Troubleshooting well pump ( with pics)

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I recently got a used Goulds well pump. I have an existing well in my basement that I would like to use for irrigation. This is how I hooked it up. http://picasaweb.google.com/mikerock92/WellPump?feat=directlink
The water in the pipe is about 20" below the basement floor, so I assumed the pump should be able to suck it out with no problem, but when I tested it out, I only get trickle of water from the outlet ( I hooked up a hose for testing purposes). I'm not sure if I need a check valve also on the input side, but I had the pump on for a good 10 minutes, and it was not spitting out a lot of water. I'm sure the connections are air tight. So now my question is from the pics, did I hook it up right? And how do I know if the pump is good or bad?
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On 4/23/2010 11:06 PM, Mikepier wrote:

Did you try priming the pump? Some pumps don't self-prime.
MikeB
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Do you mean fill the pump with water? I did that. I filled it with water through the outlet pipe. Unless I'm doing something wrong.
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You need to fill the pump and the piping all the way down to the water.
When was the last time the well produced? What was the flow rate at that time? What is the capacity of the pump? hp?
Or it you don;t know those answers....Gould Model Number?
Maybe the pump capacity far exceeds the well delivery capability (the pump is removing water faster than the surrounding rock or soil can "resupply" it) and the pump is "starving"?
cheers Bob
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I did not remove the top cap on the well side and fill that with water. I could try that. But there are also 2 brass plugs on the side of the pump. Not sure what they are for.
As far as he history of the pump, I don't know. But I remember the previous owner had a similiar pump, so I assume the well has sufficient water supply. From the plate , I can barely read the model # SKB713.
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The stamp on the pump itself says "Goulds 53555"
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On Fri, 23 Apr 2010 20:06:33 -0700 (PDT), Mikepier

You need a check valve made for a inlet line. Then prime the pump. Once done, assuming you have no leaks, it should maintain its prime and pump properly.
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UPDATE: This morning I removed the well cap, and filled up to the top with water, then tried the pump again, still water only coming out in spurts, and not consistent.
I understand I need a check valve, but for the purpose of testing the pump right now, shouldn't the pump work even without a check valve? Like I said, I filled up the well pipe to the top, and I poured water in the outlet pipe, so I'm sure the pump is primed.
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You do NOT need a checkvalve. If you filled the pipe with water you must already have a footvalve which is the required item.
Have you pulled up the suction pipe to exam what is on the end? It should be a footvalve and that could be crudded up such that it isn't passing much water.
Harry K
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On Sat, 24 Apr 2010 06:15:07 -0700, Mikepier wrote:

Hmm, surely if it were filled you should at least get a brief full flow just from the water you're primed the system with, even if something were wrong elsewhere?
I'm not really familiar with wells either - that comment just seemed surprising.
Oh, I can confirm that there's no check valve at the top end of our well, incidentally, but I've never had any need to try priming ours so can't comment on experiences there (I did have it all off while doing some plumbing for a couple of hours last year and it spluttered a bit after switch on, but picked up after a couple of minutes and returned to normal)
Ours is a top-side pump though, with an 80' well and jet assembly, so perhaps a bit of a different config to yours.
cheers
Jules
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Tony wrote:

Check valves on the suction side of a pump are probably more of a problem than on the pressure side. The OP is talking about a shallow well, with the pump drawing the water up.
OP - Some pumps are self-priming, others are not. Which is yours?
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It also sounds like whoever installed all those checkvalves didn't know what he was doing.
Harry K
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Harry K wrote:

Here is says it should have a check valve every 200 feet. I could have been wrong about every 100 feet, mine may be every 200 or 100. I just know there are a lot more than the one at the pump and the one up top before the tank.
http://www.watersystemscouncil.org/VAiWebDocs/WSCDocs/789912Valves_FINAL_507.pdf
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On 4/25/2010 1:37 PM, Tony wrote:

http://www.watersystemscouncil.org/VAiWebDocs/WSCDocs/789912Valves_FINAL_507.pdf
That's a different application. With centrifugal pumps a foot valve is used at the end of the siphon pipe, and a check valve is used post pump, if at all.
The foot valve keeps water in the pipe to aid priming of the pump, the check valve provides initial restriction to flow to prevent cavitation/introduction of air in impeller housing, and loss of prime at start up (Both input/output of impeller has water present).
Submersible pumps use checks valves at 200ft intervals to prevent excessive head pressure on the lower check valves (think of driving a wedge into a crevice with 10 pounds of force versus 50 pounds of force). Which option will be harder to get unstuck with a finite amount of pressure to get it unstuck?
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[SMF] wrote:

Yes, at that point I realized I was talking about the wrong type of pump. Without a doubt I was wrong. I was replying to the comment
"> It also sounds like whoever installed all those checkvalves didn't > know what he was doing."
I assumed it was then realized I have a submersible pump, nothing like the OP's setup, being that it is 800 or so feet deep. I suppose I should not have assumed anything, after all, you know what they say....
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Ah! The light dawns. That _is_ a good reason for them. I was looking at it as somehow decreasing the startup force on the pump and couldn't come up with any way it would do that.
Harry K
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Thanks. I had never heard (not unusual) of adding checkvalves, gonna have to read that to see if they give a reason for it. I can't see any mechanical reason for them.
Harry K
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Mikepier wrote:

If you have a way to apply water pressure to the inlet side pipes, do so while you start the pump. When it starts to pump, shut off the inlet water and see if it continues to pump. This will help flush any air in the system.
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All I can tell you is if I pour water in the pipe to the top, it eventually drains down to its standard level of 2 ft below the basement floor, so I don't think I have a checkvalve in the vertical pipe, or if I do, its defective.
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I think you do have one, because the old pump would have used one, but from sitting idle, it's probably frozen closed, with a slight leak
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