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March Pump Problem and Question

I am trying to use my March pump to circulate cold water through my immersion cooler. I live in South Texas and the water is hot and expensive making this a necessity. For the life of me I cant get the pump to generate enough pressure to make the water push through the 18 inches of hose into the immersion chiller then out to the cooler bath. Are these pumps normally this low power or am I doing something wrong? Its on with water already in the input hose and pump.

OK-finally sucked on the outlet hose and let it run before putting it back into the cooler with the cold water-seems to work but still wondering if I am using pump correctly.

Do you have a ball valve installed on the outside of the pump if not you need one.

Also these pumps need to be primed they are not self priming.

These pumps will push a stream of water 4 ft high or more.

I need to check since mine might push a stream of water 12 inches. I am not aware of a ball valve unless its installed inside the pump and not sure how to check to see if pump is adequately primed. Still don’t think I am doing it completely right.

is it oriented so that the inlet is pointing down and the outlet pointing up?

The inlet side of the pump needs to be lower than the vessel that’s feeding it so you can prime the pump. And you need a valve on the outlet side of the pump (you have to install it) so you can dial back on the flow.

I dont have the outlet valve so likely not getting fully primed. Easy to correct.

You don’t need an outlet valve if you just want to run it full speed. But it has to self-prime in order to get going, and thats where people were sayng to have the inlet side pointing down and the outlet up. I’ve found that I need to have my pump a couple feet below the reservoir for it to prime adequately.

If you are just circulating ice water, use one of these:

Cheaper and self-priming. I use one every brewday until the ground water gets chilly enough.

And heavens forbid you ever need one, you will have a sump pump on hand.

The March magnetic drive pumps we use for moving wort in the brewing process may not be optimum for moving fluids through the resistance of things like immersion chillers.

Pumps for moving chiller water can be very cheap, they just have to have the power to move the fluid at a proper rate. Without all the complicated math, if you don’t move the water through the chiller fast enough, you are literally not using the chilling capacity of your chiller. That means with a weak flow, you may only be getting 5ft of benefit from a 25ft chiller.

Submersible pumps with at least 1/4hp have proven workable, and again it is the resistance of your particular chiller. These are like the one pictured by someone else previously and can be had at places like Harbor Freight or Northern Tool for usually under $50. Don’t overspend. Using the March pump example, you can spend 3x the money and get a pump that is the wrong design for the job at hand.

http://thebeerjournals.com/chilling.html
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