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Thread: Well pump gauge

  1. #1
    Jody Humbert's Avatar
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    Question Well pump gauge

    Should all PSI gauges on a well fluctuate when water is running and pump is cycling. All the wells I have inspected have a fluctuating psi guage to show the pressure build-up. The one I encountered today stayed at a constant 40 PSI even though the pump cycled every 2-3 minutes. Water pressure was okay. I have had broken gauges before that were visibly damaged but never one that maintained constant pressure according to the gauge. Any thoughts are appreciated.

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  2. #2
    James Duffin's Avatar
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    Default Re: Well pump gauge

    Did the gauge needle move at all....ever?


  3. #3
    Jody Humbert's Avatar
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    Default Re: Well pump gauge

    No. It did not seem to move. If it did, it would have only been 1-2 psi.


  4. #4
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    Default Re: Well pump gauge

    Jody H,

    I'm a little unclear with your descriptions.

    However, I'm going to stick the old neck out and start off with, Depends.

    What type of system overall, and what you've got, and which "guage" you're looking at.

    For example, not all pressure tanks have bladders or membranes. Water can't be compressed but air can be.

    Not all well pumps are the same, jets, subs, etc. Or size. Checks, water volume, depth, etc. Different switches and settings for different applications.

    It would seem from your description of frequent pump cycles every 2-3 minutes of the well pump, might be an indicatation of a short cycle symptom; and a potential indication of a problem with the system. If I'm understanding correctly what you have stated. It may be that the guage is displaying correctly (slight changes), and there is a problem with the pressure switch functioning, or its settings, in relation to what the system requires to perform correctly.

    Last edited by H.G. Watson, Sr.; 09-30-2010 at 07:47 PM.

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Well pump gauge

    Quote Originally Posted by Jody Humbert View Post
    No. It did not seem to move. If it did, it would have only been 1-2 psi.
    If the water pressure did not change the pump would not cycle on and off. The gauge is stuck. Fairly common to see.

    The beatings will continue until morale has improved. mgt.

  6. #6
    Jody Humbert's Avatar
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    Default Re: Well pump gauge

    Gauge stayed at 41 psi. Constant. I figured it was stuck, but I had a well contractor tell me about some "constant" pressure system and I didn't have any info to verify what he was saying to me.

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  7. #7
    James Duffin's Avatar
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    Default Re: Well pump gauge

    About the only time I have ever seen a guage hold steady is when the storage tank is completely full of water. By chance did the pump come on every time a faucet in the house was opened and shut off when the faucet was closed?


  8. #8
    Jody Humbert's Avatar
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    Default Re: Well pump gauge

    No. I ran the basement sink and flushed the toilet and it still cycled around every 2-3 minutes. Tank is a 21 gallon well-trol.


  9. #9
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    Default Re: Well pump gauge

    Quote Originally Posted by James Duffin View Post
    About the only time I have ever seen a guage hold steady is when the storage tank is completely full of water. By chance did the pump come on every time a faucet in the house was opened and shut off when the faucet was closed?
    Even if the tank is water logged the pressure has to drop 20lbs. for the switch to start the pump. You would see the drop of the needle at least for a few seconds.

    The beatings will continue until morale has improved. mgt.

  10. #10
    James Duffin's Avatar
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    Default Re: Well pump gauge

    With the tank acting like a piece of pipe and not a pressure device the pressure drop is usually instant and may not be noticed before the pump comes on and shoots it back up. The OP last response ruled out the tank but I though I would give it a shot.


  11. #11
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    Default Re: Well pump gauge

    Quote Originally Posted by Jody Humbert View Post
    but I had a well contractor tell me about some "constant" pressure system and I didn't have any info to verify what he was saying to me.

    There are "constant pressure" systems, maybe that had one installed?

    Grundfos USA

    Home | Constant Pressure

    F and W Constant Pressure Submersible Pumps that maintain constant pressure from rural water wells.

    and, of course, others.

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
    Construction Litigation Consultants, LLC ( www.ConstructionLitigationConsultants.com )
    www.AskCodeMan.com

  12. #12
    Jody Humbert's Avatar
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    Default Re: Well pump gauge

    Thanks guys.


  13. #13
    Jody Humbert's Avatar
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    Default Re: Well pump gauge

    Thanks for the links to that info, Jerry. Very helpful. I did notice that those systems seem to use small tanks 2-5 gallons. This had a 21 gallon tank on it. I wonder if that size tank can be used with those systems?


