Well Pump Repair 101: Everything You Need to Know to Keep Your Water Flowing

Jan 24, 2024 | Flooding, Plumbing

As a homeowner or business owner, having access to running water is essential for daily living, and a well pump is a vital component of your water supply system. However, issues with a well pump can be stressful, especially when it impacts your water supply. Knowing the basics of well pump repair can help you identify problems before they become more severe, and reduce the stress of dealing with unexpected issues that may arise.

In this blog post, we’ll discuss everything you need to know about well pump repair, including common problems, signs of malfunction, and pricing for well pump repair. So, let’s dive in!

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What is a Well Pump?

A well pump, as the name suggests, is an integral part of a water well system. Installed deep within the well, well pumps function by drawing water up from the ground and transporting it to a storage tank, often referred to as the pressure tank. The well pump is typically powered by an electric motor that drives a series of impellers or rotors. These impellers create a pressure differential that pushes the water up the well and into the pressure tank.

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What Happens Once the Water Reaches the Pressure Tank?

Once the water reaches the well pressure tank, it’s stored until needed. This tank is designed to maintain a certain water pressure, which ensures a consistent flow of water when taps or appliances are in use.

When you turn on a tap or start an appliance that uses water, the pressure in the tank decreases, triggering the well pump to start working again to refill the tank and maintain the pressure. Well pumps come in different types, each suited to different well depths and water requirements.

Types of Well Pumps

As a plumbing expert, I’ve seen my fair share of well pumps throughout my years on the job. When it comes to choosing the right type of pump, it’s all about knowing the ins and outs of each one. The three most common types of well pumps are shallow well jet pumps, convertible well jet pumps, and deep well submersible pumps.

The shallow well jet pump is perfect for homeowners who have a well with a depth of 25 feet or less. The convertible well jet pump is a great option for those who have a well with a depth of 25-110 feet. Finally, the deep well submersible pump is ideal for deep wells, typically over 100 feet deep. Each type has its own unique set of advantages, so it’s crucial to make sure you’re choosing the right one based on your specific well situation.

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Common Problems with Well Pumps

Just like any mechanical equipment, well pumps are susceptible to a myriad of problems that can impair their operation over time. One of the most prevalent issues is low water pressure, which can stem from a multitude of causes. That being said, low water pressure is commonly due to a damaged pressure switch, which is responsible for maintaining the water pressure in the tank. Another frequent issue in a well pump system is a clogged well screen. The well screen filters debris and sand from the water before it’s pumped up. If the screen gets clogged, it can strain the pump as it tries to draw water, leading to unusual noises.

In addition to these issues, well pump repair may be required if the equipment fails. Well pump equipment failure could be due to various reasons, such as faulty electrical wiring, worn out motor, a damaged check valve, or a broken casing. Each of these components plays a pivotal role in ensuring the efficient operation of the pump, and their failure could result in a disruption of your water supply.

It’s crucial to understand that these failures often require professional intervention. Professional plumbers possess the necessary skills and tools to diagnose the exact cause of the failure and rectify it promptly and effectively. Their expertise ensures that the repair process is safe and minimizes further damage to the system. Hence, if you detect any signs of well pump failure, it’s recommended to seek the assistance of a professional plumbing service as soon as possible.

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Well Pump Repair | Addressing Lightning-Related Problems

If your well pump stops functioning after a thunderstorm, there is a possibility that your well was struck by lightning. This can result in a short circuit or a power surge within your well’s system that potentially blows the circuit. Lightning strikes carry an immense amount of electricity that can overpower and damage electrical systems, including your well pump.

You can attempt to resolve the issue by turning the circuit breaker associated with the well pump on and off again. If the well pump still doesn’t work after this, the problem could be more severe. To safely determine the root of your well pump issue, it’s highly recommended to contact a professional plumber. They have the necessary skills and safety equipment to handle electrical issues effectively and safely. Remember, while these steps can help diagnose the issue, they should not replace professional help, especially when dealing with electrical systems. A licensed plumber can thoroughly evaluate the situation and offer a comprehensive solution to ensure your well pump returns to optimal operation.

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Signs of a Malfunctioning Well Pump

Identifying the signs of a malfunctioning well pump is the first crucial step in preventing further damage to your water supply system. Some key indicators that your well pump may be failing include:

  • Low water pressure: If your water flow isn’t as strong as it used to be, or if it suddenly drops, your well pump might be the issue.
  • Abnormal noises: Strange sounds coming from your well or water system can indicate a problem. These noises might be due to a clogged well screen or other internal issues.
  • Discolored water or unpleasant smells: If your water has a different color than usual or smells strongly of sulfur, your well pump might not be functioning properly.
  • Unexpected increase in your water bill: If your water usage hasn’t increased but your bill has, your well pump might be working harder than it should be.

If you notice any of these signs, it’s advisable to contact a professional plumbing service to assist with diagnosing and fixing the issue.

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Can I Replace my Well Pump Myself?

As a homeowner, it’s natural to want to take on repairs and projects around the house to save money. However, when it comes to replacing a well pump, it’s important to consider the risks and complexity of the task. While some homeowners may feel confident in their DIY abilities, it’s essential to have experience and knowledge of the electrical and plumbing systems involved in a well pump replacement.

Attempting this task without the proper training and tools can result in serious injury or damage to your home’s water supply. It’s always best to consult with a professional plumber or well pump technician to ensure the job is done safely and efficiently.

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How Much Does Professional Well Pump Repair Cost?

As the owner of Maryland Sewer & Plumbing Service, I believe that proper maintenance is crucial when it comes to well pumps. It’s always a good idea to ensure your pump is working properly before it breaks down, resulting in more significant repair costs. In most cases, pump repairs can vary depending on the issue, but the average cost ranges from $300-$800.

Although it seems costly, trust me, repairing the pump is a much cheaper option than well pump replacement. But, if the repairing costs are close to the pump replacement, we recommend you replace it, as this provides permanent solutions. Don’t let your pump issues linger, give us a call today, and we’ll help you get back to normal.

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In conclusion, understanding the nuances of well pump repair, from understanding how well pumps work to recognizing symptoms of malfunction, can alleviate the stress associated with unexpected water supply issues. A well pump is an essential component of your home or business, and its efficient functioning is critical for maintaining a steady water supply.

While this guide provides a fundamental understanding of well pump repair, remember that a professional’s expertise is often necessary for complex issues or when electrical components are involved. At the end of the day, keeping your well pump in good working condition is not just about guaranteeing a constant water supply—it’s about ensuring peace of mind.

Whether you’re dealing with a malfunctioning pump or seeking preventive maintenance, don’t hesitate to call our plumbing professionals. Our technical knowledge, coupled with the right tools, can help extend your pump’s lifespan, ensuring reliable and efficient operation. Remember, timely intervention can prevent minor issues from escalating into major ones, saving you time, stress, and money in the long run.

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