Fixing pump/pressure tank system for well- best way?

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BuzzLOL

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OK, that does indeed appear to be a tankless two cylinder single stage high volume air compressor... it has an air filter next to the electric motor to bring clean air in... it appears to pump compressed air down through the center of the well pipe through a smaller center pipe to an air powered deep well water lifting system and then water and air come back up through the well pipe outside of the smaller center compressed air pipe and leaves the well pipe on the side near the top of it to the cistern... the cistern allows the air to separate from the water collected... A water level switch in the cistern probably turns the compressor on and off...
I found articles on it, but am still unsure of WHY the water comes up ???


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The second pump them draws water from the cistern and pressurizes it for use elsewhere...
The softening salt may go into the cistern or into another softening system...

The air compressor may need oil added to its crankcase occasionally... it doesn't appear to be an oil less diaphragm type compressor... The air filter may need changing occasionally...

Dan at opensourceecology.com:
"This is an airlift pump. The Brumby site says that the submersion/lift ratio has to be at least 1/3. Wikipedia says 1/2. In other words, if your water table is 50 feet down, you have to drill down to between 75 feet (1/3) and 100 feet (1/2).
Bubbly water is lighter than non-bubbly. If your bubbly water is half air, it weighs half as much. A 100-foot column of half air, half water weighs as much as a 50-foot column of water. So, if you introduce 50% air into the bottom of a vertical tube 100 feet long standing in 50 feet of water, the bubbly water will rise to the top.
The trick is that you have to drill down an extra 50% to 100%, which means that your well costs an extra 50% to 100% to dig. "
 
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zannej

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I've never seen anything like that. I see the bladder tank in the background of the second picture. Looks like a pipe coming up from the cistern into the tank and running out of the building, which is what I would expect. I don't know what the air is for. How does the green tank connect to the test of the system? I see salt bags, is that just a brine tank for a softener? Does the air compressor run every time the water pressure drops like a pump would? I'm pretty sure the compressed air isn't the primary force moving the water, there almost has to be a pump somewhere.
To clarify: The salt was for a water softener we wanted to install but never got installed. The plumber refused to even try to install it and the well repair guy said it was outside of his range of expertise. When we re-do things, I may see if it is possible to set the water softener in there somewhere and connect it to the main line going to the house (as we won't have room inside the house for it). We might be able to connect it with PEX.
Looks like Buzz was able to find out how it works.
The green tank connects as shown in post #12 (it's the green part on the right labeled cistern)


Buzz, if it has bubbly water, I suspect the air bubbles carry the water upward as the aerated water weighs less and then the water is released when the bubbles pop and the air is no longer lifting them. I could be wrong, but that's just my guess. We almost hit water digging for the septic tank so the water table is higher than that though. No idea if this is an efficient system or not, but it's what was here when we bought the place in the 80s.
I didn't even know there was anything to be oiled nor any filters to change. If you could show me where in the picture the filter is and the oil input, I'd appreciate it. I will have to look in to what sort of filter it will need. The repair guy never mentioned anything about filters and oil. I don't think it's ever been oiled or had a filter change in decades (although, we did get that two-wheeled pump replaced around or less than 10 years ago).
 

Eddie_T

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The 1" (1¼" or 1½") vertical pipe coming up through the floor looks like it might be the supply pipe from the well. I can think of no other reason for it to be larger. If so the strange looking fittings at the the juncture of the air, well and cistern pipes may represent some sort of airlift pump for a very shallow well.
 

BuzzLOL

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The 1" (1¼" or 1½") vertical pipe coming up through the floor looks like it might be the supply pipe from the well. I can think of no other reason for it to be larger. If so the strange looking fittings at the the juncture of the air, well and cistern pipes may represent some sort of airlift pump for a very shallow well.
Apparently this air lift system can lift water a couple hundred feet from a deep well...

The air/water supplied to the cistern air/water separater system has very little pressure and it just falls into the cistern and the air bubbles up out of the water. So a 2nd separate high pressure pump system is used to remove water from the cistern and pressurize the water into the high pressure tank that supplies the house and barn with high pressure (20 - 50 psi somewheres) water. The high pressure water tank with pressurized air above a bladder/water is used to maintain pressurized water without the need of the pump having to run all the time and quickly wearing out. In the olden days, there was no rubber bladder separating water from air in the high pressure tank and the air would eventually all dissolve into the water and the tank would have to have high pressure air added at the top yearly and then the whole process starts all over again. Of course, nowadays the whole tank/bladder system has to be replaced every 20 - 50 years whenever the bladder wears out and starts leaking air into water. Or you can continue using it by adding pressurized air in the old style way. HydroCell used to be a brand name of one tank, with internal air pressurized bladder, sold.

Looks like about a 2" pipe going down into the well with a smaller internal 1/2" or 3/4" pipe inside of it for pressurized air to go down through to the water below.

Wish zannej would stop saying "wheels" and start saying 'pulleys' since that's what they are...

Have you had the water tested to see if you need a softener? Are you getting encrustations on faucets? Are white clothes turning yellow from iron rust in the water? Does the water have a 'taste'?
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Eddie_T

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I am wondering why a cistern unless the well can't support the highest demand of a household. Another thought is that the well may be a non flowing artesian, if that the case an air lift system may also serve to eliminate sulfur dioxide gas from the water by aeration.
 

