Pump Tech comes on at preset time,but also comes on randomly inbetween

Discussion in 'Pumps and Tanks Well Forum & Blog' started by Timbuktu, Jun 20, 2012.

  1. Timbuktu

    Timbuktu New Member

    Messages:
    65
    Location:
    PalmSprings SCal
    My pumptech is set for 1.5 hr to cycle on.
    i noticed that after it has completed a normal pump run after a preset time, it will turn on once again and pump more water again for a minute or two afterward. It has never done this in the 11 years or so ive monitored it until last week.
    I dont care when it cycles,as long as it is approximately no longer than every 6 hours or so.
    What can i expect from the pump tec in the future? Will it keep keep on for some time or is this a sign that it is about to fail soon?
  2. valveman

    valveman Moderator Staff Member

    Messages:
    4,382
    Location:
    Lubbock, Texas
    Could it be that after the 1.5 hours and the pump restarts, that it only takes a minute or two to get to the float switch off point? If not then I think something is wrong with the pumptec.
  3. Timbuktu

    Timbuktu New Member

    Messages:
    65
    Location:
    PalmSprings SCal
    Symptoms rephrased( just in case)

    On a normal cycle of 1.5 hr the well pump discharge into the tank will last 3 to 5 minutes at 15 gpm rate. Until recently it never came back on again until the next set cycle time, 1.5 hr, occured again. This is how the well has worked for years.
    NOW after it has completed a cycle and tripped off,in another minute or so it will turn back on and pump more water for another min or so.


    YOUr reply:
    "does it only takes a minute or two to get to the float switch off point? "

    ME:
    The float switch appears to work as it always has.
    The pumptec does turn off when the water is low enough down below in the ground,just like its has always done...except NOW in a minute or so after it shuts off the pump will turn on and discharge more water for a minute or 3.

    Theory?
    maybe the pumptec is turning off prematurely ,and a minute or so later it still senses water below so it turns back on to spit out the remaining water??
    Now that makes sense to me,but what do I know? vewy little
    Last edited: Jun 21, 2012
  4. valveman

    valveman Moderator Staff Member

    Messages:
    4,382
    Location:
    Lubbock, Texas
    Try reseting the timer on the pumptec.
  5. Timbuktu

    Timbuktu New Member

    Messages:
    65
    Location:
    PalmSprings SCal
    how to reset timer?
  6. valveman

    valveman Moderator Staff Member

    Messages:
    4,382
    Location:
    Lubbock, Texas
    Should be an adjustment for how long it times out.
  7. Timbuktu

    Timbuktu New Member

    Messages:
    65
    Location:
    PalmSprings SCal
    Update on my failing Pump tec

    l.

    Today the PumpTec still starts the preset 1.5 hr pumping cycle and pumping water for its normal time of about 4 minutes,however, now the PumpTec doesnt trip off like its supposed to.
    How I happend to notice this is that something made a loud enough noise when pumping or starting to pump that i could hear it from where i was standing.
    i walked over to it and it was pumping water and quiet at that point.
    I never determined what the loud noise was that drew my attention to the pump.
    Toward the end of its normal pumping time of 3 or 4 minutes I could hear the pumptec clicking a couple times every few seconds,"trying to shut off".,but the red light didnt come on.
    i then peeked at the discharge pipe and there was no longer water being pumped and the trip light was not red.
    .

    Im not sure if the pumptec would eventually trip or not. i didnt want to risk any damage to the well pump ,so.I raised the front cover off the pump tec so it would disconnect from the power .i do it this way because i still need the jet to be on for the pressureized tank.
    I will fill the tank by manually connecting the pump tec ever so often until I can repair or replace it.
    My question.
    1.When the pumptec stops pumping water and doesnt trip off ,this will damage the submersable pump?
    That is the purpose of the pumptec...right?
    2. Is there any way for me to easily repair this pump tec myself.?
    3 Incase i need to get a new one,is there a better unit to replace it with for the same price range? Right!

    Thx



    Last edited: Jun 28, 2012
  8. valveman

    valveman Moderator Staff Member

    Messages:
    4,382
    Location:
    Lubbock, Texas
    Yes running the pump without it moving any water will burn up the pump in just a few minutes. You did right by shutting it off. I don't think there is much you can do to repair a pumptec. I maybe a little biased because I designed it myself, but I think the Cycle Sensor is more dependable than a pumptec.
  9. Timbuktu

    Timbuktu New Member

    Messages:
    65
    Location:
    PalmSprings SCal
    I maybe a little biased because I designed it myself, but I think the Cycle Sensor is more dependable than a pumptec.

