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Help - Pitcher pump on new sand point well issue

 
steward
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Hello friends!  I am putting in a sand point well, I think I've hit water but I can't pump it up with a pitcher pump.

Background:  1.25" driven well with a 3' sand point on the bottom.  No foot valve down in the casing.  I augured a hole about 10' and then assembled the point and started driving it deeper.  I'm currently 17' into the ground with 1' of casing sticking out.  There is water in the pipe  The water level is 12' down and 6' from there to the end of the point.  So that seems to be a good sign.

I took a bucket of clean house water and poured it down the pipe to see if I could fill up the pipe.  It disappeared as fast as I could pour it in.  I think that's a really good sign.

I bolted on a relatively new pitcher pump and poured water in the top of it and started pumping.  After a while it feels like most of the handle's travel is just creating a vacuum.  When I lift the handle (lowering the piston), at the very end of the travel it feels like the vacuum is done and I made a tiny bit of progress.  But after pumping and pumping, eventually the vacuum feeling doesn't go away and it just seems like I'm creating a vacuum and then releasing in as I raise the handle.

I disassembled the pump and the cup leather looks good, the flapper looks good, the jiggly weight at the bottom of the piston is jiggling well and seems to be sealing well.

It seems like if I can pour 2 gallons of water into a pipe and it soaks in as fast as I can pour, I've hit water.  Why can't I suck it up 12' with a pitcher pump?  

Do I have a crappy pitcher pump?  Am I priming it wrong?  Any suggestions?

Once I am pumping water, I'll drive it down another 18" so the fitting is at a convenient height.  Hopefully that will only make things better for the water supply.

Thanks!
 
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Location: East Tennessee
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The last time I drove a well I was in my late teens, we drove it about 20-30 feet and hit water. Then we filled the pipe with water and primed the pump, we began pumping and continued to pump until it had cleared up a bit. If the pipe will not stay full your pump will keep losing the prime. That's what the foot valve (or check valve) is for.
 
Mike Haasl
steward
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Should I have put a check valve at the bottom?  The sand point screws right onto the 1-1/4" pipe but I could have installed a check valve above the point to hold water in the vertical pipe.  I just didn't know if it could handle the pounding...
 
Ben House
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I think we did install a check valve above our point. The point was a screened thing about 2' long and 2-1/4" across. I think the check valve we had was steel? I'm not sure now, its been a few years. However I do know that on your basic 6" drilled well we put a foot valve to keep the prime up.
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