Ace in Hole works, but wont discharge any water when connected as backup

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kezug

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I have an Ace in the hole that works (as tested outside using a bucket of water and it discharged up a 5 foot 2.5" pvc). However, when it is connected in my sump, when I test it, it wont work. I am confused.

When in my sump, it does have to fight a lot of back flow as there is water in the pipe that falls back after the main pump shuts off. Is there simply too much water and lift for the Ace?

I have a Simer - Ace in the Hole. model A5000-03

Any ideas?

Here is a pic of my setup.
The left arrow is a check valve.
The right arrow is where the Ace in the Hole is (it has its own check valve)

To the left, the pvc then goes up a wall about 4-5 ft, then 90 elbow out of the house for a straight declining run
 
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lordofthepipes

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ace in the hole use's a billage pump to discharge water from your sump pit. billage pumps are originally intended to pump 2-5 feet of head. head is the water in the pipe from the pump till it starts to flow by gravity. in best case it will only pump aprox 10 gpm at 8 feet of head. you should do a load test on the battery to determine if i has enuff power. just checking the volts wont do, you can have 12 volts and no power under load, also you may want to pipe the back up pump with a separate discharge so you wont have to use a check valve. low power pumps like the ace in the hole may not have enough power to pump thru a check valve at the head you have.
 

phishfood

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When I read this thread earlier, I was thinking of you, lord of the pipes.
 

kezug

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ace in the hole use's a billage pump to discharge water from your sump pit. billage pumps are originally intended to pump 2-5 feet of head. head is the water in the pipe from the pump till it starts to flow by gravity. in best case it will only pump aprox 10 gpm at 8 feet of head. you should do a load test on the battery to determine if i has enuff power. just checking the volts wont do, you can have 12 volts and no power under load, also you may want to pipe the back up pump with a separate discharge so you wont have to use a check valve. low power pumps like the ace in the hole may not have enough power to pump thru a check valve at the head you have.
According to the specs, 8 feet should be no problem. Also, the backup pump does not pass through the check valve!

Look at the pick, the main pump is in the center of the pit (sorry if I didnt explain that better). The backup is to the right. The backup has its own check valve right off the pump.

So, the main pump is the only one that flow through that check valve I have the left red arrow point too.
 

Mr_David

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Are you sure the discharge line is clear of any obstructions?
If the check valve is working on both pumps, then you should only get a little water back flowing back into the sump. Equal to the volume of the pipe between the pump and the check valve.
 

lordofthepipes

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the main pump is in the center of the pit (sorry if I didnt explain that better). The backup is to the right. The backup has its own check valve right off the pump.


so the back up pump is flowing thru a check valve right? If not then every time your primary kicked on it would recycle back into the pit thru the back up pump. in other words if you have two pumps tied together on the same discharge both pumps must have check valves. as far as specs go for battery back up pumps dont always believe what you read. almost ALL exaggerate the pumping capacity's. anyway try to pipe it separately or consider a better system. i can recommend some if you like.
 

kezug

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the main pump is in the center of the pit (sorry if I didnt explain that better). The backup is to the right. The backup has its own check valve right off the pump.


so the back up pump is flowing thru a check valve right? If not then every time your primary kicked on it would recycle back into the pit thru the back up pump. in other words if you have two pumps tied together on the same discharge both pumps must have check valves. as far as specs go for battery back up pumps dont always believe what you read. almost ALL exaggerate the pumping capacity's. anyway try to pipe it separately or consider a better system. i can recommend some if you like.
I dont get the recycled water since the ace has its own check valve.
See there are 2 check valves. The main one passes through the check valve (see left red arrow). The backup has its own check valve right off of the backup pump.

The pipes are clear becuase when I disconnected the backup...thats when I got all the recycled water (and a little wet too).

I also did take it outside to test and it lifted water out of a bucket up a pipe about 5' tall.

NOTE: The top horizontal piece has a coupler. The angled pipe has the check valve that the main pump flows through.

I just dont know how anything could be blocked.

Its as if, when the backup pump runs, it cant push that water up and out.

When I test the backup pump, I let the water rise to about 1/2 the height of the backup pump, then lift the float valve and it kicks on...its working, but not lifting that water up.:confused:
 

kezug

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Hmmmm, My manual just says this: If sharing a common discharge pipe, install a check valve between the primary pump and the back-up pump connection to prevent reverse flow from the backup pump into the primary pump

Then I found this image (which is not in my manual) Notice where the Check Valve is...AFTER the (T).

SO, DO I NEED TO MOVE THE CHECK VALVE THAT I HAVE ON THE ANGLE...AFTER THE (Y) Connector? Is that why its not working?

 
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Mr_David

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The drawing you have shows a check valve at the discharge of both pumps. Thus a total of 3 check valves.
If you move the valve check valve in your photo then you will need to add another onto the main pump. The Ace in the hole will have to pass through 2 check valves now now.


It's a good practice to install a valve so you can control the back flow of water while servicing the pumps.

