Water Storage Tank

Discussion in 'Pumps and Tanks Well Forum & Blog' started by kerrpress@telis.org, May 31, 2006.

  1. kerrpress@telis.org

    kerrpress@telis.org New Member

    Oct 28, 2005
    Dear Folks,

    My In-Laws & Out-laws want me to install an above ground water tank for them...

    Do you know how, or is there anywhere I can get step-by-step instructions for connecting well pump to storage tank, (on-off for well pump to fill tank and plumbing the fill side.), installing a "sludge" drain at lowest point, sizing the above ground pump, etcetera?!? What's the scoop on colors and UV resistant? Are there rating numbers?

    Thank you in advance!

    Charles Kerr :confused:
  2. vaplumber

    vaplumber Guest

    Give us some idea of your well capacity, and how many people use it and we can give you a better idea. Most storage tanks use a float to regulate the water level, and with a low flow well you will definately want to add pump protection. As for sludge drain, depends on condition of water, but in my area we simply use 1" pipe fitting with 1" ball valve.
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  4. kerrpress@telis.org

    kerrpress@telis.org New Member

    Oct 28, 2005
    From what I can "see", without any "specs", the existing well & pump seems to be doing about 10 GPM— This project is for a household with just one, and sometimes two people living there, but they do have irragation water desires, (garden, trees, dogs, etcetera).

    They've already decided on a 1550 tank— I plan to set 'em up with about 8 to 20 GPM @ 30 to 50 psi.

    What sort of control system would protect the well pump, and stop the fill when appropiate, plus if possible protect the well pump from "dry well"—

    The pressure booster pump would probably need some protection against a dry tank...

    ...any suggestions
  5. Bob NH

    Bob NH In the Trades

    Oct 20, 2005
    New Hampshire
    Protecting the well pump:
    The Pumptec will shut off the pump if the well runs out of water. It shuts down if the motor current drops, which is what happens if there is nothing to pump.

    Controlling the tank fill:
    A float switch in the tank, with a fairly small range to keep the tank full, will control the pump. Since the pump is probably 230 Volts, a relay operated by the switch will connect and disconnect both poles. The relay can be mounted in the pump control box if you have one and if there is room for a small relay. If there is not room for the relay, it can be mounted in a 4x4 box at a convenient place in the line to the pump.

    The pump should be checked to be sure it will withstand discharge through an open pipe, or a valve should be added to throttle it a bit. Some of the pumps overload the bearings if there is no back pressure.

    Some people discharge the well pump into a pressure tank and use a float valve in the 1500 gallon tank to control the level. That is an unnecessary complication. If you already have a pressure tank, use it for the new pump.

    Protecting against a dry tank:
    A "close on high" float switch near the bottom of the tank, connected in series with the pressure switch to the coil of a relay, will protect the pump from a dry tank. If you get a power rated switch such as is used with a sump pump, and if the pump motor is connected for 115 Volts, you can dispense with the relay and connect the hot line to the pump in series with the pressure switch. Those switches often come with a special plug that you plug into the wall, and then plug the pump into that plug.

    You can order pressure switches with long enough cords that you shouldn't have to splice them.
  6. vaplumber

    vaplumber Guest

    It sounds like you have a very healthy well and pump system. It seems like a waste installing a tank and a seperate pump just to avert a problem, when a well failure could cause many additional problems in your newly installed seperate system. I would suggest that even if you already have the seperate tank, take all of the money that you would spend on plumbing and materials for this tank system, place it in an account that would earn interest, and when you do have a well prblem, then you not only have more than enough money for a repair (which most well guys will do within 24 hours), but the left over funds are continuing to earn interest! Unless you have a low yeild well and the tank is really needed, you will regret the extra expense and maintenance, not to mention that you will then have 2 pumps out there to fail. If you do decide to do this, use pressure switches on both pumps with low pressure shut offs, and use load or current protectors as required on both pumps.
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 10, 2006
  7. Gary Slusser

    Gary Slusser That's all folks!

    Aug 31, 2004
    Wherever I park the motorhome.
    I agree with vaplumber, save their money unless they are causing a dry well condition now.

    If they insist and you do this, they should be told that it can cause some serious water quality problems in the tank and the water going to the house. So they should plan for that by having a water analysis done now, before they start. That will them what they may be finding in the new storage tank fairly soon after installing it.

    If they do this... I will add that simple low pressure safety cut off pressure switches solve the problem of a dry well or storage tank. They have no maintenance and are very inexpensive and work ever time.

    I suggest if you do this, to use the present pressure tank rather than a throttle back valve and possibly freeze protection problems. I would then suggest a manually over ridden normally closed solenoid valve controlled by a float switch in the storage tank piping controlling when the well pump system delivers water into that tank. It is a simple fail safe inexpensive design. There are plastic 1" solenoid valves for less than $30 and the safety pressure switches are about the same. A new pressure tank could be very small (5 gal) and use a Cycle Stop Valve or Smart Tank Tee to provide constant pressure to the house. The storage tank pump should be a shallow well (single line) jet pump or better is a 10 gpm 1/2 hp sub pump in the storage tank hung vertically with a union. You would have two float switches in that tank. One turns on the power to the well pump system (solenoid) and the other prevents running of the new sub pump if the water level in the storage tank is too low.

    How did you determine that the present well system produces 10 gpm? If you used a pressure tank drain... they are usually 1/2" or 3/4" boiler drain valves and a poor way to measure gpm output of a well system. Actually that tells you very little about the system. You need a constant pressure, say 40 psi and a flow meter on a 1" line to come up with accurate figures, and you should run that water for some time before taking the measurement. Vaplumber, this goes to the other thread we have ongoing about well output.
    Last edited: Jun 12, 2006
  8. vaplumber

    vaplumber Guest

    You need a constant pressure, say 40 psi and a flow meter on a 1" line to come up with accurate figures, and you should run that water for some time before taking the measurement. Vaplumber, this goes to the other thread we have ongoing about well output.
    >>>Gary, I understand now. I have been deleting the pressure figures from my mind. Done a little reading up in my notebooks this eve and figured this out. I will post this to the other posting as well. Sometimes I do not think too well, huh? My apologies to you.
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 12, 2006
  9. kerrpress@telis.org

    kerrpress@telis.org New Member

    Oct 28, 2005
    Thank you all for the in-put!!!
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