What is this connector on pump wires?

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  #1  
Old 05-12-08, 06:44 PM
Z
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What is this connector on pump wires?

I am replacing the electrical conduit and water line from my well-pit to my basement. Reading one of the discussions in which someone was pulling and replacing their submersible pump, the topic of whether or not the connection splices for the pump wires should be waterproof or not came up. If I understood them correctly they were talking about where the wires from the house get spliced with the wires coming up from the pump. Someone said that splice should be waterproof.

Unfortunately for me I have an old-fashioned well-pit where my well head is about 40 inches below grade down in the pit. Sometimes I get a foot or more of rain water in the pit. (I know that is not sanitary and the pit has to go someday soon and the well head needs to be extended above ground with a pitless adapter. But I’d like to use this setup for a little while longer anyway.)

Each pump wire from the basement connects to a wire from the pump via a cylindrical object a few inches long . Almost looks like a big fuse where one wire comes in the top and the other in the bottom. These connections exist down in the well pit and are about 15 inches above the well seal. I assumed that they are just some kind of standard splicing connector that are used for pump wires. But that discussion I referred to above got me thinking. These connections probably aren’t waterproof but probably should be ! – especially given the fact that I get water down in the pit.

Does anyone know anything about those cylinder type connectors or what the story is with waterproof splices for pump wires?

Any info would be greatly appreciated!
 
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Old 05-12-08, 07:53 PM
W
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if i am thinking of what you are describing, they should look a lot like a compression coupling. it has a cap on either end with holes in it for the wire to pass through with a rubber grommet inside. when the cap is tightened it compresses the rubber squeezing it around the wire insulation, thus making it waterproof. many years ago (so i'm told) these type of connections were used to splice the motor leads with the pump wire. today, we use what are called sta kons. they are nothing more than a butt connector with a heat shrink tube around it. it is not regular heat shrink, but has an adhesive inside that when it gets heated melts arounf the wire insulation making it water tight. what you have has apparently worked this long, so i would leave it until it has to be fixed. nobody likes standing in water trying to make wires connect, live or not.
 
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Old 05-12-08, 10:16 PM
Z
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Thank you very much waterwellguy!

It certainly looks like you hit it right on the head. My house is in fact older. I used one type of heat shrink once when I spliced underground wires to my lamppost and I knew what I was seeing didn’t look anything like that. But it certainly fits the compression scheme you describe. I feel better!

As you point out this connection has worked this long - so why mess with it. I won’t. It’s funny you mention “nobody likes standing in water trying to make wires connect, live or not”. I thought it was just me! - but even though I know there is no way in the world there is any voltage there, just being around those wires standing in water makes me nervous – let alone trying to connect them.

Thanks again.
 
 

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