# Maximum length of PE pipe in a well?

Discussion in 'Pumps and Tanks Well Forum & Blog' started by Raucina, Sep 13, 2006.

1. ### RaucinaPrevious member

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515
I cannot find any information on the maximum length of poly pipe and its recommened pressure rating in a deep well. Any charts to show this? Thinking about 400 or 500 feet of 1" pipe. Very much trying to avoid the 20' sticks of schedule 80 plastic with SS joints in vogue around here. Are 500' rolls of say 200psi pipe available and would anyone use it? Only see 160 psi in the general market.
2. ### Bob NHIn the Trades

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3. ### hjModerator & Master PlumberStaff Member

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Cave Creek, Arizona
well

The depth of the well will be a major consideration since you will create approximately one half pound of pressure for each foot down to the water line. If the well is 500' deep then you need a pipe that has at least a 350 psi operating pressure, and higher would be better.
4. ### Bob NHIn the Trades

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New Hampshire
The depth that matters for pressure is the depth to the water in the well; not the depth of the well.

Depth to water at drawdown + friction loss + pressure in the tank (all converted to consistent units) gives you maximum pressure in the pipe.

Being an engineer unable to resist a challenge, here are a couple of ideas:

1. Use schedule 80 PVC with cemented joints. Hang the pump from a rope or cable so the weight of the pipe is supported in compression at the joints. The well casing will keep it from buckling. After a few hours, the pipe will support the pump.

2. Even schedule 80 pipe is flexible. I just tried bending a 10 ft length of 1" schedule 80 PVC and was able to get it to about a 6 ft radius, and it's 55 F here. I would try to rig up a support to feed the whole length down the well. Plan to allow for a 10 to 15 ft radius to make it easy.

Lay out the length that you are going to work with for a day and put it together. Then rig up a platform to stand on and feed it down the well after the joints cure. If space is a problem, you can cement it over a few days and store it in a 50 ft radius coil on the ground.

I would probably do the rope thing but either way should work.
5. ### speedbumpPrevious member

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I would never and have never put a rope or cable on a pump in a well. If the pipe you are hanging this pump on won't support the weight of the pump, that rope certainly won't (so called safety rope is 1/4" poly). The other problem with that is if the rope gets away from you and goes down the well, the pump will likely never come out again. The rope on top of a submersible pump like the wire if it gets away, becomes Chinese Handcuffs.

I don't like the PVC glue thing either. Since they make SCH 80 with male/female threads already on the pipe. Threads would be much stronger than PVC cement.

bob...
6. ### RaucinaPrevious member

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515
Water is at 160 says the ex owner - but do not know the static pumping level, and not so easy to discover it. The 200 psi is a rating at 70 degrees fahrenheit, and for constant use. I suppose the break strength in a 50 degree well would be double that. [?] Used to use 1/8" SS cable in wells, but quit. Seems the pump to pipe joint will fail in the first few months when the rope is still good and can retrieve it easy - but making rope soup in my well is still a concern. Maybe better without it- hard to decide.
7. ### speedbumpPrevious member

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4,540
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With the water being at 160 feet and assuming a shutoff of 60 psi. 160 psi. poly should be fine. Not to say 200 wouldn't be better, since I know your going to want a CSV in the line anyway. (Couldn't resist)

The rope, cable, torque arrestor thing is basically for homeowners. I don't think you'll find too many drillers/pump guys using them. It's just something else they can sell you.

bob...
8. ### Gary SlusserThat's all folks!

We hang up to 1.5 hp pumps 500' deep on 16 or 200 psi rated PE rolled pipe with long insert fittings held on with two opposed SS hose clamps properly torqued. I'd use the 200 psi. It's been done all up the east coast for decades. I've never used 'glued' PVC but some have and it's used in other areas of the country but, you glue as installed down the well. Otherwise you'll stress the pipe and weaken it by bending it from the ground up high enough to get it down the well. Which should correct those that mistakenly think you have to wait up to 24 hours after gluing before you 'use' PVC. Solvent welding happens in from 30 to 60 seconds.

I would use PE or threaded sch 80 PVC but you have be able to handle the PVC; which isn't easy unless you have a pump pulling machine.
9. ### valvemanModeratorStaff Member

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Lubbock, Texas
Valveman

I don't like glue joints, insert fittings, ropes, or cables down the well. You can lay out sch 80 PVC with threaded ends and use SS or Galv couplings. Screw the pump on and all the pipe together laying across the yard. Tape up the wire to the pipe and even have the pitless or well seal attached. Then as long as it is 50 degrees or warmer, just bend it over and start it in the well. Have someone pull or bring the pipe across the yard as the pump goes down. When you get to the end just set the pitless or well seal and your done. Goes down real easy. A little harder to pull back out, but can be done the same way. Lots of ways to skin a cat though, just my opinion.
10. ### speedbumpPrevious member

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Location:
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We use SCH 80 with the male/female threads. No couplings to buy. But we use a pump hoist. When you don't have a hoist Valvemans method works well.

bob...