The Versatility and Applications of Piston Pumps

Have you ever wondered how a front-end loader has the power to lift such an amazing volume, carry it to where it needs to be and then dump the contents in the designated area? Well, it’s all thanks to Mr Otto van Guericke who invented a piston (or plunger) based vacuum pump in 1650. These piston pumps used leather washers to prevent leakage between a cylinder and a plunger and revolutionised the process of moving liquids from one space to another. His thought process inspired great innovation and soon patented, mechanised piston pumps were being used both domestically and in heavy industry.

Piston pumps are classed as positive displacement dispensers where the high-pressure seal reciprocates with a plunging mechanism. They are most efficient when moving compressed gasses, liquids and very high viscosity oils because of their ability to seal so effectively. They are one of the strongest, most efficient pumping systems ever invented and can be used with a motor or operated manually. They are also lightweight and easy to connect to a host of other forms of machinery, making them extremely versatile mechanisms.

3 Frame CAT Piston PumpWhere are Piston Pumps Used?

From an industrial perspective, piston pumps are used for their ability to maintain an approximate flow at a fixed speed. They are capable of heavy-duty workloads and are frequently used for the toughest of applications. They can move heavy viscous materials containing solid particles like slurries and sludge, allowing easy passage of some impurities and spherical solids.

One of the least acknowledged uses is for the reliable supply of drinking water in third-world countries. Because they are so durable, low maintenance and can be operated by hand, they are used throughout Africa, the Middle East and even in rural areas of developing and first world countries. They can pump groundwater manually from freshwater catchment basins beneath the earth and are capable of sustaining the most remote farms, villages and small communities.

A primary advantage is their ability to dispense fluid at very high pressure. If sustained high pressure is required by force, the drawing stroke of the plunger would draw liquid into the cylinder through an inlet valve. On the downward stroke, water is discharged directly through an outlet valve through a spout. With two of these pumps lined in opposite equilibrium, a high range of force is acquired at a consistent level.

This is most useful in the agricultural sector where sustained pressure is required for the irrigation of crops through a system of water pipes. It is also required in most industries where consistent water flow under pressure is needed. For example, cleaning large industrial machinery in the mining industry or washing down floors, urns, cooking kettles and work surfaces in food factories.


Which Pumps are Suitable for Your Needs?

Since 1971, Bestline Manufacturing has been the sole distributor of the “Pumps with Nine Lives” in Southern Africa – CAT Pumps. We believe in providing the best quality and reliable products while supporting our customers and meeting their unique needs. Choosing piston pumps has never been this easy because CAT piston pumps can offer the best solution for you. Contact us for more information on our full product range and accessories.


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