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Well characteristics and well pumps

TimcoTimco Member Posts: 3,011
So I’m redesigning my cistern fill side. I have a 1000 gal cistern my irrigation pulls from and a dedicated well to refill it. I needed more gpm to the cistern to extend some zone watering times. The well is 280’ and the static water level is 260’ and the pump hangs at 260’. I had a 1/2hp pump in there that was making 2gpm so it was taking 500 minutes to recharge the cistern. The well could recharge fast enough to allow that to happen in one long pull. The new 3/4hp Well pump does 360 gal in 45 min for 8gpm before it runs dry, then recharges at 100 gal per hour roughly. Is there a pump controller that can be set to deliver 4-5gpm or do I simply need to time the draws from the well and do it that way?
Just a guy running some pipes.
«13

Comments

  • pecmsgpecmsg Member Posts: 1,450
    Speed drive on the pump
    Timco
  • Larry WeingartenLarry Weingarten Member Posts: 1,824
    Hi, I think there are controls that sense when the current draw on the pump drops, meaning it's pulling air, and then activates a time delay to let the well recharge. Here's a link that gives a bit of a description: https://inspectapedia.com/plumbing/Pump_Protection_Switches.php Might something like that work for you?

    Yours, Larry
    Timco
  • Jamie HallJamie Hall Member Posts: 12,956
    Some of the gadgets mentioned above may do it for you. However, a very simple float switch will also do it. Not just one of those flip-flop jobs, but there are switches made (come to think of it, that was some time ago...) including some ultrasonic ones which don't have to be in the well with a greater distance between off and on.

    You should set them, whatever you use, so that there is at least a 5 minute off time between pump runs.

    And a word of caution: if this is a submersible pump -- which at the depths you mention, I expect it is (by the way -- static at 260, pump at 260 just isn't right) -- it will have a short and unhappy life if it is allowed to run dry. They are water cooled -- but more to the point, water lubricated.

    Now. If your well recharges at a steady 100 gallons per hour, you are doing it, and your pump, no favours by trying to get more water out of it. You and your well will both be much happier in the long run if you install a smaller pump better matched to the well, and let it run steadily. I know it's sometimes hard to accept, but in many years of playing with and drilling wells, I can assure you: if the steady yield is x -- in this case 100 gph -- you simply can't get more water out of it by pumping it harder. That never works. You have a well which will give you around 2400 gallons per day, and -- if pumped at a steady rate to give you that will probably do it for many years. Bluntly, if that's not enough for your irrigation scheme, you need another well, or a much deeper one (which may or may not have more yield) -- not a bigger pump.
    Br. Jamie, osb

    Building superintendent/caretaker, 7200 sq. ft. historic house museum with dependencies in New England.

    Hoffman Equipped System (all original except boiler), Weil-Mclain 580, 2.75 gph Carlin, Vapourstat 0.5 -- 6.0 ounces per square inch
  • hot_rodhot_rod Member Posts: 13,526
    A self sensing control would be my choice. Vary the pump speed to what the well can provide.
    Most well levels vary from dry to wet season, or when others on the aquifer are also drawing heavily. As such, static level drops and pump performance also drops as the pump has a higher lift.

    Pulling a lot of gpm can change other wells in the area, even miles away.
    A neighbor put in a pond for livestock water, kept his well pump running for weeks to fill. Many of the neighbors, myself included had to drop our pumps lower to keep in water.

    That seems like a tight range well at 280, pump at 260? Any well records available to show if it was tested when drilled?
    Bob "hot rod" Rohr
    trainer for Caleffi NA
    The magic is in hydronics, and hydronics is in me
  • TimcoTimco Member Posts: 3,011
    Well report says 300’, drilled 1994, yield test was 4.5gpm for one hour. Casing is 30’. I may have used the wrong term so I’ll list the facts as it is today.
    Plumb bob measured well depth at 280’.
    Pump hangs at 260’ down.
    Water line after recharging all night is 20 below well top.
    Old pump 1/2hp was delivering 2gpm and curve confirms that.
    New 3/4hp gives 11gpm at rush, average 8.
    Well runs dry at 360 gallons at average 8gpm.

    I’ll buy the speed drive and set it to what delivers 4gpm. That will more than do what I need. I’m irrigating 1.3 acres and mostly lawn. I do half the zones one day and half the next. It takes just over 1000 gallons per day so I fill while the zones are running to add just a bit to what I could do. I just didn’t want to wait 8+ hours to fill the tank, that’s a lot of power to use too. The 1/2hp pump was just too small and the 3/4hp is too big clearly.

