Which pump you choose for your power unit affects the nature of your HPU builds. Pump choice usually depends on cost, complexity, and performance. There are three major types of pumps to select from: the gear pump, the piston pump, and the vane pump. Below, we’ll get into the specifics of each pump to help you make the best decision for your system.
Gear pumps are usually very economical but hold lower efficiency values. Their efficiency typically drops over time. However, they are quite durable. A pump’s job is to convert incoming mechanical energy into hydraulic energy. The more efficient the pump, the smaller the motor you can choose. Efficiency saves you the most money over time. Traditional spur gear pumps an average of about 80% efficiency, which puts you at a disadvantage over time.
Pros: Reliable, economical, easy to install
Cons: Noisy, inefficient
Vane pumps fall between gear pumps and piston pumps when it comes to practicality. They’re more efficient than gear pumps but less efficient than piston pumps. Vane pumps are known for being very quiet, making them ideal for industrial applications. They’re also available with a myriad of control options, like pressure compensation, displacement control, and load sensing. However, Vane pumps usually can’t handle high-pressure circuits.
Pros: Quiet, several control options, moderately efficient
Cons: Capable of low pressure applications only
Piston pumps account for the premium end of the range. These pumps are capable of supporting very high pressure and have infinite methods of control, including pressure compensation, servo control, load sensing, horsepower control, and more. Piston pumps are also incredibly efficient, with many designs being capable of 95% efficiency. The biggest downside to choosing a piston pump is cost. The initial investment will be pricey, and service or repair can be costly as well.
Pros: Efficient, high pressure, several control options
Cons: Higher investment
If you’d like more information about choosing the best pump for your HPU design, contact GCC, Inc. today! Our team of experts is ready to help you find a pump that suits your needs.