If you’ve ever been in the middle of a shower and had the water pressure drop to a trickle or sputter, you know it can be really frustrating. If you have water pipes running from your outdoor well, then it might be an indication that there is air in the water pipe supply.

Knowing what can cause the air in your water pipes from your well is the first step to addressing the issue and getting back to your normal water flow levels.

There are a few common causes of air in water pipes from a well, so let’s get right to it.

Age of Your Pump System

The most typical cause of air in a well is the age of your pump system. Older pumps tend to have more trouble maintaining prime, which is the amount of water in your system necessary to ensure an uninterrupted flow.

As the pump continues to age, it could suck air into the system, leading to a decrease in water pressure.

Clogged or Blocked Water Lines

Another common cause of air in your pipes from your well is a clogged or blocked water line.

If there is an obstruction in the pipe, water can’t flow freely, and air will be sucked into the system, resulting in a decrease in water pressure.

Blockages also create little air pockets that reduce the water flowing through your pipes and increase the air present.

Faulty Water Pressure Tank

A faulty water pressure tank can also be a cause of air in water pipes from your well.

This type of tank stores pressurized water for later use and also helps to regulate the pressure throughout your entire plumbing system.

When this tank is not functioning properly, it may not be able to store enough pressurized water for your needs, causing it to draw extra air into the system, resulting in sputtering at your fixtures.

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Low Water Table

If your well is located in an area with a low water table, it could potentially cause the air in your pipes. Low water tables occur during periods of drought and can force the pipes from your outdoor well to draw in air rather than water.

Faulty Well Pump

Another possibility is that your Well pump may not be working correctly or may need re-priming after it has run dry. A Well pump draws water from underground aquifers and pressurizes it so that it can be used by your plumbing fixtures.

If there is no proper seal between the pump and pipe, then when it runs dry, air can get sucked into the system along with whatever little bit of water remains.

Reduced Water Levels in Your Well

If there’s simply not enough water left in your well anymore due to overuse or natural depletion of underground aquifers over time, then this could be the cause of air in your water pipes.

It could lead to reduced pressure and eventual failure of the pump as it tries to draw more air than water out of the ground.

This coupled with if you are using more than one source for your household’s water needs (e.g., city supply), then could also create low-pressure issues as both systems try to draw on limited resources simultaneously.

Air Discharge In Only Hot Water Taps

Another possible cause could be a failing hot-water heater relief valve or expansion tank which releases excess steam and pressure from hot taps only when they reach their maximum temperature capacity. This would explain why you only notice sputtering when running hot taps but not cold ones.

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This type of malfunction often requires professional repair as safety precautions must be taken before attempting any kind of repair work around such high-pressure equipment. 

Defective Plumbing Valves

Faulty valves within your plumbing system can create pockets where the air gets trapped and eventually released through faucets or showers when they are turned on – resulting in those familiar sputtering sounds.

Again, professional help should always be sought out here due to potential hazards involved with tampering with these sensitive components inside walls/ceilings.

Final Thoughts

Air trapped inside plumbing systems due to poorly regulated tanks, faulty pumps, loss of ground-level aquifer sources, expansion tanks/heaters malfunctions, and bad valves all contribute towards those annoying sputters at our sinks & showers.

Knowing what causes air in water pipes with a well can help us diagnose & resolve these problems quickly & effectively before they become too costly or dangerous – so don’t hesitate to call an expert if things start going haywire!

About the author

I started working as a quality control manager with the Water Authority of Nassau County in 2005. After a few years, I moved into Water Waste Prevention, where I currently work as the production supervisor. I love my job and the people I work with, but most of all I love spending time with my family.