Waterlogged water pressure tank schematic (C) Carson Dunlop Associates How the Well Tank Affects Building Water Pressure & Flow

  • WATER TANK vs WATER PRESSURE - CONTENTS: How water tanks affect water pressure & flow rate: the function of the well water tank or pressure tank
    • How the water pressure tank smooths out changes in water pressure from a private pump and well system
    • What defects or damage to water tanks does to building water pressure
    • List of water pressure, flow, quantity problem diagnosis & repair procedures
  • POST a QUESTION or READ FAQs about the function of water pressure tanks & water storage tanks where private well water is supplied

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How to track down the reason for bad water pressure in a building. This article describes how the water pressure tank or "well tank" affects water pressure and flow in a building - part of diagnosing bad or lost water pressure.

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How might a bad water pressure tank be related to water pressure or water supply loss symptoms

Bladder type Well X Trol Water Tank (C) Daniel FriedmanThe basics process of diagnosis and the costs of the repair are explained. Consumer advice on saving money on well repair costs includes a review of the parts and labor costs of a typical well pump and pressure tank replacement case. Page to sketch is courtesy of Carson Dunlop Associates.


  1. A bad or defective water pressure tank or water tank bladder can cause well pump short cycling which in turn is hard on the pump (damages the pump) and, especially with an older pump, might push it over the edge of failure.

    When the water pump fails the building will lose water supply completely (unless it is served by an artesian well). Our photo (left) shows a Well-X-Trol internal-bladder well tank installed below a one-line jet pump.

    See WATER TANK BLADDERS & CAPTIVE AIR for details on how captive air or bladder type well tanks work.
    See WATER TANK BLADDER PRESSURE ADJUSTMENT if you need to adjust or fine tune the air charge in a bladder type water tank.
  2. A leaky or defective steel or glass-lined well tank (tanks without an internal bladder) often loses its air charge and leads to short on-cycles of the water pump. Water tank problems can also lead to poor water pressure or flow in a building.

    To review loss of air charge, water pump short cycling, water pump pressure control settings, and other water tank repairs see WATER TANK AIR, HOW TO ADD and also WATER PUMP & WATER TANK REPAIRS.

    Other detailed articles on this type of water tank are found at

    At WATER TANK LIFE EXPECTANCY we discuss about how long you can expect various types of well tanks or water tanks to last.

    At WATER TANK PRESSURE CALCULATIONS we get very detailed about how the peformance of a water tank might be affected by extremes in temperature to which the tank is exposed.

    Putting your well tank in hot sun in Arizona or Mexico will give different performance than you can expect from the same tank in a building interior and different again from a tank exposed to sub-zero weather in parts of Canada or northern states of the U.S. Adjustments to the well tank's air charge or operating pressure may be needed.

    Installing a water pressure tank where it is exposed to freezing can damage the tank or its controls and is likely to lead to need for pressure tank replacement.

A water pump might be at end of its life and about to burn up but still work after a cool-down cycle (some pumps have a thermal overload that shuts them off and an automatic reset - especially one that is inaccessible such as a submersible).

In this case water pressure and supply will return after the cool-down problem but the failure is likely to be recurrent. This is not a problem with the well tank.

Diagnostic Steps to Figure Out if the Problem is the Well Tank or Something Else

Water pressure tank with a leak - is it a bad well tank ?(C) Daniel FriedmanHere is a list of well and water pressure diagnostic steps that might help decide if the problem is with the well tank or something else:

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The role of the water pressure tank or well tank or water storage tank in water pressure troubles


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