Two issues/One system

Discussion in 'Pumps and Tanks Well Forum & Blog' started by ElCid, Apr 14, 2007.

  1. ElCid

    ElCid New Member

    Messages:
    7
    Hello! I have a sprinkler system that was installed when I built our home in 1988. All worked well until recently. I have a 4" well that is 54' deep, the static water depth is approx. 8', the dynamic water depth is appox. 10'. There is 25' of 1 1/4" sch40 down with a foot valve all of this is hooked to a 2hp electric external pump. The footvalve, pump and pressure switch were purchased and installed on 4/8/07. The former pump was 1.5 electric, approx. 3 years old when the pressure starting fluctuating from 35 psi down to 5psi with an equal drop in water output to the sprinkler system plus the system would not shut off. The system is hooked to a pressure tank that is approx. 2 years old. I called a local well company and they came out looked at the setup said it was the pump and wanted to sell me a $900 pump. I said no thank you and went to a retail chain and purchased the above mentioned pump for less than $300. The pump, pressure switch and foot valve were istalled with no change, that is, pressure and water output are still fluctating and system will not shut off. I have a cut off to the sprinkler system and a hose bib that I can use seperatly. I have run the pressure up to 40psi, shut all open valves but pressure switch does not cut system off, however, system will stay pressuized overnight to approx 40psi when I manually shut off at the breaker. I do not see any water leaks from pump to tank. All suggestions will be greatly appreciated.
  2. speedbump

    speedbump Previous member

    Messages:
    4,540
    Location:
    Riverview, Fl.
    You said you bought a 2hp pump. There are not many companies making 2hp jet pumps. So I assume you bought a self priming centrifugal. Bad choice, especially with a tank and pressure switch.

    Next, you said you had 25 feet of PVC with a foot valve. Add 5 feet and you will quit running totally out of water. You will however have a minimum supply from what your have said since the well is apparentally not keeping up with demand.

    bob...
  3. Wet_Boots

    Wet_Boots Sprinkler Guy

    Messages:
    798
    Location:
    Metro NYC
    What was the original pump installed with the system? The system might be removed from the equation, while you evaluate the performnce of your well and pump. It might be that 40 psi may be more than the new pump can easily develop.
  4. Raucina

    Raucina Previous member

    Messages:
    515
    Maybe you bought a 2hp sprinkler booster pump that in real reality is about a 3/4 hp piece of Ca-Ca. Then you got low recovery in the well. Now you got a big mess.

    Pretty soon that 900$ might look good!
  5. sammyhydro11

    sammyhydro11 Previous member

    Messages:
    709
    Location:
    Massachusetts
    Your well is being over pumped. I dont undersatnd why you have a jet pump on a 4" well that is 54' deep anyway. It might pump some water until the water level gets to the foot valve and starts sucking air.Thats why you have fluctuating water pressure. I would return the jet pump,buy a submersible pump set it at 45', and forget about it. Putting a 2 hp jet pump on the well only draws the water down quicker and doesn't resolve anything.

    SAM
  6. sammyhydro11

    sammyhydro11 Previous member

    Messages:
    709
    Location:
    Massachusetts
    You dont just buy any 1/2 hp submersible pump. You want to make sure its going to provide enough water to your irrigation system and not take out more than what the well is producing. A 7 gallon per minute 1/2 hp pump will give you a little over 10 gallons per minute at 40 psi set at 45' and with a pumping water level around 35'.If you need more you go to a 10 gallon 1/2 and then a 13 gallon 1/2. Its not a good idea to start hitting these online auctions unless you know what you are buying. You could be wasting your money like you did with that 2hp jet pump.Another thing you might want to consider doing is a pump test to the well to find out what its now producing for water. If you had a jet pump on there that worked for a good period of time and now all of a sudden its overpumping the well,the screen could be having problems and might need some attention.

    SAM
  7. ElCid

    ElCid New Member

    Messages:
    7
    Thank you for the posted advice. The original system was a Myer 1 hp. It finally gave up the ghost several years ago and I replaced with a Flowtec 1.5 hp. It worked for a couple of years and then developed the pressure flucatating mentioned before. I sized the newest pump based on calcualation of sprinkler heads, pipe size, depth of dynamic and static water level (pump and sprinkler heads are at same height, i.e. no hills). This past weekend I changed out the 1 1/4" pipe in the well with 1 1/2" and the system is working so far. Only issue I have now is the pressure switch is not turning system off well sprinkler timer turns system off.
  8. sammyhydro11

    sammyhydro11 Previous member

    Messages:
    709
    Location:
    Massachusetts
    If the pipe was changed out and you are not experiencing any problems then i wouls supect there was a vacume leak in the 1 1/4" line.The pump isn't shutting off on its own?Does the timer shuts down the irrigation valves and the pump still runs? What kind of pressure does the pump build up to?

