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  1. #1
    Veteran Member chopped's Avatar
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    Default Testing a well pump

    Greetings, My question is in regards to how to check the motor on the pump, which is several hundred feet below the Gounod.
    First some info. Its a submersible pump with a franklin control box like this
    Franklin Electric submersible pump motor controls.

    The pump will be turned on and there is power to this control box from the pressure controller.(verified with volt light).There is a clicking in the Franklin box like the relay is trying to make the motor start but doesn't..
    I should be able to use an ohm meter on the incoming three wires from the pump to check if it itself is OK?If so would they have to be disconnected from the control box terminal block?And what type of ohm reading should there be?
    Id much rather start and check here before opening the cap on the well casing itself.
    It hasn't been much colder her than usual years , but I think its possible that it tried to pump but the line could be frozen (although highly unlikely).
    Thanks in advance for any help.I will go melt snow to flush.
    oh here is a picture of the box . bottom of page.

  2. #2
    Super Star Member Egon's Avatar
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    17,499
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    Nova Scotia, Canada

    Default Re: Testing a well pump

    The pump should run with a frozen discharge unless the pump itself is frozen. It would also draw mini mun amps pumping in this condition.

    Perhaps check the capacitor in your control box?
    Egon
    50 years behind the times
    Livin in a
    Worn out skin bag filled with rattlin bones

  3. #3
    Platinum Member Phils's Avatar
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    Sep 2004
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    766
    Location
    Cherokee, CA
    Tractor
    PT-422

    Default Re: Testing a well pump

    I went through this late last year. I verified voltage to the control box but didn't know how to check that box. It comes off very easily, and I ended up simply taking it to a local pump dealer. He put it on a test machine and gave me the bad news: "the controller is good".

    When his crew pulled the pump (a couple of weeks later) the problem was obvious. The half of the pump that contains the impellers had separated from the part that has the motor and the shaft between them was broken. The motor was still operational but I had a new pump installed since that one was 18 years old, as close as I could figure.

    Phil

  4. #4
    Veteran Member Kays Supply's Avatar
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    Jul 2006
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    Location
    Southern Illinois
    Tractor
    Iseki TA 207

    Default Re: Testing a well pump

    A clamp on amp meter put around one of the power lines while it is "running" can tell you a lot. High amps, stuck motor or pump. Low amps, not pumping water. No amps bad connection/ broken wire. Like someone said, swapping the capacitor out is one of the easy things to do. Amp the wires before and after changing the capacitor. Also amp the start wire to see if it is getting off the start winding. It should bump the needle and then go to 0. If it stays drawing amps it is stuck on the start winding or the capacitor isn't getting it going. Also there should be a relay box in the control box to check also. These are few things to try before grunting the pump out.

  5. #5
    Elite Member CurlyDave's Avatar
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    Grants Pass, OR
    Tractor
    JD TLB 110

    Default Re: Testing a well pump

    When I did a bad thing (hit the well cap with the backhoe & dropped the pump to the bottom) a couple of years ago, the pump repair people and I recovered the pump & got it hooked up at the proper level.

    They then tested the pump in place by checking the current draw on each of the conductors. They had a diagnostic table, supplied by the pump & motor manufacturer of how much current on which wire was good and what were bad readings.

    If you had the table and a clamp-on ammeter you could easily do the test yourself.

    Call the pump maker or look on their website.
    40 Acres on a hill - fantastic view. JD 110 TLB, 4-n-1, 12" bucket, 18" bucket, Addington thumb, rock bucket (doubles as root grapple)

    Not only do we not understand the universe, if someone explained it to us, we would not know what he was talking about.

    Isaac Asimov

  6. #6
    Veteran Member chopped's Avatar
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    Default Re: Testing a well pump

    Thanks for all the help.I'm probably going to try to replace the control box. seems like a good gamble for the 60 so dollars.If that does work I'm going to replace the well pump with a two wire NO control box pump.
    The depth is unknown but I'm banking on the fact that its a 1/3 hp pump p and from what Ive see thats smaller than standard the days So I assume its about 100 or so feet deep and not 300 feet deep.
    Anyone have an idea on this assumption? I believe if it was figured right sized back in the day it would be. Thanks all

  7. #7
    Veteran Member Kays Supply's Avatar
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    Southern Illinois
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    Iseki TA 207

    Default Re: Testing a well pump

    You might think about the two wire pump. IF you fix this one for 60 bucks , you will have to pull the two wire pump and replace the motor to repair the same problem you did yourself for $60. Just food for thought.

  8. #8
    New Member
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    Near Cargill, Ontario
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    John Deere 955 (1997)

    Default Re: Testing a well pump

    You don't mention how often the motor relay clicks, each time you turn the power on and off or repeated with power on. A water pump does a lot of starts and stops over the years so the contacts on the pressure switch may be used up or corroded if there is a little dampness.
    Also I have seen submersible pumps with the suction screen completely covered over with iron and other minerals that built up over the years and because they were submersible they never noticed untill there was no water.
    Hope I was helpfull. Elmer

  9. #9
    Gold Member
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    Oct 2008
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    Location
    Douglas County, Missouri
    Tractor
    Kubota 3130

    Default Re: Testing a well pump

    This happened to me a couple of weeks ago. My wife woke me up at 4:30 AM to let me know we had no water. I checked the breaker for the well pump and the pressure switch. A few hours later I was able to get a well guy to come out and help me. He checked what I had checked. He then checked the control box, which was by the well head. He said it was most likely bad. I had him replace it and everything was good to go. $75.00 solved my problem. Good luck

  10. #10
    Veteran Member chopped's Avatar
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    Default Re: Testing a well pump

    Elmer, As it is now the relay will click on and off steadily about few seconds . Also i should add this pump has seen way to many starts and stops. The air bladder in the tank has been without air for a few years. This is my sisters , and she refused to listen to me when I told her about the tank. ( thats another issue lol). So Ive stood there and seen it on and off almost as it shuts off it comes on. all because in my mind the tank needs to have the air bladder filled..But point is the tank without air. the pump when water is used would cycle allot more than it would with a properly operated tank. I'm not sure, if the tank is salvageable. When i get the new pump in and water flowing ill see
    the tank is gonna be charged with just a few lbs under the pump kick in pressure. (we shall see if it holds air) if not it too will have to be replace.
    Thanks for all the inputs, and Ill check the contacts on the pressure switch, but I'm getting voltage off of the outward sides.
    but wont hurt to check it.
    Thanks again and keept he responces coming im learning

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