I took the wife and kids to the airport today and get home and I was going to start some of my projects. First on the list was to descale the tankless water heater. Head down to the basement and I can hear the hum of the well pump running. I think to myself that this is odd because I just got home so no one is using water. I keep working and think to myself that the pump should have cut out by now even if it was low. Take a look at the gauge and it is sitting at 60PSI. We have a 40/60 switch so it should be cutting out.... I go over and flip the breaker and start looking into my new project for the day. As I look over things I look at my filters. They normally are changed every 3 months and I did it last month. The first is a spin down sediment pre-filter and I can see what looks like cotton or down on the outside of the filter and what I would say is the amount of sediment we would normally see in 3 month clean out. I have never seen these fibers before so I shutdown my valve and pull the filter. Here is a photo of the fibers.
So the well pump is down about 160'. It comes into the house and there is a T that goes to the pressure switch and pressure tank. The other direction goes to the filters and on to the house. The fibers are on the well side of the filters so it has to be coming from well, well pump or pressure tank. I just cant think of anything that would have fibers in it like this. They feel like cotton. Not sure why they would have something like that in the pressure tank. Any ideas?
I did some troubleshooting. When I drained the pressure tank I noticed that the pressure gauge should have dropped to 0 but it was still sitting at 60psi. Thinking the nipple going to the pressure switch. nipple and gauge could be plugged I replaced all three with new ones. Now the pump still runs non-stop but the pressure gauge reads 0psi all the time. I even ran the pump for a minute. Verified that there is water in the tank by opening my drain briefly. Then I pulled the pressure gauge, nothing came out of it. The odd thing is there is that the hole it screws into has something on the inside of it. It is hard like the plug on the end of the fitting. I tried opening up the pipe where everything attaches but I can't seem to be able to budge the end plug. Who knows how long it has been there. The house was built in the 60s but I replaced the pressure tank about 4 years ago. At that point I had everything disconnected from the union down to the tank. The rest of it could be original for all I know.
My thoughts are these fibers are plugging up the passages to the pressure switch and pressure gauge. I am thinking I need to try and get this stuff apart to clean them out. However. If it is these fibers causing the issue, it is just a band-aid fix, I am still getting these fibers into the spindown filter and even if I clean this out, it will likely plug up again. Anyone ever see anything like this before or have an idea where they might be coming from. There is a section of rubber hose from where the copper pipe comes out of the ground to where it ties into copper pipes and make that T. For now I just run the pump for a bit when I need water and cut it off. It is just me in the house this week so I can get by. I go to the gym every morning so I shower and get ready for work there.