An Overview of Drum Pumps and Their Area of Application

Would you choose a drum pump or hand pump if you want one for your laboratory? If you consider the need for easy and safe fluid transfer from a barrel or drum to another storage vessel of up to 200 litres, then drum pumps are your best bet. The manually operated hand pumps can be used to transfer liquids such as water, alkalis, acids, alcohol, oils, and detergents from drums, tanks, or carboys, to other containers.

What is a Drum Pump?

With drum pumps, you can quickly and safely dispense or transfer any liquid or fluid from tanks, drums, barrels, or carboys. The pumps are also referred to as barrel pumps and are available in different models, with assorted accessories and tubes lengths to meet various industries’ needs and requirements. Many of the pumps are operated manually, meaning they have plungers, levers, or handles used o funnel out the fluid from the storage container.

How Does a Drum Pump Work?

A hand pump, barrel pump, or drum pump has a narrow tube fitted in an opening at the top of the tank or storage container with a vertical shaft attached. The pump also has a small DC or AC electric motor affixed to the shaft, and it turns on via a switch to run the drum pump. Once it starts running, the pumping action is generated from the tube’s base, sucking out the content in the tank, barrel, carboy, or drum. At the bottom of the tube is a rotor or small centrifugal pump impeller to aid the pumping. You also can actuate the drum pump by hand using a piston pump or a crank. Conversely, you can use the pump interchangeably, even though some drum pumps are hard-wired into the tank, barrel, or drum.

Benefits of Drum Pumps

Given how drum pumps work, they are practical and useful for emptying containers or their liquid contents. You can choose between an electric operated and hand-operated barrel pump. Many of these dumps can be hard-wired into the tank or drum, although these pumps are a portable tool given their size. Moreover, drum pumps are made of metallic and non-metallic materials. The latter is an ideal option if you want to minimise corrosion risk when working with corrosive fluids or liquids.

As for function, your choices are air operated drum pumps, electric driven, variable speed, and hand-operated pumps. Ensure the electrically driven pump has an explosion-proof motor or is batch-controlled for automated dispensing of a specific volume from the storage containers. The tubing material can be made from stainless steel, plastic, or PVDF) and must be compatible with the chemical the pump will handle. The tubing can vary in length and diameter to suit various containers and funnel large to small fluid volumes. With the drum pumps, the liquid being pump will be mixed and homogenised during a single operation.

Why Consider Manual Pumps

The hand-operated drum pumps are the most economical option and widely used solution across various industries. They are available as siphon, diaphragm, rotary, and piston hand-operated drum pumps. Furthermore, the pumps can be made from PTFE, plastic, or stainless steel. Some of the hand-pumps are designed to handle particulate-laden chemicals or shear sensitive fluids. Laboratories also can use hand-operated vacuum pumps for siphoning, checking leaks, filtration, and more.

Why Use a Drum Pump?

  • Compatibility: The pumps are available in different designs and materials to suit various applications.
  • Flexibility: They are adaptably made to be used with different containers.
  • Safe options: The air-operated models can be used in areas where electricity is unavailable, unsafe, or impractical, while the hand-operated drum pumps are an excellent choice where disposable pumps are essential.
  • Economical: Most drum pumps are a low-cost solution made for the budget-conscious user.