Low fluctuating water pressure after power outage, Pump issue?

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Old 06-27-13, 04:46 AM
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Low fluctuating water pressure after power outage, Pump issue?

We lost power at our home a week ago for about an hour, the next morning we woke up to limited water pressure. We've had this problem before, but it was caused by scale/sediment, and it would fix itself. However, this time it did not fix itself, thus a different problem this time.
I thought at first it might have been a clogged inline filter for our culligan system, checked that and cleaned it; still no go.
After this, I thought maybe it was the pressure switch, however, I can get the pressure switch to trigger by moving the lever, however, the system can't build a high enough pressure on its own to trip it. The gauge next to the pressure tank will not read higher than 30-35psi, even in the morning before any water usage.
I tried cycling the breakers and power switches, and I could hear/feel the pump shutting on and off so it is working, I'm just not sure its running at full capacity, and thus the reason for low pressure??
Another odd thing is that sometime the pressure appears to be better (not 100%) for a short period of time, then it drops down to worthless piss stream again, excuse my language.

Does anyone have any input/advice on this issue??
 
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Old 06-27-13, 08:30 AM
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You mention manually turning on the pressure switch. Will the pressure switch turn the pump on automatically when they system pressure drops? If not then you may have a bad pressure switch or clogged pipe nipple to the switch. If the switch reliably turns the pump on when needed then you may have a leak or pump going bad.

Make sure no water is being used anywhere. No toilets filling... Turn off the breaker to the pump and watch the pressure gauge on your system. Does the pressure stay the same or does it drop over time? If the pressure drops you've got a leak somewhere. If the pressure holds solid but the pump can't build pressure to the point it shuts off you could have a worn out pump that needs replacing.
 
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Old 06-27-13, 12:10 PM
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I mentioned that I tripped the pressure switch; this turns off the pump. If I shut off the power to the pump, the pressure does drop.
 
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Old 06-27-13, 01:31 PM
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If you have a crawl space or basement it's time for a look. It should be pretty easy to tell if you have a leak there. Under the house is generally easiest to check so start there.

Next walk your yard between where your pressure tank is and the well looking for wet or soft spots. In Michigan you line is buried pretty deep so it's doubtful if it will erupt at the surface. Here in NC they only have to be 12" down so leaks often erupt on the surface.

Hopefully your well head is above ground. If so try to remove the cap or vent and put your ear to it when the well pump is running and see if you hear water splashing or spraying.

Since you said the pump has a hard time getting the system up to pressure I'm leaning towards a leak but the dropping pressure when the pump is off can also be caused by a bad check or foot valve. This would let the water drain back into the well but that generally does not prevent it from developing full pressure.
 
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