Pump refurbishment package focuses on energy efficiency
20 June 2024

An Australian company that specialises in both on-site and off-site pump refurbishment is finding that energy efficiency is an important driver in its refurbishment packages – and has included South African-manufactured Vesconite bushings as part of its energy-reducing refurbishment package.

FITT Resources’ Daniel Hechter said in 2017 that electricity costs in Australia, at 25+ AUS c/kWh at the time, were among the highest costs globally.

As a result, when the company retrofits 30 to 35-year-old pumps, besides increasing the life of a pump, there is a focus on improving the pump’s energy efficiency.

The company’s retrofitting is programme-orientated and includes several interventions to increase energy efficiency by ensuring that flow is better and that less electricity is used.

One of the retrofitting tasks is typically to install Vesconite bushings as interstage bushings in the multi-stage high and low-pressure pumps that it repairs.

The pumps that it repairs have used bronze bushings historically, which has been expensive and caused shaft damage.

The Vesconite bushings, in contrast, offer the advantage of being able to run with small clearances, which causes less recycle, or less movement of pressurised water from the previous stage to the next stage.

Hechter notes that it is difficult to determine the exact energy savings that can be attributed to the bushings, but energy consumption is reduced in general following a refurbishment package.

‚ÄúCapital and labour are expensive in Australia, so it is important to use retrofitting to return original equipment manufacturer (OEM) equipment to its original if not better state,‚ÄĚ he notes.

Water utilities in the region continue to rely on the pump refurbishment firm, which is also a supplier of OEM pumps, seals and filtration systems, to refit their multi-stage pumps, and in the last four years, several multi-stage pumps have been retrofitted with either Vesconite Hilube or Vesconite bushings.

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