Well always on with low pressure at faucet.

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  #1  
Old 03-10-18, 04:21 PM
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Well always on with low pressure at faucet.

Hi everyone, David here.

This is the current situation. Very little water flowing at the faucets. Well gauge reads almost zero, maybe a couple of psi. Bladder tank pressure is set to 38 psi or as close as I can get it in accordance with the instructions for establishing the tank pressure. Starter capacitor and relay in control box have been replaced with no changes. The pressure switch was changed also with no changes. The switch is a square D (40-60) psi switch. Input voltage (L1, L2)is 243 volts. The voltage on motor windings (R, Y) is 233 volts. The Motor winding ohms (R, Y) is 23.5 ohms. The pressure gauge was damaged so I replaced it. I shut off the valve leaving the Bladder tank leading to the filters and house to isolate the house from the well. No change. The Bladder tank never changes from 38 psi and does not sound like much water is in it. So tonight I cut the electrical power to the well so it would not continuously run overnight.

I have included pictures to help you understand the equipment I have. The well was established about 1962 as best as I can find out. I don't know what brand the pump and motor are, as they are submerged into the well about 80 feet down. I hope this is enough information. If not just ask for what you need and I can provide. Thanks so much for your help. I don't want to pull the pump up but I can if it is necessary.

Thanks again,
David

 
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  #2  
Old 03-10-18, 08:12 PM
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Welcome to the forums... David.

That is a Franklin 2801054915 submersible pump control box.
It's designed to run a 3 wire 1/2 hp 240V 1PH motor.

Normally the pump control and the pump are a set which means your pump should be a Franklin.

The pressure tank has no effect on getting water. It only stabilizes and cushions the system pressure.
Can you hear/tell if the pump is running ?
If you open the faucet in the picture... does any water come out ?
 
  #3  
Old 03-10-18, 08:31 PM
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Hi, pjmax,
Thanks for the response. When I put my cane on the wellhead I can feel a slight vibration indicating that the pump is running. Also, when I open the faucet at the well (shown in the pic above) I get some water out in a steady stream. This is not a full pressure stream mind you. At the faucet indoors and the toilet I get a dribble but there is water. The sink in the laundry room which is piped directly off the hot water heater gives fairly decent pressure but still not full pressure.
 
  #4  
Old 03-10-18, 10:34 PM
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Unfortunately it appears to be a problem with the pump itself. Either not enough water to pump out or the pump is worn out.
 
  #5  
Old 03-10-18, 11:49 PM
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Is the pump a separate bolt-on unit to the Motor? Could it just be a pump replacement or an impeller or seal?
 
  #6  
Old 03-11-18, 05:20 AM
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What is confusing is that you say the sink in the laundry room has good pressure. If you had a pump problem the pressure would be low everywhere. But if your pressure is low everywhere you could have a bad pump or there is a water leak somewhere. One test is to make sure nothing is using water and turn the circuit breaker to the well off. Then look at the pressure gauge. If it drops then the water is going somewhere and it could be a leak.

Which piping goes to your house? The white PVC with the filters or the galvanized steel near the pressure switch?
 
  #7  
Old 03-11-18, 07:22 AM
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Sometimes the heat of the water heater can push some water out of that tank giving the impression of water pressure. It would be something that is relatively short lived, especially if the hot water tank is shut off.
 
  #8  
Old 03-11-18, 05:00 PM
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Update

Today's Update,

I did everything that I could per the suggestions. Thank you all for such a fantastic set of troubleshooting tips. In the end, I concluded that the pump needed to be pulled and the pipe and pump inspected. I pulled the pump. 80 feet is a long way for a 60-year-old cripple but My wife and I got it done. The pipe looked good all the way down. The head of the pump is broken. Almost looks like someone did it on an earlier service and tried to fix it with maybe a bondo or J.B. Weld product. Needless to say, nothing is permanent. I used a product called PC-11 for marine applications. Have lots of that kind of stuff in the drawer from other projects. It says I can put into service immediately after application and it takes overnight to cure. I will leave it out of the well until tomorrow and give it a chance to cure before I put it to test. A new pump is over $500 for the Franklin pump so I am hoping this will last for a few years at least.
 
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  #9  
Old 03-11-18, 05:04 PM
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The white PVC going to the filter leads to the house. I think the pressure from the hot water heater is why that sink is higher than the others. Read my update post to see what I found out and did today. let me know if you have any suggestions.
 
  #10  
Old 03-11-18, 05:48 PM
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You basically had low pressure everywhere throughout the system. Some faucets may have allowed more water flow giving the illusion of higher pressure. Once you get the pump up and running your pressure should be back to normal.

I see you do have two filters next to the well. Those filters supply the house and need to be changed routinely to keep the house water pressure up.

Hard to tell in the picture what actually has been done. It looks like the water connection fitting was the issue. Good luck on the repair and keep in mind that it is only temporary.
 
  #11  
Old 03-12-18, 07:34 AM
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Dave

(One of these days I will have to pull my pump. Its at about 80 feet like yours.)

