One of the major issues of using a sprinkler pump is the loss of prime as well as periodic prime restoration. Not knowing how to prime a sprinkler pump from a lake can result in the pump motor burning out or a leak in the water line.
People have some misconceptions regarding the process of filling up the prime from a water source.
How to pour water inside? When to turn the motor on? The list goes on and on.
We’ll talk about the basics of priming a pump so that you know exactly why you need to do it. Afterward, we’ll discuss some simple steps to prime your pump.
Table of Contents
Why Is Priming Necessary?
We’ll talk about the priming process, but it’s important to know why you should prime your pump in the first place. To understand that, we need to learn about how a pump works from the inside.
Water Pumps 101
Sprinkler pumps are designed with a technology called “centrifugal.” We won’t go into the scientific definition but will try to explain it in layman’s terms.
A centrifugal pump has two pipe joints. The larger line works as an input, letting water rush through quickly. On the inside, there’s a set of rotor blades that rapidly push the water from the bottom and through the top line, which is the smaller one.
There’s nothing with the mechanisms of this machine. The problem comes when it’s left unused for a long time. The pump loses the water from the inside, which is called the prime. The water is replaced with air.
At this point,you might be thinking,what’s wrong with starting the pump in this condition? If the water line is connected, then it should be immediately flowing, right?
Sadly, the idea is wrong. It can work as you’re expecting, only if the situation is perfect. For most of the time, this is highly unlikely to happen.
As air replaces water, some of the air gets stuck in the corners of the pump. If you start an air-filled pump and if for some reason water doesn’t come quickly, the motor will immediately get burnt. Continuous water flow is necessary on the inside to keep the motor cool.
Things would be a lot different if it was possible to retain water inside the pump all the time. However, water expands in size in winter, which can deform the shape of the pump. You can retain water inside but only for a few days, not for months.
So, priming is necessary for two reasons: saving the motor and creating pressure for water to come upwards.
How to Prime a Sprinkler Pump from a Lake
We’ve got some ideas on how a sprinkler pump works and why it’s important that you prime it. Let’s see how to prime a sprinkler pump from a lake in 2 simple steps;
Preparing Necessary Items
You need to have some things ready for this step. Get a wrench for opening the prime valve. Also, take a bucket for getting water out of the lake and a funnel for pouring water inside the machine.
Filling the Prime Opening and Starting the Machine
Open the priming and fill the inside of the pump with water. Close the drain valve of the pump and turn it on. The initial rotation of the blades will move water from one side to the other and bring air out in the process.
If everything goes well, water should be flowing effortlessly. If you notice uneven flow, turn the pump off and check back on the rotor. There’s a chance that some air is still stuck inside, blocking the water flow from achieving proper pressure. Refill the prime and restart the machine. Repeat this till air is out totally.
Priming a pump is easy when you know about the proper procedure, which you already do. Knowing how to prime a sprinkler pump from a lake is as important as knowing about the right timing for all the tasks involved with this task.
If you can get the water flow right, the motor will never burn out in the middle of the process.