Submersible pump life expectancy

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  #1  
Old 04-11-13, 09:54 AM
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Submersible pump life expectancy

This may be more of an opinion question then anything.
A few weeks ago, I found out a bit of information about my well and am now wondering what the expected (or normal) life expectancy of a submersible well pump would be.

The well/pump was installed in 1985. The well is 185ft deep.

Any guesses or ideas on how long a pump should last?
Should I start setting aside change for a replacement pump in the next few years?
 
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Old 04-12-13, 05:51 PM
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"Should I start setting aside change for a replacement pump in the next few years?"

Of course. Everyone should have some emergency money set aside to replace the pump. In your case, yours is overdue. My family always bought Sears brand pumps and they always got ~20 years out of them. Others here have said 15 is the average life.
 
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Old 04-12-13, 06:23 PM
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I built my house about 11 years ago. A few years ago I bought a well pump and connectors and all the tools and misc. stuff needed to install it and keep them at home (as opposed to my tools that may get left at the shop in town). I can pull and replace a pump in record time the key is having all the stuff necessary to do the work. I'm also a bit of a preparedness freak so take my spare parts obsession with a grain of salt.

But honestly me buying a replacement pump at 8 years is extreme. I expect my name brand stainless steel pump to go at least 15 or 20 years. In my rental houses I have some 20+ year old pumps still going strong while I've had to replace some in as little as 6 or 7 years. The shorter lived pumps were the store brand from big home centers and in their defense the pumps that failed early are in difficult wells with sediment and acidic water that is eating the steel well casings.
 
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Old 04-18-13, 07:15 PM
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hmmm... I was wondering the same thing. Only mine is more of a pain....
1989 well. Know no info other than my well is right around 800ft deep as my neighbors house WAS 750ft then went another 20ft and I am above him on a tall hill and he was told by the well driller that all the wells on our hill are very deep.

I really dont want to have to replace my pump. It is doing very well tho... 45psi cut in and 70 psi cut out....
 
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Old 04-18-13, 09:20 PM
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I had mine replaced last year and it said 1985 on it. I have an in-line filter, and a week or so before it went out I noticed an oily substance in the filter. I suspect this was from the pump, and the seals went bad on it. Just a guess though.
 
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Old 04-19-13, 04:11 AM
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hmmm... I was wondering the same thing. Only mine is more of a pain....
1989 well. Know no info other than my well is right around 800ft deep as my neighbors house WAS 750ft then went another 20ft and I am above him on a tall hill and he was told by the well driller that all the wells on our hill are very deep.

I really dont want to have to replace my pump. It is doing very well tho... 45psi cut in and 70 psi cut out....
That will be a pain to pull that pump. I know mine is going to be a pain when I pull it up to see what is what. Going to lay down a large tarp of sheet of plastic to put the wires and hoses on so I don't get them dirty or tangled.

I had mine replaced last year and it said 1985 on it. I have an in-line filter, and a week or so before it went out I noticed an oily substance in the filter. I suspect this was from the pump, and the seals went bad on it. Just a guess though.
Good to know I have something to potential to watch for.
I won't know for sure the age of my pump until I pull it. I'm suspecting it's original from the well being sunk, but who knows.
 
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Old 04-19-13, 05:36 AM
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You're going to pull a 800' pump yourself? I think your pipe is full of water since there are several check valves in it. Every 75'(?) something like that. All that water is a tremendous amount of weight.

You can calculate the weight by using the volume of a tube formula.

If you do this, take pictures and charge admission, 'cause I can't remember even hearing of someone pulling their own pump over ~200' deep without special equipment. Don't try a tripod, they are not stable enough. Four legs and a chain-fall is all I can suggest.

added:
I saw a farmer pull his pump once with a backhoe on his tractor and some chain. I forget what he used for a clamp and I can't remember how deep it was. He just pulled some up, then slid down the chain.
 
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Old 04-19-13, 05:54 AM
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Vey,
I'm assuming you where talking to the other guy. I'm only 185ft deep, with a water table at 15ft, I'm highly doubtful my pump is removely close to the bottom.
 
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Old 04-19-13, 06:13 AM
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Oh, okay. I got confused. Still, calculate the weight.
 
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Old 04-19-13, 06:22 AM
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Oh, okay. I got confused. Still, calculate the weight.
I have the calcs for in water weight vs. outside the water weight floating somewhere around this computer. Will locate that and see what the numbers say.

I should note that the leash attached to the pump is only ~1/2" braided nylon, so I can not be dealing with huge weights. I'm suspecting that the pump is not too far down. If I'm correct, I'll need to get some more info on how to properly extend stuff and send that sucker down deeper to hopefully cleaner water.
 
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Old 04-19-13, 06:42 AM
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I had to replace the well pump on a hose that was only about 8 years old. It failed due to short cycling because of a bad pressure tank. I helped the service guy pull it as I knew nothing about wells then. (I do now because I helped him )
He had a handy tool, that looked home made, that looked similar to a flat frying pan with a slot cut into it that size of the pipe going down into the well. When pulling the pump and pipe out he would pull 20' until he got to a coupling. Then slipped the tool over the pipe, and set it on the well head, so he could take a break each 20' rather then trying to pull the whole 180' in one shot.
 
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Old 04-19-13, 07:04 AM
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I did a quick and dirty calc and I'm not worried. I'll still have the local well digger over to assist the first time just so I have someone that knows what they are doing on hand. It'll cost me a couple beer some saturday afternoon once the weather cooperates.

Here is the quick and dirty calc info.

- ~1.5" pipe
- calc using pipe inside diameter of 1.5" (will be smaller, but for estimating)
- Current water level ~10 to 15ft from surface
- weight of water displaced (based on 1.5") is ~0.882lb per foot in air
- weight of water displaced (based on 1.5") is ~0lb per foot in in water
- Assumed magin of error (pump weight, electical, anything heavier then the water) ~10lb
- 15ft x 0.882lb + 10lb = 23.23lb


Again, this is all ball park figures. I highly doubt the pump is remotely close to the bottom, so I'm not expecting to deal with ~180ft worth of piping and cables.
 
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Old 04-19-13, 08:31 AM
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I have only pulled wells with poly piping and anything less than 200 is doable by myself. Having a helper to assist dealing with the pipe after it's out of the well is a big and can make it a pretty quick & easy albeit messy job.
 
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Old 04-19-13, 09:30 AM
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I have only pulled wells with poly piping and anything less than 200 is doable by myself. Having a helper to assist dealing with the pipe after it's out of the well is a big and can make it a pretty quick & easy albeit messy job.
That was my thoughts. If I don't have the well guy there, it would be a solo adventure for me.
 
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Old 04-19-13, 01:45 PM
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My calculations show that 100 feet of pipe equals 2121.39 cubic inches. 2121.39 cubic inches of water weighs 77 pounds.
 
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Old 04-19-13, 06:11 PM
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I was using one of the flow manuals I borrowed from a mechanical designer in the office. I was also calculating the weight once the pipe is out of the water as the water in the pipe in the water doesn't technically add any weight to the pull. If I have 15 foot of air at the top of the well, that is where the weight comes into play, not when it's submerged.
 
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Old 04-21-13, 02:33 PM
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Yeahbut,
If you have check valves, then the water stays in the pipe until you pull it up and empty it out.
 
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