What can cause a pump shaft to break?

pump systems

The pump shaft is the central piece that connects the pump’s impeller to the driver (electric motor, engine, etc.) A broken or cracked pump shaft is a catastrophic failure that is often the result (or cause) of significant pump damage.

Troubleshooting Your Pump Shaft

A number of things can go wrong and cause your pump shaft to crack or break. Three of the most common of these include:

  1. Damage to the pump’s impeller. A damaged pump impeller can cause imbalance and vibration that puts more stress on the pump shaft. This imbalance can cause excessive wear on the pump bearings allowing the shaft to move laterally causing the shaft to flex and eventually fail.
  2. Worn Bearings. As mentioned above, bearing failure can lead to pump shaft failure if not addressed early. The pump shaft should be checked periodically for any lateral movement in the pump shaft. Bearings that are worn usually cause the pump to run louder than normal and can also cause the pump to draw more current that normal.
  3. Misalignment. Pumps that are belt driven or use a flexible coupling can become misaligned. Misalignment puts additional stress on the pump’s bearings and shaft. Belts that are over tensioned can also cause excessive stress on the pump shaft leading to failure.

To learn more about how to keep your pump well maintained and running smoothly, contact W.P. Law, Inc. today. We’ve been helping North and South Carolina farmers and homeowners with their irrigation needs since 1970.

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