One of the most frustrating things in plumbing can be the priming of a jet well pump. Well jet water pumps are sometimes difficult to get working properly because it is very difficult to get all of the air out of the system and the pump. Well domestic water systems are great for those that need them but you need to know how to approach the air removal part.
Here are some things that will help you prime both deep well jet pumps and shallow well jet pumps.
- Always install a tee and a valve at a high point directly above the outlet of the pump. This will give you a place to pour water in and allow the air to get out easily.
- Always install a “throttling” valve on the “out” side of the pump. This will let you keep back pressure on the pump. This is especially needed for deep well applications.
- Install a switch close to the pump to make starting and stopping the pump easy.
- Make sure that the “suction” pipe coming to the pump runs continuously uphill and is not trapped anywhere.
- Make sure that the suction pipe is at least as large as the intake fitting on the pump.
- Make sure that all fittings on the suction pipe are air tight
To prime the pump begin by filling the pump and suction pipe slowly with water, allowing the air to escape as you fill. This may take quite a bit of water depending on the size and length of the pipe.
When you can get no more water to go in the pipe, then close the valve on the fill and start the pump with the “out valve” closed or mostly closed. If the pump starts to go on and off rapidly, open the out valve just a bit more, till the pumps runs continuously.
If the pump starts to pump and then stops because of an air pocket, then you may need to restart the whole procedure and add more water. Keep doing this till all of the air is worked out of the system. For some systems this can be a long and laborious procedure.
Keep working the procedure and eventually you will have your system pumping.