Guide to Identifying and Fixing Common Water Pump Issues

It is quite obvious that a water pump operating at maximum efficiency is a good investment; generally, it guzzles less fuel, minimises downtime, and saves you money. Therefore, providing regular preventive maintenance and pump repairs is an integral part of ensuring your water pumps serve you reliably and safely for longer. This article highlights some common problems associated with water pumps and makes useful suggestions about how to deal with those problems as and when they arise.

The water pump is blocking too often.

A pump that clogs a lot may indicate that the suction strainer is of incorrect size or face clearance might be too broad. Use the correct size strainer to prevent pump clogs. Essentially, suction strainers help to filter water by preventing large particles of debris from going into the pump and blocking the nozzles.

In other cases, a suction strainer may be stuck in mud, making it hard for it to function properly even if it is of correct size. You can flush out the mud from the strainers using a high pressure washer. Apart from ensuring smooth flow of water in the pump, using the right suction strainers will help reduce wear and tear of pump components due to internal friction.

The water pump is making unwarranted noise.

If the noise coming out of your water pump almost sounds like small stones rattling in an aluminum can, this may be a sign of cavitation, which may be as a result of air leaks in the suction line, a clogged strainer, failing bearings or a combination of any of these problems.

The high-pitched shrilling noises may either be mechanical or hydraulic. Run the pump for a few minutes without water. If you don't hear the noise anymore, it is probably hydraulic in nature. If the noise persists, then chances are high it's mechanical. Use a quality vacuum gauge to ensure that the suction line, hoses and pipe plugs are all airtight.

The water pump is overheating.

In many cases, this problem implies that water flow to and from the pump is being constrained. Incorrect clearance could be hampering water flow, the suction strainer may be bunged up or the discharge line may be blocked. Clean out the pump itself as well as areas surrounding the pump, specifically focusing on the vents, where air from cooling fans usually travels.

Never attempt to open a hot pump because high air pressure from inside the pump can cause severe bodily burns. Allow enough time for the pump to cool before you can open it.