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How to Choose a Water Pump

May 14, 2020

Water pumps move water from one area to another. There are many types and sizes of water pumps available that remove water from just about anywhere. Whether you need to pump water out of a flooded basement, fill (or empty) a swimming pool, or for irrigation purposes, water pumps are versatile and diverse.

When choosing a water pump, there are a variety of things to consider. This guide will help you buy the right water pump that will meet your needs.

Water pump terms to know

Discharge capacity: this is the rate of speed that the pump moves water from one place to the next. It’s measured in gallons per minute (GPM).

Maximum head lift: This is the total height that the water pump can move water from the source to the final destination (or drainage point). For example, if you need to move water from your basement up a flight of stairs to the storm drain, you will need more head lift than if you are planning to move water from a flooded field up a small slope.

Vertical suction lift: This is the vertical distance from the water to the pump itself. This is an essential factor to consider when emptying deep areas like deep ponds, or basements. The pump must be strong enough to lift the water to the pump and propel it the rest of the way.

Head: this is a term used to describe pressure. It refers to the amount of pressure or vacuum that the pump can produce.

Types of water pumps

There are several types of water pumps available, but there are four main categories.

Lightweight Pumps: Lightweight pumps are compact and portable. They’re primarily designed for situations where you need high-pressure water, like sprinklers, irrigation, or pumping water over long distances.

General Purpose Pumps: These pumps are designed to tackle most situations. They are lightweight but have full-size engines and full-frame protection. Honda general purpose water pumps have a variety of adapter options, including filters, garden hose adapters, and other options.

Transfer or Clean Water Pumps: These pumps are designed to pump clean water that doesn’t have any debris in it. They are ideal for pumping clear water from shallow areas, like hot tubs or small ponds, and for lawn irrigation.

Trash Pumps: Trash pumps can handle water with solid waste from .75 to 2 inches. They are ideal for agricultural and commercial use, like irrigating large fields, draining small flooded areas, or around construction sites.

Semi-Solid Pumps: These pumps are similar to transfer pumps, but they can pump water with small debris or solids. Most semi-solid pumps can handle solids between .25 and .75 inches in size. Most people choose these pumps for tasks like emptying small swimming pools and pumping water from flooded basements.

Factors to consider when choosing a water pump

When purchasing a water pump, it’s essential to consider a few factors to help you buy the right pump for the tasks you need to accomplish.

Flow rate: This refers to the amount of time it takes for the pump to move a certain amount of water. The flow rate is usually measured in liters per minute.

People who are planning to use their water pumps on job sites, farms, or for commercial or industrial uses typically choose water pumps that can pump over 2,500 liters per minute. Water pumps that are designed to use around the house usually have a flow rate between 100 and 200 liters per minute.

Type of water you need to pump: Some pumps are “clean water pumps,” meaning they do not handle water with debris in it (the pump with clog or break). Other pumps can handle small, medium, or large size debris. Consider all the ways you will need to use the pump to purchase one that can perform well in those conditions.

Maximum head: The maximum head tells you the longest distance, and the most height, the pump can move water. For example, if you need to move water up 25 meters (82 feet), then you should purchase a water pump with a maximum head of at least 30 meters (98.4 feet).

Inlet valve size: The inlet is where the pump sucks water in. The bigger the inlet valve, the more water the pump can handle. Most pumps have inlet valves between 0.025 meters (1 inch) and 0.15 meters (6 inches).

Timberland Supply sells Honda water pumps, some of the most durable and versatile water pumps on the market. Our expert staff are always standing by to help you select the best pump for all your needs.