There are 4 main reasons why pumps fail. They are:

  1. Dirty lubrication.
  2. Lack of lubrication.
  3. Maintenance personnel forget to grease the pump bearing.
  4. Dirt in the bearing oil.

Other considerations:

  • If you over grease the pump bearing housing it can cause overheating which will result in premature bearing failure.
  • Since most pumps are motor driven don’t forget the motor lubrication.
  • If you over grease a motor it will cause problems. The grease will eventually get on the windings which can cause motor failure.

The main thing to remember is have a schedule to lubricate your pumps.

Column Pumps

Column pumps can be product lubricated or greased. If they are product lubricated you have to depend on the pumped fluid to lubricate the bearings. If that isn’t enough you will need to add grease lines to the pump. Once you have grease line whether they are OEM or after market, make sure the lines are full of grease. This can be verified by filling the lines prior to installing the pump. If you don’t have proper lubrication the bushings and bearings will fail.

Close Coupled Pumps

Close coupled pumps rely on the motor bearings to continue operation. If the bearings are not sealed they require lubrication. You should always use lubrication that is suited for the application. If in doubt check the equipment manual or call the OEM. Most manufactures will give you a specification for the lubricant. You can also call a service company to find out what you need. Again a schedule for lubrication is important and remember not to over grease the motor. If you over grease the motor the bearings could run hot and the windings could fail. Make sure the grease is clean. If you use grease tubes there is no problem but if you use bulk grease and fill guns make sure it is properly stored.

If you have equipment that requires oil for lubrication make sure you have the proper oil. This may require checking with an  expert. Storage of the oil is very important. Make sure the can is sealed so you don’t contaminate the oil. Always make sure you don’t over fill the cavity. Too much oil is a bad thing. This can result in over heating and leakage. Most equipment has lip seals to prevent leakage.