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  • How do self-priming pumps work?

    self-priming pumps Flojet self-priming pump

    Self-priming pumps are a staple of the pumps industry.  From important environmental sustainability projects (water desalination plants) to huge commercial operations (petrochemical plants), self-priming pumps are incredibly important for many different people in many different environments. If, for whatever reason, you are not overly familiar with self-priming pumps and how they work, don’t worry. Before we get into the best ways to utilise self-priming pumps, we will first provide an explanation of exactly what self-priming pumps are and how they work.

    A self-priming pump is a form of centrifugal pump, the other of which is positive displacement pumps. Centrifugal pumps use centrifugal force to generate a pressure differential in a liquid. This pressure differential causes the liquid to move from an area of higher pressure to an area of lower pressure, allowing centrifugal pumps to pump fluids from one area to another. A (non-self-priming) centrifugal pump requires its casing to be completely submerged in liquid for it to be able to operate properly. As air is far harder to pump than liquid, the presence of air in a (non-self-priming) centrifugal pump renders it air bound. Meanwhile, a self-priming pump is able to operate in an air-water mixture by transforming this mixture into a fluid that can be pumped.

    Self-priming pumps have their in-built water reservoir to thank for this ability. The reservoir of water allows self-priming pumps to recirculate water within the pump at will, ridding the pump of the air that prevents it from operating whenever necessary. For this reason, self-priming pumps have the rare distinction of being able to turn a previously unpumpable mixture of air and water into a fluid that it can comfortably exercise control over.

    Self-priming pumps’ ability to work in a mixture of air and water makes them far more versatile than their non-self-priming counterparts, which allows them to work in a broader range of environments. In industrial chemical processes, a lot of the chemicals involved are volatile, making the ability to self-prime vital when air does seep into centrifugal pumps. Similarly, the number of air entrained liquids involved in the paper-making process makes self-priming pumps a common sight in paper mills across the world. As well as being suited to these industries, self-priming pumps are also popular in the wastewater treatment field amongst others.

    At Pump Sales Direct, we have a range of only the highest quality self-priming pumps available at the most affordable prices. If you require any more information on any of these products, please do not hesitate to contact us - one of our helpful and knowledgeable team will be on hand to help. You can get in touch by telephone, email or through this contact page.

  • What is the most efficient way to heat a home?

    Efficiency is something to strive for - whether that means completing tasks at central heating pumpswork as quickly as possible, trying to cram a month’s worth of shopping into a single visit, or using up a full tank of petrol before refilling. While these are all examples of measuring efficiency in terms of time, the efficiency of a home's heating system can be assessed in a number of different ways. In environmental terms, efficiency means generating the necessary amount of energy needed to heat your home at the lowest possible cost to the environment. Financially-speaking, the same is true - you want to sufficiently heat your home at the lowest possible cost. When it comes to heating your home, the two don't always go hand-in-hand (as you'll find out later) but there are a select number of solutions that meet both criteria. Below, we have discussed some of the most and least practical ways you can improve the efficiency of your home’s heating.

    Why it isn’t worth switching to alternative energy sources for heating

    It is important to note that there are a number of different energy sources you can switch to, that will heat your home in a more energy efficient manner. However, because the technology designed to support them is in its nascency, there are both practical and financial barriers preventing everyday homeowners from making the switch from gas boilers. Solar heating, for example, has floundered because of its prohibitively expensive entry point. The same can be said of most renewable heating technologies. Ground source and air source heat pumps occupy a great deal of space and have lengthy and complex (not to mention expensive) installation processes.

    Why you should consider installing a heating circulator instead

    No matter what kind of heating system you have installed in your home, the introduction of one of our circulating pumps into your home can help cut heating costs.  By circulating hot water throughout your home, and removing the need for large tanks of water to be heated and re-heated, central heating pumps can dramatically reduce the amount of energy required it takes to provide your home with hot water. By cutting your home’s energy consumption, domestic hot water circulators make your home more environmentally-friendly, but there is also a financial incentive too. Because your home spends less energy heating up water, your heating bills will be reduced. Over time, you will easily be able to recoup your initial investment.

