Most residential areas use Jet Pumps to draw water from wells. It is not unusual that most people don’t know how the Jet pump functions.
Maybe it is none of your business, but sometimes the system fails, and your plumber could be miles away.
How to Prime a Goulds Jet Pump
Given the necessity and importance of water, you’ll have to get your hands dirty and fix the problem. Read along to learn and understand how to prime a Goulds Jet pump.
What is Jet Pump Priming?
For the pump to work efficiently, the whole system needs to be free of air. The pump and the suction pipes that go inside the well are filled with water to evacuate any air in the system.
This process is what we call priming. In most pumps, the process is automatic, and the pumps will self-prime. But sometimes, the system may fail, and you will need to manually prime the pump.
Before installing a new pump, you need to ensure that it is properly primed. Turning on the pump with air filled in the system could cause severe damage to the machine.
It may take you several minutes, depending on the depth of the well and the girth of your pipes. But the process is essential in ensuring the proper performance of the pump.
Guide to Prime Your Goulds Jet Pump
When the pump fails to suction water from the well, chances are, it has lost its prime. Getting the pump to work means priming it all over again to gain the necessary pressure to draw water from the well.
Before you start the process, switch off the power that drives the pump since you will be dealing with water which is a good conductor of electricity.
Open all the taps in your house to release any trapped air pressure and then shut them again. Once done, inspect the entire system for any signs of damages or why the pump lost prime.
Some of the damages and reasons for loss of prime may include the following;
- Leakages in the water pump
- Air pockets in the water supply line
- Clogged foot valve
- The well could be too deep for the intake pipes
- Too much water drawdown
- Water levels dropped
Fix the problem once you find it, or call a professional if it is too complicated. If your pump is new, continue with the priming process once you finish with installation.
The prime plug is usually on top of the jet pump. Identify the plug and remove it from the pump. Due to corrosion, the plug may show some resistance; hence you will need a pipe wrench for more effort.
Open the valves in the pipes because the blockage can cause pressure to build up. Fit a funnel or a hosepipe inside the priming port and fill it with water. You may also use a bucket or a can as long you fill the pipe and the pump with water.
Once complete, water will start flowing from the priming port. At this point, relieve the valves and apply sealing tape before you reinsert the prime plug. The tape will make it easy to open the plug and also prevent any leakages.
Reconnect the pump to the power system, then turn it on and listen to the dry pump’s cranking noises as they change to whooshing noises indicating water passage.
In case the pump fails again, you will need to repeat the process. Note that it may take you more than once to prime a pump.
Once you are done and the water pressure is perfect, open your taps to keep the water running for a few minutes to get rid of impurities that may have gathered during the priming process.
It is also good to fill up your containers with clean water for the next time you might want to prime the jet pump again.
How to Prime a Goulds Deep Well Jet Pump
Priming a deep well jet pump is not at all different from priming a shallow well jet pump. The only difference is that it is easier to prime the deep well jet pump before installing it.
Like other deep well jet pumps, a Gould’s deep well jet pump combines centrifugal and injector pump principles.
Before you start, disconnect the pump from the power system, or else you may get shocked. Water has positive ions, which make it a good conductor of electricity.
The first step is to locate the prime plug and remove it from the machine. Use a hosepipe to fill the pump system with water. Using a jug or a bucket is ill-advised unless you really want to exhaust your body.
Water will pour out from the priming hole to indicate that the entire system is full and free from air. Remove the horse pipe and reinsert the prime plug partially to its place.
Turn on the power system and observe for any air bubbles from the prime hole. In case of bubbles, remove the prime plug and fill it with water once again.
Repeat the same process until no air bubbles emanate from the hole, then tighten the prime plug. If the machine runs dry again, do the entire process all over again.
Where is the priming plug on a jet pump?
The priming port usually is on top of the jet pump housing. It is the first thing you need to locate when you want to prime your jet pump.
Inside the port, there is the prime plug that you need to remove to pour in the water. In some pumps, it may look hexagonal, while in others, it is square.
What causes a pump to lose prime?
It is not unusual for a pump to lose prime. A pump may lose prime because it has stayed for too long without being used.
In some cases, it is because of leakages in the pump’s intake line. Blockages in the line may also be another reason. Other reasons include the well-being too deep or the valve at the bottom of the pipe loosening.
How much water is needed to prime a jet pump?
The amount of water needed to prime a jet pump mainly depends on the depth of the well. The girth of the pipe may also determine the amount of water necessary.
However, a gallon or two of water may work if the well is shallow. Deeper wells may demand several more gallons.
Starting your pump without priming and letting it run dry even if it’s for a few minutes could cause severe damage to the machine.