Copper tubing on pressure control switch (C) Daniel FriedmanWell Pump Priming Procedure FAQs
FAQs on how to prime a water pump

InspectAPedia tolerates no conflicts of interest. We have no relationship with advertisers, products, or services discussed at this website.

Diagnostic FAQs on how to prime a water well pump:

A "dry" above-ground water pump such as a 1-line jet pump or a 2-line jet pump won't work - the pump has lost its prime. This article provides diagnostic questions & answers that can help you if you're having trouble priming the pump.

This article series describes how to prime a water pump to restore water pressure to a building by priming the well pump to restore the pump to operation after it has lost prime.

Green links show where you are. © Copyright 2017, All Rights Reserved.

Simple & Fast Well Pump Priming Method Using a Garden Hose

Priming plug on a jet pump (C) Daniel FriedmanRecently-posted questions & answers about priming a well pump using water from an outside source: a hose from a neighbour

These questions and answers were posted originally either at PRIME the PUMP, HOW TO - topic home

On 2017-08-06 by (mod) My water pump lose prime an now want prime up what can I do


At at PRIME the PUMP, HOW TO we describe how to re-prime the pump. When your pump keeps losing prime it makes sense to figure out where the leak is located so that you don't have to keep repeating the process.

Typically that's a bad foot valve or bad check valve, sometimes it's a leak in the well piping or even an air leak into the pump right at a mating surface or bad gasket at the pump housing itself.

Start by tightening all the well piping connections you can access, adding a hose clamp if needed.

Or see PUMP PRIME, REPEATED LOSS of if you can't keep the pump primed

On 2017-08-06 by Gregory less e

My water pump lose prime an now want prime up what can I do

On 2017-06-24 by Anonymous

water pump is primed but water does not move through pipes inside the house

On 2017-04-29 by Anonymous

New pump that's primed won't pick up no pressure on gauge

On 2017-03-05 by (mod) Yesterday alone, we spent 6 hours trying to prime our pump.

Tyler: where's your pump - in the home or under water in the creek. If the pump is not a submersible unit (those area self priming) then there may be an air leak in the piping or the inlet screen may be dirt clogged. If the pump is a submersible one (under water in the creek) its impeller may be damged or debris clogged.

On 2017-03-05 by Tyler

We pump out of our creek with a hose. When it storms,our creek rages and is chocolate in color.When this happens, we pull our hose out.The last storm, last week, i pulled the hose out and turned off certain valves per usual. We were without power for 3 days. We have spent countless hours trying to prime and start the pump.

Our 2500 gallon tank has a reserve valve at 400 gallons. I opened that yesterday. Yesterday alone, we spent 6 hours trying to prime our pump. Any pointers would be greatly appreciated since a storm is heading our way, and we wont be able to pump until the creek clears up.


On 2017-01-17 by (mod) - How to remove air from tank

Make your water pressure tank has excessive air in it, leave the air with exit via the nearest faucet the next time you run the water. However if your tank is constantly accumulating air I suspect that there is a defective snifter valve.

On 2017-01-16 by Anonymous

How to remove air from tank

On 2016-11-01 by Chris

My pump which is gravity fed from a large tank . The pump is now running on and of approximately every 20 seconds . Wat would cause that . Please help it is doing my head in . Can you please messenger me . Thank you .

On 2016-10-10 by (mod) - When power was restored the pump wouldn't prime.


If you are pouring water into the priming opening on the pump but the pump chamber is NOT filling up completely with water then water is probably running back down the well piping; you need to pour in enough water to fill the system until the pump priming chamber is full. If you can obtain water from a neighbor's system via hose that may do the trick.

Watch out: after flooding your system may need to be sanitized.

On 2016-10-10 by Sonja

Trying to reprime pump. It's the only water source for our home. We live in Florida and just went through Hurricane Matthew and was without power for 3 days.

When power was restored the pump wouldn't prime. We have tried several times by pouring water in that little hole....but nothing no water!! HELP MY HUSBAND IS GETTING MAD

On 2016-09-14 by (mod) - Don't know where to add water to a goulds jet pump


I hope that you shut off your pump before running dry caused it to become damaged.