Let's back up a little.
You say it doesn't work.
What exactly is not working? How are you testing it?
Are you lifting the float switch manually?
Are you filling the sump and testing the float?
Does the main pump discharge water from the sump with out any problems?
Are the check valves installed correctly?

ace in hole_a.jpg

SumpPumps2.jpg
 

kezug

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You say it doesn't work.
Correct...only when in the pit. I have tested it outside.

What exactly is not working? How are you testing it?
For testing inside the pit...I turn off the main pump. Let the water rise to about 2-3 inches above the base of the backup pump. (hard to get it much higher as the water starts to back up inside the other drain tiles). I then either test from the control unit on the backup panel or have just lifted the switch. In all cases, the pump turns on, I can feel it working. But no water evacuates.

for testing outside the pit. I removed the backup pump, inserted it inside a 5 gallon bucket of water and connected about a 5 ft pvc pipe. Flipped the float valve up and it kicked on, and the water shot up the pipe.

Are you lifting the float switch manually?
yes

Are you filling the sump and testing the float?
Only to about 2-3 inches above the base of the backup pump. The backup pump is higher up than the main (see drawing)

Does the main pump discharge water from the sump with out any problems?
Yes.

Are the check valves installed correctly?
Yes, as far as I know, esp since my test outside in a bucket of water worked.


I am going to try and get the pit to fill with water so that the backup pump is completely submerged in water (as it would have to be to actually lift the float switch to turn on if the main actually did fail) and see what happens then.

Until then, I am puzzled.
 
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speedbump

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Just because the backup pump has a couple inches of water over its base, are you sure the impeller is in water? If not, it's not going to work. Or it might move a little water, just enough to drop the impeller out of the water again.
 

lordofthepipes

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watchdog is the same type of pump that you have, maybe you should check your local plumbing supply and ask for a recommendation. I pull out and replace lots of watchdogs.
 

Mr_David

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Your drawing show the pump set just above the other pump but if you'll notice the watch dog back up is set lower. try setting the pump lower into the sump. It's the float that turns it on, so set the float were you want the back up to come one if the primary doesn't. Maybe speedbump is right and it is not deep enough in the water. Also some times I have to drill a small 1/4" to 3/8" near the connection of the discharge line below the check valve if possible to allow air to bleed out. this will of coarse spray when the pump kicks one so is not always a good idea.
 

kezug

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Well, I pretty much took the entire thing apart. Working from the backup pump towards the main line connection, I have observed the following:
- Just the backup pump. It works
- Added the check valve off the backup pump. It works.
- Added the coupler and pvc. It works
- Connected everything to the main line. It works.
- Run the backup pump a few times. It works....sometimes

I had made several connects and disconnects and sometimes it would work and other times it would not!

I also replaced that diagonal check valve! Could it just be a faulty backup pump?

In have very little knowledge of siphoning and pumps and air pressure locks...I am stumped.

This is what I think is happening. As the pipe exits my house...it runs at a downward angle for about 100 ft to a ditch (its all downward sloped). As that water travels I can hear siphoning affect. IS THAT CAUSING AIR PROBLEMS in my backup???? Should I drill some air holes outside (under my deck) on the top of the PVC to help with that siphoning?

This is killing me...any and all help is appreciated.
 
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kezug

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Ok, so I did some further test.

When I got home tonight, I shut off the main, let the pit fill and tested the backup pump. It runs, but nothing moves up and out. I disconnected the piping on the backup and all the water ran back to the sump.
At this point, the backup pump would not run! I had to jiggle it some...tapped onto the side and even loosened the screw in check valve...then if finally would turn on.

I connected all the pipes...and let the pit fill and tested the backup pump...it works.

I plugged in the main, let it run....then unplugged to test the backup pump....Nothing...no longer pumping out the water.

So, I plug in the main, let it take a little water...(not letting the water fall below the backup pump)...turn off the main...then test the backup...It Works.

So, after many cycles, I can now recreate the situation.

Firstly, know that the water always goes about 1" above the base of the backup before the pump turns on. When the main runs, and discharches, then turns off, I hear a gurgle. Could this gurgle be putting an airlock on the backup pump???

If so, how do i avoid this? Is it because I am letting the water raise above the base of the backup?

Also, when I had the pipe off of the backup pump and tested, it worked...but I noticed that after I shut off the backup pump...that water lowered itself in the piping where the check valve is...could it be that I need to replace the check valve in the backup pump?
 

speedbump

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I think you should go back and read the posts that could have been very helpful.

You ask questions, get answers then do something else. I don't think your paying attention.
 

kezug

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I finally found the issue. The anti-airlock hole was plugged.

I must have read the manual many times, but there is no reference to the anti-airlock hole existing on the pump nor is there any indicator on any of the pictures. The only mention of the anti-airlock hole is in the troubleshooting guide...but what threw me for a loop is that I know I didnt put on in there, so I assumed it was for another model. This frustrates me, but it is solved now.

Thanks everyone for your input.
 

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