If you’ve noticed that your water pump keeps turning on and off frequently, there could be a few different reasons for this issue. In this article, we’ll explore some of the common causes of water pump cycling, as well as what you can do to diagnose and fix the problem.
First, let’s talk a bit about how water pumps work. Most homes have a water pressure tank that is connected to the main water line. The pump is then connected to the pressure tank and is responsible for moving water from the tank to the various fixtures in your home, such as faucets and showerheads.
When the pump turns on, it creates pressure in the tank, which pushes the water out to the fixtures. Once the pressure in the tank reaches a certain level, the pump turns off, and the cycle starts again once the pressure drops below a certain threshold.
Table of contents
Reasons behind Water Pump cycling & Solutions
So why might your water pump be turning on and off frequently? Here are a few potential reasons:
Faulty Pressure Tank:
One of the most common causes of water pump cycling is a faulty pressure tank. Over time, the tank’s diaphragm can become damaged or worn, which can lead to incorrect pressure readings. If the pressure tank is malfunctioning, it may cause the pump to turn on and off frequently as it tries to maintain the correct pressure in the system.
To check if the pressure tank is causing the issue, you can start by turning off the power to the pump and draining all of the water out of the tank. Once the tank is empty, use a tire pressure gauge to check the air pressure inside. The pressure should match the manufacturer’s recommended level, which is typically listed on the side of the tank.
If the pressure is low, you can add air to the tank using a tire pump or compressor. If the pressure is correct but the tank is still causing the pump to cycle, it may be time to replace the tank.
Leaking Pipes or Fixtures:
If there is a leak in your pipes or fixtures, it can cause a drop in water pressure, which can trigger the pump to turn on and off repeatedly.
To check for leaks, you can start by turning off all of the fixtures in your home and checking the water meter. If the meter is still running, there may be a leak somewhere in the system. You can also check for visible signs of water damage, such as water stains on walls or ceilings.
If you do find a leak, it’s important to fix it as soon as possible to prevent further damage to your plumbing system and your home.
Clogged Filters or Screens:
Your water pump may also be cycling frequently if the filters or screens in your system are clogged with debris. Over time, dirt, sand, and other particles can build up in your plumbing system, which can cause a drop in water pressure and trigger the pump to turn on and off repeatedly.
To check for clogged filters or screens, you can start by inspecting the filter on your pump. If it looks dirty or clogged, you can clean it by removing it from the pump and rinsing it off with a hose.
You should also check any other filters or screens in your system, such as those in your faucets or showerheads. If these are clogged, you can clean them by soaking them in vinegar or using a pipe-cleaning solution.
Faulty Pressure Switch:
The pressure switch is responsible for turning the water pump on and off based on the pressure in the tank. If the switch is malfunctioning, it can cause the pump to turn on and off frequently, even if the pressure in the tank is correct.
To check if the pressure switch is causing the issue, you can start by turning off the power to the pump and removing the cover from the pressure switch. Use a multimeter to test the switch and see if it is functioning properly. If the switch is faulty, it will need to be replaced.
Oversized or Undersized Pump:
If your water pump is too large or too small for your home’s plumbing system, it can cause frequent cycling. An oversized pump will cycle on and off frequently, while an undersized pump will struggle to maintain the correct pressure and may run constantly.
To determine if the size of your pump is causing the issue, you can consult with a professional plumber or pump technician. They can evaluate your system and recommend a pump that is appropriately sized for your needs.
Finally, electrical issues can also cause water pump cycling. If the pump is not getting enough power, it may not be able to maintain the correct pressure in the system. Also, if the electrical wiring is damaged or broken, the pump will turn on and off a lot.
To check for electrical issues, you can start by inspecting the wiring and connections to the pump. Make sure all wires are connected and there is no damage to the insulation or wiring. You can also use a multimeter to test the voltage and amperage of the pump to see if it is receiving enough power.
If you are not comfortable working with electrical systems, it’s important to call in a professional to help diagnose and fix the issue.
Also Read: How to Fix Water Pump Not Turning ON
If your water pump is cycling on and off frequently, there could be a variety of causes, including a faulty pressure tank, leaking pipes or fixtures, clogged filters or screens, a faulty pressure switch, an oversized or undersized pump, or electrical issues. By troubleshooting these potential causes, you can identify the root of the problem and take steps to fix it. If you are not comfortable working on your plumbing or electrical system, it’s important to call in a professional for assistance. With the right diagnosis and repair, you can restore your water pump to the proper functioning and ensure a reliable water supply for your home.