    Well,thats understandable to be biased.

    Im not biased or partial to any unit until I learn about those units.

    Tell me why you think your unit would or could be a better choice for me.

    The price and ease of installation is important too.

    Thx
  10. valveman

    valveman Moderator Staff Member

    Messages:
    4,382
    Location:
    Lubbock, Texas
    The Cycle Sensor digitally displays the amps. So it is easy to see the lowest amps encountered and set the current adjust below that. You can scroll to the exact amp draw you want to be the low setting. Just push the buttons to set it where you want. The Cycle Sensor also displays the word DRY when the well is pumped off, and it has a restart delay that can be set as low as 1 minute or as much as 5 hours.

    Unlike the pumptec where you just hold a button that takes a snap shot, and determines on its own how to set the under current trip point. The sensitivity setting on a pumptec is just a guess.

    The Cycle Sensor was also designed to be accurate enough to work with a Cycle Stop Valve, as that makes the amps even lower than normal. This is the main reason we made our own device, as the others out there are not sensitive and accurate enough to work with the extra low amps from a Cycle Stop Valve. The more sensitive and accurate nature of the Cycle Sensor, along with the easy push button adjustment and digital display, has proven to be superior to the others on the market.
  11. Timbuktu

    Timbuktu New Member

    Messages:
    65
    Location:
    PalmSprings SCal
    Since yesterday i have operated the pumptec cycles manually.
    After about 5 manual cycles over a 12 hr period,the pumptec is now working normal. By that I mean it senses when to trip off and does so. It has shut off by tripping now for 3 manual cycles. Does this mean there may be hope for this pumptec?
    Like just a loose wire or something? Guess I could check it first.
    I mean with the little experience I have in electrical items,when they work then dont work,then work.this usually means there is a loose ground or wire of some sort.

    Or do pump tecs just fade away by teasing us with work for a while,then wont,then work a little and so on?

    Does this change back to working normally indicate there may be a small fix it solution for me ?
  12. LLigetfa

    LLigetfa DIYer, not in the trades

    Messages:
    3,836
    Location:
    NW Ontario, Canada
    Unless you know for sure what made it work again, it cannot be trusted not to fail again. Next time you could burn up the pump.
  13. Timbuktu

    Timbuktu New Member

    Messages:
    65
    Location:
    PalmSprings SCal
    Yeah,thats what i assumed,and thats why Im still cycling it manually. If it was winter it wouldnt be so bad,but its 95 to 100 degrees here and i gotta keep my 10 thirsty cottonwoods alive.
    Yeah i know..why plant cottonwoods, in the desert,not in a wet or boggy area?
    For some reason I thought it would be managable. Its June through oct when they need lots of water
    .
    So i better replace it,cause i dont like my new "waterboy" job. plenty of easy hours, but the pays crap!
  14. Teets

    Teets CT pump guy

    Messages:
    87
    Location:
    Watertown, Connecticut
    Is there a float in this system, if there is it sounds like the float is working erratically.
  15. Timbuktu

    Timbuktu New Member

    Messages:
    65
    Location:
    PalmSprings SCal
    UPDATE loose wire seems to have been the problem.

    Admittedly i know verly little about anything like this,but i was having such varied problems,i was getting frustrated as you can see with my posts..

    i did recall one thing with my past limited personal electrical lessons.....when the symptoms get out of hand and inconsistent,check the wiring,ground etc. Actually check that first.
    I found a loose screw on one terminal and after tightening it ,I have had no issues the last couple days and several pump cycles.......so far.
    Last edited: Jul 5, 2012
  16. Timbuktu

    Timbuktu New Member

    Messages:
    65
    Location:
    PalmSprings SCal
    New problem

    Let me set the stage :

    My pump tech and the larger box that contains the 2 capicitors are connected back to back right on top of the well pipe,head or top. whatever its called.
    I have been lifting the face of the pumptec to engage/disengage the pump to pump water these last few days.

    I just noticed when I depress the pumptec cover to connect and start the pump the capacitor box jumps,each second about for 4 seconds,but I disconnected the pumptec to stop it by that time.
    Its like its starting and then stopping the pump every second. That is why the capacitor box/well jumps each time. Normally though ,there is no "jumping" or "torque" noticed when I engage the pump repeated times.

    I depressed the cover on the pumptec firmly so there couldnt have been sloppy contact on and off while I was depressing the cover.
    This cover was depressed firmly and the green light was on the whole time the pump /box was jumping every second i had the pumptec cover depressed for contact.