If there is no removable primer plug on the pump you may be able to force priming water into the system from a hose fitting located nearby, such as Auntie at the bottom of the water pressure tank.

On 2016-09-10 by Kevin

Don't know where to add water to a goulds jet pump have no water pump keeps running

On 2016-08-19 by (mod) - No water pressure. Plumber said it was well pump but wanted $2500 to fix.


Please search InspectApedia for NO WATER PRESSURE to see a checklist of things to go through to diagnose and fix the trouble.

On 2016-08-19 by Suzanna

No water pressure. Plumber said it was well pump but wanted $2500 to fix. We installed new submersible pump ourselves but still no water pressure.

On 2016-06-27 by (mod) - a tree branch had knocked of a wingnut that the wires need to be connected to pump up the water.

Hope you turned off that humming pump in time to avoid burning it up. Probably the well was exhausted. Give it 4 to 12 hours to recover.

On 2016-06-27 by Michele

Well I didn't want to bother my husbnd since he was working. We are connected to my moms well next door. We both have water tanks and pressure tanks and pumps to send water to house.

I opened her valve inside her holding tank and filled up then I connected a hose and ran it into the top of our tank.

I thought she had turned off the breaker since we have to do it manually { iforget sometimes} so I closed the hose and toke out of tank and deceided that ill give the trees some water. I turn the hose valve on and no water. at this time I still thought that the breaker was on not till I turned hose back on that I assusumed ma had turned it off.

So I deceided to call it a night. Well three days later time to fill our tank my husband said breaker was still on.

Come to find out a tree branch had knocked of a wingnut that the wires need to be connected to pump up the water.

so they could have been touching on and off however I didn't see any sparks. { I know cover should have been on electrical. repariman lost cover and screws previously and never replaced stupid decision.. so husband fixed wiring and soon a little water starting coming and then stopped.

Like a rock or lost prime. The pump is making a humming noise but not bringing up water. Two concerns I blew the pump or our water tablet is to low. its already down over 600 feet and 8 months ago they opened a chicken egg plant{ Hickmans} Husband used to work at another location and they use tons of water and we are already at a spot that you have to go really deep.

So our tank is empty thank goodnass ma only fills hers once a week. so before she kills me since I haven't told her yet. I got about 24hours till death. just kidding but she already was very concerned that we would run out of water. Whats your thoughts? I need advice fast.

On 2016-05-14 by (mod) - How to fix pump when piping or tank or pump has air


Search for AIR DISCHARGE at PLUMBING FIXTURES to read details.

On 2016-05-14 by Anonymous

How to fix pump hen has air

On 2016-05-08 by (mod) - The pump runs but no water. What's the problem


It sounds as if the people took the pump and controls too. So I'm unclear how your pump could be running at all. But if you've installed a new pump and properlyi wired it, but the pump is not delivering water, and if there's water in the well, I suspect that you need to prime the pump.

On 2016-05-05 by Vern

I've recently bought a double wide on line at a auction. When people left the property, they took the pump house! They just cut pipes and the pump wires and loaded it up! The pump runs but no water. What's the problem

On 2016-05-02 by Albright

I pump water last Friday morning, the water supply to my over head tank is connected to the bottom of the tank instead of the top.

I always shut the tank after pumping with a va;ve, but that day I forgot to. After about three hours I noticed that all the water in the overhead tank has returned back to the source. Since then till now I have not been able to pump water. After priming, I spent more than three hours yesterday without being able to pump.

Please what is the problem? Has the foot valve spoilt because of water from the over head thank flowing back to the well? Please advise

On 2016-03-19 by (mod) - Convertible jet pump manually

Robert I'm not sure what set screw you refer to. Check your pump owners manual. Also you can search for WELL PUMP WON'T STOP RUNNING to read diagnostic details.

On 2016-03-19 by Robert

I have primed my Convertible jet pump manually, but the pump is continuously running and not building any pressure? I had the set screw open to let the water enter freely into the pump housing, haven't turned it in would this be the problem?

