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Old 03-11-2015, 01:36 PM   #1
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OT: Measuring/Metering Well Water Pump Electrical Usage

This is certainly off-sportsmobile-topic, but if I was sitting around a campfire with you electrical gurus, it is something that I would ask your advice on.

The water for our new rural fixer-upper is supplied by a well via an electrical pump. The well water is shared by our neighbor to the North and the well and pump are on his property. The well pressure tank is on our property. Water is brought to the surface by the pump, and then to the pressure tank from where it is piped to both our neighbor's house and to our house. The electricity to the pump comes from a subpanel on our house from our main circuit breaker panel.*

So right now my wife and I are paying the entire electric bill to run the well pump to supply water for my neighbor and his tenants and for my wife and I.

My neighbor has agreed to pay his fair share, but to get even close at determining what that amount is, I must break out (i.e., separately measure) the electricity used by the pump from the entire electrical usage for the pump and our house.

I have been told but have not independently verified that the local utility will not separately meter or bill for the electricity used just by the pump.

Is there some sort of metering/logging etc. device that I can install after or in the subpanel to determine the pump's electrical usage?

I need to confirm, but I am pretty sure that the pump runs on 120v (not 240v).

Any suggestions?

* And for you still-citified guys and gals living in HOA/PUD's or with municipally supplied domestic water, the reason this came up is that when the well was originally drilled (at least prior to 1952) both houses were on the same lot. Later, when separate parcels were created, this issue was not addressed. We all get along. But separately metering the pump's electrical issue would help us all.

(In fact, as the new guys in "town" we want to get along. When we first moved in we were told about an unfortunate drowning of a local whom nobody liked when he was carrying a heavy chain across the river, which was determined by the local authorities to be an accident. I don't know if that is apocryphal or not but I don't want to find out...)
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Old 03-11-2015, 02:53 PM   #2
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Re: OT: Measuring/Metering Well Water Pump Electrical Usage

I Didn't read the whole post but, just put a water meter (~$100) on each service and bill according to water usage and an electrical meter at the pump.

http://www.ebay.com/itm/Schlumberger-Ne ... 234c9decb0

http://www.ebay.com/itm/WESTINGHOUSE...item2c855e3c6f
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Old 03-11-2015, 03:00 PM   #3
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Re: OT: Measuring/Metering Well Water Pump Electrical Usage

Quote:
Originally Posted by BajaSportsmobile
I Didn't read the whole post but, just put a water meter (~$100) on each service and bill according to water usage.
BajaSportsMobile: Thanks! I hadn't even thought of that. I think that would be a great way to determine the usage ratio between the two houses, but what part of my electrical bill should that ratio be multiplied by?

There remains that first ratio which must be determined of how much of my monthly electrical bill is used just to power the pump?
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Old 03-11-2015, 03:10 PM   #4
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Re: OT: Measuring/Metering Well Water Pump Electrical Usage

See revised post above.
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Old 03-11-2015, 03:20 PM   #5
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Re: OT: Measuring/Metering Well Water Pump Electrical Usage

Who frickin' knew!!!

The water meters are industrial and perfect!

The electric meter is industrial and perfect!

"Sub-Metering, Residential, Small Offices, RV Parks, Apartment Projects, Mobile Home Parks, Marina's CampGrounds, Farms, Educational Courses, Equipment monitoring, Meter Lamps
Solar Energy Forward & Backward Net Readings etc."


I can't wait to get home now to see if my subpanel will accept a meter and whether or not it is 240v or 120v.

Dude again, you totally rock!
Thank you!
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Old 03-11-2015, 06:52 PM   #6
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Re: OT: Measuring/Metering Well Water Pump Electrical Usage

The separate water meters and electric meter is the way to go. We do that all the time in new construction projects.

If the electrical meter does not fit in your existing panel you can always add a sub panel next to the main panel that only has the well pump in it.
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Old 03-11-2015, 10:45 PM   #7
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Re: OT: Measuring/Metering Well Water Pump Electrical Usage

I throw perfectly good non-digital electrical meters away every day. 120 meters are fewer in numbers though but most pumps are 240 (some 2-wire w/o a neutral) so check. Most utilities are just throwing them away, so I'd suggest just asking them for one. Small cheap meter sockets are available...you don't need a whole new panel.
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Old 03-26-2015, 11:52 AM   #8
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Re: OT: Measuring/Metering Well Water Pump Electrical Usage

I actually have a separate meter in a separate sub panel for purposes of comparing the geothermal use. From experience I can say it helps if you look at it, I've never checked either number...
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Old 03-26-2015, 12:32 PM   #9
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Re: OT: Measuring/Metering Well Water Pump Electrical Usage

Quote:
Originally Posted by jage
I actually have a separate meter in a separate sub panel for purposes of comparing the geothermal use. From experience I can say it helps if you look at it, I've never checked either number...
Hillarious!!! And exactly why I haven't pulled the trigger on the 120v meter yet because if I have to actually look at it on the first day of each month, I may never bill my upstream neighbor for his share of the pump electric bill (well on his property, powered by panel on my property, pressure tank on my property - predecessor common owner, subsequent parcel split).

I need to start looking for a digital logging/date stamped 120v meter, socket and housing. I am meaning to pm the ebay sellers about this but haven't yet. (But a cut, paste and edit of this reply would probably work...)**

Any suggestions you guys?


* Geothermal electric? Would love to read a thread about that someday.

**Edit: Done and awaiting reply from ebay Seller: e_kid123 (1935 ) 100% Positive feedback. Thank you Jage. And thanks again Bajasportsmobile for informing me that used meters are actual sold on ebay.
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Old 03-26-2015, 12:56 PM   #10
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Re: OT: Measuring/Metering Well Water Pump Electrical Usage

This one seems interesting:

daveb and others: What do you think?



http://www.ebay.com/itm/Digital-Electri ... 2a44999ca2

Wow! It also has cloud-based data logging!!!

http://www.ekmmetering.com/

Thanks guys for pushing me to get this done. Have another beer on me around this great digital campfire.
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