Centrifugal Pumps: An Overview



CCentrifugal_pump_volute_Richards_1894entrifugal pumps are among the most popular types of pumps used for a wide range of sewage treatment applications, both in residential and industrial settings. As their name denotes, these equipment are powered by centrifugal force – which facilitates the transport of sewage from the entry point to the exit point. As such, they are the simplest types of pumps available, and this simplicity offers a lot of advantages to homeowners and facility managers.

The first – and, some will say, arguably the most important – of these advantages is the cost effectiveness of centrifugal pumps. Initial purchase costs are lesser than other types of sewage pumps, mostly because they come with fewer parts. Consequently, maintenance is also easier. And repairs can be done faster, as sourcing components that may be up for replacements will not be an issue.

Also, centrifugal pumps follow a very streamlined process that does not come with a difficult learning curve. Homeowners and beginner facility managers will be able to understand the key concepts of their operation easily, and training will not be as rigorous as that which is required by utilising other types of pumps. If you hope to supplement their simple operation with more complex processes that are designed to up their functionality, it will also be relatively easier to do.

As with every other type of equipment, though, centrifugal pumps come with their share of disadvantages, too. Foremost of these is the need for priming, the process by which the pump is filled with water before it can be operated. Fortunately, some models of centrifugal pumps are also self-priming now, which can radically improve the functionality of sewage treatment in households and industrial facilities.

Another disadvantage is the pump’s higher tendency for cavitation. This occurs when the speed of the water that powers the pump is such that it forms bubbles in the liquid. When these bubbles move through the pump too fast or when they implode, the effect can be corrosive to the impeller surfaces of the pump as well as the casing. Preventing cavitation, thankfully, is very possible. All you need to do is make sure that the NPSH or Net Positive Suction Head that is available on your pump is higher than its required number. This information is available with every pump, so it is important to look for this rating prior to making a purchase or adding another pump to your current sewage pumping station setup.


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