Solar Surface Pump Quote Request
Understanding Intake (Suction) Head: Surface pumps are limited by their ability to lift water from the source to the pump head. Based on 14.7 psi of atmospheric pressure on a body of water at sea level, the theoretical limit of suction head is 33.9 feet. However, this could only be obtained if we could achieve a perfect vacuum in the pump. In reality, the suction head is limited to about 26 feet. This is further reduced by 1 foot for every 1,000 feet of elevation above sea level and changes in atmospheric pressure from the weather.

Pump performance (capacity or pressure) is highest when the pump is operated close to the water surface. Increasing the suction head will DECREASE the discharge head and consequently the discharge capacity of the pump. Most importantly, suction head should be kept to the smallest vertical distance possible to reduce the likelihood of cavitation. Cavitation (the formation of an air space in the pump head) can also occur if the suction hose is restricted. The intake hose or pipe should be the same size or larger than the intake port of the pump. Cavitation can quickly damage a pump.

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