    Improving the efficiency of your home’s heating can be a tricky, time-consuming and expensive process, but you should leave this blog post armed with the knowledge to make better decisions about your home’s heating going forward. For more information on any of our products - or if you need some help or advice - please don’t hesitate to get in touch. You can do so by telephone, email, or via the contact page on our website.

  • What are submersible pumps used for?

    submersible pumps ABS Robusta submersible pump

    Submersible pumps are one of our bestsellers at Pump Sales Direct. Their popularity, in some part, derives from their versatility. Equally at home fighting fires (their cables are flame retardant) as they are handling seawater and extracting oil from thousands of feet into the Earth’s surface, submersible pumps have a wide range of uses. And having already brought you a guide explaining the ins-and-outs of how they work just a month ago, we thought it would only be natural to follow it up with a post explaining the different scenarios in which they can be used. To learn about the ways in which submersible pumps are used and why, carry on reading.

    Irrigation

    Supplying crops with water is as important a job as any - one that, in many cases, falls to submersible pumps. The future health of our food depends on the efforts of submersible pumps. Tasked with moving masses of water from one location to another, often with metronomic precision, submersible pumps certainly have an important and difficult undertaking on their hands. There are two forms of submersible pumps, or rather compositions of submersible pumps that are typically used for irrigation - deep-well submersible pumps and vertical turbine pumps. The major difference between the two is the location of the motor. In vertical turbine pumps, the motor is installed above ground and connects to the pump itself via a line shaft. Deep-well submersible pumps have a slightly more intricate and complex design - their motor accompanies them submerged in the water - and is designed accordingly to cope with the high pressure.

    Drainage and wastewater

    Multi-stage submersible pumps’ ability to pump water upwards against the action of gravity makes them a popular choice in the sewage and wastewater industries. In packaged pump stations, where drainage by gravity is not possible, submersible pumps have become particularly invaluable - so much so that they can be considered to have had a marked impact on the sewage pumping industry over the last fifty years. Their use isn’t just confined to the commercial world though; they are just as useful domestically. For homeowners with a swimming pool or a pond that needs draining, a quality submersible pump is a valuable ally.

    Oil extraction

    The action of submersible pumps is essentially the same no matter what fluid it is pumping. While minor alterations may be made to account for differences in viscosity, submersible pumps appeal to those in the oil industry for the same reason they appeal to those in the wastewater field - submersible pumps are able to act against gravity. Where the use of submersible pumps with oil differs from those that are designed to handle water, is their ability to endure the variations in viscosity, temperature and depth that oil extraction often demands. Depths of over 4000ft are common and electrical submersible pumping systems are assembled to maximise durability and productivity even at such huge depths.

    As you can see, submersible pumps have a plethora of potential uses - both commercial and domestic - and you will find a range of the highest quality submersible pumps here. If you have any questions about specifications or otherwise, please call or email us, we are happy to help.

  • Common water pressure issues and how to solve them

    home booster pumps Grundfos home booster pump

    Throughout the UK, homeowners are affected by low water pressure. Faulty boilers, closed stop valves, frozen pipes and internal plumbing are just a few of many guilty parties. With so many potential candidates at fault, it can be overwhelming to sift through them all in search of the one (or few) that actually need addressing. To accelerate this process and make it altogether easier for our readers, we have put together this guide that covers all of the main water pressure issues that are likely to affect homeowners in the UK and how to resolve them

    It is worth noting that all of the issues we have presented in this list are all actually easily explained - and just as easily resolved. If, you don’t encounter the problem that is plaguing your own home in this list, it may be that it is a less-easily diagnosed and more complex internal plumbing issue. If you think you fall into this category, you should get in touch with a plumber.

    Identifying an internal plumbing issue

    Before you can explore potential fixes for your water pressure problem, it is important to first identify the source of the issue. Normally, your main water supply will enter your home through the cold tap in your kitchen or utility room. If this tap is working, whilst others throughout the home are not, you have an internal plumbing problem on your hands and you need to get in touch with a plumber.

