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Retired Moderator
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Discussion Starter #1
OK, I used to pride myself in private well repairs. I especially loved jet pumps. Yes, they are a bit tricky to get just right, but you cant beat them in my opinion.

Last night I had a call to replace a kitchen sink and faucet. Its at a friend of a friends house so the HO had the sink and faucet. I installed them and when I turned the water on the pressure was piss poor. My first thought was the aerator. I removed it and the water saver and still low pressure. I went out and tried the hose. So low wide open only sprayed water about 2 feet away from the end of the hose with no attachment on it. So I started checking:

220 volt submersible pump
110 on each leg at the switch and out to the pump
4.5 amps draw on each leg (So I know there is no broken wire at the pump)
Replaced the pressure gauge and it reads 50 pounds.
Pump comes on at 30 pounds
Goes off at 50
Checked the line under the pressure switch, is all clear
Replaced switch thinking resistance in contacts.
has a 1" 180 PSI poly pipe feeding the tank tee (Black roll pipe)
I built up pressure in the ballast tank, then removed the switch, the gauge, the plug ahead of the check valve and all have strong pressure. So I know the check valve and the ballast tank is working good. I then built up pressure and removed the rear plug from the check valve and nothing, so that confirms the valve is holding good.
Removed the whole house filter and bypassed it, still poor pressure in house.
Checked the lines, she has 3/4 copper main with each fixture tied directly into the 3/4 main, no reduction in pipe size at all.
Held the switch closed and maxed out the pump at 70 PSI. Go into the house, same thing, no pressure difference.
Checked the air pressure in the ballast, with zero pressure on the water side I have 28 lbs on top of the tank which is right, the tanks air pressure with no water pressure is set at 2 lbs lower than the pumps cut in pressure

I think some how there is a restriction somewhere, but thats ususally in galvanized pipes, or a broke valve someone turned off and when you turn it back on it dont open fully.

The outside faucet only gets 28 lbs of pressure even though everything reads normal.

Any thoughts??
 

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It sounds like you covered all of the bases. When you check the pressure at the outside faucet, do you get a small spurt of high pressure and then 28 psi or is it consistently low? the reason I ask is that that small spurt of high pressure with a sustained lower pressure would tell me there is a volume problem. Then you would be 100% sure that there was a dropped gate, partially closed valve or problem with the filter head.

Is the well tank filling up in a timely manner? If not, there might be sediment clogging the pump screen in the actual well.

I have the amp draws for a couple of Goulds submersible motors.

1/2HP 230 volt 2 wire 6amp max
3/4HP " " 8 amp max

1/2HP 230 Volt 3 wire Yellow 6.0
Black 6.0
Red 0

3/4HP 230 Volt 3 wire Yellow 8.0
Black 8.0
Red 0

The amp draw should be within 10% of the ratings so on a 3/4HP, I may question the readings if I has 4.5 amps.

You can also check the resistance across the start and main windings if the spirit moves you as well:)

Sure sounds like a partial blockage, but it never hurts to check the health of the pump:)
 

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Discussion Starter #3
My thought too about the pump, but the pump will fill the ballast tank to 50 psi, but it dont seem to be getting to the faucets. I have to go back tomorrow and I will search for another cut off valve or filter further down the line.
 

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new nickname:Quaker State
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check the gate valve or stop coming directly from the tank. I think we had a thread earlier about faulty gates. Let us know what you find.
 

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new nickname:Quaker State
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Ok. It just dawned on me what happened to me a few years back. I did this new house that had existing well. No pressure. After exausting all efforts to come up with a solution, this is what I found... The 1 1/4 x 3/4 galv. bushing coming out of the tank just ahead of the gate was corroded with rust. I took the gate off with tank empty. Turned power on and water trickled from the nipple that the gate was hooked to. I got my metal probe rod and shoved it through the nipple all the way inside the tank and water gushed out. I removed the bushing and it was rusted almost completely shut. Maybe thats what you got too.
 

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This is a stretch but, bear with me.

You mention black poly pipe to the house. Maybe, just maybe, this pipe was on the verge of collapse from age, ground pressure, whatever. Bill comes along and shuts off the water and relieves the pressure. Bam!(as Emeril would say) the pipe collapses or is smashed to the point it will only deliver a small amount of water. Due to the fact that the pressurized water inside it was holding it open.

Feel free to call me crazy(like a fox):thumbup:
 

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Hey Bill
Protech's response make good sense to me and is definately worth checking out. But it's like this to me..
If the system was operating at satisfactory pressures prior to any shut down to make changes or modifications, my inner ear would be pointing me to a valve issue. Gates are notorious for failing over time. I don't know the valve configeration but I would surely explore any and all that were shut during your time there. By the way.....was the pressure good before you started or was it shut down when you arrived? I always make sure before doing anything, from plumbing to heating, that things are normal before I start. Prevents all the people pout there from saying "it was ok before you worked on it"
good luck
TL
 

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Hey Bill
Protech's response make good sense to me and is definately worth checking out. But it's like this to me..
If the system was operating at satisfactory pressures prior to any shut down to make changes or modifications, my inner ear would be pointing me to a valve issue. Gates are notorious for failing over time. I don't know the valve configeration but I would surely explore any and all that were shut during your time there. By the way.....was the pressure good before you started or was it shut down when you arrived? I always make sure before doing anything, from plumbing to heating, that things are normal before I start. Prevents all the people pout there from saying "it was ok before you worked on it"
good luck
TL
When homeowners pull the ole "It was fine until you worked on it" I pull out the ole "If it wasn't broke then why did you call me?" Or "I cant warranty anything I didn't install no matter when it fails" Then I get my check and mark that one down as "never go back";)
 

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What did you find out Bill?
 

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Discussion Starter #11
The stops under the sinks and shower were cloged with debris. I cleaned them out and now there is descent pressure. The washer machine screen was so cloged it was a wonder any water got through
 

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Glad you fixed the problem
Any time a main is shut off, especially in older systems, the possibility of crud showing up in restricted areas like sink shut offs or aireators is great.
Even crud busting loose from old gates can cause problems.
Thanks for sharing your experience with us Bill, info always comes in handy
tl
 
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