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  1. #21
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Location
    Fayette County, Ohio
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    5,557

    Default Re: submersible pump goes on and off

    Our first private well only had a hand pump, my mothers cook stove was a wood burner, and our convenience was a path. I guess I'm showing my age again.
    Jack
    Be sure you live your life, because you are a long time dead.-Scottish Proverb

  2. #22
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
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    1,131

    Default Re: submersible pump goes on and off

    Quote Originally Posted by JLMCDANIEL View Post
    Our first private well only had a hand pump, my mothers cook stove was a wood burner, and our convenience was a path. I guess I'm showing my age again.
    Jack
    Age = depth and breadth of experience. At least I hope so cause at 58......it's about all a guy has left.

    I also know of the handpump, the path to which you refer......and when the wood supply for the stove ran low.....we burned corncobs. Please....no jokes connecting those to said path.

  3. #23
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Location
    Fayette County, Ohio
    Posts
    5,557

    Default Re: submersible pump goes on and off

    The only thing good about getting old is that you don't remember you forgot.
    Jack
    Be sure you live your life, because you are a long time dead.-Scottish Proverb

  4. #24
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Posts
    1,131

    Default Re: submersible pump goes on and off

    Quote Originally Posted by JLMCDANIEL View Post
    The only thing good about getting old is that you don't remember you forgot.
    Jack
    I wouldn't worry about that too much if I were you. You seem to be doin' just fine (and then some), Jack.

  5. #25
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Posts
    1

    Default Re: submersible pump goes on and off

    Most likely the "Goulds" box is a pump control that prevents your pump from burning up if the water level drops. It reacts to current loads, so it is possible that your pump doesn't start up correctly. Most submersibles have electronic starters that shift from the start winding to the run winding. The can go bad the pump will run on the start winding, but may eventually over heat. If the well goes dry (water level drops below the pump) the pump will run over speed and draw more current than normal, which would cause the pump control in the Goulds box to shut it off for a preset time and then come back on. It would repeat this until the pressure switch turns off the power.

    You need to look in the well and see where your water level is and check the current draw of the pump. If all else fails pull the pump control out and take it to a local Goulds dealer and have it checked.

  6. #26
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    Pacific Northwet
    Posts
    1,356

    Default Re: submersible pump goes on and off

    Lee S may be right about the control box monitoring the current. I don't really have any experience with these. However, there is one point I must take issue with.

    Lee says that an unloaded motor (as in a well run dry) will draw more current. It is true that an unloaded motor will spin faster*, but a motor under load will draw more current than one that is unloaded. Otherwise, we'd all be trying to figure out ways to bog down our motors almost to the stalling point, in order to save electricity. It's a simple matter of energy used being proportional to work done.

    (*Some motors do have speed governors which ensure a constant speed under load. Probably not found on water pumps.)
    The "Senior Member" designation under my name doesn't mean I know a lot, it just means I talk a lot.I've been a DIYer since I was 12 (thanks, Dad!). I have read several books on various home improvement topics. I do not have any current code books I can refer to. I was an apprentice plumber for two years.

  7. #27
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Posts
    4

    Default Re: submersible pump goes on and off

    I have a submersible pump in my well. It's a three-wire pump. It's clicking on and off for a few seconds just like the well with the problem being discussed here. Was a solution ever discovered?

  8. #28
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    Pacific Northwet
    Posts
    1,356

    Default Re: submersible pump goes on and off

    Quote Originally Posted by gregorific View Post
    I have a submersible pump in my well. It's a three-wire pump. It's clicking on and off for a few seconds just like the well with the problem being discussed here. Was a solution ever discovered?
    How far away from your pressure tank is the switch? If the distance between the switch and the tank is too far, the startup surge can exceed the cutout pressure (then it shuts off and the pressure immediately drops back to or below the cutin pressure). Moving the switch closer to the tank allows the tank to act as a "surge suppressor" for the water flow preventing the short-cycling.
    The "Senior Member" designation under my name doesn't mean I know a lot, it just means I talk a lot.I've been a DIYer since I was 12 (thanks, Dad!). I have read several books on various home improvement topics. I do not have any current code books I can refer to. I was an apprentice plumber for two years.

  9. #29
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Posts
    4

    Default Re: submersible pump goes on and off

    Thanks for the reply. I'm unemployed and money is tight so this will have to be a DIY job. The check valve is only 2 feet from the tank. It has a shrader valve in it and it squirts water if it's depressed while the pump is running. The pump is not the problem either. I have a unique plumbing configuration and am able to shut off the water to the tank (8 year old Well Mate WM9 with a good bladder)and open another valve that takes water away from the house to an old pipe that runs down to a lake. That pipe is sealed at the end. When the valve to that pipe is open, the pump will run constantly without shutting off until the old line is filled, so i know the pump is working fine.

    I suspect the problem is either the check valve or the fact that air got into the lines through a break in the old galvanized pipe between the well and the house. The pipe has been repaired and is being replaced because it's 55 years old, but when it leaked air must've gotten into the lines.

    I fixed it yesterday and then emptied the tank to get the muddy water out. I banged on the side of the checkvalve with a hammer too. When I turned the pump back on and primed it, everything was working fine. The pump only ran when the water in the house was on and it didn't turn on and off constantly like it had been doing. THEN...later that day another leak sprung in the old galvanized waterline. I patched that one and tried to do everything I had done the day before to get the muddy water out of the tank but the pump is back to clicking on and off (and I mean it clicks on for 1 second and then clicks off)every few seconds when the water is running.

    So what do you think? Is that old check valve clogged with sediment or simply malfunctioning? Every other component is working correctly or has been recently replaced. THANKS!

  10. #30
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    Tennessee
    Posts
    1,381

    Default Re: submersible pump goes on and off

    I had a problem with my check valves once. Mine has two, one near the tank and one either built into the pump or located just above it, and on top of that, the pipe between the well head and the pump had a crack. In my case, the pump cycled on and off whether the water was on or off in the house.

    As soon as the pressure built up enough to shut off the pressure switch, the water would drain back into the well and the pressure switch would come back on. The on cycles were about a minute long instead of the one second you describe, the off would only be a few seconds that it took for the pressure to drop as the tank drained back in to the well. I put in a new check valve at the tank as a temporary repair until the well guy could get out and repair the whole thing. The check valve I got did not have the port for the gauge so the well guy had to replace it along with just about everything between the tank and the pump.

    Because of the crack in the line to the pump (underground somewhere in the well casing), I got a lot of air into the water lines of the house. Every time the pump came on, it pumped air before it started pumping water.

    I hope some of this helps you. If the pump is not cycling when the water is not in use, then I don't think your check valve is bad. Even if it is bad, I don't think it is causing the 1 second cycling, that sounds electrical to me. My submersible does not have the start capacitor above ground as the well described above has, maybe mine doesn't even have a start capacitor as my well in only 90' deep and the pump is only 40' down. It does not need the power required by a pump that is several hundred feet down.

    It would help if when the pump is cycling that you pull the cover off the pressure switch and see if the points are opening and closing or if the pump is cycling while the points remain closed.

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