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  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2013
    Posts
    4

    Default Well water pump.

    I have water to the house from an outside well. When we lose power, we have to reprime our well. Most likely the foot valve is not working properly. Checked with a well drilling company and there is no way to replace the foot valve. I would have to have a new well drilled. If we are home, we hook a hose to our neighbors outside faucet, to prime our well. But if we are not home and power is restored, the pump will start and since there is no water in it, the pump will run and run, probably till the motor burns out. My question is this: Is there a device that I can plug into the electric outlet, then plug the water pump into that device, so when the power is restored the pump will not start until I restart it.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Location
    New London County, CT
    Posts
    119

    Default Re: Well water pump.

    You could wire a relay with the proper rating for your pump. The relay will operate with a push button you add to the box the relay is in. When the button is operated it will latch in the on position and stay operated until power is lost.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Location
    Fayette County, Ohio
    Posts
    5,798

    Default Re: Well water pump.

    First I would call another well service company. Foot valves and pumps can be replaced without drilling new wells.

    You could put in a relay to run the well, wired so that you have a manual button to energize the relay and the relay contacts supply the power to the pump. If power goes off the relay drops out and won't reset until you push the button.

    Jack
    Be sure you live your life, because you are a long time dead.-Scottish Proverb

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Location
    Columbiana, Alabama
    Posts
    710

    Default Re: Well water pump.

    2x JLM. Also, you could do a cheaper fix by filling a barrel with water to be used for priming, if it is needed later on.
    Good Luck from Columbiana, Alabama
    Maurice Turgeon, Hidden Content

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2013
    Posts
    4

    Default Re: Well water pump.

    Quote Originally Posted by JLMCDANIEL View Post
    First I would call another well service company. Foot valves and pumps can be replaced without drilling new wells.

    You could put in a relay to run the well, wired so that you have a manual button to energize the relay and the relay contacts supply the power to the pump. If power goes off the relay drops out and won't reset until you push the button.

    Jack
    Thanks, where can I get a relay, or how can I make one? I am an accountant, so I know nothing about relays. Thanks again.

    Tom Liberto

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Location
    South*East
    Posts
    1,210

    Default Re: Well water pump.

    There is no reason for the relay. What you need is a foot valve and a new pump man.
    John

  7. #7
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    Pacific Northwet
    Posts
    1,605

    Default Re: Well water pump.

    I have to concur with the advise to contact a different service company. Foot valves can be replaced, though it's not recommended for a do-it-yourselfer because of the risk of dropping the pipe into the well -- and if that happens, you might be forced to drill a new well. Keep in mind that well pipe full of water can be very heavy*. On the other hand, if you have a driven well (or a small-bore drilled well) where the suction pipe also serves as the casing) then a new well may very well be necessary.

    You don't need a relay system. All you need is to replace the existing pressure switch with one that has a low-pressure cutoff: if the water pressure drops below a certain point, the pump will shut off (or not turn on). These switches have a control lever on the side; to restart the pump after it loses pressure, hold the switch in the "start" position until enough pressure is built for it to maintain "on."

    http://www.amazon.com/Square-FSG2J24.../dp/B000FKBY8W

    On second thought, a relay might be easier to install if your pump is connected to a 110-120 volt outlet. This device is marketed to prevent power tools from restarting, but should work for your application:

    http://www.rockler.com/product.cfm?p...9&site=ROCKLER

    Neither of those solutions solves the problem of a leaky foot valve, which wastes electricity and puts unnecessary wear on your pump. As for the foot valve: you want to make sure that's the problem and that there's not a leak somewhere else. If you can shut off the water to the house & yard, monitor the pressure gauge. If it goes down, the leak is upstream of the main valve (between the foot valve and pump, or between the pump and the main valve). If it does not go down, then you likely have a leak elsewhere.

    *In a 1-1/4" nominal diameter pipe, the most common size for single-pipe shallow-well above-ground pumps, there are 18 cubic inches of water per linear foot. That's about 0.65 pounds. Steel pipe weighs about 2.23 pounds/foot. Add those together, you get about 2.78 pounds/foot. Multiply that by the depth of your well (to the foot valve) and you'll get an approximation of the weight. So for a 20' depth, you're looking at around 55-60 pounds. On the other hand, if you have a submersible pump that's 300' down, you're looking at around 830 pounds, plus the weight of the pump and wire!
    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.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    Pacific Northwet
    Posts
    1,605

    Default Re: Well water pump.

    Edit: duplicate post.
    Last edited by Fencepost; 05-29-2013 at 12:45 PM.
    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. #9
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    Tennessee
    Posts
    1,737

    Default Re: Well water pump.

    Is this a jet pump? If so, there should be a check valve in the pump that keeps it primed. If it is just a suction pump, why wouldn't a check valve between the pump and the well work to keep it primed.

    I had a well with a jet pump about 35 years ago and I seem to recall that when this started happening, there was a ceramic disc in the pump that had to be replaced, but I forget all the details.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    May 2013
    Posts
    4

    Default Re: Well water pump.

    Quote Originally Posted by Fencepost View Post
    I have to concur with the advise to contact a different service company. Foot valves can be replaced, though it's not recommended for a do-it-yourselfer because of the risk of dropping the pipe into the well -- and if that happens, you might be forced to drill a new well. Keep in mind that well pipe full of water can be very heavy*. On the other hand, if you have a driven well (or a small-bore drilled well) where the suction pipe also serves as the casing) then a new well may very well be necessary.

    You don't need a relay system. All you need is to replace the existing pressure switch with one that has a low-pressure cutoff: if the water pressure drops below a certain point, the pump will shut off (or not turn on). These switches have a control lever on the side; to restart the pump after it loses pressure, hold the switch in the "start" position until enough pressure is built for it to maintain "on."

    http://www.amazon.com/Square-FSG2J24.../dp/B000FKBY8W

    On second thought, a relay might be easier to install if your pump is connected to a 110-120 volt outlet. This device is marketed to prevent power tools from restarting, but should work for your application:

    http://www.rockler.com/product.cfm?p...9&site=ROCKLER

    Neither of those solutions solves the problem of a leaky foot valve, which wastes electricity and puts unnecessary wear on your pump. As for the foot valve: you want to make sure that's the problem and that there's not a leak somewhere else. If you can shut off the water to the house & yard, monitor the pressure gauge. If it goes down, the leak is upstream of the main valve (between the foot valve and pump, or between the pump and the main valve). If it does not go down, then you likely have a leak elsewhere.

    *In a 1-1/4" nominal diameter pipe, the most common size for single-pipe shallow-well above-ground pumps, there are 18 cubic inches of water per linear foot. That's about 0.65 pounds. Steel pipe weighs about 2.23 pounds/foot. Add those together, you get about 2.78 pounds/foot. Multiply that by the depth of your well (to the foot valve) and you'll get an approximation of the weight. So for a 20' depth, you're looking at around 55-60 pounds. On the other hand, if you have a submersible pump that's 300' down, you're looking at around 830 pounds, plus the weight of the pump and wire!
    I purchased the

    "SafetyGate™ Professional Retrofit Restart Protection Electrical Plug" and installed it yesterday. It works great. Just what I was looking for . Thanks for your help.

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