Installing shallow well pump

I have a Sears Craftsman Shallow Well Pump that I would like to use, but have no experience in installing. Is there a diagram I could look at to see how it is piped?
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snipped-for-privacy@bellsouth.net wrote:

I used to have a nice diagram, but I can't find it right now. However, installation is very easy. The input goes into the well (doh) AND you (optionally) need a one way valve somewhere in the line. They make "foot valves", which is nothing more then a one way valve that goes at the end of the pipe going into the well, so it is at the bottom of the well, and they usually have a screen to keep rocks out of the pump (I ruined one pump because I took the screen off and stuck the inlet pipe into the muck at the very bottom of the well). You can get these at most any hardware store for about a $20 bill. Another way is to not put a foot valve at the bottom, but use a one way valve somewhere in the inlet line. Doing it this way makes it easier to prime. Note that a foot valve or one way valve is NOT required. It is there to keep water from draining out of the inlet pipe. Without it, you have to prime the pump before each use, which is a pain.
The outlet goes to a water tank. I'm not sure if this is just a 25 gallon tank, or if there is anything special about them, someone else here will have to answer that. It's just a big accumulator, without which you would probably break the pump or bust pipes or otherwise find operation of the pump to be extremely erratic, depending on the pump. I think it would go into hydrostatic lock and break the pump and/or your pipes. Somewhere between the outlet of the pump and the water tank is the water pipe you take the water out of.
Here is mine:
http://zootal.no-ip.info/stuff/2006/2006%20June%20Garden%202/DSCF3474.jpg
The front of the pump, where it goes out and down into the ground is the inlet. The outlet is on the top, and it goes to two faucets, the tank on the right, and back into the ground to feed faucets around the house and in the garden.
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Minor nit pick. The 'one-way valve' (check valve is the technical term) has to be placed so it will _always_ be under the water. Simplest plumbing is to just use a foot valve.
Harry K
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wrote:

I respectfully disagree with that - the foot valve goes under water, but the check valve (if also used) should be close to the bladder tank.
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Jackson wrote:

I used to run mine without a foot valve, and with a one way valve on the surface near the top of the well about 50 feet away from the pump and tank. It worked fine. The only reason I switched to the foot valve was the foot valve had a screen on it. I once stuck the pickup tube into the muck at the bottom and sucked up a bunch of gravel and ruined the impeller in the pump - doh!
Does it really matter where the check valve is, so long it's somewhere in the inlet side? For that matter, if it were on the outlet of the pump, it would still stop water from discharging back through the pump when the pump cycles off, I bet it would work there also.
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My check valve is between the pump and the ground where the pipe enters. You mention lowering the pipe into the muck which I assume means that you had a small well casing driven or drilled into the ground and then the well/pump pipe went within that but around here most shallow wells are 1 1/2 to 2 inch pipe driven down with a well point on the end. That pipe connects directly (after the check valve) to the inlet side of the pump. I'm assuming the OP does already have a well driven and is just wondering how to connect the pump. I would think he could simply disconnect the old pump and reconnect the new to the same pipes. On the other hand, he may have found an old well pipe and is wishing for some reason to hook it up to water his lawn or something. If so, there was probably a reason the old well would have been abandoned and I wouldn't spend too much money on it until I was sure that water could be pumped out of it. Hooking up one of the cheap hand pumps from Harbor Freight would be a good way to test it.
Tom G.
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<snip>

