pressure tank bladder leak

Discussion in 'Pumps and Tanks Well Forum & Blog' started by rezlow, Jul 8, 2006.

  1. rezlow

    rezlow New Member

    Messages:
    5
    My pressure tank has a leaky bladder. Toward the end of the fill cycle, I can hear water squirting around inside the tank...the tank hits pressure and the pump shuts off normally. Can anyone tell me why the system still works properly?..this has been going on since last October. I will try replacing the bladder in the fall, rather than just throw out the tank...but I am very curious how the bladder can be leaking and still everything seems normal!
  2. I don't think that the bladder is leaking, or things wouldn't be functioning properly. What you hear may just be the normal operation of the pressure tank. Water goes in and out of it all of the time against the air-filled bladder.
    To check the bladder, turn off the pump, drain the water pressure off, and check the air pressure of the tank with a tire gauge. (If the bladder is leaking, water will probably come out of the air valve of the tank.) If no water comes from the tank air valve, it should read two psi below your pump cut-on pressure (i.e. if your pump is set at 30/50 cut-on/cut-off, the pressure tank should be at 28 psi).
    If it is low, air it back up with a bicycle pump or portable air tank or compressor. If it doesn't hold that pressure, then the bladder is probably shot, and you need a new pressure tank. You can usually replace a bladder, but replace the entire tank instead.
    Good Luck!
    Mike
  3. Cass

    Cass Plumber

    Messages:
    5,980
    Location:
    Ohio
    For a leaky bladder try these

    [​IMG]
  4. speedbump

    speedbump Previous member

    Messages:
    4,540
    Location:
    Riverview, Fl.
    I agree, don't replace the bladder, replace with a better tank.

    bob...
  5. rezlow

    rezlow New Member

    Messages:
    5
    more pressure tanks questions

    I am becoming confused. The pressure tank has been working fine BUT there is lots of squirting going on inside as it fills and comes up to pressure. Usually the squirting continues about a minute after the pump has shut off on pressure. The pressure guage holds steady after filling and the tank operates fine. I have had this tank for 16 years and this squirting has just been going on since last October. If it's not the bladder leaking, why am I hearing all this activity in the tank? What do you think is going on in there if it's not the bladder leaking?
  6. Bob NH

    Bob NH In the Trades

    Messages:
    3,317
    Location:
    New Hampshire
    It is possible to have a leaky bladder and still have enough air in the tank to operate the system. If the tear in the bladder is large enough you can operate the tank like a bladderless tank. You just have to be a little more careful about precharging the tank. That is not a recommendation; it is a statement of what you can do until you can get a new tank.

    If there is water on the air side of the bladder (leaky bladder) it is sometimes difficult or impossible to get all of the water out of the tank because even a little air can push a leaky spot against the inner wall of the tank, temporarily closing the leak.

    Shut off the pump and open the valve to drain the tank. Then shake the tank if you can to see if it has water in it. If it does, you almost certainly have a failed bladder.

    Try adding some air to the tank. If it still has water in it with any air pressure, then you certainly have a failed bladder.
  7. Duke

    Duke New Member

    Messages:
    15
    Location:
    Canada
    Mike: Thanks for the info. I have a jet pump system at my cottage and I draw water from the Lake.The system is working but when no water is used the pump still comes on every 30 to 40 minutes and works for about 20 seconds. I cannot find any leaks on the intake pipe and I have replaced the foot valve. My questions for you are:
    I understand from my manual that when I get water out of the air valve this may be due to a waterlogged bladder and can find no refererence to a broken bladder. the local plumbing contractor who specializes in cottage water systems from lakes tells me that the bladder contains the water NOT air?
    Any advise you can provide on the bladder and how one would confirm that it needs replacement would be appreciated.
    PS .I am a newby here and delighted to discover there is a site to discuss cottage water systems.
  8. speedbump

    speedbump Previous member

    Messages:
    4,540
    Location:
    Riverview, Fl.
    If your getting water from the schrader valve at the top of the tank, it's shot. Get a new one.

