Problem with Well pump - were can I get a Sta-Rite VIP III control?

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CountryBumkin

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My (drilled well) well pump is over 30 years old now. Twice in the last week the pump stopped working and I had to reset the Sta-Rite VIP III pump controller (by pressing reset button). Maybe the start capacitor is going bad.
Due to the age of this equipment, I think the smart thing would be to just replace this controller, however the Sta_Rite "VIP III" is no longer made.

The only replacement controller I see on the Sta-Rite website is the EASYCONTROLLER M10-240. Is this a universal replacement - as it is the only one "listed in their catalog" for a one-pump system on 1PH 230V? https://www.starite.it/fileadmin/starite/downloads/kataloge/Sta_rite_GB_LOW.pdf (page 250).

I don't know what HP the pump is, or how deep the well is (maybe 300 ft). I am the original owner but I don't have any paperwork for the well equipment (which was installed when the house was built in 1990). Based on some neighbors comments, the pump is probably a 3/4HP or 1HP. The electrical is 1Ph 230V.

So I need/want a replacement controller. Can anyone provide some guidance?
Also, if it matters (regarding the pump model that may have been installed), the well is located in central Florida.
 

CountryBumkin

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Just to add some more info - I found a photo of a used VIP III Controller (Google images), it "looks the same" as mine but has model/part numbers listed. It says it is a model VIP4D02-01 with part number LR47013.

I don't recall seeing any label/tag (model/part numbers) on my controller - I'll look again when I get home.

Assuming the model and part number above is correct, what is the replacement (brand/model) you would recommend?


Sta-Rite VIP III.JPG
 

Reach4

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Start capacitors are cheap when you are not in a big hurry.

Start capacitors will fail with time and starts. IMO, they should be a PM item, maybe every 10 years.

For size, what current is going thru the yellow wire to the pump, or one of the hot wires going thru the pressure switch or breaker, when the pump is running?
 

Valveman

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Wow! Blast from the past. I think those are even oil filled motors with ball bearings instead of water lube motors as they use today. Was the same one they sold at Sears if you are looking for an old one. That control you linked to is not correct. You can use one of the newer models as seen here.

But, the newer motors have an overload in the motor, so the control box no longer has one. You can probably remove the overload from the old box and put it in the new one. Looks like there is even still a cutout in the box for it.
 

CountryBumkin

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Thanks for your help. I'll check current draw on this when I get home and post back. I suppose I could change out just the capacitor, but as old as this controller is (and since they are pretty cheap) I just figured it would be smarter to replace the whole thing.

On the comment about the built in overload not being in the newer controllers - is that overload your saying I may be able to move over to new box, the "reset button" on my current unit? Thanks for mentioning the potential issue I may run into with the overload when buying a new controller. I would never have considered that when shopping for a replacement.

I'll see how much room that mechanism takes up in the current box, and try to get a manual/diagram for the new unit to see if there is enough room in it. Obviously, I don't want to buy a new controller and then find out it wont work after I shut off the water and have torn things apart.
 

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Thanks for your help. I'll check current draw on this when I get home and post back. I suppose I could change out just the capacitor, but as old as this controller is (and since they are pretty cheap) I just figured it would be smarter to replace the whole thing.

On the comment about the built in overload not being in the newer controllers - is that overload your saying I may be able to move over to new box, the "reset button" on my current unit? Thanks for mentioning the potential issue I may run into with the overload when buying a new controller. I would never have considered that when shopping for a replacement.

I'll see how much room that mechanism takes up in the current box, and try to get a manual/diagram for the new unit to see if there is enough room in it. Obviously, I don't want to buy a new controller and then find out it wont work after I shut off the water and have torn things apart.
Yeah just the reset button.
 

CountryBumkin

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I found some replacement Sta-Rite (now Pentair) pump controllers. Here https://www.rcworst.com/vip-pro-series-controls.html

Now the issue is that I'm not 100% sure of which model controller I have. It's hard to read the tag. It looks like VIP4EC2-0. But there is no "EC" model - so it must be a "E0" (just a bad stamping), which would be a 1HP pump.

