Facilities generally use several factors to determine whether repairing or replacing an industrial pump makes more sense. Those typically include cost, life expectancy, maintenance time and availability of spare parts.

Most often, it’s a good idea to replace an industrial pump system rather than just its components. This is done to take advantage of improved performance. These gains can be measurable in technical terms such as MTBR or MTBPM and dollar-and-cents terms.


Cost is a major factor when deciding whether to repair or replace your pump. A pump repair job can save you money in the long run. For example, if your well water pump isn’t building enough pressure and there are air bubbles in the lines, a professional will check the different parts of your system to see what is causing this issue.

Changing how a well water pump operates may improve performance and lower operating costs. For instance, using a variable speed (or flow) pump on older copper plumbing can reduce the damage from excessively high water pressure. This type of upgrade has the potential to pay for itself in a short amount of time. Another option is to evaluate if you have a local supplier that can provide pumps or subassemblies with the same functionality and warranty as a new pump at a much more economical price.

Life Expectancy

The average sump pump spends most of its life dormant, waiting to push water through the system when necessary. But it still needs pump services such as regular inspections to prevent the metal components from rusting and ensure the pump operates efficiently. Putting off this maintenance work can mean low water pressure in showers and faucets and a flooded basement at the most inconvenient time.

Generally, a pump’s life expectancy is calculated as a function of its MTBF. This can be determined from historical data or theoretical analysis. It may also be adjusted for process variations, user practices or other factors.

Preventive maintenance includes:

  • Visual inspections.
  • Assessing the mechanical condition of the pump, including seals and bearings.
  • Determining differential pressures.
  • Ensuring vibration limits are within design values.
  • Checking that register fits are correct and re-establishing impeller clearances.

It can also include installing anti-seize compounds and thread lockers to prevent air and fluids from causing the seizure of parts.


Pumps are vital to industrial and commercial applications, and when they are out of service, they can cause major disruptions. Fortunately, many pumps can be repaired rather than replaced thanks to improvements in materials like plastic that weigh less and eliminates corrosion issues. These well-designed float valves make for easier maintenance and easy-off lids.

Sometimes, a new pump is required to meet current service conditions that cannot be satisfied with existing equipment. It could be as a reactive measure in the event of a failure or as part of a proactive effort to optimize the process.

A pump replacement is a substantial investment. Making the right decision can minimize upfront and long-term costs while ensuring your medical vacuum system meets NFPA 99 Health Care Facilities Code and safeguards your patients’ safety. However, it’s important to note that even if you choose to replace a pump, you should still consider maintenance options to extend the life of your system.


Like almost everything in a home or business, pumps need routine maintenance. Often the best option is to consider a planned maintenance program. This type of maintenance is usually condition-based or predictive and involves equipment maintenance at regular intervals.

While it may seem like a rule of thumb, following a deliberate problem-identification process during troubleshooting is important. The apparent problem is often caused by another issue that must be resolved before a replacement occurs. For example, if a pump is experiencing electrical issues, it is recommended that the power supply be investigated, along with the continuity of motor windings. If this proves to be the source of the problem, replacing the pump will only continue to experience these same problems. Rather, repairing the pump would be a much more practical solution. Likewise, hydraulic problems can result from electrical or mechanical issues and must be thoroughly investigated to determine the root cause.