Pump Controls

Some means of controlling pump operation is required at most pumping installations. This is usually done from either wet-well level or flow.

Level Control With level control, each pump is turned on and off at specific water levels in the suction wet well; in the case of variable-capacity pumps, the level control attempts to maintain a preset level, once started. Pumps turn on with a rising level and off as the level lowers. Level control is generally used in raw sewage pumping applications. In this manner, it is possible to match discharge with incoming flow.

Flow Control Flow control is used sometimes where there is no limitation on the availability of flow to the pump suction and where it is desirable to maintain a predetermined rate of discharge. Where flow control is used, a flowmeter is used as the primary instrument to measure flow and to serve as a basis for varying pump speed, which in turn controls capacity. The speed can be changed either manually or automatically through closed-loop instrumentation.

Additional Level Control Low-water pump cutoff and high-level alarm are provided on most pumping installations. The low-level cutoff is required to prevent the pumps from running dry, and the high-level alarm notifies the operator in the event the pump should fail to operate. When the pump stops because of low-water cutoff, there is usually some means of indicating this to the operator.

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