Advice on Bladder tank

Discussion in 'Pumps and Tanks Well Forum & Blog' started by billfig, Feb 24, 2011.

  1. billfig

    billfig New Member

    Messages:
    109
    Location:
    upstate NY
    Hi, new to sight and need some insight:confused: House is 23 yrs. old, how time fly's:eek: New Gould pump 5 yrs. ago but when showering, psi is low for what seems to be much longer than it should. Then at about the end of shower pump must kick on and good psi for just a couple minutes maybe? I remember adjusting up the psi at the tank (last year I think but def the yr.before) which made shower taking a joy! I did try new filters again yesterday but to no avail. I always like to do most things myself to save money..plus the fact I'm a knucklehead lol! I probably should look at renewing the whole setup in-between the plastic supply and the 3/4 coupler huh? Oh also, if replacement is in order, should I try to get a larger tank? I read in sticky this would be better/less bladder operation. I think the tank is either 20 or 30 gallon too.
    Well is 80' deep & 40-50'from house, pump is a Gould 10gs05422 1/2hp.
    Last edited: Feb 24, 2011
  2. LLigetfa

    LLigetfa DIYer, not in the trades

    Messages:
    3,967
    Location:
    NW Ontario, Canada
    First off, you need to determine at what pressure the pump comes on. If the kick-in pressure is too low, it may need adjustment. If you adjust the kick-in, it may affect the kick-out, so rinse-lather-repeat. Then you need to shut the system off and drain the tank completely. Lift the tank to see if there is any water left in it. It should be completely empty. If the tank cannot be emptied, it may have a bad bladder.

    Then check the air pressure on the bladder. It should read 2 PSI less than the kick-in pressure. If it doesn't, add air.

    Let us know how you make out.
  3. valveman

    valveman Moderator Staff Member

    Messages:
    4,458
    Location:
    Lubbock, Texas
    If you are having to wait until the pump comes on to get good pressure, then you have a tank that is too large. Tanks only need to be large to reduce the cycling on and off. If you have a Cycle Stop Valve, the pump will not cycle on and off, and you can use a much smaller tank, like the 4.4gallon one in the pic to the left. Constant pressure delivers much better pressure to the shower than when the pump is continually cycling on and off. Oh and eliminating the cycling will make your pump and pressure tank last much longer.

    [video=youtube;djYEdL6an5g]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=djYEdL6an5g[/video]
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 9, 2011
  4. billfig

    billfig New Member

    Messages:
    109
    Location:
    upstate NY
    I drained tank, kicks on around 20psi then shuts off at about 58psi. I turned off pump & drained, seems empty to me...so tank seems fine?

    That sounds good... where can I buy a cycle stop valve?
    Last edited: Feb 24, 2011
  5. Tom Sawyer

    Tom Sawyer In the Trades

    Messages:
    3,167
    Location:
    Maine
    Unscrew the pressure switch and see if the nipple is filled with rust and crap. If so, clean it out. The pressure switch should normally cut in and out at either 20/40 - 30/50 - 40/60 For what a new pressure switch costs I would probably just replace it so you don't have to mess with the adjustments. Go with a 30/50 and if your gauge is crappy change that too. After you get all that crap cleaned, changed, adjusted, installed or whatever drain the tank and set the pressure to 2lbs. below the cut in pressure. If you used a 30/50 switch that would be 28lbs. Fire up the pump and see what you get. A larger tank will give you a longer draw down and longer pump run cycles which is a good thing but, if the tank is too large and your basement is warm you may have slightly warmer cold water at times.
  6. billfig

    billfig New Member

    Messages:
    109
    Location:
    upstate NY
    I take it the psi sw.is the gray elecrical piece? There is a funky pc off the plastic line-must just be a wierd looking coupler to get from plactic to brass? Also I did mess with the adjustment and cranked er up a yr.or 2 ago.. wish I could just bite the bullet and replace everything since it is old and grungy 30-35g hardness also..but it is expensive too!lol:(
    Also, I checked psi at Schrader with tank filled and it read 58psi, should I redrain tank and check that reading again? what is normal?
    Last edited: Feb 24, 2011
  7. LLigetfa

    LLigetfa DIYer, not in the trades

    Messages:
    3,967
    Location:
    NW Ontario, Canada
    No point checking the air pressure when it's pressured up with water. You need to test air pressure when water pressure is at 0 PSI. The air should be 2 PSI less than the kick-in pressure.

    That pressure switch sounds hosed to me. There is too much spread between the low and the high. If it has two adjusters you may have been cranking on the wrong one too much. Last time I checked at *******, a new switch was around $17. I've been meaning to buy a new one as my low pressure shutoff quit working and kick-in to kick-out ratio is getting wonky.