    I hope thats clear? what does that tell you?
    Again,Test or replace the float sensor?
    Last edited: Jul 1, 2012
  17. Timbuktu

    Timbuktu New Member

    Messages:
    65
    Location:
    PalmSprings SCal
    Float problem?
    I held the Pumptec face panel in to make contact and turn the pump power on. While it was pumping water,
    I had a friend hold the float in an up position and then a down position. There was no change in pump operation.
    The water never stopped pumping in with the float in either position and it should have.
    Right after this I decided to ingage disingaged the power and got none of the torque or banging of the larger capacitor box/well head I mentioned in my last post.

    now , it sound like I have two issues. The float malfunction and the pumptec problem .
    What are the chances that these are two separate failure at near the same time.unless one is related or causes the other?
    Im thinking cheap insurance to just replace both without wasting more time, as the cost is still cheap enough insurance to go risk damaging the pump.

    Whats recommended now? Replace the float first and see if theres any change in how pumptec works ? or are the malfunctions both unrelated so i should swap them both out?
    Last edited: Jul 2, 2012
  18. Timbuktu

    Timbuktu New Member

    Messages:
    65
    Location:
    PalmSprings SCal
    Summary of recent pump head noise

    Since the last post I have manually started the pump, as described, about 4 times and it pumped water without a hitch .
    This ,afternoon,i once again manually started the pump . It ran 11 minutes but at 3 separate times during the pumping the well head area "jumped",thumped ( 1 sec per thump)etc, as i have tried to describe in recent posts .
    Sorry,that I keep going on with descriptions.Im just trying to clarify the sounds & motion that occurs just to besure theres no mistake..
    My last example is : it reminds me of a starter when it cranks and kickbacks sort of sound or motion.
    Ok ive beat the discription to death,and youall probaly knew, originally, what i was describing, so Ill try and stop it now.

    You mentioned the float switch might be doing this 'jump starting' thump i hear and see.
    Guess ill just replace the switch and pump tec.
    Last edited: Jul 3, 2012
  19. sunbreak

    sunbreak New Member

    Messages:
    1
    Location:
    Brantford, Ontario, Canada
    Help please...
    I recently purchased a home (6 years old) outside of town that is equipped with a 129 foot drilled well, 3000 gallon cistern, a pumptec, a well rite tank, and kinetico filtration/softener system...
    Within days of taking possession of the home we ran out of water. In checking I found the cistern was empty, which led me to believe that the well must not be pumping any water. The power light on the pumptec was on, as was the "tripped" light. In seeing this I turned off the breaker at the panel in fear that something may burn out (well pump, etc).
    I ordered a load of water (3000 gallons) and had the cistern filled. In checking 3 weeks later (the cistern level) I realized that the cistern was down to about 1/3 full... This leads me to believe that we are running completely on cistern water and the well is not producing water?
    The previous owners indicated that they never had a problem with water supply, but had the cistern installed as the well was a slow recovery.
    Please help me to understand the following:
    1) Is the Pumptec supposed to trip regularly? When it does, does it reset itself or was I right to turn off the breaker?
    2) When the Pumptec IS tripped, is it normal for the pressure tank to show 0 PSI?
    3) Does the drilled well pump directly to the house, or through the cistern? If directly to the house, how does it fill the cistern?
    4) What is a normal recovery rate for a slow recovery drilled well (GPM)?
    5) Is there a simple way for me to adjust the timing on the pumptec (to pump 4 minutes/hour for example)? Is there benefit to doing this?

    Is there anything further I should know? Please note that I am a "city" boy and this is all quite new to me. Input is greatly appreciated.
  20. valveman

    valveman Moderator Staff Member

    Messages:
    4,382
    Location:
    Lubbock, Texas
    I hope you got some kind of warranty with the house. The well probably wasn’t working when you checked out the house. The water in the cistern will last quite a while. Now that the cistern is full, you will have to hold the float switch down to see if the pump will start. The float switch starts the pump and turns it off when the cistern is full. But the pumptec may start and stop the pump many times according to the water level in the well. Well full of water, pump runs. Well empty, pump is off. And this cycle repeats until the float switch “floats”.

    There should be another pump in the cistern that provides water to the house.

    You are no longer a “city boy”. You have to learn how that system works or be out of water at the worst possible times. You can pay someone to maintain it for you, but even then you maybe out of water on a holiday. Study “low producing wells”, and “cisterns with booster pumps”.
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