The main difference is the ratings of the capacitors (per chart below) - so I need to get this right.
The VIP4E02 is for a 1HP pump.
The VIP4D02 is a 3/4 HP pump.
The VIP4C02 is for a 0.5 HP pump, and

Not sure what size submersible well pump was installed (30 years ago). I may be able to pull the capacitors out and find a part number, which would then confirm what HP pump I have, but I'm not expecting to be able to rea any numbers of anything as bad as this box looks. And I don't want to have the controller fall apart (as I wont have water in the house) and then have to wait for replacement parts to be shipped.
Sta-Rite VIP4EG2-0.jpg

Controller  model specs (1).JPG
Sta-Rite VIP4E.jpg
 

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CountryBumkin

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Hi Valveman,
I got the replacement controller - and as you noted, there is no "Reset/Overload" button. I am gong to move the old button to the new controller. If I just use the new controller as-is, what happens if the pump/controller "overloads" how would I reset it (w/could the pump or controller burn up)? Do the newer models have an automatic reset build into pump)?

I colored the wiring diagram to trace how the wires are connected. It looks like there is room inside the new controller to receive the reset switch. I think using the old reset button in the new controller would be the best choice right now.

Question: The symbol below the capacitor, is that a resistor or a diode? It looks like I need to swap the wires on the Start capacitor (if that matters) as the blue colored wire from the relay and the orange wire from Line 1 are reversed in relation to the resistor/diode. If that is a resistor, the wire connections wont matter. If it is a diode, the connections may be important.

Thanks

Old controller
IMG_0483.JPG


New Controller
IMG_0484.JPG
 
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Reach4

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Question: The symbol below the capacitor, is that a resistor or a diode? It looks like I need to swap the wires on the Run capacitor (if that matters) as the blue colored wire from the relay and the orange wire from Line 1 are reversed in relation to the resistor/diode. If that is a resistor, the wire connections wont matter. If it is a diode, the connections may be important.

Interesting. I don't have that info, but I am trying to reason it out.
I expect it is a resistor for a couple of reasons.
1. The lines might represent 3 colored bands which are classically used on a resistor. A diode would have one line I expect. So I am thinking it might be a bleeder resistor to keep somebody from a small shock. The run capacitor would be one that does not leak charge off, unlike the start capacitor which is really a pair of electrolytic capacitors in series with opposite polarity to block (or greatly slow) the breakdown. https://flowisewater.com/control-boxes/ says "Resistor-equipped capacitors to protect against electrical shock".

2. If it is a form of diode it would be more of a breakdown diode to absorb an inductive kick when the relay opens. This is an AC circuit, so a regular diode would not be appropriate. Come to think of it, a resistor could absorb some energy from a kickback. but I don't think that is it. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Transient-voltage-suppression_diode
 

Valveman

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That is a resistor across the start cap. The old motors did not have overloads in them like the new ones do. If the old motor shorts out and there is not thermal overload, the wire or something will probably melt down before the breaker trips.
 

CountryBumkin

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I'm just posting back to let everyone know that I was able to finish the controller swap. I moved the "overload/rest" button from the old controller to the new. After getting everything apart I did find a potential cause of the original problem. The wire terminal strip looks to have been overheated. I think it is due to age and lots of moisture/corrosion over the 30 years of this controller being outdoors.

IMG_0499.JPG

IMG_0500.JPG
IMG_0498.JPG


Coincidently, last week my home's AC compressor stopped working. It turned out the 30 year old 2-pole 60A breaker (mounted outside at the AC unit) had bad/burnt contacts inside.
 

MrHyak

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Just to add some more info - I found a photo of a used VIP III Controller (Google images), it "looks the same" as mine but has model/part numbers listed. It says it is a model VIP4D02-01 with part number LR47013.

I don't recall seeing any label/tag (model/part numbers) on my controller - I'll look again when I get home.

Assuming the model and part number above is correct, what is the replacement (brand/model) you would recommend?


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