What You Need to Know About Piston Pumps


A lot of items that we use in our daily lives use pumps. For one thing, a piston pump is usually included as a major component of various machinery and equipment. Such equipment is mostly applicable in industrial, construction, and manufacturing fields including oil production, automotive, and water treatment among a few.

The basics of piston pumps

Piston pumps are considered a positive displacement pump. Its major components include the piston itself, a diaphragm, and a plunger which is responsible for moving all sorts of liquids. Piston pumps are usually powered by an electric motor via a connecting rod and crankshaft.

There are various types of piston pumps. However, all of these pumps usually have at least one piston that moves in a cylinder and O-rings that acts as a seal while the piston pumps in the enclosed cylinder. Piston pumps draw and push the liquid in and out of the cylinder. At the same time, the liquid content in the enclosed cylinder increases and decreases alternately as the pumping process continues.

Types of piston pumps

worker inside area with pumps and pipes

Most piston pumps can handle flow rates of around 5 to 700 GPM, the pressure of up to 5,000 psi, and operates with up to 500 horsepower. As mentioned, there are also different types of piston pumps: lift pump, axial pump, radial pump, and force pump.

In lift pumps, the piston draws fluid using a control device called valve up and down the cylinder. Basically, the fluid is lifted up and down the cylinder and then released through a spout that is also a part of the pump.

Meanwhile, axial pumps are considered a positive displacement pump. Likewise, it has multiple pistons arranged in a circular range of a tube block. It can be used similarly as a compressor or as a hydraulic motor.

A radial pump works when the pistons expand symmetrically within a radial track. Lastly, a force pump works when the piston pump draws fluid via an inlet valve going to the cylinder. Once the fluid goes down the cylinder, it will then be discharged through an exit valve and then into a tube outlet.

Care and maintenance

In choosing piston pumps, you should consider the pump head, flow rate, pressure level, volume stroke, the diameter of the outlet, power rate, temperature it needs for optimum performance, and horsepower. Piston pumps are also made from various materials such as plastic, cast iron, stainless steel, aluminum, and nickel-alloy among a few.

As mentioned, piston pumps are important parts, especially in the manufacturing, construction, and manufacturing fields. It moves various kinds of fluids and draws it in and out of the pump system for whatever purpose it will serve. It is also important to ensure that piston pumps are working in its optimum condition every time.

Speaking of condition, pumps need regular maintenance to ensure that any minor issues won’t escalate into something major and result in major catastrophic results. It will also ensure the workers’ or operators’ safety when using equipment with piston pumps. It will also save the company of additional costs for repairs and replacement. These are some reasons why preventive maintenance is necessary for piston pumps and all types of machinery and equipment.

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