Pump search database

The pump search database PSD provides the ability to search for pumps that are available world wide using various criteria to help you narrow down your choice such as: service, head and flow range, pump features and many others. If you are interested in slurry pumps, you can list all the slurry pumps available. The purpose is to help you find the most suitable pump for the application and this can be a daunting prospect given the great number of pumps available. That's the bad news, the good news is that the PSD will help you find it. This pump type list will give you an idea of the variety of pumps available. Pumps for all uses (residential, industrial, municipal, etc.) are included. Many details and photos as well as the manufacturer's technical brochure are provided based on the manufacturer's web site information. I am carefull to include orginal equipment manufacturers only and not distributors. This is to avoid duplication of pump models and information. Also, pumps assembled in a set are not considered as they would normally be made up of individual models that would have been described.

The goals of the PSD are to provide information on:
- what can it do: liquids to be pumped, applications;
- what does it look like;
- what are the performance characteristics: max. flow and head, special features, impeller type;
- technical information: performance curves, materials;
- usage: industrial, residential, etc.;
- country of origin of manufacturer

If you want to contribute pump information to the database, contact me here: my e-mail address

How is an on-line pump search database developed and what criteria are important and useful to the user? This is a description of the relevant criterion.

The owner of the PSD is totally independant of the pump vendors. The information is not biased in any way and comes strictly from the vendors own web sites.

The PSD does not help you calculate the operating conditions (i.e. head and flow) required to select the optimum pump to make your system function as intended. If you have this information you can use it in your search but it is not essential. Use the PSD for a preliminary selection, you will want to consult the vendor on the final selection.

For small home applications your vendor will help you select the proper size and pump model based on experience of similar installations. However you can easily get a good idea of the flow and head you require. For large industrial applications every case is different.

If you want to do your own calculations, here are some resources:

The pump tutorial.
On-line java calculation applets for head, flow, etc..
The pressure drop calculator.

For helpful advice, join our forum.

The search criteria service is a flexible term that can contain the type of liquid to be pumped (i.e. water) or the activity (i.e. dewatering, irrigation) or the location (i.e. sump, deep well) or a particular ability (i.e. high head, low volume) or liquid density and viscosity (sludge, slurry, viscous liquids) or just a statement "general use". This is useful information but probably not the best way to search. Why? Pumps are very versatile and a manufacturer may not identify all the uses for his pumps. If you were to type in the keyword "irrigation" you will not get all the results possible if a manufacturer has not identified this service. Also many manufacturers only say that the pump is suitable for general service.

For Pump type, you will find the available identifiers here. Pump type identifiers are loosely based on the Hydraulic Institute nomenclature as well as known terms in the industry. This is a pictorial chart showing the various types of centrifugal pumps and another one for positive displacement pumps both based on the HI classification system.

Here is the list of pump types with links showing their appearance and function:

Air piston (positive displacement)
Archimedes screw (positive displacement)
Axial flow (centrifugal)
Barrel emptying (positive displacement)
bellows (positive displacement)
canned motor (sealless) (centrifugal)
centrifugal close coupled (centrifugal), a category used to represent a centrifugal pump with an odd shape casing or differing from the standard volute casing
Circumferential piston (positive displacement)
Concrete volute (centrifugal)
Diaphragm single/double acting (positive displacement)
Double suction (centrifugal)
Eccentric disc (positive displacement)
External gear (positive displacement)
Flexible vane (positive displacement), see also this article from the Pump System magazine
In-line (centrifugal)
Internal gear (positive displacement)
Jet (centrifugal)
Lobe (positive displacement)
Manual (positive displacement)
Magnetic drive (sealless) (centrifugal)
Mixed flow (centrifugal)
Multi-stage horiz. (centrifugal)
Multi-stage vert. (centrifugal)
Pedestal sump (centrifugal)
Peristaltic (tube) (positive displacement)
Piston (positive displacement)
Plunger ram (positive displacement)
Progressive cavity (positive displacement)
Propeller (centrifugal)
Reciprocating (positive displacement)
Regenerative (peripheral) reversible (centrifugal)
Rotary (positive displacement)
Rotary diaphragm (positive displacement)
Rotating casing (pitot) (centrifugal)
Two/three Screw (positive displacement)
Screw impeller (centrifugal)
Self-priming (centrifugal)
Side channel (centrifugal)
Sliding vane (positive displacement)
Slurry (centrifugal)
Standard volute close coupled (centrifugal),
Standard volute separately coupled (centrifugal),
Submersible, certain types of submersibles that do not fit in the categories below
Submersible sump (centrifugal)
Submersible vert. turbine (centrifugal)
Thruster (centrifugal)
Vertical sump (centrifugal)
Vertical turbine (centrifugal)

Service specialty is a criterion that helps identify the suitability of a pump for a given application. It's another grab bag criterion that has the following values: API process, Aquarium, Bilge, Bore hole multistage), Bore hole (special purpose), Corrosion resistance, Fire systems, Fish handling, Fountain, grinder, High pressure, High pressure low flow, Hydronic heating & cooling, Low pressure high flow, Manual, multiphase, nuclear, pond, reversible, sanitary, Sewage, Shower (industrial), Sludge, Solar powered, Solids handling, Swimming pool.

This criterion comes to the rescue when the pump type criterion is insufficient. It has similar properties to the service criterion in that it can be related to location, application, market, etc. It should not be repeated in the pump type category.

Max. head gives an indication of the maximum head that the pump can produce, in the case of centrifugal pumps this is the head at shut-off or zero flow. Be aware that the shut-off head is always greater than the operating head. The exact head for a given flow is shown on the pump's characteristic (performance) curve. In the case of positive displacement pumps, manufacturers normally give the maximum pressure or maximum differential pressure that the pump can produce instead of the maximum head. This pressure value has been converted to head using water as the reference fluid to provide identical units for all pumps. If you want to convert head to pressure use this applet:
Head to pressure conversion web app

Max. flow refers to the maximum flow that the pump can produce, typically this is at the lowest head. The pump will not normally operate at this head so that the operating flow will be less. The exact flow for a given head is shown on the pump's characteristic (performance) curve.

Features is another of those grab bag categories that help differentiate pumps and highlight their uniqueness and special characteristics. They are: Axially split, Belt drive, Center line mounted, Double volute, Entrained air, Explosion proof motor, High inlet pressure, inducer, Jacketed, Low NPSHR, Mobile, Piggy back, Radially split, Rubber lined, sealless.

Head unit allows you to switch from Imperial to metric units (SI), feet (ft) or meters (m). Also allows head to be expressed as pressure in either psi or kPa. This is useful for positive displacement pumps as differential pressure is used and not diff. head.

Flow unit allows you to switch from Imperial(US) to metric units (SI), US gallons per minute (USgpm) or liter per min (l/min), meter cubed per hour (m3/h), liter per second (l/s).

Legacy brands refers to brand names, often the names of products that use the original equipment manufacturers name. Sometimes these manufacturers have been purchased by others and the brand name is kept.

Pump family is divided into two major categories: positive displacement and kinetic. All centrifugal pumps fall into the kinetic category. See the Hydraulic Institute for a description of what constitutes the kinetic sub-family. The positive displacement pump sub-family is reciprocating, blow case and rotary. The sub-sub-family of rotary includes: vane, piston, tube, lobe. gear, circumferential and screw type pumps. This is a pictorial chart showing the various types of centrifugal pumps and another one for positive displacement pumps both based on the HI classification system.

HI classification refers to the system of pump classification adopted by the Hydraulic Institute for centrifugal pumps. The essence of which, including characteristic images of each pump type, is shown on this page.