I live in a small town (Lebanon, Oregon), and a few doors down the street is this old guy that was there when they drilled my well 40 some odd years ago. He said they drove a 2" pipe about 20 feet or so down, and dropped a stick of dynamite down it to blow out the bottom and create a cavity for water to accumulate. I'm not a well digger, so I don't know if that was a good idea or not - the old guy indicated it was a pretty stupid thing to do, but what do I know? Today, the bottom of the well is 17 feet, and the water table is current at 9 feet. Towards the end of summer it drops quite a bit, and the neighbors wells actually run dry. Mine doesn't, I'm guessing it's deeper then theirs. Anyhow, because of this, you can't actually hook up to the top of the pipe, so what I do is drop a 1 1/2 OD pvc pipe down 16.5 feet so it's 6 inches off of the bottom. I currently have a foot valve on the end of the pipe. Laying on the ground nearby is a 20 foot 1" metal pipe, and I dropped that into the well, hit bottom at 17 feet, and pushed it a foot into the muck at the bottom. I'm really not sure how far down the mud goes, I wish I could suck it out and get an extra foot or two of depth. It's been a fairly dry winter and spring, and if I run out of water, it will cost me a left body part to use city water to keep my garden alive :(
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Works only if you have a self-priming pump, most shallow well pumps aren't.
Harry K
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Now I'm curious about my well. How would I go about finding out if I have a self-priming pump? Here's what I know about the well.
(1) There are two pipes going in through the top connected to the pump.
(2) According to the report from the well company that I had inspect the well before buying the house, it has a centrifugal pump.
(3) The well is 45' deep (according to the report).
(4) The static water level is 19.1' (according to the report).
(5) During the pump test, the max it was drawn down was 6.7', to 25.8'. That appears to be where it reaches an equilibrium, as it remained at that level, with a steady 3.75 GPM flow, for the last 10-15 minutes of the drawdown portion of the test.
With a bit of Googling, I can find plenty of explanations of shallow vs. deep jet pumps, and why deep jet pumps have two pipes in the well. But I actually failed to find anything that explained centrifugal pumps for wells--whether they are for shallow or deep, or can be used for both, and whether two pipes going into the well means something or if they are that way for all. It looks like, from the pump test, that my water is high enough that a shallow pump, of whatever technology, would be sufficient, but the well is deep enough that it could be drawing from far enough down to require a deep pump, so I can't tell anything either way from the numbers they gave me.
(The pump and tank are pretty old, so my plan is to replace them sometime in the next couple of years. However, first I need to find out what the plans are for the city I live next to when it comes to expansion. The city limits run about 70 ft from my property, city water is nearby in the street, and I'm in an area that has been designated by the county for the city to annex. So, presumably at some point I will annexed and required to hook up to city water. I want to find out the timeline for that before sinking a couple thousand dollars into well improvements!)
--
--Tim Smith

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You have a 'jet pump'. They work by pumping part of the water back down the well into a veturi jet pointing up the other pipe. That both forces the water up and sucks more back in.
Your figures show that a shallow well (single pipe) would not work as at the drawdown point it would suck vacuum and lose prime.
Many "shallow well pumps" can be installed either 'shallow' (one pipe) or 'jet' (two pipe)
Although there are pumps other than centrifugal, I can't recall seeing one for residential service since I was pup 60 years ago when there were windmill pumps that worked a rod going up/down, 'pump jacks' driven by gas or electric motors that did the same thing (picture a small version of the pump on top of oil wells),. and piston pumps where the works were all on top of the well. The last three were all low volume pumps and only the last one delivered any pressure.
As for overhaul of your well. Pumps/tanks are not all that expensive and are not a big job to install. I would expect a new tank/pump would come in well under a thousand doing the work myself. I would keep your well in service even after city water for irrigation IF you are permitted to do so.
Harry K
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The point is that if you are using a check valve _only_, it has to be under water or the pump will loose prime everytime it shuts off. There is normally no need for a check valve if there is a footvalve.
Harry K
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Harry K wrote:

I'm not sure I'm understanding. I've ran mine with a check valve only, with the valve on the surface of the ground near the top of the well. The pipe going into the well was a hollow pipe only, no valve, no foot valve, no nothing. It was ran like this for a long long time, and it worked fine. What does it matter where the valve is? It can't loose it's prime unless the end of the pipe is above water, or there is a leak somewhere, which there isn't. How can air get into the pipe?
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All water contains some air mixed in, some water a lot, some only a little but a little is all it takes unless you have a self-priming pump. Even with 'perfect water' you can't pull water up a pipe over about 26 ft without pulling a vacuum. I have been screwing around with pumps since I was a pup. All would loose prime if the footvalve malfunctioned whether the lift was a few feet or 20 feet.
Harry K
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wrote:

Interesting set up - I'm inspired!
The tank actually has a bladder in it so basically on one side it has air and the other water. When you open the tap the air pressure moves water from the tank to the tap and your pump doesn't kick on until the pressure drops below a set pressure on the pressure switch.
See more here:
http://www.popularmechanics.com/home_journal/how_your_house_works/1275136.html?page=3
http://www.watersystemscouncil.org/wellcare/infosheets.cfm
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Google on 'Sears' or 'Craftsman' (whatever it says on the pump) and the model number. You can find most manuals online, if not from Sears then from someone else.
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