pressure tank problem, water hammer plus
Admittedly, I live in a shack in the desert and our plumbing would best be described as eclectic, but I could use any help and advice anyone can offer.
Our water system consists of above-ground water tanks that go into a recently-installed pump and pressure tank that goes into 3/4 inch copper pipe. We have two outside spigots, one a couple feet away from the pressure tank, and one about 20 feet away from the pressure tank, each with a 1/2 inch hose bib. About 3 more feet of 3/4 inch copper pipe gets you to the bottom of the sink where it splits into a short section of 1/2 inch pipe that connects to the two hoses that connect to the kitchen sink. Theoretically, one of these will someday be hot water but we haven't gotten that far yet.
Here's where it gets weird. When you turn on either of the spigots, everything is fine, the pump/pressure tank kicks on and water flows normally at a good flow. However, if you turn either of the kitchen sink faucets on, the pump immediately begins to stutter on and off rapidly and because our system is so ghetto, major water hammering also ensues. We are working on getting everything strapped down better, but we aren't sure how to fix the pump stutter when you use the kitchen sink.
We went to Home Depot and bought the cheapest new faucet we could find, thinking maybe our old one just couldn't handle the power of the pump, but once installed, the new one did exactly the same thing. We did find that when we removed the hoses and just sent water through the half inch pipe after the split, the problem ceased, so it seems that it is the hoses that connect to the faucet or the faucet itself that is causing the problem.
What it seems like to me is that not enough water is getting through the sink fast enough so there is excess pressure which tells the pump to kick off, but then there is not enough pressure, so the pump turns right back on immediately, then repeat at a pretty fast rate. Does this make any sense?
Can you get larger diameter hoses for the faucet, or have we done something horribly wrong? Any help or suggestions would be gratefully accepted. I haven't had running water in nearly a year, and it sure would be nice...