On 2016-01-16 by (mod) - Replaced piping it prime's but don't build pressure


Please search for

WELL PUMP WON'T STOP RUNNING to see suggested diagnostic and repair steps for the condition you describe.

On 2016-01-16 by George Barrett replaced piping it primes but dont

Replaced piping it prime's but don't bill pressure

On 2016-01-09 by (mod) - is this a shallow well jet pump or is it a deep well jet pump?

Copper tubing on pressure control switch (C) Daniel FriedmanIf the jet pump is using 2 lines, a pressure and a suction line, that's a deep well set-up

A two-line jet pump is shown in my photo.

The larger line is the suction pipe.

On 2016-01-09 by brent

i have a jet pump that is old needs to replaced. it has two black lines comeing from the floor. to the end of the pump.

one is the suckion or fill line. the other one is the drain or discharge line. than there is one hole on top. which has to be shared to prime and hook up to the blader tank. my question is , is this a shallow well jet pump or is it a deep well jet pump please help.

On 2015-10-05 by Anonymous How much water should it take to prime a deep well jet pump?

How much water should it take to prime a deep well jet pump? My well is 60'. I have a two-line Gould J05 jet pump mounted to my tank.

I have lost all water pressure and I tried to prime through the plug on top of the pump. I don't have a close enough water source to use the garden hose method, so I will need to prime it manually.

On 2015-07-26 by Anonymous

It works ! you have to keep draining the air out of the line disconnect the bladder tank and shut the water valve going to it prime and shut the main off open the shut off valve to bladder tank line to drain air into 5 gall bucket We have a 90 ft deep double drop well so it took 5-6 times to get it to running steady.

On 2015-07-19 by Rick Gruber

Have a submersible pump in a 35' deep well about 20 years old, that recently has an issue. The tank drains downs and kicks on the pump, but delivers no water to the tank, even though I can hear or feel the vibration in the pipe. If I flip off the breaker and turn it back on, it will then pump water to the system. Sometimes it will pump water and fill when it draws down to 30 psi by itself, but most of the time I have to turn off the power and turn it back on, and then it will fill. Any idea of the problem?

On 2015-05-18 by (mod) - what if using a garden hose to prime the pump won't work because there's no nearby water supply

John if there is no place to which you can connect a garden hose to obtain an independent, pressurized water supply to use that priming method then this is not going to work - though one could jury-rig a tank of water, hose, and pony pump it seems pointless. Instead use the pump priming method described at the live link found at the end of the article at "Continue Reading at


On 2015-05-18 by john

there is no faucet on there to prim it

how do I prime my pump using a hose

On 2015-05-01 by Mixie

Note that for a female-female faucet to hose connector you can use the connector on your pressure washer (Karcher).


Continue reading at PRIME the PUMP, HOW TO through the pump priming plug If you do not have such a source available, we provide alternative methods, or select a topic from closely-related articles below, or see our complete INDEX to RELATED ARTICLES below.

Or see WATER PUMP PRIMING DIAGNOSTIC FAQs - set #1 of Q&A on how to prime the pump

Or see PUMP PRIME, REPEATED LOSS of if you can't keep the pump primed

or if priming the pump is just not working for you see WATER PRESSURE LOSS DIAGNOSIS & REPAIR.

Or see this

Water Pressure & Water Pump Article Series

Suggested citation for this web page

WELL PUMP PRIMING PROCEDURE Q&A-2 at - online encyclopedia of building & environmental inspection, testing, diagnosis, repair, & problem prevention advice.


Or use the SEARCH BOX found below to Ask a Question or Search InspectApedia


Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Click to Show or Hide FAQs

Ask a Question or Search InspectApedia

Use the "Click to Show or Hide FAQs" link just above to see recently-posted questions, comments, replies, try the search box just below, or if you prefer, post a question or comment in the Comments box below and we will respond promptly.

Search the InspectApedia website

Comment Box is loading comments...

Technical Reviewers & References

Click to Show or Hide Citations & References

Publisher's Google+ Page by Daniel Friedman