Are you saying that you see a split(s) at the pump head and that is a leak(s) which caused very low pressure?

To me it just looks like surface deterioration where metal flaked off and some surface rust. But you are there and have a much better view and Im no expert for sure.

Should you test that pump somehow before you drop it down the well? Just a thought.
 
  #12  
Old 03-12-18, 10:13 AM
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This is a long shot, but...if no improvement, ask about a CSV or constant supply valve. It will keep your pump from cycling endlessly when water flows.
 
  #13  
Old 03-12-18, 04:21 PM
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Hey, let me just you all are great for giving me such useful suggestions. The current situation is this. In answer to a question, the pic does not show the fissures that appear to go through the pump head. About 3 inches of the head is just deteriorated away and these little fissures and pits look like they go all the way through. With the pump removed there is, of course, no pressure to test my theory, however, I can't find anything else wrong. I hate to drop it back down and not have solved the problem. So, I put this PC-11 marine grade epoxy paste in it and left it overnight. This afternoon about noon or so I could still move the epoxy paste with my finger. I called the company and spoke with a tech. The tech told me that was not right as it should be hard as a rock. We concluded that the product was too old as it had been in my shop for over 10 years. Who would know... lol. I found another product called J. B. Water Weld. I called the company and they assured me that it would work. Off to the store to get a fresh batch this time. It is supposed to cure in one hour, however, my experiences have taught me that I should leave it overnight. I have been without a well and water for two days so one more won't matter. I will check it after dinner and see if they are right. Regardless I will leave it until about noon tomorrow. I will give you all another update when I get the pump installed or find out it did not solve my problem. Thanks again so much, for all the help provided.
 
  #14  
Old 03-12-18, 04:29 PM
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I wanted to put it into a trash can with water. But guess what? I have no water. I Live pretty far from neighbors. Any Ideas?
 
  #15  
Old 03-12-18, 04:43 PM
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Putting it in a trash can wouldn't be much of a valuable test. It would move water but you'd have no idea if it was normal. It's quite a different thing to pump up 80' into a pressurized system.
 
  #16  
Old 03-13-18, 05:52 AM
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Applying JB Weld over old, failed epoxy is not going to hold well unless you cleaned the snot out of the pump to remove all traces of the old epoxy. What you might end up with is hardened JB Weld on top of the old mushy epoxy. It might hold when you poke at it on the surface but when you put 80 psi water pressure underneath trying to push the repair off it might not hold. This would be a good time to consider getting a new pump.
 
  #17  
Old 03-16-18, 04:49 PM
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Update. Well Working

First, Thanks to everyone for all your suggestions. The Pump was frozen. I am not sure how it even got the trickle to go 80 feet up and get to the faucet. I replaced the Pump, which was no easy chore for a novice. The system now pumps to 60 psi and holds with no leaks. There is a small drip at the journal where the pump pipe connects to the system. I put Teflon tape on it but can't get the drip to stop. Any suggestion would be appreciated. So, with water running the system is about 40 psi and the pressure at the faucet is better than it has been in years. Thanks, everyone.
 
  #18  
Old 03-16-18, 05:33 PM
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There is a small drip at the journal where the pump pipe connects to the system.
Not sure what you are describing there.
 
  #19  
Old 03-16-18, 08:44 PM
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Originally Posted by PJmax View Post
Not sure what you are describing there.
I may have the wrong name. If you look at pic number 5 in my original post. There is a straight pipe coming from the top of the wellhead. There is a connection that connects it to the main system. That first joint has a small drip in it. I thought it was called a journal but I could be wrong.
 
  #20  
Old 03-16-18, 09:09 PM
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You're talking about where the connection comes apart by loosening the nut ?
That's a union.
 
  #21  
Old 03-16-18, 10:37 PM
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Ok, thanks for the correction. The "Union" has a small drip coming from it. I put Teflon tape on it and cleaned it with a wire brush. It's about as tight as I can get it. Not sure what to do with it next.
 
  #22  
Old 03-17-18, 07:54 AM
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Dave-

I’m no expert but unions have always given me problems also. You have to make sure the surfaces that mate inside the union are perfectly clean and smooth. No dirt or any substance on those surfaces whatsoever. I’ve had one already where somehow the smooth surfaces pitted and there was no way to stop the leak. So I just replaced the union.

Also, you have to make sure those surfaces line up perfectly when you tighten the nut. If they are out of line just a little bit you will get the drip-drip-drip.

Sometimes if you tighten up just a little bit more, with a lot of muscle and wrenches, that will stop the drip.

I’ve already cheated and used Teflon tape and Rectorseal#5 (over the tape) on the threaded part and actually put some extra Rectorseal#5 all around the outside of the union (but cleaned it up a little bit to look neater) and that stopped the drip.

If nothing works you might be better off buying a new union. I believe it’s the case that sometime those unions aren’t that well made and you will be banging your head against the wall trying to get it to seal properly.
 
  #23  
Old 03-20-18, 09:49 AM
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Occasionally, if you loosen the union...just a hair, it might stop the drip. And, as #22 says....make sure the two mating surfaces are really clean.
 
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