    Checking for a closed stop valve

    Sometimes the most seemingly drastic problems can have the most straight-forward solutions - and that is certainly true when it comes to a closed stop valve. Your water nightmare could have been resolved a long time ago with a cursory glance under the kitchen sink (where the vast majority of indoor stop valves are housed) and a simple anti-clockwise motion twist. As simple as it sounds, you’d be surprised just how often plumbers travel to a home just to conduct a bewilderingly simple fix.

    Preventing and fixing frozen pipes

    Unfortunately, once temperatures drop low enough, frozen pipes are an ever-present threat. And in the colder months, this threat lingers in the background like a bad smell. There are however, a number of preventative measures you can take. An unoccupied home acts as a breeding ground for frozen pipes. With the heating turned off, pipes filled with water can very easily freeze over. To combat this, it is imperative to set your thermostat to at least 5°C to stave off the advance of the cold.

    If your home’s pipes have already been affected by low temperatures, you have to prioritise remedial rather than preventative measures. The first, and most vital, step you have to take is to shut off your water supply using your stop valve. This will prevent any more water from entering your home and potentially exacerbating the problem. From there, turning on all the cold taps in the house will allow the water that has accumulated in your pipes as ice to escape. To speed up this process, you can use a hairdryer or hot water bottle to heat up the pipes nearest to the taps. If, however, there is a leak, it is unavoidable that you will have to contact a plumber to amend the leak and repair any damage.

    With an understanding of the most widespread water pressure issues, you should be well placed to identify and resolve any issues that may come to affect your own home in the future. Rather than dealing with a fundamental flaw in your water system, there are homes that just do unfortunately suffer from weak water pressure. A home booster pump can rectify this with ease. At Pump Sales Direct, we have a range of the highest quality home booster pumps that are fit to service any scenario. If the issue is confined to your the water flow of your shower, you may instead benefit from a new shower pump. If you require any more information, simply call or email us - we are more than happy to help.

  • What bar shower pump do I need?

    shower pumps

    If you have spent a fair bit of time browsing through the range of shower pumps we have on sale, you may have noticed a piece of notation you were not familiar with - the letter B. Accompanying the brand of shower pump, the number of impellers it has, and its listing as positive or negative head, is a two digit number that lies somewhere within the 1.0 to 5.0 range. This number is an indication of a shower pump’s bar rating. To give you a better insight into exactly what bar is, how it works and how it should affect your decision to buy or not buy a particular shower pump, we have put together this helpful guide.

    What is bar?

    First things first, an explanation of bar is required. Bar is a metric unit of atmospheric air pressure, and the bar rating of a shower pump is a reflection of its ability to generate pressure. The higher the bar rating, the higher pressure the shower pump is capable of generating. More precisely, 1 bar of pressure is equal to the pressure exerted by 10m of water. Although there are instances of pumps with a full range of bar ratings from 0.5B right through to 5.0B, the vast majority of shower pumps lie somewhere in the 1.5B to 4.5B range.

    What bar shower pump do I need?

    The sheer scale of the room you aim to service with your shower pump is perhaps the simplest yet strongest indication you can garner of the bar rating you’ll need. A pump with a 0B or 0.5B rating (a rating which you’ll really struggle to find) is incapable of generating any of its own pressure, meaning it is largely reliant on gravity to shift water from A to B. At the opposite end of the spectrum are pumps with a rating of 4.0B, which possess the ability to move masses of water. So much so, that a Grundfos shower pumps guide suggests that a pump with a rating of 4.0B can service two bathroom suites single-handedly. From that, you should have a better idea of the kind of bar rating your shower pump is likely to need.

    What other factors should I consider?

    Alongside bar, there are a number of other factors you should consider before committing to buy a certain shower pump. Just as important, if not more so, is the positive or negative head status of your shower pump. So too is the pump’s centrifugal or regenerative status. You can read about the implications of positive and negative head shower pumps, as well as centrifugal and regenerative shower pumps here.

    What next?

    Hopefully, you have a far greater understanding of bar, and how differences in its rating are likely to affect the kind of shower pump you require. If you need a more detailed explanation, or want some clarification on the specifications of a particular product, you can contact us by phone (0800 008 6405) email (customerservices@pumpsalesdirect.com) or through the contact page on our website.

