How to Deal with the Top 5 Most Frequent Pump Failures with Heinz Bloch
In the first part of this podcast episode, we covered the state of pumps in facilities and process industries and the top 5 pump failures and their causes. What’s the best way to deal with these? Is it proper design specifications, proper engineering upfront? Is it a maintenance program? Or is it a combination of the two? In this second and last part of our podcast episode with Heinz Bloch, we are going to find out what has been implemented to address these failures.
There are a lot of things that go wrong when a pump fails. One of the major reasons that one of the top 5 five pump failures occur in a system is that there’s no open communication among the personnel. The process engineer and the operations department need to communicate enough before a pump is installed in a machine. The process engineer should be aware of the pump specifications that would fit the system and check with other engineers who can help him with the layout of the system and design of the pump.
When there’s a lack of communication between the operator and engineers, the engineers might make the wrong choice in buying a pump. When that happens, you have a pump that is either too big or too small and it might not be the right one for your asset. Then there is the design and operation issue. If you are not taking friction and pump pressure into account, that could result into pump failure as well. That can only be determined when the person selecting the pump knows what he is looking for and he communicates with the operator who can provide insights into the design phase.
The other issue is inadequate lubrication. Different types of pumps need different kinds of standard lubricants for operating in the right manner. When you use too thick or too thin lubricant, it disturbs the rotation of oil rings in the pump. It ultimately leads to oil rings being stuck and they almost stop rotating or don’t rotate at the needed speed anymore. This results in pump failure. That’s why these oil rings require the specific ISO recommended lubricants that would be ideal for them to operate in even the changing conditions. There is always a concern with impurities, of course.
It is a good practice to get in touch with the pump manufacturers and get the information from them. They will be able to guide you better as in what type of lubricant would be the most suitable for the pump and how much of it you should use it. The other issue that is sealing in the pump should be taken seriously as well. You can also get in touch with a service provider who you trust and make a partnership with them if you have to. They will guide you through the whole process and help you along the way with overcoming sealing issues.
You also need to have manual or step by step guide for installation and alignment of the pump. The management or plant engineers need to sit with technicians and come with a detailed and standard document that will guide people to install the pumps the right way. They should be able to install and remove a coupling by reading that document. They should be able to make good alignment decisions and guide others as well by introducing best practicing, documenting them, and implement them in the best ways possible for pumps.
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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