Bits ‘n Pieces – The Driller’s Blog

Which Supply Pump Will Do the Job?

Posted by Rod McCoremick on Sep 24, 2018 11:01:00 AM

In our last blog, we talked about the importance of having a continuous flow of water in diamond drilling, so that the borehole is lubricated, the core bit is cooled and the drill cuttings are flushed from the hole.

Unless your water is being trucked in to site, you will need two pumps, a supply pump and a pressure pump. The difference is that the supply pump is located next the water source and it pumps water to the drill site, while the pressure pump will pump water down your bore hole, supplying a coolant. Supply pumps, like pressure pumps, should be positive displacement pump to move water from one point to another without losing water flow performance.


There are different things you must consider when choosing your supply pump. You need to make sure the pump will be able to get the water to the drill site. Each pump has its own specifications in terms of gallons per minute (GPM) and pressure in pounds per square inch (PSI). You want to make sure the pump can get the water where it needs to go.



You will need to calculate the distance between the water source and the drill site in order to make sure the pump is strong enough to deliver the water.



Elevation will play a role in your calculation because it will have an impact on the pressure. If you need to get water to climb to an elevation of 50 feet, it is important to account for this.


Hose size

The size of your hose will have an impact on the pressure as well. Simply increasing the size of your hose can dramatically decrease the overall friction within the line over a long distance and therefore increase that distance considerably.

Let’s use a practical example using the chart below for a model of Elepump. We’ll say that a driller has a one-inch hose and he has to get his water from a source one kilometer away with an elevation of 50 meters. You can see that this pump will pump up to 1,297 meters so you are fine. However, if you need to go two kilometers, simply changing to a hose with a quarter inch larger diameter (1-1/4 inch) will allow you to go up to 3,876 meters.


Keep in mind that this chart is only a guide and was made using average conditions and certain assumptions. You should have a similar guide for your pump using that pump’s specifications. Our Elepump pumps have some great features including nickel plated water heads, high quality ceramic plungers and extremely long wearing parts that make this pump a drill site favorite. Our technical support team can also help guide you in determining what kind of pumps you need.

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Topics: Basic drilling information, How to choose equipment

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