    SAM
  9. ElCid

    ElCid New Member

    Messages:
    7
    Sam: Yes the timer shuts the sprinkler system off, but the pressure switch does not shut the pump off. As I have mentioned earlier, the pressure tank is approx 1 year old, the pressure switch was changed out on 4/7/07. The pump is running at approx 42psi
  10. sammyhydro11

    sammyhydro11 Previous member

    Messages:
    709
    Location:
    Massachusetts
    What is the make and model of the pump? I would suspect a problem with the jet assembly.

    SAM
  11. ElCid

    ElCid New Member

    Messages:
    7
    Sam: I don't recall at this time as I am work. It was purchased at Lowes and I think I read in the booklet it is a subsidiary of Myers, but I can be sure. It is a cast Iron body around the inpeller instead of the plastic around the Flotec. I can let you know tonight when I get home if it would help.
  12. speedbump

    speedbump Previous member

    Messages:
    4,540
    Location:
    Riverview, Fl.
    In my opinion, you have bought pumps when the real problem is your well. With only 25 feet of pipe in the well, it would act just like it is now because of the water lever being dropped to the footvalve then getting a shot of air making the pump lose it's prime for a while. Self primers do not make great pressure, especially when the water level is down close to the 25 foot mark.

    bob...
  13. sammyhydro11

    sammyhydro11 Previous member

    Messages:
    709
    Location:
    Massachusetts
    I agree speedbump. I think a submersible pump is the way to go.

    SAM
  14. ElCid

    ElCid New Member

    Messages:
    7
    Gentleman: The pumb is a Water Ace 2.0 hp. I have run for 16 hours with no problems except for the cut off issue. As I stated originally, the static water depth is 8' the dynamic water depth is 10', so water level is not the issue, apparently the pump was pulling more than the pipe could deliver. Do you have any recommendation on the shut off issue?
  15. sammyhydro11

    sammyhydro11 Previous member

    Messages:
    709
    Location:
    Massachusetts
    I would suspect the jet assembly is clogged and that is what usually gives you problems with the pump building pressure. I'm not familiar with the type of pump you have but if you can get to where the nozzle is in the jet,it could be clogged.

    SAM
  16. speedbump

    speedbump Previous member

    Messages:
    4,540
    Location:
    Riverview, Fl.
    I think we have already answered that question. Your well is not supplying enough water, so it's drawing down and giving your 25' of droppipe a shot of air.

    bob...
  17. sammyhydro11

    sammyhydro11 Previous member

    Messages:
    709
    Location:
    Massachusetts
    Elcid,
    have you measured the pumping water level? Because unless you have something lodged in that nozzle speedbumps assumption would be correct.

    SAM
  18. ElCid

    ElCid New Member

    Messages:
    7
    Sam:

    The depth of the water level while the pump is running is approx. 10'. I have solved the issue of fluctating pressure and everyones answer was correct in that I was not pumping enough water. The solution was to increase the size of pipe from 1 1/4 to 1 1/2 this was done the weekend of 4/14/07. The pump is new, I understand anything could clog it, but is that possible with so new a pump? Thanks for the advice
    Last edited: Apr 20, 2007
  19. sammyhydro11

    sammyhydro11 Previous member

    Messages:
    709
    Location:
    Massachusetts
    Elcid,
    changing the size line was not the remedy to your problem. I know you would want to think that but its not.Your old line had a suction leak. When you replaced that line you put that one together so there werent any suction leaks. At this point if you want us to help you with this system we would need to see some photos of your setup because what you are telling us doesn't make sense. If what you are telling us is correct then i would say that your pump is junk or you have a serious leak on the discharge side of your system.

    SAM
  20. speedbump

    speedbump Previous member

    Messages:
    4,540
    Location:
    Riverview, Fl.
    I'm in agreement. First it was fluctuating water pressure, then no water then water etc. Then it was the 40 psi. max thing. I'm guite sure you have a self primer because Myers does not offer a 2hp jet pump. So there is no jet to plug. Self primers do not make much more than 40 psi anyway. A Myers 2hp self primer will make a maximum of 50 psi with zero water lift. Take away the 10 feet pumping level you say you have and the pumps max pressure is now less than 50 psi. If you have a pumping level of around 20 feet, max pressure would be around 42 psi. Just like you said you have. So something does not make sense to me either. Changing one pipe size would not cure the problem. I remain confused.

    bob...
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