Tips on how to buy a pump

Select the best water pump for you

In this section, I’m going to help you to select the right water pump or diesel/petrol pump by telling you what you’ll need to tell us. What we want to do here at Obart Pumps is make sure you don't just buy the biggest and the most expensive, thinking this may be the best. Buying the wrong pump, cheap or expensive, can be costly: pumping more than you need it to (wasting energy), failing prematurely and damaging property and/or needing to be replaced. Knowing a few key pieces of information before you begin will save you time and make sure you spend your money on the right pump for the job. Giving us the wrong information often leads to problems, just like with my computer… “garbage in garbage out”! So here goes:

I want to replace an existing pump

PUMP GEEK: You’ll need to tell us about the pump you’re replacing

  • If so, have a look at the specification plate. Make a note of the manufacturer’s name and model number. Write down the voltage and as much other information that you can see.
  • Try and remember how long it has been working. A few months or a few years? If it is only a few months it might not be the right pump for the job so we’ll need to know more about what you want it to do (see notes 2 onwards below). A few years old should mean it has worked satisfactorily.
  • Has it been trouble free during its life? Try and remember if you’ve ever had to attend to it. What was the problem?
  • If you can’t find a specification plate take a picture of the pump and email it to us.
  • Once you have all the facts get in contact with our sales department.


I don't have a pump to replace - Buy a new pump

PUMP GEEK: You’ll need to describe to us the work the pump will be doing

  1. We’ll need to know how much liquid you want to pump, so you’ll need to estimate this (for example 1000 litres is the volume of liquid in an area of 1-metre high x 1-metre long x 1-metre wide). We’ll also need to know how quickly you want to pump the liquid out. We measure flow rate in litres per minute.
  2. We’ll need to know how high you want to pump (from the liquid level to the end of the pipe) and then how far along the ground. We measure distance in metres.
  3. Do you want us to recommend a pipe diameter? We’ll select the correct pipe for the job and offer you an alternative depending on your budget.
  4. If you are you using existing pipe, what material and diameter is it? (Some pipe material can slow pumping rates dramatically) We measure in millimetres.
  5. Are there any elbows, T pieces and valves in the pipe/required? Count them up.
  6. We’ll need to know about the liquid.
    1. Is it water or like treacle or something in between? (more viscous liquids require more powerful and sometimes different kinds of pumps) 
    2. What is the chemical make up? Are there hydrocarbons present? (Acidic or corrosive liquids and fuels/oils can damage certain pump materials).
    3. What is the temperature of the liquid? 
    4. Does it contain solids? Are those solids soft and fragile? Are they hard and abrasive? (If so, they could wear down a pump made from the wrong material) Do the solids need to be chopped up? Some pumps include a chopper mechanism. What size are the solids?
  7. Think about how the pump will be powered? 
  8. Do you want to use electricity? If it is domestic use you’ll probably want 230volts, but we do supply pumps that work using 110volts and 400volts for industrial users. We can also supply pumps in 12volt and 24volt DC for use with a battery.
  9. Do you want to use liquid fuel? Petrol and diesel are available but these pumps must be used outdoors. 
  10. Do you want to pump by hand? Rotary, lift and force and diaphragm pumps are available but performance is limited and can be hard work if you’ve got a lot to pump or pumping up high. Good exercise though!
  11. Think about what type of pumps you prefer? Submersible pumps or surface pumps?


I’ve got all the information…what do I do now?

PUMP GEEK: When you have all this go to our home page scroll down, input your information and view the results! Alternatively, call or email our sales department