intermittent pressure loss


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Old 02-10-13, 12:44 PM
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intermittent pressure loss

Every once in a while we will lose pressure in the house. The pump runs, but doesn't build more than 15-20 PSI. If I shut the pump off and cycle it on and off 2-3 times pressure builds back up and works again...for a while (a day or a week). This is a 1/2hp shallow well jet pump from a dug out. Not sure of the age as I just moved in in May of 2012. It has a 19 gallon pressure tank. It cuts in at 38 psi and out at 60psi. I drained the system and checked the tank pressure. It was only at 12psi, so I adjusted it up to 34-35psi. I've never had to reprime the pump so I don't think it's a leak. Could a bad pump cause intermittent issues like this? I can't check the intake as it's got almost 2 feet of ice on the dug out right now.

Any ideas? Thanks.
 
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Old 02-10-13, 04:01 PM
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Sounds like something is blocking the intake.
When you turn off the pump (and/or cycle it a few times), the 'thing' drops off the intake end and you get water again.
Hopefully, its not a dead critter..
(mmm, critter-filtered water...).

Sorry, didnt mean to gross you out.. but it has happened.

Maybe its freezing at the intake or elbow (where the pipe exits the well) ?

Im curious about this '2 feet' of ice on top of the dug well ?? If your well cover is subject to flooding , this is not good (surface water can get in there).
 
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Old 02-10-13, 06:12 PM
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That's what I'm afraid of (blocked intake).

We don't have a well. It's a dug out (man made pond about 50 feet by 100 feet and about 30 feet deep). Being winter, it's frozen over and the ice is about 2 feet thick on it. So pulling the intake is not going to be an easy thing to do. We do have a windmill aerator to keep the water from getting black and smelly over winter. This water is not potable, but after filtering is used in the toilets, washing, ect.

Guess I'll try to cut a hole in the ice and see if I can even find the intake.

Thanks for the reply.
 
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Old 02-11-13, 05:43 AM
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Being February and sounding like a block, I will wager it is a frozen line and that could happen anywhere along the line, not just at the intake. Actually the intake is probably the only thing that you can assume is not frozen, depending on how deep it is in the water.
 
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Old 02-11-13, 04:35 PM
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Ahh.. when you said dug out, I was thinking that was just your term for a dug well. Now I see its more like a pond.
If your line from the pond to the house is all below frost level (and no one is driving over it etc), it should be ok. There would be a foot valve at the pond end, so you cant even blow air (if you could somehow create enough of it) out the line..

Maybe the local police dept might need to practice under-ice diving ? Hehe..
 
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Old 02-22-13, 04:13 PM
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I took a chance and replaced the pump. I also redid some of the plumbing. It was 1 ľ reduced to 1 inch into the pump (left that alone as new pump was a 1 inch inlet). Outlet was 1 inch down to ĺ to a tee, back up to 1 inch to the filters, Ĺ inch to the U.V. light, 1 inch out the U.V. to the house Ĺ inch copper. From the tee was Ĺ inch to the pressure tank through one of those black braided hoses Iíve seen for hot water tanks. I changed it all to 1 inch until the Ĺ inch copper in the house. When I took the black hose off the tank, I saw it was mostly collapsed (likely only about ľ inch). Since doing this we have had no pressure loss (maybe just coincidence but Iím ok with that). Also the house pressure and flow is better. At some point Iím going to switch the bath tub and shower to ĺ inch, but thatís a future project Iím hoping will increase flow (help fill the bath tub faster for the wife).

Thanks all for the help/ideas. Iím hoping this has it at least until the ice comes off and I can check the screen easier.
‚ÄčI tookWell
 
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Old 02-23-13, 04:36 AM
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Unless that black rubber hose was swollen to reduce the internal diameter, it shouldnt have choked off the water.. since the line to the pressure tank would always have some pressure holding it open. Good thing you replaced it though, probably was ready to break and cause a mess.
When we reno'd , we replaced the main line copper with 3/4". One thing I noticed, is now you can flush a toilet without noticing the diff in the shower. Im not sure if the flow rate at the tub did increase, possibly a bit. We're restricted by a 5u filter and a softener anyhow, so things do cap out at a point.
 
 

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