    There is a clear bodied inline filter on the cistern fill from the well and I can easily tell when I’m getting low in the well because it gets darker when it’s low.

    Since this is the first year we have owned this property we have no previous years or winter numbers to compare too and it’s not used in the winter anyway. Thanks for the input!
    Just a guy running some pipes.
  • pecmsgpecmsg Member Posts: 1,450
    What are you watering that you need almost 400 gals a day?
  • TimcoTimco Member Posts: 3,011
    pecmsg said:

    What are you watering that you need almost 400 gals a day?

    I need about 1400 gallons a day. 1.3 acres and mostly lawn. Some planter beds and a 200’ long row of boxwood hedge.
    Just a guy running some pipes.
  • Jamie HallJamie Hall Member Posts: 12,956
    Good grief. We use around 200 gallons per day; 1 acre "locally grown" veggies and some horses.

    Oh well.

    On the power. The electricity cost of pumping 1,000 gallons of water at a slow, constant rate -- such as around 2 gpm -- will actually be less than pumping at a higher rate with a bigger pump for less time. Why? Because you are paying for the power to lift the water, and if you don't draw the well down so much you will use less power.

    A well tested for 1 hour will not necessarily yield 4 gpm over any longer run. A true well test runs for at least 24 hours, and is often around half the one hour test.

    I would point out that the colour change of the water indicates that yes, you are drawing down too far -- and, worse, indicates that you are overstressing that well.

    Put the 1/2 horse pump back in, if you haven't junked it, and put a float switch on the cistern. Set the switch so that you some reasonable draw -- say 2 feet or so -- turn the thing on and let it go. Be happy with 2 gpm.

    And welcome to country living. Water is your most precious resource; don't abuse it.
    Br. Jamie, osb

    Building superintendent/caretaker, 7200 sq. ft. historic house museum with dependencies in New England.

    Hoffman Equipped System (all original except boiler), Weil-Mclain 580, 2.75 gph Carlin, Vapourstat 0.5 -- 6.0 ounces per square inch
    pecmsg
  • pecmsgpecmsg Member Posts: 1,450

    Good grief.
    And welcome to country living. Water is your most precious resource; don't abuse it.

    Way too much water usage!
  • TimcoTimco Member Posts: 3,011
    edited July 19
    These don’t even show the side of the house on either side. All grass and beds. I have zero info on the domestic well. It’s behind the garage. Each zone gets 20 min every other day. Beds only 10 min. Remodel starts in the spring and we are adding a small ‘orchard’ of fruit trees so some grass goes. That’s Mt Hope bay across the street.







    Just a guy running some pipes.
  • pecmsgpecmsg Member Posts: 1,450
    Sorry but I cant justify wasting resources like that.

    This summer has been extremely dry on the east end. I let my lawn go brown rather then waste all that water. It comes back when it finally rains, Only so much available on Long Island.
    Charlie from wmassethicalpaul
  • TimcoTimco Member Posts: 3,011
    Well, one person’s waste is another person’s yard. It’s a nice area and a prominent street. It has to stay nice to maintain the home’s only real appeal at the moment. The whole property needs help and updating.
    pecmsg said:

    Sorry but I cant justify wasting resources like that.

    This summer has been extremely dry on the east end. I let my lawn go brown rather then waste all that water. It comes back when it finally rains, Only so much available on Long Island.

    Just a guy running some pipes.
    Charlie from wmass
  • GroundUpGroundUp Member Posts: 995
    I had a similar issue recently with a rental property. To make it simple, I just installed a flow restrictor on the 1/2HP pump outlet to limit flow to 3 GPM. Easy peasy, $40, all done. No more sediment or dry well
  • hot_rodhot_rod Member Posts: 13,526
    Can or are you collecting rain water? I see Utah now allows a 2500 gallon tanks per home. With drip or root zone irrigation that would go a long ways for a vegetable garden.
    Bob "hot rod" Rohr
    trainer for Caleffi NA
    The magic is in hydronics, and hydronics is in me
    Gary Smith
  • TimcoTimco Member Posts: 3,011
    We live in a small town in RI now. The area we are in is maybe 10,000 population and we are out in the country a bit. Right on Mt Hope bay. My front porch looks at Fall River. I’m officially a New Englander now.
    hot_rod said:

    Can or are you collecting rain water? I see Utah now allows a 2500 gallon tanks per home. With drip or root zone irrigation that would go a long ways for a vegetable garden.

