Submersible Well Pump Overheating?

Discussion in 'Pumps and Tanks Well Forum & Blog' started by dandreozzi, Jul 19, 2012.

  1. dandreozzi

    dandreozzi New Member

    Messages:
    2
    Location:
    Massachuesetts
    I bought a house 4 years ago with a private well that I've been told is over 400 ft deep with a submersible pump sitting somewhere around 300 ft down. The house is just over ten years old and the well along with all of the equipment was installed at the same time the house was built. I have a pressure tank in the basement, but I'm not sure of the size. It's a Well-X Troll. I also have a 12 zone spinkler system and ever since I have first turned on the sprinkler system some 4 years ago I've had intermitent problems with the pressure in the tank dropping instantly to zero causing the pipes to hammer (violently at times) and the water to shut off. The problems over the years have occurred less frequently than this particular year where the problem has been happening much more frequently. The sprinkler system normally runs for about 3 1/2 hours before completion. However, this problem can occur within the first 5 minutes, 10 minutes, 30 minutes, 60 minutes, etc. It's very random. The problem doesn't seem to be tied to any particular zone since it's happened during virtually every zone run at one point or time. If I shut off the main valve to the spinkler system, then the pipes stop hammering and the pressure in the tank jumps back up to 40 psi (the cut on, cut off is 60 psi).

    I finally called a well professional in a week ago because I was concerned that my well may be going dry, or that the pump was failing. He checked the well and told me that there was plenty of water and that the well was producing over 6 GPM. He also told me that the well was recovering at 4 feet per minute which he said was fine. The static water level was about 30 feet down from the top of the well casing. He was at my house for an hour and a half, but of course the problem did not occur. While he was there he also checked the pressure tank which he said was cycling properly and the pressure switch which seemed to be functioning properly. Lastly, he checked the amps going to the well pump. Everything seemed fine (about 9.5 amps while running). The only concern was that it seemed as if the pump was spiking too high during start up at times. He said the amps should only spike high for a split second than return to normal, but he noticed a few times where it hung for a few seconds. He suspected that the pump may be overheating, and if so, should be replaced, but he couldn't say for sure without the problem happening while he was there.

    Could this be anything besides an overheating well pump?
  2. valveman

    valveman Moderator Staff Member

    Messages:
    4,473
    Location:
    Lubbock, Texas
    There is no such thing as “properly cycling”. If the pump is cycling on and off while the sprinklers are running, that is your problem. The amp spike staying high after start up is because it has been starting too many times. This will cause the overload in the motor to trip, which lets the tank empty and causes water hammer. In a couple of minutes the motor will cool off and the overload resets itself, and it will work again for a while.

    That 1 HP pump will probably produce about 10 GPM. Your well only recovers at 4 GPM. So you either need to keep running 4 GPM to the sprinklers and let the pump cycle itself to death, or install a Cycle Stop Valve (CSV). The CSV will turn that pump into a 4 GPM pump, so it won’t cycle and trip the overload.
  3. dandreozzi

    dandreozzi New Member

    Messages:
    2
    Location:
    Massachuesetts
    Thank you for the quick response. I guess what I meant by "properly cycling" is that the tank is not short cycling in the opionion of the "well professional" who looked at it. Also, shouldn't the well pump be able to run over and over continiuosly without overheating? I'm sure that over the long run it puts more strain on the motor and shortens the life of the pump, but why is the pump sometimes overheating within 10 minutes and other times it's overheating after 1 1/2 hours? I was told that the well recovers at 4 feet per minute. What does that translate into for GPM? I believe my motor is 3/4 HP by the way.

    The CSV may be an option. Where do I buy one and where does it get installed? Thanks!!!!
  4. valveman

    valveman Moderator Staff Member

    Messages:
    4,473
    Location:
    Lubbock, Texas
    Not “short cycling” to most pumpmen means on for at least 1 minute and off for at least 1 minute. A complete cycle every two minutes is 105 cycles for every 3 ½ hours of your irrigation zone. A small zone will make the pump run a very short time to fill the tank, then the pump will be off for a longer time as the tank drains. A large zone will make the pump stay on longer and only be off a short time, as the tank will drain quickly. This starts your pump before it has time to cool off, and is probably why it is tripping the overload at random times.

    A CSV cannot undo the damage that has already happened to the motor, but it can keep any more damage from happening. Our web page is in the link below or you can call 800-652-0207.
Similar Threads: Submersible Pump
Forum Title Date
Pumps and Tanks Well Forum & Blog Submersible pump pulled, minimal flow in test bucket.... Sep 3, 2014
Pumps and Tanks Well Forum & Blog Submersible pump well problem Aug 1, 2014
Pumps and Tanks Well Forum & Blog Protecting a submersible pump using flowmeter Jul 26, 2014
Pumps and Tanks Well Forum & Blog Tankless Submersible Well Pump losing pressure Jul 7, 2014
Pumps and Tanks Well Forum & Blog Submersible Pump Problem Jun 30, 2014

Share This Page