O,o! My well isn't working


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Old 05-12-11, 04:30 AM
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O,o! My well isn't working

I work up this morning and I have no water. The pressure gage says "0". What should I check before I call the plumber? The pump is in the well, outside. Usually I can hear it running a slight bit by the vibration through the inlet line. But today, nothing. I looked at the breakers. They are not tripped. Maybe the breakers went bad. But there are 2 breakers. Could the both be bad? I'll leave work early today to see if I can figure something out. Any ideas?
 
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Old 05-12-11, 05:54 AM
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Hi.

1. Breakers may not look tripped. You have to move them to the off position, then on. Try that.

2. If that dont work, the the pressure switch could be defective. Try tapping the switch with your fingers. This is a little box near the well tank.

If none of the above, then you will need to do some testing.

This is High voltage and you can be seriously injured or killed, so use caution. We dont know your skillset, and it may be left to a profesional.

Let us know.

Mike NJ
 
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Old 05-12-11, 09:25 AM
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I checked the voltage to the pressure switch. 230v (actually 240 something). Pressure is 0 and points are closed. Volts to pump=o.
There is a box on the wall above the tank where power goes in and then comes out and goes to the well. I opened the box. It says in there "control box" and "overload protector". There is a very large capacitor inside. The end of the capacitor, where the wires connect, is detached and the terminal, inside, is disconnected. Was this an overload?
I have included a picture of the box on the wall, the front cover with the capacitor and a closeup of the capacitor, which you can hardly make out..
Comments please.


 
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Old 05-12-11, 09:33 AM
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Looks like the capacitor took a dump.

The question is why did the capacitor take a dump? They do this due to age, or something may be going wrong in the pump windings.

I would get the #,s off the cap and replace with one that is identical.

If the new one does the same thing after some time, then its time to check the pump.

it also could be that the well tank is shot, and the pump was cycling too often. Its a start cap and may not of had time to charge properly, and overheated.

Again, High voltage. Be careful.


Mike NJ
 
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Old 05-12-11, 12:31 PM
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Guy at electric store said that it may have got hit by lightning last night. We had a storm. I bought a new one. $7. Holy crap!!! This is MY day.
Works fine now.
 
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Old 05-12-11, 01:33 PM
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My pessimism says wait a couple of days.

Mike NJ
 
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Old 05-12-11, 05:22 PM
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The only thing that will blow the top off a capacitor like that is high voltage.
Even a locked up pump motor will only melt the inside.
I am with the lightning cause. Even if it struck a pole down the street, it can still travel down the wire, and go straight to the well.
The best breaker in the word can not stop lightning.
 
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Old 06-06-11, 10:48 AM
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I wish all OPs would post back with follow ups. In this case, I'd like to know if the capacitor held up after a few days.
I went through this a few months after we moved out here. Thanksgiving day with 20 people in the house, the pump died just as the post-dinner clean up began.
First thing I did was run 150 feet of garden hose to the neighbors outdoor faucet.

Called the well guy. (same one who installed well 20 years earlier. He said it was probably a capacitor but expressed concerns that a bad pump may have caused the cap to burn out. I went out to his place on Thanksgiving night and picked up a new cap. We had water for about two hours then lost it again.

The well man and his team were out our house with their well rig by mid morning the day after Thanksgving. They pulled and replaced the pump.

So, yes, I'm wondering if the cap did the trick for the OP.
 
 

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