Pressure Tank Not Draining -Solved-

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ffltstn

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I live in Central Florida, have a well so hard water and Iron. I also have a system to correct those issues.
Every couple months I turn off pump, open valve on pipe coming out of the tall tank and drain off the Iron settlement. This has always also drained the pressure tank on the left. Today when I drained them the water remained in the pressure tank. I removed the gauge that is next to the switch and did not get water out of it, I also tried shaking the tank. There was air in the bladder but I can't check or set the air pressure as the tank is full of water.
1. Is the tank bladder causing this or could the drain on the bottom of that tank be clogged?

2. The water comes out of a 1 1/4" thru the T that leads to system and then into the pressure tank, then back out to T, is that connected correctly?
Is there a better way to pipe everything. Been like this since 2008.

Thanks Everyone!
Ken
SOVLED... Once I cut the pipe and was able to get to the inlet I added air to the top and could feel and hear it coming out of the bottom. Broken bladder, replaced tank.

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LLigetfa

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I would never use a captive air tank if precipitated iron is present. I use a composite HP tank with removable 4 inch top and bottom bungs so I can take it apart to pressure wash the inside and use muriatic acid when needed. Of course, an air maker is needed with a HP tank.

You could have a busted diaphragm plugging the port on the bottom or it could be plugged with iron.
 

Bannerman

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There was air in the bladder but I can't check or set the air pressure as the tank is full of water.
A well pump pressure tank will typically contain sufficient water to occupy only 1/4 of the total tank volume while the system pressure is high enough to cause the pressure switch to shut down the pump. An 80-gallon tank should contain approx 20-gallons water, a 100-gallon tank, 25-gallons etc. When the system pressure is lowered to the pressure switch cut-in pressure, the PT will contain almost no remaining water.

It's unlikely that the bottom connection is blocked since water will enter the PT each time the pump is operating, and that same water will be pushed out through that same port whenever water is utilized prior to the pump becoming activated.

Since the PT should never be 'Full' of water, I suspect the diaphragm is torn and there is insufficient air remaining to push water out from the tank.

It's also possible that the top of the tank has rusted through so the air has escaped through a perforation in the steel shell.

Adding air to the top of the pressure tank may push the water out through the bottom connection to a drain valve or through the gauge port while the gauge is removed.
 
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Valveman

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Actually it is very common for the bladder in the tank to tear and cover the inlet/oulet hole. This can work like a one way check valve, letting water in the tank, but not out. Adding air just pressurizes the water you need to remove. An 80 gallon tank can weigh more than 700 pounds when full of water like that. Many a tank I have had to drill or "pick" a hole in the side of a tank to let the water out so I could get it out of the well house or basement.
 

Bannerman

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it is very common for the bladder in the tank to tear and cover the inlet/oulet hole. This can work like a one way check valve,
My comment was initially in response to concern of rust and sediment blocking the water port.

You and LL maybe correct, but until some air is added to the tank, Ken won't know if it is possible for any water to be pushed out. Perhaps air will be heard escaping from a rust hole through the tank's shell.
 

Reach4

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Air could even force water thru the hole to lighten the tank for replacement.

Plastics should be protected from long term UV. This includes the PVC pipes and media tanks. Maybe get a big cover made? Maybe paint the pipes with latex paint?
 

ffltstn

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A well pump pressure tank will typically contain sufficient water to occupy only 1/4 of the total tank volume while the system pressure is high enough to cause the pressure switch to shut down the pump. An 80-gallon tank should contain approx 20-gallons water, a 100-gallon tank, 25-gallons etc. When the system pressure is lowered to the pressure switch cut-in pressure, the PT will contain almost no remaining water.

It's unlikely that the bottom connection is blocked since water will enter the PT each time the pump is operating, and that same water will be pushed out through that same port whenever water is utilized prior to the pump becoming activated.

Since the PT should never be 'Full' of water, I suspect the diaphragm is torn and there is insufficient air remaining to push water out from the tank.

It's also possible that the top of the tank has rusted through so the air has escaped through a perforation in the steel shell.

Adding air to the top of the pressure tank may push the water out through the bottom connection to a drain valve or through the gauge port while the gauge is removed.
I added some air but no way of telling if its filling the bladder or just the space in the tank. I'm cutting the pipe and going to try and drain it. Then it it takes a lot of air to fill it I'll know the bladder is torn.
 

Reach4

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You should buy or borrow a compressor with a CFM or a SCFM rating. A bicycle pump or a pump with a "250 psi" rating would take a very long time.

But as was pointed out, adding air may well not do it, and you will need to drill. Rubber has a self-sealing effect. A bigger drill bit may be needed.
 

Bannerman

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I added some air but no way of telling if its filling the bladder or just the space in the tank.
Did adding air cause water to be pushed out from an open faucet?

The point of adding air was to determine if water will be expelled. If the bottom port is not blocked and if air is not escaping through a rust hole, a little air should cause at least some amount of water to be expelled. Additional air should cause a larger amount of water to be expelled until all of the water is eventually pushed out from the tank.

If additional air is not causing water to be expelled, then either the air is leaking out through the steel shell, or as mentioned by others, the diaphragm may be blocking the bottom port.
 
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