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There are a number of issues and alternate problems that need to be considered first before choosing to install a pressure pump system on an existing gravity feed water system. Common misconceptions and frequent advice that is off the mark Some expats advise that the person should get a bigger tinaco: Bigger tinacos fill much more slowly, actually giving noticeably lower pressure in gravity feed systems.
Some types of shower heads work much better than others in gravity feed systems.
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As seen in the next 4 points, reduced flow can be the actual cause of seeming pressure problems. Do you have low flow and low pressure at all points in the system, or in just selected areas?
If you answered that the pressure is too low at ALL points in the system, then you really might need to raise evahs tinaco or buy a hidropneumatico.
This algae lasts for years. What equipment should you consider: If he has not checked-out the 5 points I described above, it may be time to interview a different plumber. Your final system settings should have a working range of about 5 psi, with the air bladder pressure set either at the low-pressure pump-start pressure or 3 psi below that value.
Pressures set higher than 20 — 25 psi tends to cause problems with most Yucatecan plumbing systems. The D ring seals and coupling designs in flexible connections used here to couple faucets and toilets to the PVC pipes are just not designed to handle pressures higher than psi, not to mention the potential for hidden leaks inside walls or under floors.
The ROWA goes on and off every time you open the water and this does not seem efficient to me, but my husband is convinced that the amperage required to do so is less than what is used by the hidroneumatico. So, if you choose a smaller ROWA, it will use less power than the hidropneumatico, but the small ROWA only makes a maximum of 6 gal per minute, which means you might not want to flush a toilet while taking a shower.
Since it is a small low-power pump — Brasilian made — based on a Swedish design — it does not pump water that high…. If you only have a 1 story house, the ROWA should work OK, if you take showers without watering the yard, flushing the toilet, etc.
If you have a 2 story house, with the ROWA on the first floor — far from the bathroom, you may find shower pressure less than exciting. We will take your comments in to consideration. Jan charges more than the local guys, and I am not sure if he is still doing plumbing as we have not seen him in a year. I can send you his email if you are interested. When installing the new unit, inspect your well, to see that is clean, and that the intake tube for your water system is properly positioned.
The tube should be pulling water from a point not next to the bottom of the well. Do you get debris or sediment in your toilets or tubs when running water?
If there is no debris or sediment accumulating in the showers or toilet tanks, then the water is likely not causing the hydropneumatico. I have not worked with Impulsora Hidraulica. When you select your new hydropneumatico, be sure to get one with a large enough motor to lift the water out of the well. As you inspect the well, measure the height that the pump must lift the water from the water level in the well up to the pump.
All the best, steve. This is really helpful. Or attach an above-ground motor. Any thoughts on that end? Thank you again for your time.
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hidroneumaticod I love your work, I am now in Brazil and trying to improve the water pressure in my house, after read your work, I question my self now if I really wants to pressurize the gravity fed system.
It scars me, because I did not had the control who did the plumbing when the house was build. As a Brazilian I know that they did a lot short cuts, and did not use the PVC glue the way it suppose. I will follow your steps to try to find where is the cause to loose the ihdroneumaticos, and my last thing will be to raise the container to increase pressure or start over with the plumbing, witch economic unreliable task.
Hi Lucio, Your insights are exactly what we have here in Mexico. Anyone can do plumbing with no hidroneumaticps.
They use the wrong parts, they glue things badly, they solder them badly, and then they bury them in the wall or in the floor. If you install the hydropneumatico, then do a little test. Let the hydropneumatico run up to its highest pressure setting, where the pump shuts off say 22 psi.
Just wanted to say I love reading through your blog and look forward to all your posts! Keep up the excellent work! Building a house in Cansahcab.
Water flow from the town supply is horribly slow, barely a trickle. I am afraid that unless I have several tinacos, we will run out of water and I reeeeeeeaaalllllly like water pressure so I am trying to avoid the pitfalls before we get to that point. Never done it before, in Mexico. I will be there Nov.
I would like to have a more indepth discussion when you have time and maybe even FTF if you are in Merida or thereabouts. Hi Jack, Barely a trickle, eh? Any chance that there is more flow in the middle of the night?
If it is terrible flow all hours, is it possible that they kinked your line? If there is one time of the day with a bit more flow, then you could use a pump to gently suck water during those hours, to fill a tinaco.? Hi, I have 2 hidropneumatic pumps here in Merida and one in uaymitun and i highly rececomend Valto tecnlogies for equipment and instalacion, they are professional people and very helpful. They are located a couple of blocks from parque aleman on aleman avenue.
Hi Joe, Yes, higher water levels in the roof-top storage tanks increase the pressure a little. The increase in height inside a typical tinaco changes by about 2 feet when mostly empty to full. If you have a 1 story house, then the roof is only about 6 feet above the level of the faucets for newer constructionand the tinacos are often on a 2 ft platform — which gives you 8 feet of head pressure. If you have pressure problems in a gravity fed system, check for white PVC tubes that are exposed to sunlight — like on the roof.
Since gravity fed systems have a breather pipe that is open to the air, the water system sucks in air every time you run the water — and air contains algae spores.
The white PVC pipes have relatively thin walls that allow sunlight to illuminate the inside of the pipes — making a nice algae garden. If this has happened, I have found it takes a pressure washer to blow the little algae blockages out of the lines.
If you just hit the system with chlorine, it kills the algae, but the dead algae mats then flow through the system to block even more spots. Kill the algae with bleach 1 cup per gal tinaco — mix the bleach in the tank — wait 20 minutes run each faucet in the house until you smell bleach. Let the dilute bleach soak in the pipes at least 2 hours. Flush the system — hopefully opening a big oepn holed faucet connected to a big pipe — to allow the dead algae mats to flow out without blocking sink aerators or shower heads.
If this does not cure the low pressure problem at a faucet, you may have to use a pressure washer to blow out the blockage… We have also found sand and sediment partially clogging lines if you have a small plumbing leak in a line that runs through a floor — underneath the concrete. We live in Ixtlan del Rio, Nayarit. We just rented a house that was in bad shape, but we have been fixing it up. We have a tinaco and fairly good water pressure everywhere except the upstairs hot water for the shower and the hot water in the kitchen.
You had mentioned about air bubbles in your blog. Would that cause those two faucets to be slow letting out water? We would be fine with the low water pressure, but my dishwasher does not fill up quickly enough before the timer sets it going on with the wash cycle.
I think it is because of the poor hot water pressure in the kitchen. Can you think of an inexpensive and easy fix for these problems? Hi Elizabeth, I have seen pebbles in Mexican water lines, I have seen sand in Mexican water lines, I have seen little pieces of gravel in Mexican water lines, and I have seen little pieces of concrete in Mexican water lines.
It is possible that you have air bubbles cavitations in the water system, due to not enough air vents, but it is also possible that you have some obstructions. If you have white PVC pipes running across the roof — or down a wall — that are exposed to direct sunlight — you may also have an algae garden inside the pipes.
We have successfully blown out sand, gravel, pebbles, and algae using a pressure washer. In our cases, by gently increasing the pressure — a plug of sand, piece of gravel, pebble, concrete, or a bunch of rubbery algae blew out into the bucket. If it continues to happen, you may have to either install a new vent line, or just run new pipes. You are commenting using your WordPress. You are commenting using your Twitter account.
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Living in Mexico Change: Moving to Mexico …. Howler Monkeys Gone Wild! Hope you get all the pressure you want and enjoy years of strong showers and brisk flows. Fry Read on, MacDuff. Surviving Yucatan Eric Chaffee says: November 16, at 9: But once I posted my comment, it magically appeared! Not sure what the issue is.