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Jet Pump Installation Check List

The information provided here is for educational purposes only. We recommend that a qualified and competent contractor install all new systems and replace existing pumps and motors. Failure to install in compliance with local and national codes and manufacturers recommendations may result in electrical shock, fire hazard, unsatisfactory performance, and equipment failure.

Preparing For Installation

  • Inspect the pump and the motor assembly for shipping damage. Insure that you have all of the parts required for a proper installation.
  • See component lists for different system types. There are shallow well, convertible shallow well, convertible deep well – twin pipe, convertible deep wellpacker, vertical deep well-twin pipe, vertical deep well-packer, and booster systems.
  • Check power supply voltage and select motor voltage. Most 1⁄2 hp Jet pumps are factory pre-wired for 115 volts while 3⁄4 hp and larger are pre-wired for 230 volts. Motors from 1⁄2 hp to 11⁄2 hp can operate on either 115 or 230 volts. The 2 hp motors and above operate only on 230 volts.
  • Select a site where the pump and tank will not freeze.
  • The pump must be within 4' of the tank to prevent switch chatter.
  • There should be no filters or valves, other than a wide open gate valve, between the pump and tank.
  • Fluid temperature must not exceed 140° F (60°C).

General Information - Piping

  • Always follow state and local plumbing codes.
  • Most pump manufacturers do not sell or specify pipe types or materials, consult with your pipe supplier to determine the best pipe for your installation.
  • Pipes can be threaded, glued, soldered, or clamped to available fittings and adapters.
  • If using poly pipe with barbed connectors we suggest you double clamp all fittings to prevent air leaks. It is very important to eliminate high spots and dips in suction\ piping as they will trap air and make the system very hard to prime.
  • Never route the piping up above and then down to the pump suction.
  • Suction piping should be either straight from the well to the pump or should slope upward to the pump.
  • Pumps do not “hold” prime, piping systems and check valves do.

Suction Piping

  • The suction pipe should be at least as large as the pump suction, typically 1-1/4"
  • Use of smaller pipe increases friction loss and increases effective suction lift. This will reduce flow and pressure.
  • On offsets over 50' we recommend using pipe larger than the pump suction. This will reduce friction loss and improve performance.
  • Install a foot valve on the end of your drop pipe if the well is 2" or larger.
  • Lower the drop pipe with foot valve into the well. It is best to keep it at least 5' off the bottom of a clean well. If you set it lower you increase the chance of pulling debris into the screen or into the pump.
  • On sand points or driven wells you can install an in-line check valve near the well head or at the pump and use the well casing as the suction pipe.
  • The closer the check valve is to the well the easier the system will prime.
  • In areas where freezing occurs make the transition from vertical to horizontal below the frost line using a pitless adapter. In some areas they use a well seal and a 90° elbow.
  • We recommend not using filters on the suction side of a jet pump. Dirty filters increase the effective suction lift on the pump and can starve the pump of water. This will damage the impeller and diffuser which will affect performance.
  • On Convertible Pumps install shallow well adapter. Unpack the “Shallow Well Adapter”. Insure that the nozzle is installed in the adapter. Screw the venturi (long black tube) into the adapter. Install the gasket and bolt the adapter to the front of the pump using the bolts provided. Tighten the bolts evenly to insure proper sealing and alignment of the venturi to the impeller. Do not over tighten the bolts.
  • On Shallow Well Pumps the jet is built-in so proceed to attaching piping
  • Attach suction piping to pump by installing an adapter into the pipe. If using poly pipe double clamp the fitting. Or thread a pipe nipple and union into the suction port to make a threaded pipe connection.
  • Make sure the union is clean and well seated. Any air leak will ruin performance and the pump will not make pressure

Discharge Piping

  • Install a tee or cross tee in the pump discharge. (They are usually not supplied with the pump!)
  • Install a pipe plug or a pressure gauge into a reducer bushing in the top port of the tee. This will be used as the priming port.
  • When you use a cross tee - the discharge line to the home attaches to one port and the tank attaches to the other. This is called an Off-Line Tank installation.
  • When you use a tee - you can use one line to supply the house with the tank tee installed off the line. This is called an On-Line Tank Installation and is most common.
  • Note: Water System tanks are shipped with a tank installation guide. Refer to it for more detailed tank instructions.
  • Do not place valves or filters between the pump and tank, other than a fully open gate valve or “full port” ball valve. The most common ball valves are not full port!
  • Most valves and filters will create excessive friction loss and cause “switch chatter”.
  • Switch chatter is a rapid On- Off cycling of not only the pressure switch but also the motor. It will burn the points in the switch, the motor points, and cause motor damage if not corrected.
  • If for any reason you must have fittings or filters between the pump and tank and they cause switch chatter you should move the pressure switch to the tank cross tee.

Power The Motor

  • The electrical supply must be a separate branch circuit with a properly sized breaker or fuses.
  • All wiring must conform to National (NEC), CSA, state, provincial, and local codes.
  • The power supply voltage, phase and controls must match motor.
  • Never run the pump dry. Damage will result and the warranty will be voided. !
  • Always disconnect and lock-out all electrical power when installing or working on pumps, motors or switches.
  • Insure that the power supply breaker is off or the disconnect (where used) is off
  • Attach the green or bare ground wire to either green ground screw in the switch. It makes no difference which
  • Line terminal you attach the hot- L1 (usually Black) and neutral- N (usually white) 115 volt wires to on the switch.
  • The same goes for a 230 volt hook-up, either wire can go on either Line terminal.
  • Re-install the switch cover.
  • The motor voltage must be changed inside the motor cover, not in the pressure switch.
  • Make sure the breaker or disconnect is OFF before entering the motor cover. All motors have a wiring diagram on the motor label
  • Check to insure that the motor is wired to match the incoming voltage. Most motors have a sticker near the pressure switch that identifies the pre-wired voltage.
  • Most 1/2 HP jet pumps are factory wired for 115 V, and 3/4 HP and larger are wired for 230V.

Priming a Shallow Well System

  • Priming means filling the pump and suction pipe with water. Most shallow well jet pumps handle air well and will evacuate air from the suction line but it may take several minutes to prime depending on depth to water, and pipe size and length.
  • It is easier to prime a pump if you allow all the air to escape from the pump and the pipes, the water cannot go in unless the air can escape!
  • Remove the pipe plug or pressure gauge bushing in the discharge tee to fill the pump with water.
  • On shallow well pumps you should remove the ¼” pipe plug located between the suction and discharge ports to allow air to escape as you fill the casing with water.
  • The port will be located on either the top of the casing or the top of the shallow well adapter.
  • Fill the pump and as much of the suction pipe as possible with water through the discharge port.
  • Replace the ¼” pipe plug and discharge gauge/bushing.
  • Open the faucet closest to the pump/tank a small amount to allow air to escape the system.
  • Do not open it too much or the pump will expel too much water and you will have to re-prime the pump casing.
  • On jobs with long suction pipes you may have to add water to the pump casing several times to complete the priming process.


  • It is necessary to drain the entire system where the pump,tank, and piping will be subjected to freezing.
  • Vertical pumps have a drain plug located on the side of the pump casing near the bottom of the pump.
  • Horizontal pumps may have two drain plugs, one on the casing (part where pipes attach) and another on the motor adapter.
  • They are also located near the bottom of the pump.
  • Multi-stage pumps also have 1 or 2 drain plugs and they may require you to tip the pump or blow compressed air in one hole to get all the water out of the stages.

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