How to wire a 220v submersible well pump

Written by finn mccuhil
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How to wire a 220v submersible well pump
Surface pumps are for shallow wells. (at the pump image by nutech21 from

A submersible pump is the most efficient way to get well water into your house if your water table is deeper than 100 feet. Shallow well pumps and surface jet pumps use an impeller to develop a vacuum to lift groundwater into your system. A submersible pump is located near the bottom of your well and lifts the water by pushing it. Since it spends its working life underwater, the electrical connections you make must be watertight to prevent shorting.

Skill level:
Moderately Easy

Things you need

  • Submersible single-phase pump
  • Wire strippers
  • Submersible pump wire
  • Crimp wire connectors
  • Crimping tool
  • Shrink-wrap sleeves
  • Propane torch
  • Electrical tape
  • Screwdriver

Show MoreHide


    Pump Connections

  1. 1

    Strip 1/2-inch of insulation off the ends of each of the pump's wire leads.

  2. 2

    Strip 1/2-inch of insulation off each lead on the submersible pump wire. A two-conductor wire will have three leads. A three-conductor wire will have four. The green wire is the ground wire and is not counted as a conductor.

  3. 3

    Slip a shrink-wrap sleeve over each conductor.

  4. 4

    Insert each lead from the pump into a crimp wire connector. Use the crimping tool to secure the connector to the wire.

  5. 5

    Insert the leads from the submersible pump wire into the crimp connectors with the corresponding leads on the pump. Crimp them securely, black to black, red to red, and, on a three-wire pump, yellow to yellow.

  6. 6

    Pull the shrink-wrap tubes up over the crimped connectors. One at a time, heat the shrink-wrap tubes with a propane torch until they shrink tightly around the wires. The tubing is sufficiently tight when insulating gel appears at both ends of the tube.

  7. 7

    Attach the green lead from the submersible pump wire to the pump's grounding terminal.

  8. 8

    Attach the first length of well pipe to the top of the pump. Secure the submersible pump wire to the well pipe two feet above the pump with several wraps of electrical tape.

  9. 9

    Continue to secure the submersible pump wire to the well pipe about every 10 feet as you lower the pump into the well.

    Aboveground Connections

  1. 1

    Strip 1/2--inch of insulation off all the conductors on the submersible pump wire.

  2. 2

    Connect the conductors to the control box if you are using a three-wire pump. Follow manufacturer's instructions for proper lead placement. Connect the control box leads to your pressure switch.

    Connect the two conductors to the L1 and L2 terminals on your pressure switch if you are using a two-wire pump.

  3. 3

    Connect the ground lead to the ground bar in your service panel. This applies to both two-wire and three-wire pumps.

Tips and warnings

  • Two-wire pumps have the circuitry to control starting voltage built into the pump. Three-wire pumps must be connected to a control box.
  • Always slide the shrink-wrap tubing over the leads of the submersible pump wire before you crimp the connections. If you forget this step, you will have to cut the connection apart, slip the tube on and crimp again.
  • Never perform any wiring on a live circuit. Turn the power off at the service panel before you start wiring the pump.
  • Using undersized wiring can significantly shorten the life of your pump; a guide is provided in the Resources section. Check with your local codes department before purchasing or installing new wiring.

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