  • How do garden water pumps work?

    Garden pumps are an essential component in keeping your garden fresh, green, garden water pumpsand clean. There are different types of pump, namely submersible and external – but the basic premise of how they work is relatively similar. This article aims to give a brief explanation of how garden pumps work and outline their various functions.

    Anatomy

    A submersible garden pump's primary component is its impeller which moves the water through the water intake pipe and the water outlet pipe. The intake pipe is connected to inbuilt filters which clean the water as it passes through before being re-distributed via the outlet pipe.

    The pump is often powered by an electric motor which is why it is essential that a submersible pump is entirely waterproof. The electricity flows through wires in an enclosed block to separate the current from any possible contact with the water – thus ensuring personal safety.

    It is the electric motor which turns the impeller, and the vanes of the impeller discharge the water with each revolution. Due to the impeller's high speed, the flow of water appears continuous. In terms of composition, the garden pump is perhaps one of the most straightforward desgins.

    Submersible or Non-Submersible

    A submersible pump is relatively easy to grasp. The pump is placed beneath the surface of the water, meaning it is suited to gardens where space is at a premium. Submerging the pump creates a more aesthetically pleasing result since there is minimal machinery exposed.

    An exposed non-submersible pump sits to the side of the pond and has a more complex installation process. Before activating the pump, you need to make sure that the pipes contain water to ensure the pump does not begin by sucking air. It is also advisable to have secure housing for your external pump in order to separate it from small children and sunlight.

    Function

    Garden pumps can be utilised in numerous ways. Firstly, they can be used to maintain your garden’s water features, for example, a pond or a fountain. A pump will keep the water circulating around your pond, this keeps the water fresh and helps prevent the build-up of algae. In this regard, a filtration pump is ideal because it aids the oxygenation of the water. Garden pumps are exceptional at keeping water running and preventing stagnation.

    A garden pump can also be used to water the lawn since the installation of a pump allows you to transfer large amounts of water to different areas. This feature can also be used to fill a pool elsewhere in the garden.

    In summary, garden pumps are a beneficial addition to your garden – especially if you are considering creating a water feature or already have one that requires maintenance. Garden pumps come in varied forms and offer a range of possibilities, one is sure to fit your needs, and here at Pump Sales Direct, we have a selection of high-quality garden water pumps. For more information, call us on 0800 008 6405, email customerservices@pumpsalesdirect.co.uk , or use our contact form.

  • Lessons from World Water Day to take with you

    grey water recycling

    This year, Thursday 22nd March, saw World Water Day come and go. First commemorated in 1993, World Water Day was created to advocate for the sustainable management of freshwater resources. The heightened awareness generated is fleeting. But instead of allowing the environmental lessons we have learned go to waste, we have made a concerted effort to ensure that the environmental concerns the day was created to raise awareness of, continue to make an impact beyond a single day. With this goal in mind, we have put together this list of ways you can maximise the sustainability of your own home in 2018.

    Grey water recycling

    According to a report released by the Energy Saving Trust, Britain uses 840 billion litres of water every year - a great deal of which is perfectly fine to be used again. The water flushed away down showers, dishwashers and bathroom and kitchen sinks across the country has the capability to be repurposed for use in washing machines and toilets - and grey water recycling systems are designed to help you do just that. In many cases, these systems reduce water usage as drastically as up to 50%. Alongside the obvious environmental benefits, there is a financial incentive behind adopting a grey water recycling system too. When water usage is reduced, so too are the associated bills.

    Circulating pumps

    The Energy Saving Trust also estimates that the UK spends a staggering £2.3 billion on heating water for showers alone - compare this to the £1.6 billion spent powering dishwashers and washing machines. Circulating, or central heating, pumps work by distributing your supply of hot water evenly throughout your home, meaning your home’s appliances have hot water as and when they require it. By more efficiently circulating hot water around your home, central heating pumps reduce the heating costs that surround hot water use (they provide a cost-effective alternative to heating large tanks of water) while simultaneously reducing the associated environmental costs. By minimising the volume of water used as well as the amount of energy needed to heat said water, circulating pumps are a superb way of making your home more sustainable.

