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Common Symptoms Of Water Pump Failure To Watch Out For

Water is a vital resource that makes life on earth possible. It covers 71% of our planet, where humans, plants and animals could not survive without it. We all recognise the importance of water, but it needs to be managed properly so we can make the most of its versatility.

Floods, storms and pipe leaks all result in water ending up in places where it isn’t wanted, where this can damage property and put lives at risk. Luckily, engineers and technicians have developed effective solutions to keep water where we need it, where a key instrument in modern water management is the pump.

A water pump is a versatile piece of equipment used to relocate quantities of water. It works by increasing the flow levels in the liquid in order to displace the water in a controlled direction, where it generally consists of an electric motor which drives a centrifugal pump.

But, like any hardware, a pump needs regular maintenance and monitoring to keep it in top condition, where it is important to be able to recognise the symptoms of water pump failure. Read on for an in-depth look at water pumps, with an insight into their uses alongside a complete guide to spotting system failures and breakages.

Pump inspection

A Brief Pump History

Civilisations through the ages have developed innovative processes in order to manoeuvre large quantities of water. The Ancient Egyptians used long rods and weights to raise water buckets to a usable height, whilst Ancient Greek inventors manufactured water organs with rudimentary valves.

Early centrifugal pumps emerged during the Italian Renaissance, whilst steam powered inventions in the late 1700s changed pumping technology forever. The early 20th century saw the first electric motor that could be used underwater, followed by decades of innovation that led to today’s modern day pumping systems.

Types Of Water Pump

Water pumps are as diverse as the different uses of water, where each has a particular domestic or commercial application. Some variations include:

Drainage pumps - where these are used to remove excess water from industrial sites, and for underground dewatering tasks where water has to be pumped uphill

Waste water pumps - these pumps remove sewage and other waste from homes, farms and industrial sites, where they can also displace seepage and effluent water

Storm water pumps - this pump helps to prevent flooding by moving large volumes of water away from built-up areas

Sump pumps - where these remove water from sump basins, typically found in basements and on construction sites

Submersible pumps - fully immersed in the water that needs extracting, these pumps are used to remove flood water and for sewage treatment

Booster pump systems - these are used to increase domestic water pressure and improve low water flow in industrial settings

Pump stations - also known as pumphouses, these are facilities which store pumping equipment for commercial and industrial uses

Symptoms Of Water Pump Failure

As water pumps are so useful for a variety of industries as well as for domestic purposes, it is important to watch out for signs of machinery failure. Neglecting your pump can lead to costly repairs, flooding and unwanted leaks or contamination, where understanding the symptoms of technical breakdowns can help you to fix any problems before they escalate.

Common symptoms of water pump failure may include:


An initial sign that your water pump is faulty is that it will begin to overheat. This means that your pump will be hot to the touch, or will begin to function at a slower pace. Overheating can occur as a result of clogged pipelines, or if too much current is flowing through the motor. It is also important to ensure your pump is properly ventilated at all times.


Your water pump will emit steam or smoke as a further sign that it is overheating, where this can also indicate that a pipe is jammed. Overheating will cause water that is running through the pump to turn to steam, which can damage the machine’s efficiency. To avoid this, you should aim to ensure your pump maintains a constant temperature at all times.

Coolant Leaks

A coolant spillage is a sign of machinery failure specifically with coolant pumps, where you should look out for leaks of orange, blue or green liquid. This occurs because of cracked seals or other breakages in the pump system, where other types of pump may leak wastewater or sewage if there is an error.


Corrosion is a process that breaks down metals into a more chemically stable form, such as a metal oxide or hydroxide. This can take place in a water pump if the pipework’s protective film wears away, exposing the bare metal surface to the liquids being displaced. Over time this can lead to breaks, blockages and poor pump circulation.


Some pumps will make a humming or whining noise when in proper working order, but louder sounds or excessive vibrations could indicate that there is a mechanical problem. Pump cavitation can cause excess tremors, whilst rattling can indicate worn-out bearings or

unhealthy circulation.

Maintaining Your Water Pump

These symptoms of machinery failure indicate that repairs are necessary. But regular maintenance checks can help to look after your pump before these breakdowns occur.

Some essential tips for maintaining your system may include:

● Conducting thorough and regular cleans

● Ensuring the surrounding area remains clear for proper ventilation

● Topping up coolant or oil levels

● Checking pipes for early signs of rust and corrosion

● Storing your pump in a clean, dry place

● Booking regular servicing appointments

● Keeping an accurate maintenance log

Repairing A Damaged Water Pump

In an ideal world, regular maintenance checks would be enough to prevent pump breakdown. But over time machinery will naturally show signs of wear, and repairs will become necessary. Peruse this list for some DIY repair tips:

Managing Overheating

If you suspect that your pump is overheating, then your first steps will be to conduct a deep clean of the impeller and the filter system. This will improve overall circulation. Checking for blockages and clearing these out can also help your system to regulate its temperature, whilst keeping the area surrounding your pump clear can keep the equipment working properly.

Removing Rust & Blockages

To clean a clogged pipe, you will need a snake-like extended cleaning brush or pole which can be inserted through the length of the mechanism. You can also purchase specialist rust removal chemicals, where this process can be followed with restoring the protective film over the exposed metal.

Fixing Leaks

A leaking water pump can be repaired using a specialist resin product or sealant, where you can locate the crack or breakage by flushing an identifiable liquid through the pump. This should be left to dry and set properly before the pump is used again. You can also source replacement parts for your pump, where you can purchase a new pipe segment rather than replacing your entire water pump system.

It is always smart to consider repairing your equipment before you replace it, but some breakages will be irreparable, especially if your pump is particularly old or outdated. Enlisting the assistance of a professional repair service is also recommended if your pump’s power source is exposed or if you lack the DIY experience to carry out an effective repair.

H20 Flowtech: Waste Pump Repairs, Installation & More

At H20 Flowtech, we can supply you with a wide range of essential water management equipment, including drain pumps, storm water systems and submersible pumps. Our services include installation, servicing and water pump repairs, where we’re here to help you handle all of your pumping and water displacement needs.

We also commission and install an array of pump stations, including macerator, cutter and septic tank pump facilities, where our expert engineers always ensure our products are fitted to the highest standards.

In addition to this, we install and maintain a variety of sewage equipment and interceptors, where all our products are designed in accordance with the British Water Code Of Practice. Contact us today to find out more about our comprehensive range of services.

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1 comentario

Francky  Kalombo
Francky Kalombo
07 sept 2023

Thank you for sharing this informative article on Water Pumps

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