    Just a guy running some pipes.
  • TimcoTimco Member Posts: 3,011
    I’ll have to do this tomorrow until I can get a pump speed control..
    GroundUp said:

    I had a similar issue recently with a rental property. To make it simple, I just installed a flow restrictor on the 1/2HP pump outlet to limit flow to 3 GPM. Easy peasy, $40, all done. No more sediment or dry well

    Just a guy running some pipes.
  • hot_rodhot_rod Member Posts: 13,526
    Timco said:

    We live in a small town in RI now. The area we are in is maybe 10,000 population and we are out in the country a bit. Right on Mt Hope bay. My front porch looks at Fall River. I’m officially a New Englander now.

    hot_rod said:

    Can or are you collecting rain water? I see Utah now allows a 2500 gallon tanks per home. With drip or root zone irrigation that would go a long ways for a vegetable garden.

    Yep, I knew you are a back easterner now. We are actually trying to get back to Utah

    Bob "hot rod" Rohr
    trainer for Caleffi NA
    The magic is in hydronics, and hydronics is in me
  • SteamheadSteamhead Member Posts: 13,876
    @Timco , I see radiators in the garage pic B)
    All Steamed Up, Inc.
    "Reducing our country's energy consumption, one system at a time"
    Steam, Vapor & Hot-Water Heating Specialists
    Oil & Gas Burner Service
    Baltimore, MD (USA) and consulting anywhere.
    https://heatinghelp.com/find-a-contractor/detail/all-steamed-up-inc
  • TimcoTimco Member Posts: 3,011
    There are many things I miss about Utah. We lived in SLC and we couldn’t take the mayor and city council’s agendas and the politics any longer. Crime is insane and property values are crazy. Add a growing homeless population to that and the smog and it was time to get out. We did very well on our place and the rentals.
    hot_rod said:

    Timco said:

    We live in a small town in RI now. The area we are in is maybe 10,000 population and we are out in the country a bit. Right on Mt Hope bay. My front porch looks at Fall River. I’m officially a New Englander now.

    hot_rod said:

    Can or are you collecting rain water? I see Utah now allows a 2500 gallon tanks per home. With drip or root zone irrigation that would go a long ways for a vegetable garden.

    Yep, I knew you are a back easterner now. We are actually trying to get back to Utah

    Just a guy running some pipes.
  • TimcoTimco Member Posts: 3,011
    I’ll always be on the lookout. It took me just a couple weeks of owning this place to find rads for free in Newport. I couldn’t resist. I still have the little pantry rad I got from Dave Stroman.
    Steamhead said:

    @Timco , I see radiators in the garage pic B)

    Just a guy running some pipes.
  • SteamheadSteamhead Member Posts: 13,876
    So what kind of heat does this place have?
    All Steamed Up, Inc.
    "Reducing our country's energy consumption, one system at a time"
    Steam, Vapor & Hot-Water Heating Specialists
    Oil & Gas Burner Service
    Baltimore, MD (USA) and consulting anywhere.
    https://heatinghelp.com/find-a-contractor/detail/all-steamed-up-inc
  • TimcoTimco Member Posts: 3,011
    Oil fired hot water. I’m changing to LP high efficiency with a backup oil system. Currently all copper fin BB but main floor will be warm floors and maybe some rads on 2nd floor. There’s also three AC zones.
    Steamhead said:

    So what kind of heat does this place have?

    Just a guy running some pipes.
  • Jamie HallJamie Hall Member Posts: 12,956
    @Timco . Rhode Island? With that kind of water use I had assumed at least Kansas. There is no way you can justify irrigating on that level in New England -- except to keep up with the Joneses. I'm completely with @pecmsg on this one.

    On the well. I've told you what you need to do. No sympathy if getting a speed control doesn't work.
    Br. Jamie, osb

    Building superintendent/caretaker, 7200 sq. ft. historic house museum with dependencies in New England.

    Hoffman Equipped System (all original except boiler), Weil-Mclain 580, 2.75 gph Carlin, Vapourstat 0.5 -- 6.0 ounces per square inch
  • ChrisJChrisJ Member Posts: 11,075
    Well,

    Apparently it's typical for a golf course to use 300,000 gallons per day wasted on grass.