BuzzLOL

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I am wondering why a cistern unless the well can't support the highest demand of a household. Another thought is that the well may be a non flowing artesian, if that the case an air lift system may also serve to eliminate sulfur dioxide gas from the water by aeration.
I figure the cistern is to just let the air bubbles/foam leave the water at the top and pure water is pumped out of the bottom...
Around here some people pipe the natural gas off their water wells and use it to heat their homes...
 

zannej

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LOL. OK. Pulleys it is. That's what I initially called them when first describing it online but people didn't understand & when I showed pictures they called them wheels.

I've never noticed a taste but we don't drink the water without boiling it & putting it through a filter. There is no odor that we can detect but it comes out tinted rather than clear. It stains clothes with a rusty color and also stains the toilet and other fixtures. We need a filtration system on it. I think Spicoli mentioned a 3 tier system. I'll have to look in to that.

So, since I have the cistern, would a CSV be redundant?

I'm still wondering if it would be good to get it just to have the system more streamlined and take up less space.
 

BuzzLOL

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It stains clothes with a rusty color and also stains the toilet and other fixtures. We need a filtration system on it.

So, since I have the cistern, would a CSV be redundant?
Sounds like you need iron treatment... we had that problem where I grew up... what's CSV stand for?
 

zannej

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Sounds like you need iron treatment... we had that problem where I grew up... what's CSV stand for?
Yup. Lots of iron in the soil.
Cycle Stop Valve. It's supposed to make it so the pump doesn't cut on and off as abruptly. It supposedly allows you to use a smaller pressure tank as well.
 

BuzzLOL

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Cycle Stop Valve. It's supposed to make it so the pump doesn't cut on and off as abruptly. It supposedly allows you to use a smaller pressure tank as well.
That sounds counter-intuitive...
 

Eddie_T

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CSV also delivers near constant pressure which makes for showering w/o pump cycling and water adjustments. My son considered it but went with a normal system as no one seems to have them in our area for a look-see..
 

Eddie_T

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@zannej Out of curiosity I read up on airlift pumps and cisterns. Airlift is typically for 3-9m lift and for degassing water. I suspect that you have a non-flow artesian well, it may also be insufficient for direct pumping. The cistern permits the bubbles to remove dissolved gases as well as storing water for demand. Silt might be another reason for not directly pumping the well as silt can shorten pump life. If you have silt it would settle out in the cistern and require periodic cleaning. If you have neighbors using an airlift and cistern supply you might discuss it with them. Another good source might be Terry Love Plumbing forum;
 
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68bucks

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How does it work that magic? Is it a pressure regulator?
Yes it's a regulator. Basically whenever there is water flow the pump runs continuously so the pressure stays more or less constant. It's supposed to reduce the cycling of the pump though it increases the runtime.
Very happy with mine on a submersible
SARG did you see improvement in pressure? What is it that you see improvement in? I have been considering trying one but not completely sold yet.
 

SARG

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SARG did you see improvement in pressure? What is it that you see improvement in? I have been considering trying one but not completely sold yet.
68bucks ... Our benefit is primarily during showers. I have a 30/50 system and rather than the pressure going up & down from the 30 to 50 and back again ... repetitively .... I have the CSV set to about 45 psi and it stays constant while the water is running. The cycling is what wears the pump and check valve out. I just put in a new pump and don't want to do it again.

I have another well with a submersible in a workshop on contiguous property with a smaller pressure tank. These days it is used mostly to fill the wife's 50 gallon water wagon she uses for flowers. The well cycles contantly while filling ..... so I will be spending the $179. for another CSV when the weather breaks.
 

zannej

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I believe the CSV1A is up to $190 now but I think that includes shipping.
Thanks for the info, Eddie! Terri Love's forum is the one I used to visit before I came here. Terri himself is friendly, but there were some people there who were a bit on the rude side (not sure if they are still there). I believe I joined that forum in 2008. I know the inside of my cistern is filthy but the well guy wouldn't clean it when I asked. Can't really blame him for not wanting to do the job. I can't get in there myself to do it.

I don't see or talk to my neighbors very much. I have no desire to talk to the nearest ones. The others keep pretty busy & I lost their numbers.

SARG, I get pressure fluctuations on my current system. Shower hasn't worked in awhile though so I've been showering at a friend's house.
 

SARG

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Price at cyclestopvalves.com is $179 with free shipping .......... was $175 last year.
 

68bucks

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68bucks ... Our benefit is primarily during showers. I have a 30/50 system and rather than the pressure going up & down from the 30 to 50 and back again ... repetitively .... I have the CSV set to about 45 psi and it stays constant while the water is running. The cycling is what wears the pump and check valve out. I just put in a new pump and don't want to do it again.

I have another well with a submersible in a workshop on contiguous property with a smaller pressure tank. These days it is used mostly to fill the wife's 50 gallon water wagon she uses for flowers. The well cycles contantly while filling ..... so I will be spending the $179. for another CSV when the weather breaks.
How does it handle short water draws, like rinse of some dishes stuff after dinner or a low volume washer filling, flush a toilet, stuff like that. I have wondered if you lose some benefit on short runs that a larger tank would prevent a pump cycle. Things like a shower I totally see the benefit. I only shower once a day, I run the water a little here and there lots of times a day. Can't get off the fence on this. I'm planing an addition that would move my water system and I would probably just replace the pump (submersible) at the same time. That would also be the time to add a CSV.
 

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