Booster Pump Troubleshooting


Please use caution when checking anything electrical.  Pumps use 115 volts AC which can injure or kill.

Always turn off circuit breaker (or remove fuse) that feeds the pump before servicing or inspecting it.  Some of these troubleshooting items will involve voltage testing.  If you are not comfortable doing that, hire a professional electrician.

Refer to owners' manual section on how to interpret the panel lights for more information.


Possible Cause

Corrective Actions To Check/Try

No lights are lit up on control head
Pump is unplugged
Plug pump securely into grounded 115v outlet.  Test outlet by plugging in another item that works on another outlet (a lamp, drill, etc.)
No power at outlet
Check circuit breaker that services the oulet and reset as needed.  Check wiring to outlet if needed.
Pump does not turn on when water is running
Pump does not have power
See section above called "No lights are lit up on control head"
Water flow is not greater than ¼ gallon per minute
Open a faucet or two wide open to flow more water.  Pump should start and run.  If it does not, continue troubleshooting.
Bypass pipe around booster pump is open
If pump was installed with a bypass pipe and valve, close the valve so the water flow must go through the pump.
If motor hums but does not run, when water flows, pump may not be getting adequate electricity.
Confirm that pump is plugged directly into an outlet (no extension cord) and that the outlet is fed by wire of heavy enough gauge.
Problem with control head or motor
If all other troubleshooting indicates no problems, motor or control head may be faulty.  Replace unit.
Pump does not shut off when water flow stops
Standard delay built into system
If pump runs for a few seconds after water flow has stopped, but does then shut off, this is normal.  Nothing is wrong with the pump.
Pump is not mounted upright
There is a flow valve in the discharge of the pump that returns to its 'off' position by gravity.  Pump must be installed with discharge pointing straight up.
Valve switch is stuck with debris, scale, etc.
Remove discharge pipe from pump.  There is a brass poppet valve right there that should return to it's "down" position by gravity.  If pipe scale, rust, or other deposits have that blocked open, the pump cannot shut off. Clean out the area so valve can shut.
Pump runs when water flows but pressure does not seem to be boosted
Flowing too much water
The more water that is being moved, the less pressure the pump can actually add.  Try running with fewere fixtures open and see if pressure is better.  If using pump for an irrigation system, close off some valves to limit the number of heads running and see if pressure is better.  Nothing is wrong with the pump in this case, you simply need to flow less water for the pressure to be boosted.
Bypass pipe around booster pump is partly open
If pump was installed with a bypass pipe and valve, close the valve completely so all the water flow must go through the pump.
Pump is worn
If pump is worn from much use, or because dirty or sandy water has been pumped through it, it simply may need to be rebuilt.  Purchase overhaul kit and rebuild pump.
Pump acts erratically. Does not start/stop according to description
Pump may be mounted before a pressure tank
In any system that has a pressure tank, booster should be installed on outlet (household) side of the tank, not on the inlet (pump or other supply) side of it.
Pressure in the house is too high when pump runs
When it operates, the pump will boost by as much as 40 psi.  That pressure, in addition to the inlet pressure, is getting too high.
It may be necessary to lower or regulate the pressure on the inlet side of the pump.  Do not try to restrict the booster pump's output.
Booster pump is not shutting off when it should
See troubleshooting item above called "Pump does not shut off when water flow stops"

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