Here's the scenario. I have a old hand-dug, 30'x3' wide shallow well that
is pumped using a single line shallow well configuration (2" PVC). The pump
is a 1/2 horse "red-jacket" jet-pump in my basement.
About 3 months ago while doing some plumbing work (changing pressure tank) I
noticed that a check valve has been installed right at the pump's inlet.
This indicates to me that there might not be a foot valve at the bottom of
If there isn't a foot valve, how can I prime the pump, if the need ever
arises? My understanding of the "normal" priming method is to simply pour
in water until the pipe is full, but without a check valve, the water will
just run right into the well.
I am concerned that the need to re-prime may very well be imminent since
galvanized fittings were used between the pump, checkvalve and PVC, and they
show signs of decay.
Can anyone enlighten me on how to re-prime a line without a foot valve?
Ohh, and does anyone know when PVC pipe and grey PVC fittings became
available? (I'm trying to figure out how old this set-up is, or could be)
URL showing my pump model:
Chances are that either the well _does_ have a foot valve, or the pump
self-primes. From less than 30 feet, it _may_ self-prime (straight
"vacuum lift"). That's probably only likely for an impeller
pump if the static level of water is no more than about 10-15 feet
below where the pump is.
Chris Lewis, Una confibula non set est
It's not just anyone who gets a Starship Cruiser class named after them.
I have a hand pump connected to my system. The hand pump is
T'ed betweem the preassure tank and well pump.
Shut off the water line going between the preasure tank and
the hand pump T fitting, open a valve below the hand pump.
Pump water up the water line from the lake, through the well
pump to prime the system.
Although its not nrcessary, its a good idea to shut the valve
below the hand pump before turning on the well pump. :)
You may find that someone installed that check valve instead of repairing a
leaking foot valve. Or in case the foot valve started to leak; which would
never allow them to know if it was, which is your dilemma now. It's rare for
a jet pump to be a self priming type. Does the web site say the pump is self
priming? If not and you loose prime, be prepared to not get water until you
replace the foot valve. They are on the end of the suction pipe, not the
well (especially a 3'/36" ID well!).
Your dark gray PVC is sch 80. It's been around for decades and is excellent
cold only potable water line and fittings. New or used galvanized should be
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