    Single pipe quasi-vapor system. Typical operating pressure 0.14 - 0.43 oz. EcoSteam ES-20 Advanced Control for Residential Steam boilers. Rectorseal Steamaster water treatment
  • Charlie from wmassCharlie from wmass Member Posts: 4,130
    You need a flow control or put in the proper size of submersible pump. Just like with circulators they need properly matched to their load. Grundfos offers constant pressure systems but flow is not an option as far as I know. I vote to stop irrigating so much.
    Cost is what you spend , value is what you get.

    cell # 413-841-6726
    https://heatinghelp.com/find-a-contractor/detail/charles-garrity-plumbing-and-heating
  • pecmsgpecmsg Member Posts: 1,450
    ChrisJ said:

    Well,

    Apparently it's typical for a golf course to use 300,000 gallons per day wasted on grass.



    Golf courses are registered and permitted for there use.

    The OP's not a Golf Course

  • TimcoTimco Member Posts: 3,011
    All points understood. I know what the yard needs to look like we want it to. I’m confident the speed control is the answer. For now I added a ball valve and choked it back to 5 gpm. Water stays perfectly clear. I appreciate your advise.

    @Timco . Rhode Island? With that kind of water use I had assumed at least Kansas. There is no way you can justify irrigating on that level in New England -- except to keep up with the Joneses. I'm completely with @pecmsg on this one.

    On the well. I've told you what you need to do. No sympathy if getting a speed control doesn't work.

    Just a guy running some pipes.
  • TimcoTimco Member Posts: 3,011
    I had two options. 1/2hp @ 2gpm or 3/4hp @ 8gpm. I need about 4gpm. Not sure why so many are offended by irrigating 20 min every other day. I’m not keeping up with the Jones’s, I am the Jones’s when it comes to the yard. It’s important to me and I’ve spent cash on the jet pump and lawn this year.

    You need a flow control or put in the proper size of submersible pump. Just like with circulators they need properly matched to their load. Grundfos offers constant pressure systems but flow is not an option as far as I know. I vote to stop irrigating so much.

    Just a guy running some pipes.
  • ChrisJChrisJ Member Posts: 11,075
    pecmsg said:

    ChrisJ said:

    Well,

    Apparently it's typical for a golf course to use 300,000 gallons per day wasted on grass.



    Golf courses are registered and permitted for there use.

    The OP's not a Golf Course

    So your point of view is, if the OP paid the government for a permit, it would magically change everything? But he's still using the same exact water, for the same exact thing. Literally nothing changes on his part.

    That's a bit strange.

    Single pipe quasi-vapor system. Typical operating pressure 0.14 - 0.43 oz. EcoSteam ES-20 Advanced Control for Residential Steam boilers. Rectorseal Steamaster water treatment
  • TimcoTimco Member Posts: 3,011
    So someone believes I need a permit to pull up to 1500 gallons a day from my own well? I’ve not been given any documents restricting what I can pull and I have never been billed. I don’t even think there are restrictions to adding 5 wells if I pay to have them drilled.
    pecmsg said:

    ChrisJ said:

    Well,

    Apparently it's typical for a golf course to use 300,000 gallons per day wasted on grass.



    Golf courses are registered and permitted for there use.

    The OP's not a Golf Course

    Just a guy running some pipes.
  • JUGHNEJUGHNE Member Posts: 6,985
    We have 2.2 acres. Mostly planted in fescue?? or Buffalo grass.
    Once started no water at all. Green now because of rain. Another 2 weeks it may be browning.
    My theory is the more water the more mowing needed.
    Also weaker root system near the surface.
    Whatever mix of grass we have has to go down deep to stay alive. This is how prairie grasses survived here.

    Drip hose for anything that needs more than rain.
    ethicalpaul
  • Jamie HallJamie Hall Member Posts: 12,956
    @Timco . It might pay you to check with your local health department, if the well is not known to be permitted. Most districts in New England require a permit for an active well. It's usually not a big problem (though if you are connected to public water it is a big problem), but helps everyone to keep track of -- and not overuse -- what is in truth a limited resource.
    Br. Jamie, osb

    Building superintendent/caretaker, 7200 sq. ft. historic house museum with dependencies in New England.

