well pump questions


Old 01-22-13, 08:02 PM
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well pump questions

thinking of buying home. seller says well pump (not submersible) is 1 yr old.
recently, no water came on when owner tried it. he says some kids left hose on outside and pump just drained system and lost prime.
is that possible? who knows how long it ran without water. could that damage pump? shorten its life?
he checked pump; impeller was wobbly on its shaft and worn; replaced impeller and seal. says is now ok.
i am skeptical. i can't imagine a one yr old pump would have impeller wobbling.
could pump really be run until it drained tank and lost prime? would that make impeller wobble and wear? or are there other problems? could this have temporarily drained the well itself? sucked in sand or grit?
i am a 62 yr old city lady, never dealt with wells and don't want to buy a bad wellpump for my first time in rural area!
thanks for info and advice!
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Old 01-23-13, 06:33 AM
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Yes, running a pump dry for a long time can damage the seal though I've never seen one to the point of being wobbly. Generally if they get bad like that I replace the whole unit, but then it generally only happens when they have a good bit of age on them.

Could there be other problems? Yes. It's sort of like going to buy a used car and the seller says "oops, I forgot to put gas in it so we can't go for a test drive". Yes, they could be telling the truth but you don't know. Running the well dry is possible. I think it's rare in much of Florida but it is possible.
Old 01-23-13, 07:54 AM
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Let the real estate agent know your concerns and as a condition of sale you want an independent inspection by a professional well/plumbing company.....paid for by the agent or the seller. If everything is supposedly in good order.....then they have nothing to fear.....if they balk at that.....then it might be best to walk away.

You should be there to oversee the inspection.....not only to ensure it is thorough....but to educate yourself about all the system components and to better understand how it functions.

The plumber should be made aware that the system was run dry and the "wobbly" impeller was replaced. He should inspect the well, all the piping, the pump (including the impeller)....and any pressure/holding tanks. He should test the gallon per minute flow rate and how well the pump builds pressure.....as well as set the correct cut-in and cut-out pressures and check the psi of the air in the pressure tank. I would even run the pump for a while to make sure the well won't run dry during normal use.

You should get a written report that includes all the pertinent information. Of course, this won't guarantee you won't have any future problems, but it will establish the current functionality of the system so that you can move forward.

Old 01-26-13, 09:13 AM
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I would be concerned that it ran dry. What happen to all the water? Did it literally suck your aquifer dry? That would be my concern. Will you have enough water, from this well, for your needs?

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