Any opinions on the Constant Pressure Systems

Discussion in 'Pumps and Tanks Well Forum & Blog' started by Dale Facey, Aug 10, 2011.

  1. Dale Facey

    Dale Facey New Member

    Messages:
    6
    Location:
    Ontario, Canada
    I have a new well about 1100' from the house. The driller is suggesting a Goulds (i think) or some type of constant pressure system. Suggesting this as a 3 phase and in doing so and getting away with using #12 AWG wire size hence the $$$ savings from this over #8 AWG single phase system.

    I've heard some in this forum not in favor of constant pressure systems, I'd like to get more information on those with experience & any pros/cons.

    I still have to do the math to compare the cost differential of the single/standard pump versus constant solution but unsure if I shouldnt even question the cost and go single and bigger wire.

    thanks
  2. Texas Wellman

    Texas Wellman In the Trades

    Messages:
    555
    Location:
    SE Texas-Coastal
    Wait a minute, I'll grab some popcorn.
  3. valveman

    valveman Moderator Staff Member

    Messages:
    4,586
    Location:
    Lubbock, Texas
    “Lets all go to the lobby and get some treats for the show.” Ron knows this is one of my favorite subjects.

    In the last few days I have talked to several homeowners who were talked into the VFD type system with three phase motor for cost savings on smaller wire a few short years ago. After replacing the expensive controller several times and breaking shafts and other problems with the pump itself, they are now wishing they had gone the other way. The #12 wire is cheaper if you don’t have to throw it in the scrap pile and replace it with #8 later to get a system that will actually last a while.

    Funny thing about using a VFD system in a deep well so you can use smaller wire, is that the longer the wire from the VFD controller, the worse the reflective wave and voltage spikes are on the motor. The longer the wire with a VFD system, the more problems you have.

    Pump and motor manufacturers are really pushing these variable speed pump systems because they make a lot of money continually replacing them. The more those manufacturers make, the more it cost you. Do yourself a favor and spring for the larger wire so you can have a dependable type normal pump system.

    The newest problem with VFD type pump systems is the harmonics it produces and sends back into the electrical grid. The harmonics are erasing data from radio-controlled devices like smart electric and water meters. Electric companies like Idaho Power and PP&E are now requiring homeowners to meet IEEE19 requirements. This means installing a $3500 harmonics filter and getting a $1200 certified test to be able to use a VFD type pump system. If this is not required in your area, it soon will be. That alone makes the #8 wire seem way less expensive.

    These kinds of regulations always happen on the west coast first, and within a few years everybody else will see them as well.
  4. ballvalve

    ballvalve General Engineering Contractor

    Messages:
    3,261
    Location:
    northfork, california
    I have the very nice quality Goulds 1.5 hp 3 phase 4 stage [?] pump from one of these CP systems, new from an auction. [above ground booster type]

    But the controller is several hundred dollars. I am going to use this very nice pump as a booster unit with a pressure tank.

    The local mechanical supplier sells them like snake oil that cures even cancer. I dont trust the electronics - yet.

    BUT - 14 gauge wire will run most 1.5 HP 3 phase motors on a very long run, even 16 gauge in shorter ones.

    And if we get into 480 volts, you can go miles. Americans are afraid of voltage, its a big boost to the copper mines.
    Last edited: Aug 11, 2011
  5. mpt1123

    mpt1123 New Member

    Messages:
    1
    Location:
    Mount Airy, MD
    My well is about 300' and the pump is about 18 years old. I had the bladder tank replaced about 15 years ago. Over the last year or so the water pressure seems low. I checked the bladder and it's about 1/3 filled with water. Instead of replacing it, a
    plumber I know suggested replacing the pump and bladder with a constant pressure system. Not sure of the manufacturer, but he says I could get it for cost - about $1,000.

    I'm interested in any opinion on whether I should replace the whole system with what I have or move on to the CP system.

    Thanks.
  6. masterpumpman

    masterpumpman New Member

    Messages:
    729
    Location:
    Virginia Beach, VA
    Forget the constant pressure systems, they are are a computer operated pump which are troublesome and a nightmare. I suggest that you stick with a conventional pump and #8 wire (if that is what's specified) and then install a Cycle Stop Valve http://www.cyclestopvalves.com/index2.html. If you are considering installing a new tank I'd recommend that you install a Pside-Kick http://www.cyclestopvalves.com/pdf/psidekick-brochure.pdf. The Pside-Kick comes with a small WX102 tank which is all that you need when using a CSV Valve and it also comes with the CSV valve. A CSV will give you constant pressure like city pressure.
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