Keeping your centrifugal pump in proper working order often begins with you. As an operator, you can avoid a number of mishaps with a few practical tips. Here are three ways you can avoid a failure of your centrifugal pump.
Choose The Right Size Pump
The pump you choose will have a direct impact on how well the pump operates. If you choose a pump that is either too large or too small, you actually increase the likelihood of a failure. Always choose a pump based on head size and flow rates. The head size refers to the level of energy necessary for the pump to operate based on friction loss and any elevation concerns.
Flow rate refers to the power level at which you need the liquid to flow from the pump. If you are simply replacing your pump, you can generally choose a pump that is the same size as your existing unit. However, should you need to make changes, it's best to rely on the expertise of a professional.
Avoid Dry Runs
Never allow your centrifugal pump to operate in a dry state. Unless it has been specially configured to do so, centrifugal pumps must always operate with liquid flowing through them. Allowing the unit to run dry can lead to permanent damage that is generally only resolved by completely replacing the unit.
To avoid this mishap, make it a regular habit to ensure the foot valve is operating correctly. The foot valve is a valve placed on the side on the pump suction that helps facilitate the flow of water. If this valve has failed, the water won't pass through. A failed valve may be loose or have a noticeable blockage.
Install A Pressure Gauge
Since you can't see inside the pump to monitor its inner workings, a pressure gauge will serve as a window inside the unit. In many instances, before a major malfunction with a pump, a quick glance at the gauge can help alert you of a problem. If your pump doesn't have a pressure gauge, install one.
It's best to place the gauge on the suction side of the pump as this space will give the most accurate reading on the overall pressure of the unit. When the gauge reaches the red zone, it's time to have the unit inspected by a professional.
The more aggressive your approach towards maintaining your pump, the fewer the incidence of a malfunction. Keep maintenance a priority. For more help, contact a company like PFC Equipment, Inc.