How to Clean a Submersible Well Pump

How to Clean a Submersible Well Pump: Step-by-Step Guide

Last Updated on July 23, 2023

Are you experiencing low water pressure or inconsistent water flow from your submersible well pump? One possible cause could be a clogged pump. Regularly maintaining and cleaning your submersible well pump can prevent these issues and ensure it works efficiently.

To clean a submersible well pump, turn off the pump’s main electrical connection to ensure your safety. Remove the submersible well pump from the well casing and identify and clean the water inlet. Then, inspect and clean the impeller before checking and cleaning the wiring and connections.

Today, we will walk you through the steps to clean your submersible well pump, so you can keep your water supply running smoothly. 

How to Clean a Submersible Well Pump: Steps to Follow

If you’re looking to clean your submersible well pump, there are several steps you’ll need to follow.

  • STEP 1. Turn off the Pump’s Main Electrical Connection
  • STEP 2. Remove the Submersible Well Pump
  • STEP 3. Identify and Clean the Water Inlet
  • STEP 4. Inspect and Clean the Impeller
  • STEP 5. Check and Clean the Wiring and Connections
  • STEP 6. Reinstall the Pump
  • STEP 7. Turn on the Pump and Test

STEP 1. Turn off the Pump’s Main Electrical Connection

Turn off the Pump's Main Electrical Connection

To ensure your safety and avoid any potential risks of electric shock, turn off the main electrical switch for your submersible well pump before starting any cleaning or maintenance tasks. This is a crucial step that should always be considered.

Even if you’re an experienced professional, taking precautions and following safety guidelines to protect yourself from harm is important.

To turn off the main electrical connection of your submersible well pump, locate the circuit breaker box or electrical panel that controls the pump and switch it off. Make sure to label the breaker or switch, so you can easily identify it in the future.

Once you have turned off the power, you can proceed with cleaning or maintenance tasks without any risk of electric shock. Remember to always prioritize your safety when working on your submersible well pump.

STEP 2. Remove the Submersible Well Pump

After ensuring your safety by turning off the main electrical connection, detach the pump from the well. Make sure to avoid any damage during the lifting process.

Start by lowering yourself into the well and attaching a rope securely to the pump. If the pump is large or the well is deep, you may require assistance from another person to hoist it out.

As the pump is being lifted out of the well, keep a close eye on it to ensure it doesn’t get damaged during the process. Once the pump is out of the well, set it aside in a safe, dry location. This will give you plenty of room to work on cleaning the pump thoroughly.

Be sure to follow the manufacturer’s instructions for cleaning the pump, as different models may require different cleaning methods. Be gentle when cleaning the pump, as you don’t want to damage any of the delicate components.

STEP 3. Identify and Clean the Water Inlet:

Congratulations! You’ve successfully removed the pump from the well, now it’s time to hunt down the pesky water inlet and give it a good scrubbing to ensure uninterrupted water supply.

The water inlet is a crucial component of your submersible well pump and prevents debris from entering the pump. It is typically located midway between the top and bottom of the pump and is usually a screen or filter.

To clean the water inlet, you must first identify its location. In some cases, it might be obscured by moss or debris, so thoroughly inspect the pump. Once you’ve located the water inlet, use the following table as a guide to clean it:

STEP 4. Inspect and Clean the Impeller

Now take a closer look at the impeller to check for any damage or debris accumulation that could potentially disrupt the flow of water and cause further problems down the line.

Inspect the impeller carefully and use a soft brush or cloth to remove any dirt or obstructions that may have accumulated over time. Ensure the impeller is spinning freely without any hindrance, as a damaged or worn impeller can lead to poor performance or complete pump failure.

If you notice any signs of damage or wear, it may be necessary to replace the impeller. However, cleaning the impeller regularly can help prevent the need for costly repairs or replacements.

Always follow the manufacturer’s instructions for maintaining your submersible well pump, and consult a professional if you need clarification on any part of the process.