    Check your toilet tank. It may be leaking slightly. Just enough to make that faulty tank force the pump to run again.

    bob...
  9. Duke

    Duke New Member

    Messages:
    15
    Location:
    Canada
    Thanks for your prompt reply. What is the "Schrader Valve " ? I don't see any water at the base of the toilet so I doubt that it is leaking.
  10. speedbump

    speedbump Previous member

    Messages:
    4,540
    Location:
    Riverview, Fl.
    The little valve on top of the bladder tank. Where you add the air.

    Toilets have a way of leaking very slowly. It's like watching paint dry to find such a small leak.

    bob...
  11. Bob NH

    Bob NH In the Trades

    Messages:
    3,317
    Location:
    New Hampshire
    The valves on your tires are Schrader valves. You should have one on the top of your bladder tank where you can add air and measure air pressure.

    If water comes out when you depress the core pin, then you have a leaky bladder.

    Turn off power to the pump, run all of the water out of the tank; leave the water valve open, and put air in at the Schrader valve to 2 psi less than your pump start pressure. You will need a tire gauge and means of providing air pressure.

    I have also seen cases where the metal tank leaks on the air side. They symptom is that it won't hold pressure for even a day. If that happens, replace the tank. If the bladder leaks, replace the tank.
  12. speedbump

    speedbump Previous member

    Messages:
    4,540
    Location:
    Riverview, Fl.
    If your tank is full of water, which it must be if your getting water out of the "air valve" you need to replace the tank. It will just waterlog again if you add air and your now getting water that is entering a non painted surface. The inside of the tank where the air used to be. I see no reason to add air to a bad tank. Just replace it and get on with your life.

    bob...
  13. jadnashua

    jadnashua Retired Defense Industry Engineer xxx

    Messages:
    21,917
    Location:
    New England
    A bladder tank uses the bladder to separate the captive air from the water. The pump pushes water into the tank, compressing the air and storning energy so it doesn't have to turn on each time you open a valve - it is using the stored energy from the compressed air. If the tank leaks between the bladder and air sides, it needs to be replaced. As noted, if you get water out of the air valve (Schrader valve), the tank needs replacement. There are a few tanks that can be repaired, but at 16-years, yours may not be a good candidate.

    Another cause of noises after the pump turns off is rust accumulation in the pipes. The inside passage can get so constricted that only a trickle can pass through. If there is any galvanized piping in the system around where you hear those noises, it could be the pipes are basically nearly clogged.
  14. Duke

    Duke New Member

    Messages:
    15
    Location:
    Canada
    Thanks for the comments:
    Para #3Why or when would I do this ? What does it solve if water comes out when I depress the core?

    Par#4 ..."metal tank leaks on the air side" what do you mean by air side please?
  15. jadnashua

    jadnashua Retired Defense Industry Engineer xxx

    Messages:
    21,917
    Location:
    New England
    Very few things in our world are perfect. Do you ever have to put air into your tires? No visible leaks, but eventually they lose a little bit. Same can happen with your bladder tank. If it doesn't contain the proper amount of air at the proper pressure, it won't perform properly. The 'dry' side of the bladder tank is the side there should only be air. It is adjusted by using an air compressor or pump - a bicycle pump would work fine, although maybe more work than you want, it is doable. If by checking the pressure (looks like and is made like a tire's valve) you get water out, the bladder that separates the air from the water in the tank is shot...replace it.
  16. tshen_2000

    tshen_2000 New Member

    Messages:
    1
    I have V100 Stand Model pressure water tank from Goulds Pumps. Based on the design, the drawdown water should be 9.9 Gals with 30/50 PSIG setup.
    But right now it was only 3.5 Gals. The pressure in the water system likes OK. but the air pressure in the tanke is always 8-10 PSIG belower the water pressure.

    What is wrong? Do I have to replace the water tank or .....

    Thank you for your suggestion.

    Tim
  17. Gary Slusser

    Gary Slusser That's all folks!

    You have to check the air pressure with no water in the tank. Otherwise you measure water pressure and the air gauge should match the water pressure gauge reading, if not one or both gauges are incorrect.

    The air pressure should be 1-2 psi less than the turn the pump on pressure switch setting; with no water in the tank.
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