Possible leak from well > house, any tips/guidance appreciated

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haniblecter

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HELLO!

Last post here had me pulling my iron drop pipe out, replacing with some black plastic, putting in a nice FE pump, and installing a FE Subdrive SD15 that has worked flawlessly (But OMG that FE Connect app is mother f'er to get connected!) I have city water, but the pump is a holdover from another time and only flows to my outside silcocks. (see pics in link) I did not change the old pitless, but did put on new rubber..gaskets?...with tons of grease.

I've since installed two sweet Eley reels in teh front and back, reran my copper inside to be all 3/4's, and bought $600 in Goodyear hose. Pressure was great, ran excellently...until late last season.

I realized my pump was cycling without turning on a silcock...alot. I run it at 62psi and always had a feeling that might be too much for the 20 year+ fitting off of the wellhead to the black PE. I had the cut on pressure set for 3psi.

With no leak in the basement, constant decrease in pressure with the pump off, I have to assume its a leak from the well > black pipe. I do not hear dribling when I take the well cap off. There's been nothing to cause a rupture along any path of hte line, and no trees along the short 35ft run to my basement. If I turn the cut on pressure to 35psi from 59, then it takes hours to cycle on, but now I got the odd pressure flows which I didnt put this time and money in to experience.

I plan on digging this coming weekend and would like to know what to expect in terms of replacement parts...as in, is some simple store-bought fitting that I can pick up at my local well supplier or just replacing non-statinless steel hose clamps?

Thank You in Advance
 

Valveman

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I don't think anyone here recommended a Subdrive, which could very well be the reason for the problem. 3 PSI drop is not much, especially if you are using a small pressure tank. The extra high voltage at the motor caused by a Subdrive could also have eaten away a metal fitting at the pump. Close the ball valve going to the house, and if the pressure drops the leak is before that ball valve. My guess is the fitting screwed into the pump has a hole in it from electrolysis, which can be exacerbated by a VFD like a Subdrive. Sorry for all your problems. If you had gone with the Cycle Stop Valve instead of the Subdrive you probably would have forgotten you have a pump by now.
 
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Fitter30

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Black pipe isn't for potable water galvanized is. Black pipe would give you orange to rust water. Agree drop pipe is comprised.
 

haniblecter

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I don't think anyone here recommended a Subdrive, which could very well be the reason for the problem. 3 PSI drop is not much, especially if you are using a small pressure tank. The extra high voltage at the motor caused by a Subdrive could also have eaten away a metal fitting at the pump. Close the ball valve going to the house, and if the pressure drops the leak is before that ball valve. My guess is the fitting screwed into the pump has a hole in it from electrolysis, which can be exacerbated by a VFD like a Subdrive. Sorry for all your problems. If you had gone with the Cycle Stop Valve instead of the Subdrive you probably would have forgotten you have a pump by now.

So you're telling me, in a matter of 2 years, voltage leaking from the pump via variable voltage from the subdrive, has worn a hole in a portion of my new stainless steel barb fitting on my pump, causing a pressure leak? That makes no sense. The water column at 80ft would supply enough pressure to prevent water from leaking out to no pressure in the system.

Just to clarify, Prior to the issue, the system would maintain 62psi indefinitely. I had the cutin at 3 psi (59) to keep pressure nice and constant, if I turn off the system, it'll drop to nothing.

If there was a leak, its either at the drop pipe > pitless or pitless/wellhead > drop pipe. I don't hear water dribbling the 10ft down to the water level, so assuming its wellhead >< black pipe, probably the 20+ yo fitting and hose clamps.


My interest is in what the fitting coming from the wellhead >< black piple looks like. Is it just another barb?
 
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Valveman

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If it is a SS barb fitting on the pump, electrolysis probably didn't eat the fitting. But the hose clamps usually have hardened steel or SS screw, which can get eaten away. But yes it could also be the barb fitting after the pitless, but will usually make a wet spot.

Only having a 3 PSI drop before the pump comes on, especially when using a small pressure tank, means the pump comes on if you leak a cup or so if water. A 20 PSI bandwidth will let you use some water out of a tank, like a 4.5 gallon tank would give you 1.2 gallons of draw down. 3 PSI drop is not enough. Sometimes even a change in temperature at the tank can make 3 PSI difference.
 
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