STEP 5. Check and Clean the Wiring and Connections

Next up, you’ll want to take a close look at the wiring and connections. Don’t be surprised if you find a tangle of corroded wires or a heap of grime-covered connectors, with a little elbow grease and determination, you can make them shine like new again.

To clean the wiring and connections, follow these steps:

  1. Turn off the electric power supply to the pump before you start cleaning.
  2. Inspect the wiring and connections for damage or corrosion – if you find any, you’ll need to repair or replace them before proceeding.
  3. Use a wire brush or electrical contact cleaner to clean the wiring and connections thoroughly. Be sure to remove any dirt, grime, or rust.
  4. Once you’ve cleaned everything, ensure all the connections are secure and the wires are properly attached. Then, turn the power back on and test the pump to make sure it’s working correctly.

STEP 6. Reinstall the Pump

Reinstall the Pump

To ensure the proper functioning of your well system, you need to carefully lower the pump back into the well casing and securely attach it after cleaning the wiring and connections.

Proper alignment is crucial to prevent any damage during the re-installation process. You should take your time to ensure that the pump is positioned correctly and securely attached to the well casing.

Failing to do so may result in a malfunctioning pump or a costly repair. When lowering the pump, you should also be careful not to damage the wiring or any other components. It’s recommended to have another person to assist you with this task, especially if you have a heavy or large pump.

Once the pump is securely installed, you can turn on the power and check if it’s functioning correctly. If everything works correctly, you can use your well system again with peace of mind, knowing it’s clean and functioning correctly.

STEP 7. Turn on the Pump and Test

After reinstalling the pump, flip the main switch and check for leaks or unusual sounds to ensure proper system functionality. It’s important to ensure there are no leaks in the system, as this could cause damage to the pump and affect its performance.

Additionally, unusual sounds could indicate a problem with the pump, such as a malfunctioning motor or damaged impeller. Once you have ensured no leaks or unusual sounds, check the water flow to ensure it is steady and consistent.

 A steady water flow indicates that the cleaning process succeeded and the pump works properly. If the water flow is not steady, there may be a blockage in the system that needs to be cleared.

Finally, test the pump’s functionality by turning it on and off a few times to make sure that it’s working properly. If everything checks out, you can feel confident in the performance of your submersible well pump.

How do I know if my Submersible well pump is clogged and needs to be cleaned?

If you’re experiencing changes in water pressure, odd noises coming from the pump, or pressure tank sounds, it may indicate that your submersible well pump is clogged and needs cleaning.

Changes in Water Pressure

When you notice changes in water pressure, it’s important to check the submersible well pump for any issues. A change in water pressure can indicate a blockage or clog in your well pump system. If you don’t address this issue, it can lead to more serious problems like a burnt-out motor or a damaged pump.

To properly diagnose the issue, there are four things you should check:

Odd Noises From the Pump

You may hear strange noises from your water system, such as grinding or screeching sounds, which could indicate a problem with the pump.

The submersible well pump comprises multiple mechanical parts that work together to ensure proper water flow. If one of these parts becomes faulty, it could cause unusual noises to come from the pump.

To diagnose the issue, refer to the following table that outlines possible pump problems and their corresponding sounds. Once you have identified the issue, it is important to address it promptly to prevent further damage to the pump.

Ignoring the problem could result in a complete breakdown of the pump, which would require costly repairs or even a replacement.

Pump ProblemSoundPossible CauseSolution
Grinding or RattlingLoud, metallicLoose parts or debris in pumpTighten or replace loose parts, remove debris
ScreechingHigh-pitched, continuousWorn bearings or damaged impellerReplace worn bearings or impeller
HummingLow-pitched, continuousFaulty capacitor or start switchReplace capacitor or start switch
GurglingBubbling or gurglingAir in the systemPurge air from system

Pressure Tank Sounds

Pressure Tank Sounds

If you’ve noticed odd noises coming from your submersible well pump, it’s important to investigate the issue before it becomes a major problem. But sometimes, the sounds you hear may not come directly from the pump.

