Well pressure tank pressure guage question

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  • This topic has 5 replies, 4 voices, and was last updated 17 years ago by GarySlusser.
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    • #277228
      David Brinkley

      My new home builder installed an Amtrol Wel-Flo well pressure tank. I do not have the part number but believe it is an 85 gal. tank.

      After drilling the well the plumber hooked up the well water to the pressure tank before the well was allowed to pump for the 48 to 72 hours the driller recommended as part of commissioning the well. The well discharge hose pumps clear water but all water used in the house is very brown colored and is pumping sand the plumber got in the PVC pipes as they lay uncapped in the trench for a couple of days while the drilling process was taking place.

      The driller suggested I turn off power to the pump (circuit breaker to OFF) and let the tank drain by leaving the outside hose bibbs open, then turning the breaker on for 10 seconds, then close the breaker again and let the tank empty. He said do this about 10 times in a row. (Has not helped the color but just a very little).

      My question: With the tank at 60 pounds pressure (40/60 switch) and the breaker OFF, the tank begins to discharge thru the outside hose bibbs – when the tank pressure reaches 30 pounds, it immediately fall to 0 pounds. Turning the breaker to ON causes the pressure to immediately jump to 30 pounds and then slowing climb to 60 pounds as it fills. Each time it is powered OFF and the tank drains, it falls from 30 pounds to 0 pounds.

      Shouldn’t it slowly drop to 0 pounds the same as it falls from 60 to 30 pounds slowly as the water drains from the tank – or is this fall from 30 to 0 pounds normal?

      Thanks for any help.


    • #295773

      No, it’s working correctly. What you are seeing is the air pressure precharge in the tank which is or should be set at 29-28 psi woth no water in the tank. When the water flows out down to 30 psi water pressure, the tank empties of water and you see 0 water pressure. As it should.

      You should be using the tank drain to drain and flush the tank, the outside faucets will trap sand in their lines. The last little bit of water that comes out of the tank will contain the sand/dirt/rust, and going uphill from the tank won’t get the stuff out of the plumbing. You should call the plumber back to make things right. Plumbers and others that do this type work should know what they’re doing or not take on these jobs. The driller told you/him what had to be done and he didn’t do it, so why should you suffer alone, share it with him. Actually the driller should have developed (commissioned) the well as part of drilling it, but they don’t do that anymore as they once did because it takes time and they can’t charge for it because homeowners want to pay as little as ossible for their well. A well tha tis not properly developed usually has water qualtiy and low productions problems later in life; and that can start at ‘birth’ as we may be seeing here.

      As to the colored water. That usually means you have (ferrous soluble clear water) iron in the water that is oxidizing in the plumbing creating rust (ferric iron). Get a water test done to see what all is in the water and how much of it you have. You may need a water softener or if the iron is higher than a softener can remove, an iron filter.

      Quality Water Associates

    • #295774

      Gary, thanks for the excellent ‘Reply’. As to the builder, painters, plasters, electrictions, plumbers, well drillers, etc, etc you wouldn’t begin to understand the screw-ups the trades create in the Ocala area – cracked marble window sill, install the window anyway, take the window out and replace the sill, after the painters painted around the window, so paint again. Or sod the yard, then dig up the sod to lay cable for the pole light, then leave sod in the sun to die, bring in more sod and back the tractor over a tree, cut down the tree and tear up the new sod. Paint the ceiling, then stand the interior door up on the floor and spray them – and of course, spray the ceiling with another color, then lay yhe carpet before repainting the ceiling Just over and over and over!

      Is there a drain cock under the ring the pressure tank sits on? Why would a jar of water from the pump head discharge pipe have clear water that remains clear of 2 days, but water from the pressure tank comes out of the tank brown colored – even when run steady for 15 minutes – the clean water from the well should not oxidized just between the pump and the 50 ft. run to the pressure tank should it. BTW, I have a 40/60 tank precharged to 38 pounds. Doesn’t clear iron use oxygen to oxidize the iron to brown?

      Thanks again

    • #295775

      wow, youd think someone would want to save some of the money they’re spending fixing fixes.

      Yes oxygen is needed and most well water will have an amount fo dissolved oxygen in it. As the water comes out of the well the pressure is decreased to your switch settings and that depressurizatiun helps that to happen. In many cases it’s just enough to oxidize some of the iron. Iron also oxidizes in the top part of the well too, from the static water level down to the pumping level where air does it. usually some of the rust falls and when the pump comes on, the rust is sucked in and pumped to the tank and plumbing. Then it will settle out in the tank and plumbing. You might be surprised at how much can be in your pressure tank.

      Quality Water Associates

    • #295776

      Iron is like very normal in well water. Discoloration or orange tint to your clothes from washing them in the ACW is a sign of iron. Get city water. .city water also makes good water to drink if you have a chlorine filter on it.

    • #295777

      Zeek, you may want to read up on “city” water problems that you can’t see, smell or taste.

      I have a .doc file I’ll send you if you want to read up on a few of them. It has to do wit hboth Boston and Washington DC water quality problems that are in the news now.

      Quality Water Associates

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