New well installation questions

Discussion in 'Pumps and Tanks Well Forum & Blog' started by phughes200, Nov 10, 2011.

  1. phughes200

    phughes200 Engineer

    Messages:
    49
    Location:
    NC
    It looks like I need to replace my well with a deep (200' +) well. I have some basic questions. The well will be in NC where the temperatures are moderate wih little snowfall.

    1) The quotes I am getting call for a 20 gallon tank. Is this adequate? This is for a three bedroom, three bath house. I have no immediate plans to have irrigation.

    2) I have discussed installing a cycle stop valve with the drillers. Most say not to bother unless I plan on installing an irrigation system. Any comments?

    3) I have the option to place the tank at the well head or the crawlspace. Any drawbacks to putting in the crawlspace? If I put it in the crawlsplace, can I assume that I don't have to worry about freezing at the well head. My current tank is in a closet in the carport and the small tube between the pressure switch and the pump (jet pump) froze last year. A light bulb took care of that issue. If I put the tank at the well head, I will probably need a power outlet for a heat lamp.

    4) Any recommendation for pump brand? I will need either a 1/2 or 3/4 hp. So far, one quote calls for gould the other myer (sp?).

    5) What is consider an acceptable yield?

    6) Any general questions I should ask the well driller? I have research this quite a bit but could use some suggestion on how to pick the right driller. I do not know anybody who had to do this.

    Thanks.
  2. LLigetfa

    LLigetfa DIYer, not in the trades

    Messages:
    4,158
    Location:
    NW Ontario, Canada
    The tank is not sized according to the number of bedrooms or bathrooms. It is sized according to the pump GPM. A 20 gallon tank would be good with a 5 GPM pump. A CSV would let you go with a higher GPM pump.

    I'm not sure what their reasoning is to only use a CSV with an irrigation system. An irrigation system draw should be matched to the output GPM of the pump so as to run continuously and not cycle. A CSV really shines when the rate of consumption is less than the pump output.

    Horsepower is decided by factors such as depth of well and GPM. Your choice of pump should factor whether or not you go with a CSV. Some pumps float their impellers with individual bearings and a CSV may cause the pump to draw a little more amps than one with different bearings.

    I would put the tank in the crawlspace rather than a wellhouse.
  3. phughes200

    phughes200 Engineer

    Messages:
    49
    Location:
    NC
    Thanks for the input.

    As you stated, I won't know the hp required until the well is drilled. Based on the neighbor's well, I hope the well will be between 200 and 300 feet deep.

    If I go with putting the tank in the crawlspace (my choice at this point), I suspect my choice of tanks will be limited to a maximum hieght of 30".
  4. LLigetfa

    LLigetfa DIYer, not in the trades

    Messages:
    4,158
    Location:
    NW Ontario, Canada
    You also won't know the GPM the well will produce until after it's drilled so you may need to adjust your expectation on irrigation.
  5. masterpumpman

    masterpumpman New Member

    Messages:
    729
    Location:
    Virginia Beach, VA
    The Pump should be designed to the wells quantity. Don't let any driller/pump installer sell you the new technology, troublesome and expensive variable flow pump. Install a Pside-Kick http://www.cyclestopvalves.com/products.html. It takes up very little space so if possible I'd install it in the garage or somewhere servicable. The Pside-Kick includes all that you will need including the recommended 5 gallon tank. It will give you constant pressure (like city water) while preventing your pump from cycling. It doesn't take up much space and it will extend the life of your pump, tank and pressure switch.
    Many well drillers and pump installers aren't up to date with new products such as the Pside-Kick.
    I recommend that you contract a National Ground Water Certified Well Driller or Pump Installer "CWD/PI" and also a North Carolina state licensed well pump installer.
  6. phughes200

    phughes200 Engineer

    Messages:
    49
    Location:
    NC
    I had a driller come out today. He is NC state licensed and was recommended by the town well inspector as someone who does good work and is one of the main drillers in my area.

    He mention that that the tank should be sized so the pump runs for at least a minute. Of the drillers I talk to, all quote a 20 gallon tank since that is what fits in the crawl space and has a lower cost. He felt that would be on the small side. He mention that if I wanted it to go in the crawl space that I might need two tanks. Does this make sense?

    I asked him about ths csv. He was concerned about the back pressure and the effect on the pump bearings. You mention the choice of pumps and bearing design could impact the decesion. Not sure how as a consumer I can make an educated choice. As an engineer, I can understand the issues.

    He also mentioned a constant pressure pump. From what I read here they do not seem to be recommended.
  7. valveman

    valveman Moderator Staff Member

    Messages:
    4,549
    Location:
    Lubbock, Texas
    If he mentioned a constant pressure pump and doesn't understand enough to know that a CSV makes pumps last longer, not the opposite, then you need to find a more educated pump man or do it yourself.
  8. LLigetfa

    LLigetfa DIYer, not in the trades

    Messages:
    4,158
    Location:
    NW Ontario, Canada
  9. justwater

    justwater Well Drilling/Service

    Messages:
    327
    Location:
    FL/GA
    you cant really blame the well driller. every year he is attending seminars and classes (to keep his license) put on by large pump manufacturers that are pushing VFD and dont say any good things about CSV or "pressure regulating valves". they wont admit that a simple valve is better than an extremely overpriced VFD. of course we know better, and they likely do too, but they have alot of money invested in this junk...

    If the well driller has never seen nor used a CSV, and only hear what the big boys have been preaching... why would he recommend one?
  10. phughes200

    phughes200 Engineer

    Messages:
    49
    Location:
    NC
    Okay, the new well was finished today.

