Hello! Welcome to the wonderful world of pumps. Learn about pumps and pump systems. You can do calculations and trouble-shoot pump problems, everything is FREE.

Need more help, check out the forum.

Wooo... and there's lots more. This web site has no affiliation with any pump manufacturer and is entirely educational in nature and intent.

Branch systems, a short review on how to deal with branches in pump systems, August 2021.
Branch systemspdf button image

Understanding liquids in movement better. How moving liquids compares to moving solidspdf button image

There is no reason why anyone should not be able to go out and buy a pump, do the installation, and be satisfied with the results.
pump basics

Why do we use head as a measurement of a pump’s capacity and not pressure? The short answer is that it is more appropriate. We need different terms to explain the movement of liquids; to move liquids we use pressure, for solids we use a force. The term head which is energy per unit weight of liquid displaced is used to explain how much energy a body of liquid at elevation can provide to the inlet of a pump for example. For solids, energy is a force times a distance with the force being applied in the same direction as the movement of the object, for example lifting a weight up vertically.
Pressure or head

The document below is a primer on pump systems, it’s not required reading but will help the user with pump system concepts and terminology; and also, fascinating aspects of fluids in motion. If the Romans can do it, we can do it too, see the following document.
Understanding pump systems pdf button image

The strange behavior of liquids pdf button image and also just day to day pumping situations. May 31, 2018

An interesting historical review pdf button image of pumps throuhout the ages. May 28, 2018

universal system                            

One formula for all systems, one to bind them all...There is only one formula pdf button image required to analyze any system, here is one page that explains the formula and another page with some examples pdf button image.

The relationship between velocity and flow pdf button image in a liquid system.

How to select a small pump small pump

A 2-page summary of formulas for analizing pump and liquid flow systems (total head and N.P.S.H.A.)
Pump system formulas web page icon    pdf format pdf button image Download an example calculation excel button image

How friction is radically different in small pipes vs large pipes for the same velocity and length

Friction, small vs large pipes    pdf format pdf button image
The calculations in Excel    excel button image

A solution to the Colebrook equation using Excel excel button image can be found here.

How high can you suspend water in a pipe? web page icon    pdf format pdf button image

The siphon, is it free energy? I think not. Also understanding how pressure varies in a pump system.

the siphonweb page icon    pdf format pdf button image

I find the terms pressure and head often get mixed up, here's my attempt to clarify this. Let's reveal what's behind the curtain. I'm calling this series of 3 articles "The Pump Companion"

pressure and static headweb page icon    pdf format pdf button image

pressure or headweb page icon    pdf format pdf button image

pressure and head as energyweb page icon    pdf format pdf button image

These apps allow you to make calculations directly on a web page (no java applets) or on your mobile browser. You can calculate: velocity, head from pressure, pipe friction, N.P.S.H.A, submergence requirement, specific speed, suction specific speed and pipe dimensions. Web apps web page icon.

This video is a blackboard style presentation that shows how to develop the all important flow schematic.

youtube logoPump and process part 1
Pump and process part 2
Presentation sketchespdf button image

This video is a blackboard style presentation that shows how friction is calculated with formulas.
youtube logo>Calculating friction with formulas
Presentation sketches pdf button image
This spreadsheet allows you to do your own calculations.
Excel spreadsheet to calculate pipe friction with the Colebrook equation excel button image

Low pressure from a venturi venturi how does it work? venturi

The siphon venturi, energy for nothing? siphon

Pressure everywhere web page icon

youtube logoVideo tutorials Why? Because you can get the gist of a subject in a minute when someone tells you about it.

1. Pumps and how they work. The basics: pumping from one tank to another Support document: Head and pressure formulas and sketchespdf button image
2. Determining flow and pump total head. Support document: Pipe friction tablespdf button image
3. More about pressure, head and the syphon
4. Branch systems
5. Suction or not
6. Specific gravity, head and pressure
7. Specific speed of a centrifugal pump
8. The venturi
9. Centrifugal pump performance curves part 1
10. Centrifugal pump performance curves part 2
11. System curve
12. Cavitation, what is it?
13. Minimum submersion height to avoid vortex formation
14. How to build an upside down aquarium in your dreams?

The following videos are a re-constitution of a presentation I gave in September 2014 to the Society of Piping Engineers and Designers of Calgary. It's a basic introduction to pump systems.

15a. Pumping and piping part 1, SPED presentation, Calgary March 27, 2013
15b. Pumping and piping part 2, SPED presentation, Calgary March 27, 2013
15c. Pumping and piping part 3, SPED presentation, Calgary March 27, 2013
15d. Pumping and piping part 4, SPED presentation, Calgary March 27, 2013
15e. Pumping and piping part 5, SPED presentation, Calgary March 27, 2013
15f. Pumping and piping part 6, SPED presentation, Calgary March 27, 2013
15g. Pumping and piping part 7, SPED presentation, Calgary March 27, 2013
15h. Pumping and piping part 8, SPED presentation, Calgary March 27, 2013
16. Buying your first pump, Calgary October, 2013
I am your host Jacques Chaurette and the author of this web site and most of everything in it. I live in Montreal, Canada. I have nothing to do with any pump manufacturing company and am not trying to sell you anything. Please join the Forum and ask any question you like. I can be reached at Yours truely.
The previous incarnation of this site was www.lightmtypump.com, yeah I know it seemed like a good idea at the time, I changed it to www.pumpfundamentals. The prior site to lightmypump.com was called www.fluidedesign.com it was abandonned (for bizarre reasons)and morphed into this site. Unfortunately by mistake, the domain name was allowed to lapse and someone else picked it up. Before that I had a site called www.pumpsRme.com, not very original I know, that was in 1992, everything was new then on the internet.
Yours truely

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If you are starting from scratch or you want to review what you know, check this outtutorial It will help you understand how transparent centrifugal pumps and pump systems work.


Check out these cool experiments with fluids.


If you're currently designing a system or checking out an existing one, here are some ideas on what to avoid and what to look for.


An alphabetical list of pump and pump system terms that will show as well as explain the terminology.

new ideas

This section is devoted to NEW ITEMS that have been added to the site or just interesting downloads or ideas that I have come across. Updated on March 2020

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See previous new items


I am back from Australia where I was working on a pulp & paper project near Melbourne.

Australia....what a place. I will miss it.


Yeah I know these are crazy pictures but it's my life. OK, down to business,

Jacques, Steve and Robin, long time members of the centrifugal pumps group on Yahoo meeting in Melbourne on May 28, 2006

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If you would like to benefit or contribute your knowledge to pump users around the world, this is the place. forum

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This site has alot of information and data:

Solved problems and helpful examples on various pumping system problems and how to solve them
Metric and Imperial formulas that you can use for pump and pump system calculations
A detailed manual (FREE) on how to do centrifugal pumps sizing and how to solve various pumping system problems.
...and much more, just follow through the top menu

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