Maybe you folks can help me again.

I live in Old Mexico, in Chihuahua on a little ranch. We have a deep well we are told was drilled to 361 feet, with a 3HP 220 volt pump hung on a 2" galvanized pipe to a depth of 285 feet. The pump controller is by Franklin, with a date code of G90 which I take to mean July of 1990. The previous land owner says the pump was installed in 1986, so I don't know what it has down there.

The pump output seemed low, so I tested it by filling a series of five gallon buckets over ten minutes, getting on one test 4.5 gallons per minute, and on another day 5.1. The pump will produce this volume for 8 hours or more - - I haven't needed more so I turn it off.

While the pump is working, the amperage on both legs of 220 measured volts is 14.8 - 15 amps. When I measure what is going down to the moter, one run winding gets 14.8- 15 amps, and the other gets a little bit less the 12. The other 3 +/- amps is going into the start winding. I checked each part of the pump controller: capacitors, overloads, and the start relay. They all test fine. I even replaced the start relay just to be sure.

So now I think the pump itself is damaged. It seems to me that the water that is coming out is a tad warmer than it used to be, so I wonder if I am making heat when I should be making motion.

I asked a pump dealer down here what brand of pump he favors, he sells Franklin of Mexico, Grunfoss, Barnes and others. He told me the issue in Mexico is not the quality of the pump. Rather the issue is the quality of the electric power. I have my own transformer hooked by the electric company to its 13,000 volt line, and voltage/ampperage does not seem to be an issue.

It costs about $500 labor here to have a company pull and install a pump. I would like to do it once. Do you have any sugggestions? I can have a pump shipped to El Paso and save a lot of money. Is there a way for a layman to check the depth of water?

The well casing does not have proper cap. It has a 1/2" steel plate with a "fork" cut into it that a union of the galvanized pipe rests on. The plate is sitting on the well casing, and the excess space is blocked off by a piece of wedged in wood. With the pump off, I lowered a casting plug tied to 20# test line into a 1.5" hole I had bored into the wood, but I got mixed results. The plug seemed to be moist at 200 feet, but I could not be sure if it was wet. When I was trying the third time, the casting plug go stuck about 35 feet from the surface as I was pulling it up. I would really like to know the level of water in the well before, during, and after pumping. Any ideas? Is there a way for a layman to check the depth of water?

Thanks again!

Walt Barbier