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Hand pumps have been used for centuries to draw water from wells and other water sources. They have come a long way since the first manual pump was invented in the early 17th century. Today, there are many different types of hand pumps available on the market, each with its unique features and benefits. In this article, we will discuss the two main types of hand pumps, their differences, and uses.
What Is a Hand Pump?
A hand pump is a device that is manually operated, and its primary function is to extract water from a source, such as a well or a borehole. Hand pumps can also be used to pump other liquids such as oil or gasoline.
A typical hand pump consists of three main components: the suction pipe, cylinder, and pump lever. When the user operates the lever, it moves the piston inside the cylinder, creating a vacuum that draws water or the intended liquid from the source into the cylinder. When the user lifts the lever, the piston pushes the water or liquid out of the cylinder and through the outlet pipe.
Manual pumps are often the go-to option in situations where electricity or other power sources are not available. They are also ideal in situations where portability is necessary.
Types of Hand Pumps
There are two main types of hand pumps, namely:
1. Piston Pump
2. Diaphragm Pump
1. Piston Pump
Piston pumps are also commonly known as jack pumps, and they are the oldest type of manual pump. The piston pump operates using a piston that moves up and down in the cylinder to create a vacuum that draws water from the source.
Piston pumps work using a one-way valve, allowing water to be drawn in on the downstroke and expelled on the upstroke. The pump lever connected to the piston must also be lifted and lowered for the piston to draw new water into the cylinder.
Piston pumps can lift water from depths of up to 325 feet. These pumps are ideal for use in shallow wells and surface water sources such as springs and hand-dug wells.
The Advantages of Piston Pumps:
- Easy to maintain
- Can lift water from deep wells
The Disadvantages of Piston Pumps:
- Require manual operation
- Not suitable for contaminated water sources
2. Diaphragm Pump
Diaphragm pumps are the newer of the two types of hand pumps. These pumps use a flexible diaphragm instead of a piston to create the vacuum that draws water from a source.
Diaphragm pumps work using a two-way valve that allows water to be drawn in on both the upstroke and downstroke of the pump lever. This design allows for a continuous flow of water.
Diaphragm pumps can lift water from depths of up to 80 feet. These pumps are ideal for use in shallow wells and surface water sources such as springs and hand-dug wells.
The Advantages of Diaphragm Pumps:
- Ability to pump water at a consistent rate
- Can lift water from moderately deep wells
- Suitable for contaminated water sources
The Disadvantages of Diaphragm Pumps:
- More expensive than piston pumps
- Require periodic maintenance
How to Choose the Right Hand Pump
Choosing the right hand pump can be overwhelming, but it doesn't have to be. Here are some things to consider before purchasing a hand pump:
1. Depth of Water Source
Consider the depth of the water source you intend to pump. If you plan to draw water from a deep well, opt for a piston pump. If you plan to draw water from a shallow well or surface water source, the diaphragm pump will suffice.
2. Water Source Quality
Consider the quality of the water source you intend to pump. If the water source is contaminated, opt for a diaphragm pump rather than a piston pump.
Consider the portability of the pump. Piston pumps tend to be heavy and not as portable, while diaphragm pumps are lighter and more portable.
Consider your budget before making a purchase. Diaphragm pumps tend to be more expensive but require less maintenance, while piston pumps are more affordable but require more maintenance.
In conclusion, there are two main types of hand pumps – piston pumps and diaphragm pumps. Piston pumps are the oldest type of hand pump and use a piston to create the vacuum that draws water from a source. Diaphragm pumps are the newer type of hand pump and use a flexible diaphragm to create the vacuum that draws water from a source. When choosing a hand pump, consider factors such as the depth of the water source, water source quality, portability, and budget.