how to prime a well pump

How to Prime a Well Pump at Home

Do you have a well pump? Yes, but I need to prime it, then you are in luck. Here I will share how to prime a well pump manually and get all the water you need. But first, you tell me what this priming a well pump means and do you really need it.

You may not because most modern well pumps are designed to prime automatically. But if your pump needs one, here is how to do it. So let’s start with what this priming means. 

What is Priming a Well Pump Means

What is Priming a Well Pump Means

A well pump is a pump that pulls up the underground water toward your house using an electrical motor. There are many types of well pumps available for different uses, like submersible well pumps, shallow well pumps, and convertible jet pumps.

Priming a well pump means creating a manual vacuum pressure through which the underground water can be pulled and directed through your water pipelines. This priming is normally done when you install your first well pump. But in the future, if something happens to the pump, it may need a second priming, or maybe not. Here is how to tell.

Do You Really Need to Prime Your Pump

Do you really Need to Prime Your Well Pump

Look, not all well pumps need a manual prime, even when you first install them. As I have said earlier, some pumps are automatic and some are not. You must know what kind of pump you have. There are two primary types of well pumps used in households, and there are as follows.

  • Submersible Well Pump: It does it works completely underwater for years. It is best suitable for deep wells. It does not need to be primed because it works underwater with automatic commands.
  • Non-Submersible Well Pump: It is suitable for shallow wells. They operate above the ground. This type of well pump needs to be primed when installed for the first time or if something happens to the pump, like any damage.
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So you have a non-submersible well pump, most probably. The next step will show you how to prime a well pump.

How to Prime a Well Pump Easily at Home

How to Prime a Well Pump Easily at Home

Just follow the steps, and solve the issue yourself.

  • First, switch off the pump, and unplug it from your power supply for safety.
  • Check for any damages or cracks on the pump or the connectors.
  • Find the main plug, remove it, and put it aside (it is located on the head of the pump). 
  • Try opening the pressure relief valves to prevent a pressure buildup inside the system.
  • Now, find your garden hose connector.
  • Run water through it to clean the hose out. For cleaning, you can also use a bucket.
  • Once it is ready, fill the casing of the well pump. Do it until water flows from the valve and prime plug. 
  • Replace the prime plug, and make sure the water is clean and potable.
  • Now, connect the pump and set the system as expected.
  • Watch the pump to know if it is working correctly.
  • Close the pressure relief valve, and use your well pump water as you want.

So this is how to prime a well pump. But check the pump well in every way. Because if you do something wrong, the motor will get hit, and many motor-related issues may occur. 

Repeat all the processes if you think there is something wrong. Be careful you do not want to destroy your expensive motor. If you can not do it, hire someone to prime your pump properly. 

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Why Do You Need to Prime Your Pump

Why Do You Need to Prime Your Well Pump

Before you start priming your pump, answer this question, why do you need to prime your pump? If your pump is self-priming, then you do not need it. If not, you may need it (for sure). 

But in some conditions, a self-priming well pump also needs priming as they could not do the priming themselves. Conditions are the following. 

  • Crack in the pump: If there is a crack in the pump, it may damage the water vacuums. You need to replace the pump and prime it as well.
  • Clog in your pump: If there is an interruption in water flow, then know the vacuum that makes your pump work is broken. If it is, then you have to prime it. You do not have any other options other than prime it.
  • Valves and fittings are in bad condition: Any loose fittings and bad valves will break the vacuum of your well pump. You can repair it through good priming. 
  • Broken seals: If the seal is broken you have to buy a new one that can replace it. Plus, you have to re-prime your pump like a new one.
  • Your pump is dried out: If that is the situation, repair it and prime it before use. 

So do you have any of these problems? If yes, then you need to prime your pump. 

Well Pump Priming FAQs

Well Pump Priming FAQs

How to re-prime a well pump?

Use a garden hose to fill the casing of the well pump and do it until water flows from the valve and prime plug and you are done re-priming your well pump.

How to prime a deep well pump?

First, switch off the pump power supply, open the pressure relief valves, run water through your garden hose, fill the casing of the well pump (do it until water flows from the valve and prime plug), replace the prime plug, and re-connect everything.

prime a well pump

Last Words

So now you tell me how to prime a well pump at home? Just follow the above steps. But first, know why you need it or what type of pump you have, then you can be sure that the formula will work. I wish you the best of luck.

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About Author

Nazim Ali

Nazim Ali is an engineer who loves fixing things at home. He loves to try new things and share the knowledge with the world.