In some cases, the pressure tank may be the culprit. The pressure tank is an essential component of your well system, responsible for maintaining consistent water pressure throughout your home. However, if the tank is malfunctioning, it can cause a variety of noises, including clicking, humming, or hissing sounds.

Water Spitting From Faucets

Water spitting from faucets can feel like fireworks going off in your sink, instantly leaving your hands and dishes wet. This issue is often caused by air trapped in the plumbing system.

To fix this problem, start by turning off the water supply to the affected faucet. Next, open the faucet and let any remaining water drain out completely. Then, close the faucet and turn the water supply back on.

Finally, let the faucet run for a few minutes to flush out any remaining air pockets in the plumbing system. If this doesn’t solve the issue, you may need to call a professional plumber to investigate further.

Lack of Water

During the scorching summer months, turning on the faucet and receiving nothing but a weak trickle of liquid is frustrating. If you’re experiencing a lack of water from your submersible well pump, there are a few things you can do to troubleshoot the issue.

First, check to see if the well pump is running. If not, you may have a power issue or a tripped circuit breaker. Ensure the power’s on and the circuit breaker’s in the correct position.

If the pump is running but you’re not getting water, there may be a problem with the well itself. Check the well for any signs of damage or clogs. Also, you may want to consider hiring a professional to inspect the well and pump to diagnose any potential issues.

Sediment in Your Water

If you’ve experienced a lack of water in your submersible well pump, it’s important to address the issue promptly. However, if you’ve resolved the problem and still find sediment in your water, it’s time to look closer at your pump.

Sediment in your water can be caused by a buildup of minerals, sand, or other debris in your well or pump. This not only affects the quality of your water, but it can also damage your pump if left unchecked.

You’ll need to follow a few steps to clean your submersible well pump and remove sediment.

  • First, turn off the power to your pump and disconnect it from the well.
  • Then, remove the pump from the well casing and inspect it for any damage or wear.
  • Next, clean the pump and well casing using water and a cleaning solution, such as vinegar or bleach.
  • Finally, reassemble the well pump and reinstall it in the well, ensuring it is securely fastened and connected to the power source.

Do submersible Well pumps need to be cleaned?

Regular cleaning is necessary for submersible well pumps as debris and sediment can build up and affect their performance over time. When a submersible well pump is left uncleaned for a long period, it can lead to decreased water pressure, damaged pump components, and even pump failure.

Thus, regularly check the pump and its surrounding components for debris and sediment and clean them as needed. Cleaning your submersible well pump can be done easily with simple steps.

First, turn off the power supply to the pump and disconnect it from the plumbing system. Remove the pump from the well and clean the exterior with a soft brush and mild detergent.

Next, disassemble the pump and clean its components, including the impeller, diffuser, and motor housing, using a soft brush and clean water.

Once all the components are clean, reassemble the pump and reinstall it in the well. Regular cleaning can extend the life of your submersible well pump, ensuring that it continues to operate efficiently and effectively.

How often should a submersible well pump be serviced?

How often should a submersible well pump be serviced

You should consider scheduling a yearly submersible well maintenance check, just like you go for an annual physical exam, to ensure your well pump is working at its best.

Your submersible well pump is the heart of your water supply system, and neglecting its maintenance can lead to costly repairs or even replacement, much like how ignoring your heart health can lead to serious health problems.

To ensure your well pump is working properly, it should be serviced at least once a year. A professional plumber should inspect and test your well pump to ensure it works efficiently and effectively.

Keep Your Water Flowing: Regular Well Pump Cleaning Is Key

According to experts, a well pump should be serviced annually, depending on usage. Think of your well pump as the heart of your water supply system. It pumps life-giving water to your home and keeps your family healthy and hydrated.

Regular well pump maintenance can save you from costly repairs and unexpected breakdowns. Just like a car needs regular oil changes and tune-ups, a submersible well pump also requires regular servicing.

Neglecting its maintenance can lead to a lack of water pressure, low flow, or a complete breakdown. So, take care of your well pump, and it’ll take care of you.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Scroll to Top