Well Water Keeps Shutting Off

Discussion in 'Pumps and Wells' started by CarpeMofo, Apr 2, 2014.

Help Support Plumbing Forums by donating:

  1. Apr 2, 2014 #1

    CarpeMofo

    CarpeMofo

    CarpeMofo

    New Member

    Joined:
    Apr 2, 2014
    Messages:
    3
    Likes Received:
    1
    Location:
    ,
    I have well water. Randomly I will go to use a faucet and get no water. So I have to go to the breaker box, turn off the breaker to all the well stuff wait 30 or so seconds, turn it back on and I have water until the next time this happens. When I turn the breaker back on I can hear water running in the tank (I assume it filling) and my water pressure is just fine directly after doing this. I replaced the electronic pressure switch assembly and I still have the problem. The pump and tank are both less than fifteen years old. When I had everything surveyed the guy said that my well would most likely never go dry. Also, the water is /always/ clean and perfect. (Though it is hard water) Does anyone know what the problem could be? I think it might be the pump, but I'm loath to replace that since they tend to be several hundred dollars.
     
    Zanne likes this.
  2. Apr 2, 2014 #2

    Zanne

    Zanne

    Zanne

    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2013
    Messages:
    1,680
    Likes Received:
    196
    Location:
    ,
    Do you have an actual pressure tank? When I had a problem like that it was because the pressure tank had become too saturated and was causing problems that made the pressure switch on the pump flip.
     
    CarpeMofo likes this.
  3. Apr 2, 2014 #3

    CarpeMofo

    CarpeMofo

    CarpeMofo

    New Member

    Joined:
    Apr 2, 2014
    Messages:
    3
    Likes Received:
    1
    Location:
    ,
    I do... If this were the problem, how would I go about diagnosing/fixing the problem?
     
  4. Apr 3, 2014 #4

    phishfood

    phishfood

    phishfood

    Moderator Staff Member Professional Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Jan 18, 2010
    Messages:
    5,745
    Likes Received:
    986
    Location:
    Orlando, FL
    Moved to appropriate section, should get an expert answer quicker.
     
    Zanne likes this.
  5. Apr 3, 2014 #5

    Valveman

    Valveman

    Valveman

    Pump Controls Tech Professional Lifetime Supporter

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2010
    Messages:
    480
    Likes Received:
    92
    Location:
    ,Lubbock, Texas
    I thought this was the appropriate place for questions about pumps and wells?

    Anyway, you have one of two problems.

    Either your well is pumping dry and you have to stop the pump, let it re-prime, and then it will pick up water.

    Or the overload in the motor is tripping and automatically resets about the same time as you turn the pump off and back on.

    An amp meter clipped around one of the hot wires coming in will tell you which it is. If it is not pulling any amps, the overload is tripped. If it is pulling low amps, the well is pumped dry.
     
    johnjh2o, Zanne and phishfood like this.
  6. Apr 4, 2014 #6

    CarpeMofo

    CarpeMofo

    CarpeMofo

    New Member

    Joined:
    Apr 2, 2014
    Messages:
    3
    Likes Received:
    1
    Location:
    ,
    Would the water still be clean at all times if the well was pumping dry? The water isn't being filtered. It's just goes from pump to pressure tank to tap. I was under the impression the pump would suck up sediment and the water would get gross if the well was running dry.
     
  7. Apr 9, 2014 #7

    Valveman

    Valveman

    Valveman

    Pump Controls Tech Professional Lifetime Supporter

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2010
    Messages:
    480
    Likes Received:
    92
    Location:
    ,Lubbock, Texas
    Sometimes but not always.
     
  8. Apr 9, 2014 #8

    Zanne

    Zanne

    Zanne

    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2013
    Messages:
    1,680
    Likes Received:
    196
    Location:
    ,
    Carpemofo, do you have any photos of the setup?

    There can be multiple issues in a well system. I don't know about yours, but I have a pump to bring water up into the cistern (holding tank), then a pump to push the water out of the tank into the water supply, and a pressure tank to control the pressure of the water before it goes out. There is also some sort of mechanism to detect the water level in the holding tank. On mine it is a crappy old float that tends to get stuck (which causes pump #1 to overheat because it keeps pumping). I've been told that it should have something called a solonoid (spelling?) valve for that.

    Over the years I've had my water stop for numerous reasons. One was the first pump burned out so there was no water in the tank. This caused the second pump to overwork by trying to pump water that wasn't there and it pumped air and it burned out. The pump also vibrated a lot and the connections to the pipes came apart so water started leaking out. Someone had to actually climb inside the empty holding tank and hold something so the pipes could be reconnected to the tank. Other times there was a leak in an outside line that caused the cistern to drain so the water level dropped again. Another time the pressure tank died (this was all within a one year period when all of these things failed-- in fact, I had a brand new pump fail within a month because a rod in the piston cracked-- note: the Countryline pumps they sell at Tractor Supply are absolute garbage).

    In the past I did have a problem with the water not running and flipping the breaker fixed it. A few times it was because of the water leak.

    So, you might want to check out your lines and find out if there are any leaks that are draining the holding tank. I suggest going out to your pump house and shutting off the waterlines (if you can find a shutoff valve) and waiting for the cistern to load.

    Honestly, I think the best thing to do is to call in a well system service and have them check out your system to look for problems to try to troubleshoot.
     
  9. Apr 10, 2014 #9

    Valveman

    Valveman

    Valveman

    Pump Controls Tech Professional Lifetime Supporter

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2010
    Messages:
    480
    Likes Received:
    92
    Location:
    ,Lubbock, Texas
    Your well pump and your cistern pump should have something like a Cycle Sensor that will shut the pump off on DRY run before any damage can occur.

    [​IMG]
     
    Zanne likes this.
  10. Apr 11, 2014 #10

    Zanne

    Zanne

    Zanne

    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2013
    Messages:
    1,680
    Likes Received:
    196
    Location:
    ,
    Valveman, is that usually built in to the pump or is it a separate device?

    Are there any photos of what a modern pump setup should look like (for the whole well system-- not just the one to pump water out to the fixtures)?
     
  11. Apr 14, 2014 #11

    Valveman

    Valveman

    Valveman

    Pump Controls Tech Professional Lifetime Supporter

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2010
    Messages:
    480
    Likes Received:
    92
    Location:
    ,Lubbock, Texas
    Zanne likes this.
  12. Apr 19, 2014 #12

    Zanne

    Zanne

    Zanne

    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2013
    Messages:
    1,680
    Likes Received:
    196
    Location:
    ,
    Thanks, Valveman, I'll have to look into getting one of those if it will help our system.
    I hope Carpemofo has resolved his problems by now.
     

Share This Page