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 Well, pump, tank, water quality, plmbg & electric
 Tanks in general
 water shuts off
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dmowmow
New Member

6 Posts

Posted - Aug 13 2005 :  12:20:49 PM  Show Profile  Visit dmowmow's Homepage Send dmowmow a Private Message  Reply with Quote
This is another attempt to describe my problem.
I'll try to give all the details to try to help with the solution.

The well & pump worked fine except when we would turn on too many faucets, like watering the lawn, then the water would shut off. I tried adjusting the pressure settings now it shuts off more often.
I replaced the pressure switch to increase the settings from 30/50 to a 40/60. It's about 150' from the well to the pressure tank & 200' to the house with a 1" line. To keep the pressure up at the house I started the pressure settings at 50/70 with 48lbs in the pressure tank. The pump works alittle harder getting to 70lbs but would go higher but the pressure relief valve would leak. The pump works fine for awhile, even days, then shuts off, often at night when there is no water usage. I've tried adjusting the pressure just about every way I know how but it still shuts off.
I've used an accurate pressure gage to check the pressure tank when the pump is shut off. The tank is empty and light. Adjusted the cut-on and cut-off by watching the pressure gage on the pipe.

When the water shuts off the pipes are filled with air when we turn the pump back on. I'm wondering why the water shuts off when there is no usage, and if the air in the lines effect the pressure settings. I adjusted the pressure settings to 55/70 to give more room for the switch to click on. It still works fine then shuts off.

I bought a pressure switch with an auto shut-off option in case the well runs dry, which it doesn't. What would happen if I went to one without this option?

I think I could have someone come out but they would probally adjust the settings and it would be ok, for a day or so, then shut off at night. I hope you could help I would very much appreciate it.

speedbump
Admin



Riverview
Florida
11659 Posts

Posted - Aug 14 2005 :  2:40:02 PM  Show Profile  Visit speedbump's Homepage Send speedbump a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Ok,

Setting the pressure isn't going to make any difference if the pump (itself) is shutting off.

But if your losing pressure because your using too much water like you indicated, you are probably drawing the well down and the pump is running out of water.

You made it tough on me, as you are giving several different scenarios. The low pressure switch you have (if you still have it hooked up) will stop the pump from running by opening the points at a pre set low pressure. Once this happens, you have to physically lift the lever for a while to get the pump to over come this low pressure so the points will stay together through the rest of the cycle. I would get rid of the FSG-2 M4 swtich if that is what you have.

Let me know if anything I said makes any sense so we can narrow this down a little.

bob...
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dmowmow
New Member

6 Posts

Posted - Aug 20 2005 :  5:21:53 PM  Show Profile  Visit dmowmow's Homepage Send dmowmow a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I was thinking that when we opened the high pressure valves to water the lawn the pressure dropped past the cut-on switch faster than it could turn on.
I messed with the settings now as I said it works fine for days sometimes, even with plenty of use which makes me think the well has enough water, but then it shuts off with no use.
Could the air in the lines effect the settings, it seems to work better with higher setting between the tank to the pump but still shuts off sometimes more & sometimes less.

I do have a fsg 2M4 switch which I can replace, doesn't that save the pump if it does go dry or what else is it's function. If this would be the way to go I'm all for it. This switch was what they recommended at the hardware store.

Thanks for your help
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speedbump
Admin



Riverview
Florida
11659 Posts

Posted - Aug 20 2005 :  6:08:00 PM  Show Profile  Visit speedbump's Homepage Send speedbump a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Yeah they are really helpful at hardwares, those guys are out servicing pumps all the time.

I need to know if the pump is shutting off physically or is it running when you run out of water.

Also I need to know what kind of pump you have, submersible, jet etc. And anything else you can tell me about the system.

bob...
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dmowmow
New Member

6 Posts

Posted - Aug 23 2005 :  12:50:02 AM  Show Profile  Visit dmowmow's Homepage Send dmowmow a Private Message  Reply with Quote
The 1/2hp pump is submersible down about 80' and shuts off. When we turn it on we can use plenty of water which makes me think it isn't ruuning dry.
I went to get a new pressure switch again like you mentioned to get rid of the FSG2M4 which has the lever on the side. I'm figuring the one you suggest doesn't have the lever?? The one without the auto shut-off??