    Energy efficient products

    Across our website, you will find a range of energy efficient products that will help to bring your water and electric usage in line with global sustainability standards. Foremost amongst these energy efficient products are variable speed circulators. Working upon the same principles as circulating pumps, variable speed circulators work to meet the demand for water flow as precisely as possible, ensuring that no water or energy is wasted. All energy efficient products are marked as such with an ERP Ready icon, which you will see across our website. For more information on any of our products, get in touch on 0800 008 6405 or email customerservices@pumpsalesdirect.co.uk.

  • Submersible pumps explained

    submersible pumps Grundfos Submersible Borehole Pump

    Used in swimming pools, boreholes and cisterns, submersible pumps have an abundance of underwater utilities, but just how do they operate? To help clarify the inner workings of submersible pumps, and how this makes them suited to a number of different uses, we have put together this guide to everything you need to know about submersible pumps.

    What allows a submersible pumps to operate underwater?

    In other words, what makes submersible pumps submersible? Submersible pumps have hermetic seals to thank for this ability. A hermetic seal is any kind of sealing that excludes the entry, exit and movement of any gas, making a property completely airtight. The motors of submersible pumps are protected by the hermetic seal - giving the pump itself the licence to operate without fear of water infiltrating it, which is so important as the influx of water would cause a short circuit.

    How do submersible pumps work?

    Broken down to its constituent parts, a submersible pump consists of a motor, an impeller and a cable. When a pressure switch is activated, the motor spins a series of impellers and the pump can begin to draw water in. The water is pushed through the pump and travels to the surface, where a pipe then transports water to the desired destination.

    What is the difference between single stage and multiple impeller submersible pumps?

    Single stage impeller submersible pumps are the simplest, and most commonly used variety of submersible pump. As the name suggests, single stage impeller submersible pumps contain only one impeller, giving them limited range and power when compared to a multi-stage impeller pump. You will find single stage impeller pumps in use as swimming pool and pond filters as well as in drainage.

    Meanwhile, any transportation that requires any kind of artificial lift, like a borehole or a well, is reliant on a multi-stage impeller submersible pump. This is because, with multiple stages, they have the strength to propel water upwards against the pull of gravity. While this makes multi-stage impeller pumps more versatile, the increased exertion they are exposed to makes them far more susceptible to damage than their single stage counterparts.

    What are the advantages of submersible pumps?

    By way of their operation underwater, submersible pumps are constantly primed which is an advantage for a number of reasons. Because they are acting against gravity, above ground pumps are subject to huge amounts of stress that submersible pumps simply don’t have to deal with. Also thanks to their positioning deep underwater, they are protected from any potential cavitation issues - placing submersible pumps amongst the most resilient and durable pumps on the market. The typical lifespan of a submersible pump is evidence of this - they typically last well over 25 years.

    Compare submersible pumps at Pump Sales Direct

    Sourced from the leading manufacturers worldwide like Grundfos and Ebara, Pump Sales Direct is proud to make a range of the highest quality and best value submersible pumps available to customers online. If you have any questions or queries, do not hesitate to contact us. You can get in touch on 0800 008 6405 or email customerservices@pumpsalesdirect.co.uk.

  • How do drainage pumps work?

    drainage pumps

    Drainage pumps are often installed to move waste-water from a range of domestic and industrial sites, including private housing, farmland, and construction sites. They deal in underground dewatering, usually when gravity can't be applied to move the water (in this respect a drainage pump is similar to a sewage pump). What a drainage pump does is effectively ‘what it says on the tin', however, how they do it is a different matter entirely. This article aims to introduce the how's and why's of non-submersible and submersible drainage pumps.  

    Non-Submersible Drainage Pumps

    A non-submersible drainage pump is not placed directly in water; instead, it uses suction hoses and permanent pipework to transport the waste-water from the unwanted location. This type of drainage pump is often used when pumping waste-water from ponds, and other mobile drainage requirements.

