What do I do when my water pump won't shut off?

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12/31/2012 at 8:19:00 PM

I noticed my water pump running when there was no water being used so I shut it off by the breaker for a few seconds then back on and it shut off.

But now that doesn't work so what can I do?

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Bobby from Construction A-Z in Laval
Date/Time12/31/2012 at 9:14:56 PM

If your pit is empty is not good. If your pump is stel running then you need to adjust the levler or replace it if is damaged.

Hopfuly this will fix your problem.

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Date/Time12/31/2012 at 9:52:28 PM

Hello Pam,

Sorry to hear about your water troubles.

I am guessing that when you heard your pump running on and on that you had no water pressure in your home. If you draw your water from a private source there are a few different problems that can come up - if you have a jet pump-one trouble that can happen is some rust or debris has gotten stuck in the venture of your pump - this is a funnel looking object inside the pump. it is located inside where your intake pipe comes into the pump-located by removing the 2 bolts opening the pump at the leather gasket and flushing out the plastic venture. (pour some water through it opposite the direction of flow) probably be obvious. A very small piece of rust can cause your pump to run on and on never reaching pressure.

The fact that your pump is not working when you restore power - Some pressure switches need a certain amount of pressure to operate- this ensures that your pump stops when you loose prime.

After you have the rust or debris removed and your pump is put back together- Remove the small nut holding on the cover on your pressure switch, using a piece of wood or something -push and hold open the plate held closed by a spring - opening the small contact points will allow power to pump and it will begin to pressurize. You need to hold this plate open until your water pressure is around 15 or 20 pounds. Then it will remain open on its own and hopefully will come up to pressure for you.

*** Be very careful to avoid the 4 screws and the wires that provide power inside the switch.*** That is why I suggest you use a piece of wood or something to hold open the plate inside your pressure switch - something other than a metal screwdriver.

There are a few different things that can cause this problem-but this is very often the trouble and the cure.

Hope this finds you well Pam.

Happy New Year

Bruce Tiffin

Granite Wood Construction

Georgia Bay, Parry Sound, Muskoka

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Date/Time12/31/2012 at 9:56:26 PM


I'm assuming this is a water pump to supply water to your home. It sounds like the points on the switch are worn, need cleaning and or simply need replacing. If you cannot do it yourself call a certified electrician to replace it for you.

Hope that helps. :)

Have a great holiday. :)

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Date/Time12/31/2012 at 10:37:25 PM

Sounds like you have either something stuck in your footvalve a hole in your water line either in the well or in between the the house and the well. Either way I would call a pump company to come and fix it.

It might be an easy fix say $75-$200.00 or it might cost alot more. You will have to have a professional take a look at it.

Good Luck

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Jeff from Aok Roofing in London
Date/Time1/1/2013 at 1:51:44 AM

This your water pump for your water supply, like from your well, or is this your sump pump?

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Date/Time1/1/2013 at 6:14:55 AM

The most likely cause of a pump not shutting off is the pressure switch. It is a small box attached to the water line with electrical wires running to it from your water pump. It's used to turn the pump on when the pressure gets low ( around 40 PSI) and turn it off when it gets high ( around 60 PSI). If you have a pressure gauge ( that works) on the water line you can easily tell if it's working properly. It's about a $60 part available at home centers and very easy to change.

The other posibbility is the pump is not building pressure. If the pump is an old unit, it's proably better and cheaper to replace it, than to try and find parts to repair it. They cost between $2-600.

Two things a lot of people don't have in there system, that you should install (if you don"t have already). First is the pressure gauge that I mentioned, a high quality liguid filled gauge is best ($50).The next is a pressure tank. It's used to store extra water pressure so the pump doesn't come on everytime you open a faucet for a short time. They don't cost a lot and you should install the biggest one you can find.

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John from JALS Corporation in Welland
Date/Time1/1/2013 at 9:16:06 AM

It is most likely the pressure switch. Have a certified electrican look at it.

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Date/Time1/1/2013 at 10:24:18 AM

Check the stem where the float ball is located. Try moving it up and down as it could be seized.

Do you know how old the pump is as with age they will seize or need to be replaced.

Check the pipe that goes to the outside as it could be frozen if you don't have water. You could try using a hair dryer to heat the line and get the water moving.

If you don't get any results from trying these things, leave the pump off.

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Date/Time1/1/2013 at 11:35:37 AM

Replace pressure switch.

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Date/Time1/1/2013 at 4:28:51 PM

I agree with most of the responses relating to the pressure switch. That is the likely cause, it may be as simple as adjusting it or it may need to be replaced as the diaphragm is penetrated. It is possible that the pump is worn and may require replacement.

As suggested by others, a qualitpressurere guage will tell you if your pump is creating the pressure you need.



John Kuehnl-Cadwell

Master Electrician

Datawise Solutions Inc

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