How's this theory?? The check-value may not be working and when the well isn't in use and a leak or something causes the water to drain back in the well. Then when there is a call for water it cavitates enough to shut off the pressure switch??
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speedbump
Admin



Riverview
Florida
11659 Posts

Posted - Aug 23 2005 :  09:30:55 AM  Show Profile  Visit speedbump's Homepage Send speedbump a Private Message  Reply with Quote
The fact that your sprinklers drain the system in a hurry tells me the well can't keep up with them. I am not suggesting you get rid of the M4 switch all together, just to see what is going on. If it keeps shutting the pump off which is what I think is happening you need to have a switch on there that won't do this for troubleshooting.

You say when you turn the pump on, you have lots of water. This would be because you have given the well a chance to recover. If you use too much water though, the same thing will happen over and over again.

bob...
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Gary Slusser
Senior Member



Wherever we park the motorhome
728 Posts

Posted - Aug 23 2005 :  11:28:21 AM  Show Profile Send Gary Slusser a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I agree with Bob. And if the low pressure safety cut off switch has to be reset to get water, you ran out of water, or at least the pressure fell below about 20 psi because the pump sucked a slug of air. Cavitation isn't a factor in your system.

The next time this happens, reset the switch and run a lot of water in a tub or garden hose and when the water stops, hold the switch lever handel in Run/On whatever until you run out of water again, it should only be a few minutes. You should get air in the water when you do this, and if you do, it's because the pump is sucking air instead of water. That will be due to no water above the pump inlet. Otherwise you have something being sucked up against the pump inlet preventing the pump from getting water. Here we have boimass (Iron reducing bacteria) cause that sometimes. Or, the inlet screen is loaded with rust and there's only a small amount of the screen that allows water into the pump.

Gary
Quality Water Associates
www.qualitywaterassociates.com
Softener Forum: http://www.qualitywaterassociates.com/phpBB2/index.php
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dmowmow
New Member

6 Posts

Posted - Aug 28 2005 :  11:27:02 PM  Show Profile  Visit dmowmow's Homepage Send dmowmow a Private Message  Reply with Quote
When the water shuts off I can open all the faucets in the house to let the air run out, even the high volume yard hydrants and the water doesn't shut off. This gets rid of the air past the pressure tank.

What about my theroy on the check valve? Cavitation meaning between the pump and the pressure switch.

I shut off the water to the house then let the pump fills the pressure tank, then with no use the pressure drops. Sometimes it fills and is fine but it mostly shuts off when we aren't home or over night with no use.
This makes me think it's leaking back into the well since I can't see any moisture coming up from the ground along where the water lines are buried. (It's been dry here and the ground is especially dry.)
The check valve could be cloughed or the spring worn or not setting right, letting the water run back into the well to create enough air to allow the pressure switch to drop past the cut-on.

We have a fair amount of magneise and some iron, the pump is 10yrs old with 5 yrs of use.

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Gary Slusser
Senior Member



Wherever we park the motorhome
728 Posts

Posted - Aug 28 2005 :  11:50:51 PM  Show Profile Send Gary Slusser a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Maybe the check valve is allowing water back into the well BUT... When the pressure decreases to the cut-in setting on the switch the pump is supposed to come on. If it does, then pressure builds to cut-off this will repeat until lyou fix the leak, and a check valve on the inlet to the pressure tank is not the way to do that, because you could have other causes of a leak than just the check valve. Like a broken fitting or tubing split that if left alone will get worsen until the pump falls off. And you think you have a problem now...

So when you wake up with no water, the pump didn't come on before the pressure reached 20 psi or less, the safety switch psi and the switch prevents the contacts from closing. So check for blockage in the switch and its nipple and where the nipple goes into the tee etc.. That will prevent the switch from seeing real time pressure by causing a lag.

This has nothing to do with cavitation unless your definition is different than 'cavitation'. If the check valve were leaking, you usually don't get air in the line unless there is a leak above the water level in the well; where would the air come from or get into the line otherwise?

It's time to check the check valve and drop pipe for leaks. To do that you lift the pump a bit and check the water level in the drop pipe and pressurize it (pressure test it) with a compressor or water with a pump. If there is no leak there, then you should pressure test the line form the well to the pressure tank. Drillers and pump guys, or a plumber capable of pulling the pump, know how to do this. While they're there, have them check the static water level in the well.

Gary
Quality Water Associates
www.qualitywaterassociates.com
Softener Forum: http://www.qualitywaterassociates.com/phpBB2/index.php
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