Irrigation pump not pulling well water


Old 09-16-16, 09:12 PM
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Location: USA
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Irrigation pump not pulling well water

Evening All:

About a week and a half ago I was turning around from grabbing something over the fence and broke a well water(irrigation) pipe that was sticking up from the ground. So the next day I had repaired it. Went to startup the pump and it wasn't pulling water from the well. Called Gould(I have the GT-10 1HP) and the tech said I need to prime the pump. Turns out that the company that installed the well system did not give me a way to add water to the pump. So Gould had said I needed to add an adapter to the discharge line with a cap to add water(I am including photos). So I proceeded to tear down the discharge line from the pump hole on up and out through the wall. I had a tee with a spigot that I needed to remove redo everything. I ran into an issue where I couldn't understand how to marry the two opposite angles of already connected pipe to other piping. Called out a few guys and they got the pipes together and they started up the pump and after letting it run for a few minutes, it pulled the water. But now after all zones are completed and the system shuts down, the next time I start it up it wont pull water. I sprayed some soapy water around the threads at the adapter at the discharge hole on the pump, and there was no apparent leak. I created a female to female adapter to attach the garden hose to the discharge spigot to send water into the pump. Just not sure if I did that correctly. When the system does run, I get full pressure. Did I mess something up badly? Many Thanks. Name:  P1010126.jpg
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Old 09-16-16, 09:32 PM
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One picture.... pulled back so the whole pump can be seen would be helpful.

Is this a shallow well system ?
The line from the pump to the bottom of the well needs to stay full of water when the pump stops running. Usually this is accomplished with a foot valve on the suction line at the bottom of the well. If the foot valve leaks the line drains down.

Many times it's inconvenient to pull the foot valve and line up so a check valve is added up top. The bad thing about that is it can be hard to manually prime the pump as you can't water to pass the check valve to fill the suction line.
Old 09-17-16, 05:44 AM
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Spraying soap solution will not help you find a leak. Since the pump is not pumping there is no pressure to create bubbles and... since your pump pumps water it does not pump air to make bubbles.

The sillcock you added to your outlet pipe will likely not help with priming especially if the irrigation system is on and calling for water. Your piping has an upside down U with the pump located on the other side from your spigot. When you feed water into the spigot it likely goes down and out to your irrigation system. Another problem is that a pocket of air is trapped on the pump side. Unless you provide a way to bleed out that pocket of air water will not be able to enter. The cap inside is still the best place to add water for priming. And, don't install a sillcock there. Remember you need to add water and allow the air to escape. That big cap when removed takes care of both at the same time. A sillcock will allow you to add water and it might work but you'll still have a big bubble of air in the system which can limit the odds of the prime working properly.

If your pump works after being primed but looses it's prime after the pump shuts off you have a leak somewhere on the suction side. It can be a bad foot/check valve or it can be a cracked or leaking fitting or pipe. Since it was working properly before you broke the pipe I suspect a leaking pipe or connection. Note that when the pump is running this leak will NOT drip water as it's on the suction side. If you're really lucky you might see a slow drip after the pump is turned off.

It looks your piping was replaced above ground but nothing was done below grade. It's possible the hit cracked something below grade, possibly where the pipe meets a fitting. So if your above grade search for a leak doesn't find anything I'd carefully dig down to inspect below ground.

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