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  1. #1
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    Default Pulsating water flow at faucets

    Inspected a rural home with water supply from a well with a pressure tank. Water flow from both the hot and cold sides would pulsate, not a steady flow. What could cause this, faulty pressure tank, well pump?

    Thanks in advance

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  2. #2
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    Default Re: Pulsating water flow at faucets

    Quote Originally Posted by sidney alstad View Post
    Inspected a rural home with water supply from a well with a pressure tank. Water flow from both the hot and cold sides would pulsate, not a steady flow. What could cause this, faulty pressure tank, well pump?

    Thanks in advance
    Those would be my guesses.

    "It takes a big man to cry. It takes an even bigger man to laugh at that man". - Jack Handey

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Pulsating water flow at faucets

    Quote Originally Posted by sidney alstad View Post
    .
    ]Inspected a rural home with water supply from a well with a pressure tank. Water flow from both the hot and cold sides would pulsate, not a steady flow. What could cause this, faulty pressure tank, well pump?

    Thanks in advance
    .
    Also the aerator could be partly blocked causing the water flow to pulsate.
    .

    It Might have Choked Artie But it ain't gone'a choke Stymie! Our Gang " The Pooch " (1932)
    Billy J. Stephens HI Service Memphis TN.

  4. #4
    wayne soper's Avatar
    wayne soper is online now Member
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    Default Re: Pulsating water flow at faucets

    Pressure tank needs air. Get the broker to blow into the air valve. Try not to overfill.
    We don't want any $hit in the water system


  5. #5
    John Kogel's Avatar
    John Kogel is online now Member
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    Default Re: Pulsating water flow at faucets

    What Wayne says. The pressure tank is water-logged. It needs to have a cushion of air in it to work. When the tank contains a pocket of air, the air can be compressed by the flow of water from the pump. The pump will run until the pressure in the system reaches the max setting on the pressure switch.
    The cushion of compressed air allows you to run taps without causing the pump to run. Pressure drops slowly, then the pump kicks in, and re-pressurizes the tank.
    With a water-logged pressure tank, the pump starts immediately because the pressure drops sharply, then, because water won't compress, the pressure quickly jumps to max and the pump kicks off. That situation is called cycling and is hard on the pump.
    A little portable air compressor can be used to pump new air into the pressure tank. I've even used a bicycle pump. It's a cheap and easy fix.

    John Kogel, RHI, BC HI Lic #47455
    www.allsafehome.ca

  6. #6
    Bill Brooks's Avatar
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    Default Re: Pulsating water flow at faucets

    John is right on the money with his answer, just be careful if its an expansion tank with a diaphragm it does not require alot of air. Also if it is a diaphragm type of tank when you go to add air and if you get water out the air fill valve it means the diaphragm is split and needs a new tank.


  7. #7
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    Default Re: Pulsating water flow at faucets

    Thanks for your answers, they are much appreciated.


  8. #8
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    Default Re: Pulsating water flow at faucets

    This is not a problem that a home inspector should try to "fix" with a compressor or bicycle pump. It indicates a problem with the pressure system that could be caused by any number of things. Could be: 1) Leaking air valve on captive air tank; 2) Defective or plugged air admitance valve on well drop pipe or check valve; 3) Defective bladder or diaphram in captive air tank; 4) Defective or plugged air release valve on conventional pressure tank; 5) Defective pressure switch; 6) etc., etc., etc. This should be referred to a licensed water system professional.


  9. #9
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    Default Re: Pulsating water flow at faucets

    Quote Originally Posted by Ralph Holden View Post
    This is not a problem that a home inspector should try to "fix" with a compressor or bicycle pump. It indicates a problem with the pressure system that could be caused by any number of things. Could be: 1) Leaking air valve on captive air tank; 2) Defective or plugged air admitance valve on well drop pipe or check valve; 3) Defective bladder or diaphram in captive air tank; 4) Defective or plugged air release valve on conventional pressure tank; 5) Defective pressure switch; 6) etc., etc., etc. This should be referred to a licensed water system professional.
    Mr Holden,

    Don't worry, I am not going to repair this, simply provide direction to my client.

    Sidney Alstad
    RE/INSPEX


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