I was going to include more information and a video clip but I'm away from home and my water now does not work so I'm posting sooner rather than later. I have a bilevel house with a water pump in a crawlspace. I don't have the model number or other information on hand right now, but it's a few decades old. Recently, the pump is taking extra time to run, similar to a car engine trying to turn over. I hear a low hum as usual before it kicks on, but the hum is now lasting for 5-10 seconds. When I flush the toilet, I can't run water afterwards for a minute because if I do, the toilet stops flushing and no water can come out. In the shower, the water stops running or only dribbles, every 10 minutes or so, which is less time it takes to empty the water tank. I have well water and a septic, if that helps at all, and this problem is fairly recent, it's only been occurring for a week or so. Is my pump bad or could it be something else?

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    I would check 2 things will the pump motor spin easily? If it is stiff the bearings may need greased or replaced. If the pump motor spins freely I would check for a bad capacitor or a centrifical start winding the contact may be bad or gunk on the springs may keep it from switching to high speed until it gets hot. These items are somewhat common to old motors. I would also agree that your pressure tank could need an air charge because it should have enough volume to allow the toilet to fill without the pump turning on. – Ed Beal Nov 30 '17 at 17:19

Sounds like the "pump is bad", which may be caused by any number of conditions that need to be examined prior to burning out the next one.

For example, we bought a place in which the 230VAC had been fed to the pumphouse using 12AWG Romex strung 150 ft through the bushes. This probably resulted in excessive voltage drop before the power got down the hole to the pump, causing premature failure in a 1.5 hp pump more than 200 ft down.

There could be other problems with algae, sediment, clogged pipe, low water, inadequate pressure tank for your home, etc. A deep well pump over 15 years old, or so, may be due for replacement anyway.


It sounds that you have more than one problem. Your pump sounds to me to be suspect. Also, I think you need to have the pressure tank checked closely.

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