PRV on Well/Pump System?


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Old 12-26-12, 08:40 PM
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PRV on Well/Pump System?

I recently installed a water filtration system on our well system and our water pressure seems to be acting strange. I understand there will be some pressure drop with installing a filter/softfener but specifically the pressure starts out strong but then slowly reduces over several or more seconds to like 10 PSI. In looking at my setup, I have a PRV installed after the well pressure control switch. The house is 13 years old, we recently purchased it so I don't know why this PRV was installed. Is that common? I have not seen it to be a common installation and don't know why it is there. Based on what I read on this site, it sounds like the PRV has gone bad, at least that is what the symptoms show. So my question is do you think the issue is that the PRV is bad and is it common to have it in this type of setup and if not, should I just remove it?

Thanks
 
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Old 12-26-12, 08:54 PM
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No....I don't think PRV valves are normally used in well systems because they get clogged.

We'll have to hear from the well guys.
 
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Old 12-27-12, 06:08 AM
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I have never seen a pressure reducing valve (PRV) on a well system. Are you certain that is what you have? The water pressure is controlled by the pressure switch so there is no need for a PRV. I say remove it but I'm really curious why it was installed in the first place.
 
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Old 12-27-12, 06:34 AM
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A relief valve....if that is what it is.....may have been installed in case of a pressure switch failure.

But it would unlikely cause any flow issue as it would simply be installed with a tee fitting.

But....if it's a pressure reducing valve.....then it could be an issue....a picture would help out.


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Old 12-27-12, 09:14 AM
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Pictures

Attached please find a couple of photos. Let me know what you think. Thanks
 
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Old 12-27-12, 09:31 AM
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That's definitely a pressure regulator.....factory set a 45 psi

Depending on water hardness it could be a potential choke point for mineral build-up.

It may have been installed just to deliver a constant even pressure to the house.

What's the pressure setting for your cut-in and cut-out on the pump?

There also appears to be another regulator of some sort at the pressure gauge location.


.
 
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Old 12-27-12, 09:46 AM
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Unfortunately I'm not up there now and won't be for a little while. I'll have to get back to you in a few days on that. Would that information be listed on the pressure control switch cover?
 
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Old 12-27-12, 09:53 AM
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It may be labeled but the switch could have been re-adjusted.....making the label inaccurate.

The easiest way is to just look at the gauge and watch it go through a pump cycle.

Open a tap....the gauge reading will drop and the pump will turn on at the low pressure or cut-in setting.

Close the tap.....the pressure will climb and the pump will shut off at the cut-out setting.


.
 
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Old 12-27-12, 09:59 AM
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Generally the cover of the pressure switch will say what it was set to at the factory like 20psi cut in and 40 psi cut out and is marked at 20/40. Other common pressures are 30/50 and 40/60. Pressure switches are adjustable so it may not be what's marked on the switch. Generally it's easier to just run water in the house and watch the pressure gauge. You can hear when the pressure switch clicks on and off. If the cut off pressure is higher than your PRV then we know the PRV was probably installed to keep the water pressure in the house more consistent.

Mine at home is about 30/50 and it is not very obvious as the pressure changes. If you are looking for it you can tell but nothing I would bother installing a PRV to prevent.
 
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Old 01-07-13, 03:42 PM
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Update

Ok, so I'm back from my trip. The pressure switch is a SquareD 40/60. So when we got here, the gauge read 71 psi. I started running the water. It's run for 30 minutes and the gauge is at 59 psi. I'll let it keep running until I hear the clicks. I have two large Gould tanks that are 116 gallons each so I guess it could take a while for the pump to click on. Interestingly there is a hand written note that says "high psi=75" on the pump label. I suspect the Pilot Dane's theory is correct in terms of why the PRV was installed. Once I hear the clicks I will report back.
 
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Old 01-07-13, 04:02 PM
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Interestingly there is a hand written note that says "high psi=75" on the pump label.

Tell us more about the pump?
 
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Old 01-07-13, 04:14 PM
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Sorry meant pump tank label. The note is on the Gould Pumps label.
 
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Old 01-07-13, 04:29 PM
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Ok so the pump came on at about 49 psi and shut off at 75 psi. Pressure at the faucet is only 12 psi. Must be that the PRV is clogged or failed. I suppose I should start with that wouldn't you think?
 
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Old 01-07-13, 04:50 PM
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Could you take a pic of the pump?

Yes I would think the prv is bad. You dont need it but I would like to see the pump. Is this a shallow pump???
 
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Old 01-07-13, 06:45 PM
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No, it is a submersible pump. I don't know how deep it is either. The original owner left a lot of paperwork, but I didn't see any info on the pump. I will recheck.

If I took the PRV out would upwards of 75 psi be ok to run through the system? I'm not sure why it is set so high then run through a PRV that is factory set at 45 psi.
 
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Old 01-07-13, 06:53 PM
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That pump can produce a lot of pressure if there was a failure of the pressure switch. That prv is protecting the home piping... Is it pex or something? That relief valve is of the 100 psi variety. Possibly there was an issue at one time?

