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Residential Well - loss of pressure

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SteveJ

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Here are the facts. I replaced a bad water pressure tank (35 gal) and replaced the pressure switch (20/40). Pressure tank was set to 18 psi and pressure gets to just under 40 psi so I adjusted the pressure switch accordingly. We have a deep well jet pump, but not sure how deep the well is. Here is the problem. When the pump turns off and someone takes a shower the pressure drops to 20 and the pump kicks in after about 5 minutes the pump sounds like it cannot draw enough water to maintain the pressure and it drops to almost no pressure. If you turn off the shower and wait a few minutes the pump seems to catch up and build the pressure back up. We are in a mild drought in our area this year and not sure that is the issue. I have watched and read so many things on wells that I am at a point of frustration. Any guidance would be appreciated.
 

RS

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It sounds to me like your well is running out of water. Possibly just a plugged screen. Otherwise you could move the jet down deeper if there's room, or install a submersible pump near the bottom of the well.
 

fixitron

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In order to determine if the problem is in the well, you need to know the depth of the well, the static water level and the depth of the jet (venturi) at the bottom of your suction pipe. The first two can be done by sounding the well (dropping a stone and timing until it hits water, dropping a string with a weight and measuring the total depth and the length of wetness). The only way to measure the third is to pull the piping out of the well. While you are at that, you can check the screen at the bottom to be sure it is clear.
Not sure what you mean by "Pressure tank was set to 18 psi and pressure gets to just under 40 psi so I adjusted the pressure switch accordingly. " You should not have to adjust the pressure switch. If you mean that the pump kept on running and would not get to 40 psi, then that is an indication of a low water level and the pump is not able to pump water from the lowered water level in the well up to your pressure tank, at a pressure of 40 psi.
 

FishScreener

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Ammeter the pump wiring. If the pump is running out of water to pump, the amperage will go down as the pump runs out of water, and it transitions to just spinning.
 

Valveman

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The water level in the well could be low. But you could also have a clogged jet nozzle at the bottom of those two pipes, or even a hole in the pipe down the well.
 

SteveJ

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Thanks for all the feedback. I have attempted everything I can do as a novice. I strongly believe it is a well water level issue, but my better half thinks I did something wrong when I changed the pressure tank. The water issue has been a problem over the last month or so anyway. We are going to call in a professional to assess the situation. I try and be jack of all trades, but we all have our limitations. I am an IT professional by trade and I am not willing to go into the weeds so too far on our well. I am not afraid to learn, but sometimes you need to just bring in the big guns.

I will post what was found and any resolution to the problem.

Thanks again!
 

SteveJ

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In order to determine if the problem is in the well, you need to know the depth of the well, the static water level and the depth of the jet (venturi) at the bottom of your suction pipe. The first two can be done by sounding the well (dropping a stone and timing until it hits water, dropping a string with a weight and measuring the total depth and the length of wetness). The only way to measure the third is to pull the piping out of the well. While you are at that, you can check the screen at the bottom to be sure it is clear.
Not sure what you mean by "Pressure tank was set to 18 psi and pressure gets to just under 40 psi so I adjusted the pressure switch accordingly. " You should not have to adjust the pressure switch. If you mean that the pump kept on running and would not get to 40 psi, then that is an indication of a low water level and the pump is not able to pump water from the lowered water level in the well up to your pressure tank, at a pressure of 40 psi.
I agree with your assessment on the water pressure and the level. After everything I read and watched online, that was the most logical explanation. We had a mild drought in our area that we have never experienced while living here.
 

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