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2 November 2022

Borehole Pump vs Centrifugal Pumps for Irrigation

The world’s climate is changing, taking its toll on the water table below the Earth’s surface. The need for harvesting underground water for the sustenance of life is critical.

As cities develop, the need for more water is becoming obvious. Municipal water supplies as a primary water source are fast becoming problematic. Boreholes play an important role in supplementing municipal supplies.

Need to Know About Boreholes and Pumps

Much thought and preparation go into drilling boreholes. Familiarising yourself with the different pump types is essential. Which pump works best for your needs? Do you choose borehole pumps or centrifugal pumps to extract water from the earth? We unpack the various points to consider.

Choose from Several Pumps for Irrigation

There are several types of pumps to choose from for irrigation. This depends on what you use the pump for.

What are Borehole Pumps?

We use borehole pumps to extract water from underwater supplies. We create boreholes using drilling rigs.

Boreholes are vertical shafts using specific measurements to fit pumps. The reason is it gives enough room to pump water easily.. The pumps are narrow in appearance. We submerge in the water and pump the water supply above the ground.

Pumps use high-powered motors and impellers to draw water.

Borehole pumps are a certain type of centrifugal pump.

Applications of Borehole Pumps. Where are they used?

We apply borehole pumps to a wide range of uses. Some of these applications include mining and various industries. Other uses for borehole pumps include irrigation, agriculture, and construction. The applications are endless.

What are Centrifugal Pumps?

Centrifugal pumps draw water through a spinning motion using an impeller. We refer to this spinning motion of the water as centrifugal force. It is this force that helps move the water in an upward motion against the force of gravity. Centrifugal motion transports the water to a designated location.

Centrifugal pumps are the most common form of irrigation pumps used in South Africa. A borehole pump is an advanced version of a centrifugal pump.

Find the Best Borehole Pump for Your Needs. How to Choose?

Once the drilling of the borehole is complete, the installation of the pump is the next step. Applying certain factors will help you choose the right pump. Compare pumps to find the right fit for you. The selection process plays an important role. This will get you the best value for your initial borehole outlay.

Pointers to Consider When Choosing the best Pump

Selecting borehole water pumps is much more than the initial outlay of monies. It goes beyond a borehole pump vs a centrifugal pump.

There are other pointers to take into consideration. One is including lifespan costs of owning the borehole. Another point to consider is the installation costs of the pump.

A too-large, or too-small pump could prove inefficient in the long-term. The reason is they consume extra energy and are expensive in relation to the water they deliver.

Pumps that are energy-efficient won’t break down often. They might be expensive initially, but over the long-term will save you money.

Everything I Should Factor into My Initial Costs

Factor all the pros and cons into your initial investment.

Common points to factor into your initial cost should include:

  1. Maintenance (how often will the pump of choice break down?)
  2. How much are you prepared to outlay? What have you factored into your budget?
  3. What will the energy consumption be when running your pump from solar or the grid?
  4. Factor any other miscellaneous costs.

The Choice of Pump Depends on the Application

The type of pump you choose will depend on where you use your pump. There’s a different pump for every type of application. Some applications include:

  • Domestic garden irrigation
  • To fill reservoirs and tanks
  • Applications for farms such as irrigation of crops, and water for livestock
  • General household use
  • Mine dewatering

Flow and Pressure Play a Role When Selecting a Pump

The choice of pump will depend on two key deciding factors. These are how much water your pump moves. We refer to this as the flow rate. The other important factor is water pressure. This gets the water to its destination.

Distance and Depth Are Both Important Considerations

Your water, once pumped, will need to get to its destination. Points of consideration include pumping distance, the depth of the borehole, and the horizontal distance.

Once you have pumped the water from below ground to above-ground, it needs to reach its destination. The endpoint distance from the top of the borehole will determine the amount of pressure needed. We refer to this as horizontal distance.

Select your pump according to ground elevation. This is especially important if the level from the top of the borehole to the endpoint differs.

What is Borehole Recharge Rate? Will It Affect my Decision?

The water in your borehole will fluctuate during pumping. Levels will drop as you pump the water out and rise accordingly when you stop pumping.

Factor the recharge rate of your borehole. Do this when comparing a borehole pump versus a centrifugal pump.

This is especially important when selecting a pump for mine de-watering purposes.

Why Does the Diameter of Piping Matter?

Installing the right size of pipes is important. This is to get good results and uninterrupted water flow. Larger pipe diameters cause less friction than smaller pipes. Therefore, you require less pressure or a smaller size pump.

Find Out Everything You Need to Know About Borehole Pumps vs Centrifugal Pumps

Choosing the right pump for your unique needs might seem confusing. We are here to assist with all your borehole pump enquiries. Get to know what works and what does not. Get the best ROI from your borehole investment today!
Give our AxFlow AQS Liquid Transfer experts a call today. You will find us on +27 12 548 7204 or fill out our enquiry form. Our team of professionals is here to assist. We will get back to you with the friendly advice you deserve.
Source – Selecting the right borehole pump — Borehole Water Association of Southern Africa (

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