Water pumps are quite often overlooked until a problem occurs. It is always amazing to hear that private residents, large commercial operations, or even municipalities were unaware of water pump problems until suddenly they didn’t have water any longer. Just like any other system, a water pump requires maintenance checks, to ensure that everything is working properly. There are sensors and controls that can be used to extend the life of the pumps as well.
Unfortunately, though, not all water pump disasters are preventable, even with proper maintenance. In fact, it was during a routine maintenance check that one water pump suffered a catastrophic failure recently. The reports told the story from the perspective of the technician who had been performing the regular investigation of the pumps. He had finished his assessment, and went through the process of turning the pumps back on, only one of them refused to restart.
Every mechanical system is going to fail at some point, or have an issue that will affect the performance, but in many cases, such a situation can be predicted. In this case, the prediction might not have been so easy to make. It would be very difficult to guess that a piece of fire wood would made its way into the suction impeller of the pump. It jammed up the pump, and that explains why it couldn’t be restarted.
There is a portion of the system where flow, or pressure differential, can be measured. A sensor used in the right way might have set off an alarm when the log was introduced to the system, alerting the operating technicians that there is an issue with the pump and investigation was warranted. With the damage done, and the need for a new pump, certainly this facility would consider the benefits of installing such a sensor. With pressure transmitters like the NoShok 100 (which is equipped with easy plug and play cord), perhaps the pump could have been saved.