Many wells operate in the United States with beam pump artificial lift equipment. Most of these wells have a pump capacity that exceeds the production rate of the well. These wells would operate more efficiently and at a lower cost if they operate with a full pump. This requires the elimination of gas interference in the pump, insuring that the pump has no mechanical problems and then optimizing the run time so that the well operates periodically, yet removes all the available liquid from the wellbore.

Optimization of the pumping system requires an integrated analysis1  of the prime mover, surface equipment, wellbore equipment, downhole pump, downhole gas separator and the reservoir. Analysis is based on information obtained from liquid level instruments, dynamometers and motor power probes.

This paper reviews the analysis of the pumping system and then discusses the various methods of controlling the operating time with devices such as timers and pump off controllers. Using the integrated analysis method presented in this paper, the operator can monitor pump fillage and set run time on these devices, thereby efficiently producing his well.

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