I would remove the PRV myself, but if you want to put on on then get a 25-75 psi unit. Thet are preset to 50 psi so you may turn it up some if you go this route.

Install a new relief valve too.

Just thinking though, is there an irrigation system?
 
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Old 01-07-13, 07:09 PM
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The home piping looks like copper. No irrigation system.

Is the valve the thing directly below the gauge?
 
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Old 01-07-13, 07:22 PM
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Is the valve the thing directly below the gauge?
Yes if the PSI ever got over 100 then that would trip. to relieve the pressure. Most pipe then to an area that does not cause damage. That one is low so no where to pipe really. You cant go up with them.




 
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Old 01-07-13, 09:30 PM
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Mike....don't forget there is a water softener/filtration system involved too.
 
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Old 01-07-13, 09:35 PM
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Probably is not backwashing properly a 40 psi.... Whats the filtration system have to do with it?

I would remove the PRV and lower the pressure switch to 65psi. 45 psi cut in.

Probably have to drain the tanks and adjust the air in them.
 
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Old 01-08-13, 06:00 PM
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Hi guys -

Here is a link to that PRV. Thought it might help, although I guess the PRVís are kind of straight forward.

http://www.cashacme.com/_images/pdf_.../EB86_Spec.pdf

But I was wondering about the following:

1. The problem seems to have appeared after adding the filter/softener. Wouldnít that seem to be the culprit?(kind of what I think PJmax was suggesting). I was just wondering if there is a big pressure drop across the filter/softener and the PRV output pressure really hasnít changed. But the big drop is now noticeable to jlamoree thus calling attention to the PRV? But maybe thatís the wrong place to look?

2. How do you know what the output pressure of the PRV is set to? Seems like the specs say it can be set between 10-70 psi. If the output is low or even 45 psi then maybe setting it higher would help?

Iím in the process of setting up an acid neutralizing filter and Iím including a bypass valve, and gauges before and after, just because Iím afraid Iíll see a big pressure drop, and it would be hard to diagnose otherwise. Iím assuming jlamoree doesnít have a bypass setup at this time otherwise bypassing the filter/softener would seem to me to be the correct test now.
 
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Old 01-08-13, 07:07 PM
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but specifically the pressure starts out strong but then slowly reduces over several or more seconds to like 10 PSI.


That was his first post. From my experience thats typical of a faulty PRV.....

 
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Old 01-08-13, 07:20 PM
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but specifically the pressure starts out strong but then slowly reduces over several or more seconds to like 10 PSI.



That was his first post. From my experience thats typical of a faulty PRV.....




That's why you get paid the BIG bucks!

 
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Old 01-09-13, 05:49 AM
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I talked with a professional last night that is coming to look at the system on Saturday morning. I will report back what he finds. While talking over the phone, he thought the same thing that lawrosa was saying: remove the PRV and lower the cut in and cut out limits and adjust pressure in tanks.

There are bypass valves on the water softener system so we can run the test with and with out it in the system. I did talk to those guys and they said there should not be much drop across it. I think the fact that it starts out strong and then over several seconds drops seems to indicate a faulty PRV.

By the way, I have found that well pump expertise is hard to find here locally. Had to call three different guys!
 
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Old 01-09-13, 06:20 AM
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Let us know .........................

Make sure you keep that relief valve. And if old change it......
 
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Old 01-09-13, 10:41 AM
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Sounds good. Sounds like you'll be dealing with a competent honest guy. Still a few out there!LOL

That doesn't seem like a real bad job. Shouldn't cost an arm and a leg.
 
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Old 01-12-13, 09:55 AM
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Success! We took the PRV out and I wish I took a picture of the inside of it. It was totally gunked up with mud. We lowered the cut in to 45 and the cut out to about 68. Pressure upstairs is more than adequate. I can now flush the toilet and faucets still run. For whatever reason, there are two 115 gallon tanks and the only issue we experienced was that we could not raise the pressure in the tanks due to a faulty air compressor that we had access to. The pressure in each of those is 32 which he said was a little low and should be around 42. I asked if I should get another compressor that I had at my main house and fill them up and he said it wouldn't hurt anything and he thought leaving as is was ok and to just see how the pressure runs over the next few weeks. Thanks for all the help guys, I've certainly learned a lot through this and right now, we're extremely happy with the results. Job took about 2 hours and the plumber charged me 150 which I thought was very reasonable.
 
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Old 01-12-13, 12:15 PM
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Getting the air side of those pressure up to the proper level (43psi or so in this case) will reduce the cycling of the well pump. It wont change what you feel at the tap, but it's easier on the pump.
When you add air, turn off pump and open a tap nearby.. dont want water pressure fighting the air pressure while you set the value.
 
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Old 01-12-13, 05:44 PM
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Job took about 2 hours and the plumber charged me 150 which I thought was very reasonable
.



Good for you! Now there is a guy who is not greedy.
 
 

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