Clogged pipe wellhead to house.

Discussion in 'Pumps and Tanks Well Forum & Blog. Water is life.' started by zver11, Feb 5, 2020.

  1. zver11

    zver11 New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2013
    Location:
    Philadelphia pa
    Dealing with a nightmare well company. Needed to replace 3/4 HP submersible pump in 450 ft well. Already hit $5500 bills for replacement of pump, new wire, reuse PVC down pipe. Now company wants $2800 to replace pipe from well to house (<30') because pipe is blocked. Everything was fine until pump failed. My question is:
    Could a plumber snake the line or otherwise clear a blocked standard 1" well line? Seems extreme to dig up yard and have to run a new line!
     
  2. Reach4

    Reach4 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 25, 2013
    Location:
    IL
    Tell us about that blocked line. Steel, polythene, or what? You say 1 inch... is that 1.375 OD?

    If clogged with hardness materials, I am thinking of maybe pumping an acid such as vinegar, through it for a while. Recirculate and warm the vinegar, I think.

    What is the access -- pipe is connected to a pitless, or what?

    Regarding snaking, I don't know. Makes some sense to try if you have access. I am not a pro.
     
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  4. valveman

    valveman Cary Austin Staff Member

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    Pump Controls Technician
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    Lubbock, Texas
    Which came first, the chicken or the egg? The underground line was probably blocked, which deadheaded and burned up the pump. In the pump guys defense, he couldn't tell the line was blocked until he replaced the pump. Now the line is blocked. I would have hated to have to tell you that. If you can get a line through, they maybe able to pull through and bust up the old line while pulling in a new one. Probably be as expensive as digging to replace the line though.
     
  5. craigpump

    craigpump In the Trades

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    Self employed water system tech
    Location:
    Connecticut
    The only thing that would block the line is if the check valve in the pump broke loose and got pumped up and got lodged someplace. OR, someone installed a checkvalve underground and it failed.

    Have you seen water being pumped onto the ground after installation of the new pump? I ask because it's not impossible for a check valve on the drop pipe to be installed upside down.

    I would disconnect the incoming waterline at the tank and run an electricians snake out to the well and see where it stops. That's where I would dig to find the blockage. Depending on the age of the house, I might dig for and install new offsets.
     
  6. zver11

    zver11 New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2013
    Location:
    Philadelphia pa
    Well/pump work. I am getting water from temporary hookup to wellhead held above ground(nervous about this freezing). Problem definitely in pipe between pitless and house. Have a 25' snake. Ran it outward from house. Line clear for 25'. Given large amount of clay-mud produced by pump after installation and residue in area around pressure switch, suspect heavy clay blockage in first 10' or so from wellhead toward house.
     
  7. Reach4

    Reach4 Well-Known Member

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    Sep 25, 2013
    Location:
    IL
    Can you pressurize the line from the house size, and maybe wash the plug out?
     
  8. LLigetfa

    LLigetfa DIYer, not in the trades

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    Occupation:
    Semi-Retired
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    NW Ontario, Canada
    You need a longer snake. That said, there is a good chance the blockage is right at the pitless and the snake might not dislodge it. It depends on whether there is a 90 degree elbow at the pitless. That is a common practice so that if there is settling, it doesn't put undue force on the connection.

    How deep is the pitless? It might be prudent to dig it up.

    When I had my trench backfilled, I made sure to put only sand (not clay) near the casing so if I ever need to dig it up, I could do it by hand. My pitless is 6 feet deep so would be a chore to dig by hand.
     
  9. Reach4

    Reach4 Well-Known Member

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    Location:
    IL
    Maybe you could use a Clog Hog https://www.cloghog.com from the house side. Ask them if that should work. There would be water coming back, which you would collect in a tub. Then have a pump keep the tub from overflowing.
     
  10. fitter30

    fitter30 Member

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    Feb 2, 2020
    Occupation:
    Retired service tech
    Location:
    Peace valley missouri
    I wànt to see if there is water pressure at the pitless connector so the pump has to be lifted out a few feet to get it out of the well head. The well serviceman should have a gauge to check its pressure. Doesn't seem right that the line from well casing to house would be 100% blocked. Also look into the pitless connector that is tight 90* turn so if any part from the old pump might get stuck there. With the pump out could also take the line loose in the house an with a shop vac see what comes out.
     
  11. zver11

    zver11 New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2013
    Location:
    Philadelphia pa
    Thanks Reach4! Problem solved! Got cheap consumer grade(made in China) jetter(Amazon $70 tips plus 100' small diameter pressure hose), low end electric pressure washer(Harbor Freight $80). It cleaned out amazingly well and easy. Went through so easy. I did not know I reached the clog until I was through it. Cleans out all silt in the pipe as well so do not need to worry about it clogging lines in house. Definitely much better than a snake for this task. Only caution is that the relatively stiff head end of pressure washer hose is relatively long. Fortunately, my pipe did not have any tight corners. With corners, I might have needed a premium hose with a shorter front end. Quality of components used was not high end, but I. hopefully, will not need to use them again.
     
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  12. LLigetfa

    LLigetfa DIYer, not in the trades

    Joined:
    Feb 6, 2011
    Occupation:
    Semi-Retired
    Location:
    NW Ontario, Canada
    Quality jetters have a pulse mode that helps to advance it around bends.

    Glad it worked out for you.
     
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