    One last question for this discussion. I would like to keep the old well active for watering the garden, washing the cars and as a backup for the house. Do I need to be concerned about the system sitting unused for months at a time? If so, what steps should I take?
  11. valveman

    valveman Moderator Staff Member

    Messages:
    4,549
    Location:
    Lubbock, Texas
    The best place to store a submersible pump is in a well. Constant temperature, no oxygen, etc.. I have worked on pumps that had been left unused in a well for 20 years, and they fired right up. Steel pipe or fittings would be your only problem. What kind of system did you let them talk you into?
  12. phughes200

    phughes200 Engineer

    Messages:
    49
    Location:
    NC
    The old well was a 2" well with a jet pump.

    I won't claim I was talked into a system. The well ended up being a 6", 405' deep with a static water level of 30', 64' of steel casing, a 3/4 hp Gould pump set at 240' and a capacity of 5 gpm. They installed a 20 gallon tank in the crawl space.

    I did not install a CSV yet. I will see how th system works first. They did know about them. They felt it wasn't need for my application.

    To be honest, it was hard enough getting people to qoute (could only get two to do it) let alone doing something different. I ended up hiring the company that I had solid recommendation for and that was willing to give me a written quote. Here I thought times were hard.
    Last edited: Feb 10, 2012
  13. valveman

    valveman Moderator Staff Member

    Messages:
    4,549
    Location:
    Lubbock, Texas
    With only a 5 GPM pump, a CSV is not going to help much. Although a 5 GPM pump is also inadequate for a 3 bath house. If all three showers are running you will be using a minimum of 7.5 GPM. Then if a washing machine is running or a toilet or two is flushed, you could be requiring as much as 10-15 GPM for peak loads. Even though the well only produces 5 GPM, with a static of 30’ and a pump setting of 240’, you have about 300 gallons stored in the well that can be used at any flow rate required, before the well limits the output to 5 GPM. So you could use 10 GPM for 30 minutes before the well drops to a 5 GPM rate. Or you could use 15 GPM for 20 minutes when the peak demand requires it.

    A 20 gallon pressure tank only holds 5 gallons of water, which is not enough to help with peak demands. I would have put in a 15 GPM, 1.5 HP pump. Or at least a 10 GPM, 1 HP pump. Then with a CSV and a 4.4 gallon size tank, you could use up to 15 GPM when needed. But the CSV would make it work like a 5 GPM pump when that is all you need. So if you wanted to do some long term irrigation, you could set your sprinkler zones to 5 GPM, the CSV would make your pump a 5 GPM pump, and you wouldn’t pump your well dry or cycle your pump to death by doing so.

    Systems like yours are why many people think a well pump delivers much less pressure than a city water supply. When you have company over and two or three showers are being used at the same time, a toilet or two is flushed, and maybe someone is brushing their teeth, the pressure will be so low that you and your company will just say, “that is just the way it is when you live on your own country well water”.

    I even know of people who run their water system like “Green Acres” when they have company. They will devise a schedule like 7AM to 7:15AM Johnny can take a shower. 7:15AM to 7:30AM Sue can take a shower. 3PM to 6PM is laundry time and so on until everyone is “scheduled”. Your guest will be saying, “I’ll be glad to get back to the city where I can have good shower pressure”.

    That is crap. A good pump system should be able to provide much better pressure than any city supply. My guests from the city always say, “they never had such good shower pressure, and with no chlorine smell as well”. Sometimes it is even hard for me to get rid of my in-laws after a holiday. Even if all my in-laws are taking showers at the same time, the washing machine is running, and a toilet or two is flushed, the pressure stays rock solid at 60 PSI. Nobody gets “scalded” or runs low on water. The only thing I try to schedule is what day my in-laws are leaving.

    One of my pet peeves is people changing from a well to city water supply so they can “have good pressure”. The only reason a well supply doesn’t have better pressure than city water supply, is because your pump installer is still doing things the old fashioned way, and doesn’t understand there is a much better way.
  14. phughes200

    phughes200 Engineer

    Messages:
    49
    Location:
    NC
    Sorry for the confusion.

    The pump is a Gould 7GS07422C (7 gpm) set at 240 feet. The static water is at 30 feet. The installer (and the charts) said initially, it would pump 10 gpm. When the water level drops to 180 feet, it will pump 6.3 gpm and at 240 feet I would get 2.5 gpm. With a capacity (the rate water flows into the well) of 5 gpm, I doubt the water level would ever get to 240 feet. I have run the pump for over 6 hours nonstop using a garden hose and have been getting a steady at 6+ gpm and the flow rate has not dropped. I am assuming the hose length and size is limiting the flow.

    In reality, my system is sized for what my needs are 99% of the time. I agree totally that if three people are showering and someone starts the washing machine and then uses the toilet that the 10 or 6 gpm will be lacking. However in the past two years, there has only been one time that two people showered at the same time. I do not plan on irrigation. If I change my mind, I can use lake water and the 2 hp pump I have on my dock.
  15. phughes200

    phughes200 Engineer

    Messages:
    49
    Location:
    NC
    Based on your post, I would not see much benifit from a CSV?

    When the installor discussed the 1 hp at 320' (not sure what gpm. I asume the same series.) it seam like I would see very little increase flow until the water level dropped below 180'. I would see a vast improvement at 240 and also an additional 120 gallons of usable storage. He did say if I had any plans for irrigation, he would recommend the 1 hp otherwise 3/4 hp would be adequate. I just didn't see where I needed it. To be honest, I was still in sticker shock after learning what I hoped would be a 250-300' well end up as a 405'. If I thought about, I would have considered the 1 hp since the additional cost was minor compare to the total cost of the job.
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