The Top 5 Most Frequent Pump Failures with Heinz Bloch
Being one of the most important parts in automotive and aircraft industries, pumps are no exception to failure modes. The reason why pump failures exist is because either people think the pumps are not that important or they just know it and simply don’t want to take enough time to fix the problems. They just go about either replacing the pumps or just relying on the reserved pumps. They don’t even bother to eliminate the repeating failures by finding the root cause.
In this episode, we covered:
- State of pumps in facilities and process industries
- The top 5 failure modes in pumps
- Causes of these failure modes
- And much more!
When a primary pump fails, there are safety concerns as well. There are a lot of the pump failure modes but there are five critical ones based on the frequency of failures. The first one is operating conditions outside the design envelope. It means that you can’t operate a pump over those limits that are part of its design. If you do, there are higher chances that it will fail earlier than its lifetime. The second failure is the Lubrication Loop. There are small pumps and then there are large pumps. Both types require different types of lubrication—the former requires grease but the latter can only work well if oil lubrication is provided to it.
Then there is an issue of oil wings whose shape can change over time if you don’t lubricate the pumps properly. When they start touching the surface of the bearings, the bearings either stop working properly or fail because of the dripping of oil. The abrasion causes the part to fail with time and the machinery stops working altogether.
Another precipitating factor is the sealing issue. The mechanical seals are often overlooked for pump maintenance even though they are a necessary commodity these days. They not only help you avoid technical issues and failures, they are necessary for safety as well. The lives are always at risk because of sudden fire and other hazards. That’s why it is very important to use appropriate seals for the pumps. It will result in less maintenance and a lesser risk of failures. Then the fourth one on the list is bearing issues. We see bearing fail all the time because of lubrication issues. Most importantly, the bearings are used wrongly in terms of design. Maintenance people should be able to judge what kind of bearing goes where.
Then the last on the list is not giving the maintenance people enough time to fix issues properly. They might need more time in fixing an issue the right way but they are often given a short time and they just go about finding a temporary fix. That results in recurring failures in the pump which ultimately leads to machinery failures. The organizations need to give proper training to the staff, encourage them, and make sure engineers can help technicians in every way possible. That is the only way pumps can be given the attention they need.
If you liked this, you might be interested to check our other episodes with Heinz Bloch.
- HP Reliability
- A Smarter Way of Preventative Maintenance Free eBook
- inspired Blended Learning (iBL®)
- James Kovacevic’s LinkedIn
Heinz Bloch Links:
- Books by Heinz Bloch:
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