Better Maintenance for High Pressure Pumps in South Africa

High pressure pumps are becoming more prominent in South Africa, especially since government’s focus seems to be moving closer to manufacturing. These machines provide an essential service – whether it’s for cleaning, or pumping a liquid from point A to point B. Nevertheless, they are made to last and often form the most reliable part of any system. However since all machinery is subject to wear and tear, there might come a time where it fails to do what it says on the label.

We’ve detailed a few common symptoms, their probable causes and simple solutions below to help operators diagnose problems more effectively.

It’s operational, but doesn’t produce any flow – In many instances this means that the pump has not been primed. A simple flood suction followed by the restart of the system can help set things right.

But it fails to prime! – It could be that there is trapped air. Remove any trapped air by disconnecting the discharge hose and flooding the suction hose. When this has been done, restart the system and let it run until all the air has been removed.

Ah, but it loses prime and emits a garbled noise, and the pressure thread is going up and down – one of two scenarios is possible here: either air is entering through the inlet fittings or the suction hose, or something is clogging up the strainer. If it’s the former, remove the suction line and make sure that it is clear of any obstruction; with regards to the latter, simply clean the strainer.

There’s an oil leak between the crankcase and the pumping section – This can be attributed to one of two things: Either the rod seals on the crankcase are worn, or the o-rings on the plunger retainer have become worn. In either case the seals will need to be replaced.

Oil is leaking close to the crankshaft – You may have a worn bearing, a worn crankshaft seal or ill-fitted oil seal o-ring. Whichever one of these may be causing a problem, it’s best to either fit a new bearing or new seals where applicable.

Loud clanking noises – In most cases this is attributed to worn bearings, which simply need to be replaced. However it might also be that the pulley on the crankshaft is loose, which means the set screw will need to be tightened.

It’s important to remember that in many instances pump services are necessitated by operators attempting repairs themselves after wrongly diagnosing a problem. Best practice guidelines suggest getting in touch with the service centre or the reseller before attempting repairs you aren’t 100% sure of. Fully functional high pressure pumps will help South Africa increase its productivity, thereby contributing to tomorrow’s better future.