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Country Discussion Topics
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Well problems and pressure tanks
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Griz    Posted 02-03-2004 at 09:24:27       [Reply]  [Send Email]
Again, new to the country so trying to get use to the whole well thing. The pressure in my house is not that great and I figured that either there was a problem or at least I could find a way to increase the pressure. So, I turn the basement shower on and walked to the pressure tank. It measures about 40lbs. However, with the shower on the psi guage will go from about 40 psi to 20 psi real quick (like dropping in less than a second) and then in about 2 seconds it shoots back up dramatically to the 40 psi. In the course of a minute it will cycle 20 times or better. This is obviously not good for my well pump nor my electric bill. I shut the pump off and bled out the lines. I then put a pressure guage on the pressure tank and it measures 34 lbs. My initial thought here was that it was deadheading. Anyways, I bled it down to 26 lbs thinking that possibly the bladder was too full but it still does the same thing. So, other than replace the pressure tank I am clueless on what to do next. Is this a sign of a bad pressure tank or is there another simply fix I need to try? I can't get a 32 gallon tank for $170 here locally or I can make the drive into the city and possibly buy cheaper. Any suggestions??


Willy-N    Posted 02-03-2004 at 13:29:15       [Reply]  [No Email]
On your presure tank with bladders in them you should set the air presure 2 lbs below the cut off presure on the water system. Adjust the presure after all the water is out of the tank and none will come out of the fausets. This way you will get maxuim draw down gals out of the tank before your pump comes back on. Mark H.

Wisereader    Posted 02-03-2004 at 10:23:09       [Reply]  [No Email]
Believe it or not, the type of showerhead you are using makes a big difference. Change to a good, quality low-flow type, and you will notice a dramatic difference.

duh    Posted 02-03-2004 at 14:38:48       [Reply]  [No Email]
you need to change your name. This doesn't have anything to do with his problem. Like if my radio is too loud should I change my shower head?

Bob    Posted 02-03-2004 at 09:45:44       [Reply]  [No Email]
You state that you have a bladder tank. If this is true, there will be an air charge fitting on the tank, usually under a plastic protective cap.

Shut off the well pump, and allow the pressure to bleed off through an open faucet. Using a portable air tank, or an air compressor, put a shot of air into the air charge fitting on the bladder tank. Often, there is a tag on the tank, charge to "X" PSI. (That pressure would be checked at the air charge fitting with a tire gauge, with the tank empty of water.) I can't recall what the typical air charge pressure is, but it would be less than the desired system pressure, to allow the water incoming into the tank to compress the air charge, and allow the rated capacity of water to flow into the tank.

If the bladder is good, or at least does not have a big leak, the system will work much better.

If the bladder is bad, the air you put in the charge fitting will pass through the bladder, and out your open water faucet. The other possibility would be the charge air leaking out the fitting, or through a rust pit in the air storage area of the tank.

Bob    Posted 02-03-2004 at 09:52:19       [Reply]  [No Email]
After posting, I re-read your post, and now understand that you have already bled off some air?

Is there a tag on the tank that says "pre-charged to "X" PSI?

You might want to bleed off some more air. (You can always add air, if this doesn't help.)

The only other thing I can think for that there is some restriction to the water from the pump actually getting into the tank... Perhaps a closed valve, or maybe rust and crud blocking the fitting at the bottom of the tank so no water can get in.

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