Different Types of Water Pumps: Complete Guide

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Water issues are common in both rural and urban areas and in spite of technologies like rainwater harvesting, and dams, we often face water scarcity. So, to deal with this problem, humans went to the next level and invented – water pumps.

Water pumps are mechanical devices that pull water from underground and transfer it to your residence. In most industrial and rural areas, this device has greatly helped people and has made their lives hassle-free.

In this article, we will help you learn the different types of water pumps, how they work, and what are their advantages and limitations. So, without further ado, let’s begin.

Types of Water Pumps

There are mainly 2 types of water pumps available in the market and they are domestic pumps and agricultural pumps. Let’s have a quick glance at these major categories.

  1. Domestic Pumps – These water pumps are used in our homes for daily water consumption, that’s why they are termed as domestic pumps.
  2. Agricultural Pumps – These water-extracting devices are lifesavers in rural areas for crop production.

Let us now learn in detail about different types of water pumps.

1. Self-Prime Regeneration Pumps

What it is: A self-prime regeneration pump has a self-priming capability that is to generate vacuum on the suction line with the help of liquid stored in its casing.

In this pump, the mechanism mixes the air with the circulating water inside the casing and later displace it in the suction pipe while pumping the water up.

Working Principle: When the vanes or impeller inside the casing of the pump rotates, a low-pressure zone is created in the center. This pressure draws air from the suction line and meanwhile, the liquid inside the casing forms a cylindrical ring.

This phenomenon causes a suction effect that makes the liquid move up in the suction pipe and the air is discharged.


  • These pumps mostly come in a compact size which makes them easy to transport.
  • Self-Prime pumps are very economical in nature.
  • Incredible solid handling.
  • These pumps do not require a foot valve.


  • The biggest limitation of this pump is its efficiency. The self-priming process requires a larger clearance to deal with solids.

2. Centrifugal Pumps 

What it is: A centrifugal pump uses the kinetic energy of the motor to move the water up. The electric motors generate rotational energy that drives the impellers inside the casing and when the liquid enters this rotating part, centrifugal force works upon it and forces the liquid to draw out from the pump outlet.

Working Principle: Impellers inside the casing play the most important role in the centrifugal pump. The impellers have a series of rotors or vanes. The water enters and goes in the impeller’s axis/eye. When the electric motors start, it generates rotational energy that accelerates impellers.

This motion flows the water into the vanes and it goes to the pump casing and finally to the pump outlet.


  • Centrifugal pumps have a very high discharge.
  • These pumps have higher hydraulic performance and efficiency than regenerative pumps.
  • It works on a very simple principle and does not require many moving parts which can minimize your maintenance.
  • Centrifugal pumps have a consistent and steady output.


  • These pumps can become inefficient if the viscosity feeds is high.
  • It has to be put under the water or primed so that it could move the water up.

3. Submersible Pumps

What it is: As the name suggests, submersible pumps are a device that comes with completely sealed motors and are immersed into the water bodies like open wells, tanks, or bore wells. As these pumps don’t need priming, they are efficient and a wiser option.

Working Principle: The submersible pump pushes the liquid to the surface with the help of three energies. The rotary energy that is generated through impellers gets converted into kinetic energy and then kinetic energy is converted into pressure energy when the liquid is pushed by impellers in the diffuser. From there it goes to the surface or to the pump outlet.


  • The biggest advantage of this pump is that it does not need to be primed.
  • These pumps do not require too much energy to pump the water up, this makes them quite efficient.
  • You will not face cavitation issues in this pump as they are submerged under the water and there is no spike in water pressure.
  • They are quiet inside the water.


  • Any fault inside the pump will not be noticed as they are submerged in the water.
  • A malfunction in the seal can damage the motors.
  • Repairing this pump is a tough job.

4. Bore Well Compressor Pumps

What it is: The Bore Well Compressor Pumps are mechanical devices that are designed to extract water from deep narrow wells. As the water is pumped from a deep surface, the machine has to use compressed air and water mixture.

Bore Well Compressor Pumps are optimal for wells that have a depth of 600 feet. They come in two variants namely Belt Driven and Monobloc.

Working Principle: This pump works on a principle of density difference of two inter-connect water section. It pumps the water by forcing the compressed air into the bore via a pipe.

The compressed air and water are mixed by the mechanism so that the density could be lower in comparison to the surrounding water. This difference flows the water upwards through the pipe to the outlet.


  • One of the biggest advantages of using a Bore Well Compressor Pump is the way it is designed. It comes with a tightly contained unit that keeps the water out of the casing and internal components.
  • It works effortlessly on salty and muddy water.
  • The pump is placed inside the liquid, this means more efficiency and less power consumption.


  • The biggest disadvantage of this pump is that the area will get depleted fast where the machine will be installed.
  • This machine could eventually cause drought-like conditions and affect the quality of soil or vegetation.

5. Pressure Booster Pumps

What it is: If you require higher water pressure then this pump will come in handy. A pressure booster pump is a device that is designed to supply pressurized water according to your needs. These pumps are common for heavy cleaning, boiler feed, tall buildings, HVAC, etc.

Working Principle: This pump uses one or more impellers to push the water out from the outlet. The water enters from the inlet and goes to the impellers that help the water to push out through the outlet. These pumps have pressure monitors device that makes this device quite smart in terms of AI.


  • The main advantage of this pump is the increase in water pressure.
  • You will enjoy a steady water supply from this device.
  • These pumps are compact and could be installed easily inside the house.
  • These pumps are suitable for both residential and commercial purposes.


  • High pressure in the system will make a noise.
  • If the pressure is improper the pump may stay on for a shorter duration.


Let us quickly recap what we have learned in this article. Water pumps are one of the best inventions in human history and have incredibly helped people who face a water crisis. There are two major categories of water pumps – domestic and agricultural pumps.

When it comes to different types of water pumps there are five common names – Self-Prime Regeneration, Centrifugal, Submersible, Bore Well Compressor, and Pressure Booster pump. We have discussed their working principle along with advantages and limitations so that you can make the best out of this page.

Make sure to review each type of water pump from above if you are planning to install this incredible device in your area. Good luck!

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