Selecting a Water Pump Based on Total Head

When selecting a water  pump for any application based on head, figure 1 is a good representation of effect of head on water pump performance 


If suction head hs (suction distance) is increased or decreased it will impact the discharge head hd (discharge distance) by either increasing or decreasing accordingly - the total head will stay the same.  So with your application you can identify the required head at the flow you need. 


For example if you require a water pump to perform certain functions i.e. open 2 x SV500 spray valves at once (requires approximately 20 psi per spray valve to open) and they can deliver up to 500 litres per minute each, and the water pump supplier provides a Water Pump performance at a total head number you can convert the head number (head in feet of water) and divide this by 2.31 to convert to pressure (psi).  


If you need any help or have any questions at all please don’t hesitate to contact  the Water Wise Team on 1300 306 917 or




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