  14. #14
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    Default Re: Well pump gauge

    Quote Originally Posted by Jerry Peck View Post
    There are "constant pressure" systems, maybe that had one installed?

    Grundfos USA

    Home | Constant Pressure

    F and W Constant Pressure Submersible Pumps that maintain constant pressure from rural water wells.

    and, of course, others.
    If I read it right, the F & W pump runs at low speed 24/7 until you need a glass of water. Then it speeds up so your glass fills at the same rate every time. Brilliant

    The beatings will continue until morale has improved. mgt.

  15. #15
    David Bell's Avatar
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    Default Re: Well pump gauge

    Being that the gauge is connected inline with the pressure switch I would have to say the gauge is no good. If the switch is activating on pressure changes every 2 to 3 minutes with no faucets open, then the switch or a check valve are faulty.


  16. #16
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    Default Re: Well pump gauge

    Jody H.:

    I'm addressing this issue with you that I've covered before about client privacy/homeowner privacy, as well as potential fuel for opposition claims/suits, your E&O & GL comp ops carrier, and the "net", "world wide web", www, exposing present/future owners to possible fraud-sters/scam-ers (false repair scams, and such), etc.

    I will first address "how" you can mitigate, or at least somewhat "undo" or correct the instant "issue" on one of your follow-up posts on this thread, for the time being on THIS site but it may be too late for other references already "cached" on the "www" for"ever".

    If, when logged in to the site" you revisit the post on this thread wherein you attached a photo, you click your mouse pointer hoovered over the "button" or box labeled "edit" at the lower right of your post, you can then scroll down below the composition box and click on the attached photo option which will provide a pop-up box. Below where you usually might "browse" to begin to identify photos to "upload" you will find an area listing the photo you previously "uploaded", with an option to "DELETE" said photo.

    Although I have mentioned this on other threads, and many, MANY times to other members via private messages, etc.: IT IS A GOOD IDEA to RENAME photos from Inspections (you can make a second copy on your local harddrive with a different, non-property identifying name, and chose to UPLOAD this differently named photo file to your post on InspectionNews.net. It is a BAD idea to name uploaded files with property and/or client identifcation to unsecure, open, unencrypted, public access, internet sites, boards, servers, etc.

    InspectionNews (IN) scores HIGHLY on www. search engines. File names posted ARE SEARCHABLE on the www.

    Uploading files which include identifying information in their (file) names, such as: client name(s), PROPERTY ADDRESSES, etc. are IMHO: NOT A GOOD IDEA.

    There are a multitude of reasons, which include, client and home owner(present) privacy, advertising details of a particular property which may subject the property owner (past, present or future) to scammers using "inside information" as to a condition or state which may make said "scammer" appear "legitimate" to the "victim" property owner, and of course potential litigation actions/liability/insurance issues/party investigations, SoPs, protections, contractual obligation issues, licensure regulations (if applicable), as well as the relative confidential nature of the general buisness and practice of the professional home inspector.

    I STRONGLY suggest that you consider re-visiting your post, using the photo attachement feature to remove (delete) the file as named and posted, rename it locally on your harddrive, and re-uploading under a new name which doesn't designate property address, property owner, or potential purchaser names. Insurance underwriters, attorneys, home warranty companies, realtors, regulating/registration authorities, the B.B.B., etc. oftentimes "search" the www as a regular part/process of doing buisiness (as do past, present, and future clients, realtors, other parties to RE transactions, etc.).

    Even if you fear no possible "consequences", etc. Naming such a file in such a way so as to APPEAR to disclose identifying information, APPEARS unprofessional, if you catch my drift.

    As far as the system functioning properly, or being sufficient to supply that jetted soaking tub in the Master Suite as well as a 3 Bdrm-3 Bath, water consuming appliance ladden, full basement's, multi-car garage & mult-acre lot containing large pole barn & livestock/horses, home's future occupants-capacity-needs-requirements-demands, a referral to same to an independant Well and water professional to review the system and function, and memorialize details, supply, water quality testing, etc. on behalf of the potential buyer, prior to and not after a closing, might not be a bad idea.

    Off my soap box.

    Have a great weekend.

    Last edited by H.G. Watson, Sr.; 10-01-2010 at 10:08 AM.

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