    Hoffman Equipped System (all original except boiler), Weil-Mclain 580, 2.75 gph Carlin, Vapourstat 0.5 -- 6.0 ounces per square inch
  • TimcoTimco Member Posts: 3,011
    I enjoy the yard work. I mow weekly all year and do it myself. I keep it as perfect as I can.
    JUGHNE said:

    We have 2.2 acres. Mostly planted in fescue?? or Buffalo grass.
    Once started no water at all. Green now because of rain. Another 2 weeks it may be browning.
    My theory is the more water the more mowing needed.
    Also weaker root system near the surface.
    Whatever mix of grass we have has to go down deep to stay alive. This is how prairie grasses survived here.

    Drip hose for anything that needs more than rain.

    Just a guy running some pipes.
  • TimcoTimco Member Posts: 3,011
    The health department division of wells sent me my well record for the irrigation well. The domestic well was drilled just before there were any requirements and I was told to contact a well company if we have any issues. When I spoke to them they made no comment about permits or ongoing permitting or documents or inspections. Water was tested just before we bought. High iron but we soften. New England is lacking in several things but I don’t think ground water is one of them.

    @Timco . It might pay you to check with your local health department, if the well is not known to be permitted. Most districts in New England require a permit for an active well. It's usually not a big problem (though if you are connected to public water it is a big problem), but helps everyone to keep track of -- and not overuse -- what is in truth a limited resource.

    Just a guy running some pipes.
  • pecmsgpecmsg Member Posts: 1,450
    edited July 20
    > @ChrisJ said:
    > (Quote)
    > So your point of view is, if the OP paid the government for a permit, it would magically change everything? But he's still using the same exact water, for the same exact thing. Literally nothing changes on his part.
    >
    > That's a bit strange.

    No my point is the golf course is regulated. They can only pump X amount of gallons a year.

    You’re the one that brought up a Golf Course
  • pecmsgpecmsg Member Posts: 1,450
    > @Timco said:
    > So someone believes I need a permit to pull up to 1500 gallons a day from my own well? I’ve not been given any documents restricting what I can pull and I have never been billed. I don’t even think there are restrictions to adding 5 wells if I pay to have them drilled. (Quote)

    In certain jurisdictions yes water is considered a mineral just like gold silver and lead.
    In Colorado you need to contact whoever owns the water rights to put a well on your property
  • woodrowwoodrow Member Posts: 33
    like ground up said install a flow limiter after the presure switch and relif valve not on the pump outlet in case it clogs they make them stainless with a changeable rubber restrictor is this a jet pump or submersible if its a sub put on a pump tech. in ct they required me to install a water meter on a private well to see how much water was be discharged to the septic system in a church
  • TimcoTimco Member Posts: 3,011
    There’s just a small difference between west of the Rockies and East. I have no specific water rights and there are no limits.
    pecmsg said:

    > @Timco said:

    > So someone believes I need a permit to pull up to 1500 gallons a day from my own well? I’ve not been given any documents restricting what I can pull and I have never been billed. I don’t even think there are restrictions to adding 5 wells if I pay to have them drilled. (Quote)



    In certain jurisdictions yes water is considered a mineral just like gold silver and lead.

    In Colorado you need to contact whoever owns the water rights to put a well on your property

    Just a guy running some pipes.
  • pecmsgpecmsg Member Posts: 1,450
    > @Timco said:
    > There’s just a small difference between west of the Rockies and East. I have no specific water rights and there are no limits. (Quote)
    True but why wast it...........because you can?

    We’re handcuffed with energy regulations yet you can waste 1mil BTU’s Heating your pool with zero government regulation, is it right NO but it’s legal?
  • TimcoTimco Member Posts: 3,011
    Define waste! My lawn being watered and me using 1200-1500 gal per day is not having any adverse effect on anyone lol. I can see you’re an anti-lawner type but I have over an acre of green lawn and I’m not ashamed to keep it that way. Do you think that the aquifer I pull from is one sealed pool that will run dry sometime? You won’t shame me into letting my lawn go brown. To me that’s the hillbilly approach. Too lazy to mow weekly? Don’t have any pride in your home’s appearance? Well water is not an issue in southern RI. Now if I can just find that speed controller online. That’s why I started this thread, not to fight about what constitutes waste.
    pecmsg said:

    > @Timco said:

    > There’s just a small difference between west of the Rockies and East. I have no specific water rights and there are no limits. (Quote)

    True but why wast it...........because you can?



    We’re handcuffed with energy regulations yet you can waste 1mil BTU’s Heating your pool with zero government regulation, is it right NO but it’s legal?

    Just a guy running some pipes.
    GroundUp
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