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Old 05-27-19, 03:06 PM   #13
Apprentice EcoRenovator
Join Date: Jul 2016
Location: Georgia
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Perfect timing. I tried to use the jet pump to flush some of the silt from the bottom. As soon as I stirred up the silt the orifice in the foot plugged. That was a week ago. We've been getting our water from 350 feet of garden hose connected to my neighbor's well.

I pulled the jet pump and tried to install the submersible. It's been so hot the pvc couplings kept failing. I finally cleaned out the foot valve and reinstalled the jet pump today.

The instructions that came with the submersible said I needed a convection sleeve on the pump or it would overheat in a 24 inch bore. So we made a nice sleeve with a long filter screen to prevent large stuff from entering and clogging the pump.

After the problems with couplings I gave up and called the well company. They wanted $1850 to install a new pump, switch, and tank. That seemed high but I was out of energy and didn't care about the price. But when I asked them about the cooling sleeve he said it wasn't necessary. They would install the pump 2 feet off the bottom and said I would never have a problem.

Having the foot valve 2 feet from the bottom is what gave us muddy water and finally plugged the jet. I also started having second thoughts about a well company telling me I didn't need a cooling sleeve on a submersible when every other source of information (including data on the pumps they install) contradicted this claim. Seemed like more shoddy work to me.

So for now I'm back to the jet pump. The foot is now 5 feet above the silt which gives me 15 feet of standing water above it. I am still looking at ways to remove the silt. Using the jet or submersible pump is not going to work. The clearances in the pump are calculated for efficiency, not sludge.

There are some air operated diaphragm pumps on ebay under $200. These generally tolerate quite a bit of solids and can be lowered into the well on a rope to get right into the silt. That may be my next approach.

I thought of buying a trash pump head and mounting an IP67 rated electric motor on it so I could lower it into the well. That's a lot of work but may be the best way to remove the silt.

Yesterday I measured water at 32 feet and bottom at 52 feet, giving me a 20 foot water column. The person I bought the place from in 1996 said the well was originally 65-70 feet deep. So we have around 15 feet of silt.

It's too hot to work out there so I'm going to procrastinate and hope the wife doesn't burn up another pump before I get the 330 gallon IBC's set up for garden water. In the mean time I may put a PLC and contactor in the electric line to limit run time.
CrankyDoug is offline   Reply With Quote