Following on from our last post about pumps, we should take into consideration how we are going to power this pump. If your pump is an air driven diaphragm pump, you’ll need air.
YOUR AVAILABLE AIR SUPPLY WILL DICTATE THE SIZE OF PUMP YOU WILL BE ABLE TO RUN
Small pumps require less air than larger pumps. A ½” pump will pump around 15 gallons a minute while a 1” pump can move more than twice that amount. Smaller pumps, ½” and 1” pumps can easily operate off of compressed air cylinders like SCBA bottles of from a cascade system. Larger pumps like a 2” pump, can move around 150 gallons per minute but these pumps use a lot of air. You SCBA bottles or cascade system will normally not keep up with this pump. A 1 ½” pump is a good middle ground.
This company uses ½” stainless diaphragm pump and 1” aluminum pumps. Our air supply is from cascade system size cylinders. These cylinders are rated at 4500 PSI. We can easily transfer 300 gallons of product in about 20 minutes and have plenty of air left.
ALL PUMPS ARE RATED, OR CLAIM, TO PUMP SO MANY GALLONS PER MINUTE UNDER SO MUCH PRESSURE
Remember, these performance tests are conducted under controlled and more ideal conditions than the ones you are going to face, so don’t expect the same results. Your pump will be controlled by a ¼ turn ball valve or other metering type of valve. Operate the pump slowly. That pump does not need to be run at full force. Experiment with water by running the pump at half open, then three quarters then full open. See how much water you pump, how much air you use and how much strain you have put on the pump. You will find that happy spot where everything is working good, remember that sound.
The hose that supplies your pump should also be considered. The smaller pumps can effectively run on a 3/8” air hose while an 1.5” or 2” pump will need up to a 1” hose to supply it. If you are OK with pumping from 15 to 50 gallons a minute then the 1/2” or one inch pump with a 3/8” air hose will do the job. Larger pumps equals bigger air.
I don’t want to leave out the importance of selecting the correct pump for the task at hand. Make sure if the product you are moving has a flash point, then there is a chance for static electricity to create problems. Check the continuity when you get your equipment together for the first time and periodically after that. Ground your pump in the field. Be safe!!