    Submersible Drainage Pumps

    The reputable pump manufacturer Grundfos defines the submersible pump as "an enclosed unit with a close coupled pump and motor, due to its construction, the pumps are suitable for submersible installations – designed to be partially or completely immersed in water."

    A submersible drainage pump will collect water from the base of the unit and transport the water up and out of the system and include a no return valve to ensure there is no potentially damaging backflow. To use the ABS Coronada 250W-SX as an example, it is optimised to work when submerged in several ways. Firstly, the unit is encased in corrosion resistant stainless steel which is vital for the products durability – the model is also equipped with thermal sensors in the motor to prevent overheating. The Coronada is also equipped with the previously mentioned no return valve.

    The Calpeda GXRm 11 fits the similar purpose of draining rooms, water extraction, and can also clean water containing solids of up to 10mm in size. Its operating systems differ in various ways from the Coronada, for example in the Calpeda the motor is cooled by the water passing between the motor jacket and external jacket. However, both jackets are similarly corrosion proof – making both these submersible drainage pumps excellent units for domestic use.  

    Submersible Drainage Pumps & Industrial Use

    An industrial site naturally includes different working conditions when compared to the domestic setting – the Trencher T400F automatic submersible drainage pump is an excellent example to consider concerning industrial conditions.

    Whilst this pump is undoubtedly suited to a residential environment, what makes it uniquely suited to industrial sites is its adept handling of water supply from lakes and rivers. The Trencher is excellent when dealing with sediment removal thanks to its high abrasive resistance resin vortex impeller– which is something more common in industrial sites that often handle raw materials, thus this feature is less likely to be needed in a suburban estate.

    Every pump adheres to its specifications and operating systems, they often share a common purpose but when looking at the ‘how', one must look carefully at the detailed specification pdf's that are regularly available to select the correct drainage pump for you.

  • How does a coolant pump work?

    Think you might need a coolant pump? You’ve come to the right place. By coolant pumpleaning on our years of experience in the pumps industry, we have created this post that will tell you everything you need to know about coolant pumps. For everything from sizing requirements to compatibility with different materials, you’ll find it all here.

    What is a coolant pump?

    As you can probably guess by the name, the role of the coolant pump is to ensure that coolant is distributed evenly throughout the structure in which it is situated. Coolant is any substance (generally speaking a liquid or gas though) that is used to regulate the temperature of a system. In industrial processing, the term ‘heat transfer fluid’ often replaces the term ‘coolant.’ Coolant pumps are used in a range of industries, which has led coolant pumps to specialise in a number of different ways.  Typically though, a coolant pump is a submersible multistage centrifugal pump. Put in simpler terms, a coolant pump is capable of operating fully submerged in liquid, and works by imparting energy from the rotation of multiple shaft-driven impellers to the coolant.

    Secondly, it is important to differentiate machine tool coolant pumps (which are the kind we deal in here at Pump Sales Direct) from the coolant pumps you might find in your car, or further still, in a nuclear reactor. Although functionally similar - they all work by pumping a coolant around - there are a number of subtle differences that distinguish them from one another in practice. A coolant pump designed for a pressurised water reactor for example, is more elaborate and technical as it needs to be able to transfer heat in a steam generator to water across different pressure circuits. Meanwhile, in car engines and machine tools, the role of the coolant pump is more straightforward as they are only needed to circulate coolant irrespective of pressure differentials.

    How do I know if I need a coolant pump? And if so, what kind do I need?

    Because coolant pumps have so many industrial applications (everything from boiler feeds to industrial washing machines) it can be difficult to work out whether you actually require one, and narrowing it down to a specific model can be even tougher. However, once you have established your flow, pressure and length requirements, picking out the right coolant pump is relatively uncomplicated. On the other hand, if you are still unsure when it comes to the technical details, the flexibility of the Grundfos range of SPK coolant pumps makes them a feasible choice in a multitude of scenarios.

    At Pump Sales Direct, alongside the very popular Grundfos SPK range, we stock a variety of machine tool coolant pumps. Have a look at this extensive range of machine tool coolant pumps here.

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