Pennsylvania Loop Piping Leak

Discussion in 'Maintenance and Troubleshooting' started by Inspector7, Sep 14, 2016.

  1. Inspector7

    Inspector7 New Member

    Yes, total of 6 vertical loops off the manifold. Original design called for 4, and its a long story how we ended up with 6, but will say it was installer inexperience, and a lot of the reason why I am now willingly making changes.
    I just got off the phone with a guy that worked for the well driller (no longer in business) He said hdpe pipe outside wall is 3/4" (4 originally drilled wells upsize to 1" outside wall- 2 do not....(Good eye Arkie, and Thank you for pushing me to be sure)

    So here is what is there:

    3 wells at 15' from house at 150' deep
    3 wells at 30' from house at 135' deep
    Thus 330' of 3/4" that upsizes to 1"....guessing 2' for through wall and to header
    Inside pipe is 1" schedule 40
    3' of header, 3' reverse return pipe and fittings, 6' of pipe and fittings to a Grundfos 26-99 f pump, followed by 5' of pipe to heat pump.
    Out of the heat pump with 5' of 1" pipe and fittings into a Grundfos 26-99 f pump followed by 5' of pipe and fittings into a 3' header.

    As you can see from the earlier posted photos, it is a seemingly confusing mess of piping.

    I plan to change the piping to the following, attach 1" ball valves to the through wall hdpe piping, then connect to a header, 1' of pipe into a 45 bend (shape of wall), then 4' of pipe to a flow center, then 4' of pipe to the heat pump. Obviously, this a rough plan that will change with selection of non pressurized flow center and its manufacturers installation recommendations.

    This will clean up the piping mess, remove the pressure tank, and make up water connection to potable supply (that i just realized does not have a backflow preventer)
  2. docjenser

    docjenser Well-Known Member Industry Professional Forum Leader

    So your pressure drop in the loop field should be very low!
    Your manufacturer recommends 10 gpm with antifreeze, the other tables are for open systems where they have a high flow rate at lower temps to prevent freezing. Just ignore them.
    So you need to shoot for 10 gpm. With 11 gpm, and 25% glycol, your loop field should have around 4.5 ft/hd, very low.
    Add another 12 ft/hd for the heat pump, and maybe 2 ft/hd for the internal piping in the basement, and you end up with less than 20ft/hd. A single 26-99 can do 25ft/hd at 10 gpm, so (1) pump flow center should be ok, saving you 50% pumping power.
    You should make the header 1.25", and use only full port shut off valves. No need for a reverse header in your application. I don't know the PVC valves in your system, but they might cause your high pressure drop.

    What material do you want to use for the inside? HDPE? PVC?
  3. Inspector7

    Inspector7 New Member

    It will not be hdpe, since it will be DIY. Probably leaning towards pvc since copper price would be a bit much
  4. arkie6

    arkie6 Active Member Forum Leader

    Why? Is it because of the different length loops with different size pipe?
  5. arkie6

    arkie6 Active Member Forum Leader

    That is partly due to the fact that it is a reverse return header (commonly used), which is intended to balance flow between the loops, assuming equal length and size pipe loops, and partly due to the fact that is made with PVC pipe and individual loop isolation valves which makes the header take up a lot of space. The individual loop isolation valves will make it easier to purge the loops of air since you can do that with the installed loop pump by just purging one loop at at a time to maintain sufficient velocity through the pipe.
  6. Mark Custis

    Mark Custis Not soon. Industry Professional Forum Leader

    Add stop leak and then try all of the above if it does not work. Waterpirate has the issue dialed in. Always use the soft material at the male fitting. Furnox makes a product that only seals and hardens when it see O2.
  7. docjenser

    docjenser Well-Known Member Industry Professional Forum Leader

    The impact on flow (balance) on the the circuits of a reverse header versus a conventional header is negligible if you run the pressure drop calculations. A couple feet more pipe on a circuit which has a few hundred feet in the ground per circuit.
  8. mtrentw

    mtrentw Active Member Industry Professional Forum Leader

    I've not seen mentioned, but be sure you check anti-freeze levels. Not sure where that could be with a make up water connection.
    Inspector7 likes this.
  9. Inspector7

    Inspector7 New Member

    Yes, that is a concern and a big impetus for taking action. (Tester will be delivered tomorrow). Current status is......Picked up a flow center today, waiting on ball valves to be delivered, and then will remove and re-do the piping. The original leak has not gotten worse, unfortunately, I found a second drip, which justifies the cost of the changes considering more are likely.
  10. Mark Custis

    Mark Custis Not soon. Industry Professional Forum Leader

    .....and the result is????
  11. Inspector7

    Inspector7 New Member

    The result from testing the glycol mix, was approximately 20 degrees.

    Update- removed all the old 1" piping, the 2 circulation pumps, expansion tank, make up water connection, and everything else to the hdpe pipes through the wall. Re-plumbed with 1" full port ball valves on each through wall pipe, 1-1/4" pipe, added a flow center (with one punp) and other valves. Still working to flush and purge air from loops. Had a little issue with a true union ball valve wanting to leak, but after getting that taken care of everything seems to be working as planned. Thank you to everyone who helped!!! It definitely has been appreciated.
  12. docjenser

    docjenser Well-Known Member Industry Professional Forum Leader

    Since you can isolate very circuit now, it should be very simple to urge out the air with a single pump flow center.
  13. Carolyn Slone

    Carolyn Slone New Member

    Nice advice and solution to recover the loop leaking pipes. It is vital for us to care for our home. Recently, my friend also faced the same problem and on someone's recommendation he consulted the plumbing service north NJ and expertise helped him to recover it.
  14. Deuce

    Deuce Member


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