General Question

Seek's avatar

How do I change the pressure settings on my well pump?

Asked by Seek (30181 points ) October 12th, 2012

My landlord is an idiot. For serious.

There are two houses on the property I live on, and they share a well, but there are two pumps. For some reason, he had us on the wrong pump, so when our neighbors moved out and had the electricity shut off, we were out of water. He came over and switched the pumps.

NOW, our water pressure is really, really weird. The second you turn on the water, the pump starts running. So we get decent pressure that “breathes” down to almost a trickle, then back up to full (meh) pressure, down to a trickle… It’s nearly impossible to take a shower, because you’re intermittently freezing and scalding your flesh in about four second cycles.

How do I fix this without involving the stupid arse landlord?

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7 Answers

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LuckyGuy's avatar

It sounds like the air cushion in your tank is either damaged or full of water so there is no air storage. The air acts like a cushion to allow the pressure to drop slowly from typically 50 psi (the setting where the pump turns off) down to 30 psi (the setting where the pump turns on). Your system might be 60/40. I have mine set to 55/30. There are a few ways to fix this. My tank is old 60+ years and it has a fitting installed on the side so I can pump air into it to refill it with my air compressor. I do it about once per year. The new “improved” designs often do not have such a feature and have an air bladder tank above the water tank someplace. You need to drain the water out of your system. Do that by shutting off your pump. Open a spigot so the water pressure goes to zero. Drain out the air tank either by removing it and reinstalling or finding a drain valve someplace.and letting it fill with air. If you have a deep well jet pump you might need to prime it to get it started pumping again.

CWOTUS's avatar

Exactly what @LuckyGuy said. The last time I lived in a house with its own well and pump was over 12 years ago, and we had the same problem with “no air cushion”.

Probably any of your handy neighbors who have their own well and pump could diagnose and fix the problem pretty quickly, if you don’t have the tools. (I think you can pump the air bladder full with a bicycle pump, if I recall correctly. And I think that I used a 12V portable pump of the kind that people keep in the trunk of their cars – well, the kind I keep in my car, anyway – as an emergency aid.

LuckyGuy's avatar

Actually you could ask the landlord to fix this. Warn him that you heard the constant on and off of the pump can easily damage it. Fixing the air cushion will help avoid an expensive repair down the road. (And add to your comfort. – but that is probably not his concern.)

Seek's avatar

He doesn’t care. We’ve had a leaking faucet for months, and had the guy who maintains the filtration system tell him that the filtration system is going to pot unless he stops the leak (since he told me that). The guy won’t fix a damned thing unless it’s legally obligatory, and even then he’ll try to find a way to half-ass it just to piss me off.

I’m so moving.

WyCnet's avatar

Hmm, how much extra did you pay for your x-neighbours’s water habits? Were there large bags going out at night, about once a week?

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