    {edit}LOL... found another vendor that's a bad word around here.
    Last edited: Feb 24, 2011
  8. WellWaterProducts

    WellWaterProducts In the trades

    Messages:
    126
    Location:
    Northwood NH
    The best way to view a precharged tank is that it's got an inflated balloon inside of it. Many brand new tanks ship with a "balloon" pumped up to 38 psi. Since water does not compress but air does, the balloon starts shrinking when more it encounters more than 38 psi water pressure. At that point it becomes like a loaded spring attempting to push water out of the tank.
  9. billfig

    billfig New Member

    Messages:
    109
    Location:
    upstate NY
    I prolly should replace the switch and gauge as previously mentioned & under 25.00. I was quoted 150.00 for a gould v60 20gal.tank today which seems a bit on the cheap side:) or an Amtrol at 194.00. I'm wondering since these only last so long.....
  10. valveman

    valveman Moderator Staff Member

    Messages:
    4,458
    Location:
    Lubbock, Texas
    If your tank is bad, the pump comes on and off too quickly instead of tanking too long to come on when in the shower. I think Tom is right that the 1/4 x 3 nipple under the pressure switch is rusted or clogged up. It needs to be brass instead of galv anyway. Then you can loosen all the way on the small adjuster in the pressure switch, it will narrow the band so it doesn't go all the way to 20 before it starts. Should be on at about 40 and off at aobut 60. A 3 dollar nipple, adjust the pressure switch, and check the air in the tank is probably all that is needed.
  11. Tom Sawyer

    Tom Sawyer In the Trades

    Messages:
    3,167
    Location:
    Maine
    Gopher buddy, is that you? Aqua Specialties? Hey, welcome to the jungle
  12. justwater

    justwater Well Drilling/Service

    Messages:
    327
    Location:
    FL/GA
    before u go on a spending spree.. like previously stated, buy the new gauge and a 40-60 switch. kill the power and open that hose bib at the bottom of the tank. when water stops, leave it open and pump 38psi in that tank with a compressor. if it holds the air with the hose bib open, awesome. now install the new switch (check nipple for blockage/replace) and install gauge. now check the tank pressure again and make sure it's still 38. now turn on the power and close the bib.. let it rock.

    if it just blows air out the bib and doesn't build pressure, then ur bladder is shot and it's tank time.
    Last edited: Feb 24, 2011
  13. billfig

    billfig New Member

    Messages:
    109
    Location:
    upstate NY
    Thanks everyone for all the input! I definitely plan on getting a switch and gauge, just thinkin that da** tank is due for failure, no? The precharge is at 22psi cut-in about 20psi and cut off at 58psi.
  14. cacher_chick

    cacher_chick Test, Don't Guess!

    Messages:
    3,246
    Location:
    Land of Cheese
    Some pressure switches allow for split adjustment of the cut-in and cut-out pressures and some do not. The first limiting factor of testing is knowing if your gauge is reading properly or not. If the water pressure gauge is wrong, there is no way to know how much air to put in the tank.

    Assuming the gauge is right and the pressure switch cut in can be adjusted, I would set it to 40. If this can be accomplished, then the tank can be drained of water and the air charge set to 38.

    Replacing the components is fine, assuming there really is something wrong with them in the first place. A properly calibrated gauge is #1.
  15. justwater

    justwater Well Drilling/Service

    Messages:
    327
    Location:
    FL/GA
    tank is ur call.. all u can really ask of one is to drain empty and hold a precharge. urs might last another 5 yrs, and it might go out tomorrow.
  16. billfig

    billfig New Member

    Messages:
    109
    Location:
    upstate NY
    The other thing is the switch..which one and does it matter if I do get a larger tank like a Gould V80(26gal) or V100(32gal)? I think my switch may have been a 20-40 which I cranked up to 58 which by the way seems more psi at faucet but would empty quicker causing more pump cycling...yes? I'm thinking maybe I should get a 30-50 and try leaving it at those adjustments points.
  17. cacher_chick

    cacher_chick Test, Don't Guess!

    Messages:
    3,246
    Location:
    Land of Cheese
    If you have room for it, bigger is better. Read up on tank draw down and the pressure/volume relationship so you understand what you are really getting.

    I use a 30/50 switch in my home and find it quite adequate.
  18. justwater

    justwater Well Drilling/Service

    Messages:
    327
    Location:
    FL/GA
    i agree, i ran 30-50 for years and it was just fine... many people confuse pressure with volume. also agree on the tank, bigger is always better... if u have the room.

    descent rule of thumb is that you want your tank's drawdown to (at least) equal the actual pumping gpm of ur pump.. more tank helps though.

    then there is the csv if you wanted to go constant pressure and reduce the cycling, in which case i'd go with at least a 20gal bladder tank. dont be sold by the 4gal stuff for residential use, thats for irrigation applications imo... residential systems need at least some drawdown.
  19. LLigetfa

    LLigetfa DIYer, not in the trades

    Messages:
    3,967
    Location:
    NW Ontario, Canada
    Well... you're confusing me now with that statement. More pressure will push more volume through a given shower head. The difference in volume beween a 30-50 and 40-60 is noticable. If the OP jacked his pressure to 58 to get more volume from a shower head, but yet the pump drops all the way to 20, I think he would find more joy at 40-60 than at 30-50.

    I would love to be able to run mine at 40-60.
  20. justwater

    justwater Well Drilling/Service

    Messages:
    327
    Location:
    FL/GA
    you are right, it is noticeable... to someone who's never had 60 psi. but someone who has always had 50psi and no major restrictions rarely complains about pressure problems. i realize more pressure brings more volume, but if there are any restrictions.. it could easily take 80psi to do what 30psi could do.. as far as that "seat of the pants" feeling goes... most people in this area run 30-50. but its more and more common now with all of the "water saving" fixtures to need the pressure boost to get the same "feeling" they are use to.

    run that 60 psi through a low-flow head, then run 50psi through a shower with the restrictors removed.. the average joe will swear the 50 psi has "more pressure"... make sense? this is why i say pressure can be confused with volume.

    btw, i suggested he buy a 40-60 switch..
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