Well wiring, original owner oddities, how much should I fix?

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    Well wiring, original owner oddities, how much should I fix?

    While doing diagnosis on another well related issue, I am finding that the wiring on the system is a bit odd when compared to normal setups I've read about.

    Here is an older picture of what the wiring looks like:
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    One of the two 12/2 wire pairs on the left go to the well. The other two 12/2 wire pairs go to the breaker box.

    First oddity: The two 12/2 wire pairs going to the breaker box are on two separate 20 amp breakers.😱 I'm assuming that this is a BS hack job and should be replaced with a single two pole 20 amp breaker. Correct?

    Second oddity: The pressure switch only breaks a single leg of the 220 circuit. My reading on well pressure switches shows both legs getting broken. In my case, there is a 110V wire going to the well pump permanently. Is this a problem? Do I need to go fix the wiring buried in the walls?
    Attached Files

    #2
    2 breakers I assume are on either side of the panel. You are correct it's hack and should be a single two pole 20 amp breaker.
    I think the switch wiring is fine but I am no electrician.

    Comment


      #3
      Originally posted by Paladin View Post
      2 breakers I assume are on either side of the panel. You are correct it's hack and should be a single two pole 20 amp breaker.
      I think the switch wiring is fine but I am no electrician.
      My panel just has a single row of breakers. I didn't count how many breakers between the two.

      I'm not an electrician either. Thus I'm somewhat concerned over having a single 110V leg hot going to the well.

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        #4
        Both legs should be switched at the pressure switch. Do you have different pictures than the drawings?

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          #5
          Instead of buying a new breaker you can also get tie bars to connect the two separate breakers together.

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            #6
            Originally posted by Paladin View Post
            Instead of buying a new breaker you can also get tie bars to connect the two separate breakers together.
            Unfortunately, there are about 3 breakers between the two well breakers I'm not averse to spending ~$20 on a new breaker to make it easy.

            Originally posted by M92PV4U View Post
            Both legs should be switched at the pressure switch. Do you have different pictures than the drawings?
            I do have some pictures.

            Here is a potato picture of the old junction box:
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            The cover outlet goes to the pressure switch as shown in the picture above. You can see the two white wires wirenutted together same as picture above. I have replaced the above with a cleaner version of the same thing.

            Here is the current box:
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            Similar to the first picture above.

            Since it sounds like I need to break both legs of the 240V, I have a follow up question:
            How close to the pressure tank does the pressure switch have to be?

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              #7
              The pressure switch should be close to the tank as possible to prevent double start or shutoff from water hammer. Is there a control box or do only two wires go to the motor?

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                #8
                Originally posted by M92PV4U View Post
                The pressure switch should be close to the tank as possible to prevent double start or shutoff from water hammer. Is there a control box or do only two wires go to the motor?
                I was afraid you'd say the switch had to be close to the tank. Time to figure out creative routing without tearing apart walls 😐

                As far as I know, there is only two wires straight to the pump. In the crawl space, I only see the wiring go into the dirt/under foundation. Maybe 30 feet away from the house is the well head. In there, I only see metal wire conduit to the well head itself. No clue what a control box would look like😣

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                  #9
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                  it's most likely a two wire pump. So your wires come from each breaker one wire go straight to the pump the other goes to the pressure switch back to your junction box then the pump. As for the pressure switch if it doesn't turned off on off when the pump is supposed to shut off it's probably fine if it does you can try to install a pressure snubber under the switch but if the well pumps sand it will just plug up and cause more problems.

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                    #10
                    Originally posted by M92PV4U View Post
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                    it's most likely a two wire pump. So your wires come from each breaker one wire go straight to the pump the other goes to the pressure switch back to your junction box then the pump. As for the pressure switch if it doesn't turned off on off when the pump is supposed to shut off it's probably fine if it does you can try to install a pressure snubber under the switch but if the well pumps sand it will just plug up and cause more problems.
                    I definitely don't have a box like you show anywhere in the house. Out of curiosity, can a control box be used to have a single input from the pressure switch to break both legs? I prefer a clean look over cheap

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                      #11
                      No it cannot.

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                        #12
                        Is the pump on the surface or deep well

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                          #13
                          Quick follow up question:
                          Does the location of the pressure tank make a difference? I've seen pictures of the tank right next to the well head outside. And similar to mine that is in the basement/crawl space. Is there an issue with outdoors with snow? Assume non-insulated outbuilding.

                          Originally posted by bigun View Post
                          Is the pump on the surface or deep well
                          I believe the pump is inside the well. I do not see a pump sitting next to the well head. I do not know the depth of the well but have been told it is relatively shallow for "low" Sierra foothills(3500') at 100 to 150 ft range.

                          The above does bring up another question. Can I do the weighted fish line trick to measure well depth with the pump in? Let's assume the well cap is easy to move to the side.

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                            #14
                            Here is the "well house":
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                            The electric is behind the water pipe. The junction has a pair of wire nuts. The casing is 6" PVC. The front access panel does not go to the ground.

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                              #15
                              Yes but use zip cord, your local hardware store should have it.

                              Cut a foot apart at the lower pump end put the weight on the long leg of this end of the wire and put a ohm meter that makes a sound when continuity is achieved and then mark the wire with a zip tie or a knot in the wire pull it from the casing and measure it.

                              As to how much you should put into this well do you plan to just turn the property or keep it for a few years ?


                              Originally posted by Lil'John View Post

                              The above does bring up another question. Can I do the weighted fish line trick to measure well depth with the pump in? Let's assume the well cap is easy to move to the side.

                              Comment

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