How do you choose the best flexible pump connector to join a pump and pipe? In fact, why are they needed at all? Read on for a quick overview.
When it comes to choosing the right flexible connector for pumps, there are several factors that need to be taken into consideration. Flexible connectors play a critical role in ensuring that a pump operates efficiently and reliably, and choosing the wrong one can lead to issues such as leaks, vibrations, and premature failure. A flexible connector is needed because any number of pump problems can result from the excessive pump nozzle loads without one. Nozzle loads from pipe misalignment, thermal expansion, and other factors can cause seal leakage, coupling problems, bearing problems, and more. The right flexible pump connector can eliminate the problems caused by these excessive nozzle loads.
In this blog, we will discuss some of the key factors that you should keep in mind when selecting a flexible connector for your pump.
Operating conditions: The first factor to consider is the operating conditions of your pump. This includes factors such as the temperature and pressure of the fluid being pumped, as well as any external factors such as vibrations or shock. Make sure to choose a flexible connector that is rated for the specific operating conditions of your pump.
Material compatibility: The material of the flexible connector is also an important consideration. It should be compatible with the fluid being pumped to ensure that it does not degrade or corrode over time. Common materials used for flexible connectors include stainless steel, rubber, and PTFE.
Size and length: The size and length of the flexible connector are also important factors to consider. The connector should be appropriately sized to match the inlet and outlet of the pump, and the length should be sufficient to allow for any movement or vibration that may occur during operation.
There are three main types of flexible connectors used with pumps, and they are made from rubber and stainless steel. Easyflex provides all these styles and more.
There are two types of rubber connectors: the spherical type, and the spool type. The spherical type is the most popular and economical style for pumps, and it has a metal flange that can have tapped holes, making it easy to install. Spherical designs have good flow-through, and minimal turbulence and sediment build-up. See the basic Spherical Floating Flange Type at Click Here
Spool type connectors have full-face rubber flanges, reinforced with metal backing rings. Spool types can be made with a wide arch to reduce stiffness, or a filled arch for a smooth bore. See the basic Spool at Click Here
The elastomer must be carefully selected for either type. EPDM, Neoprene, butyl, and many other compounds are available. These connectors can expand and contract as required, because they act as expansion joints. But control units with tie rods may be needed to prevent over extension if the system is not properly anchored. Control units must be assembled in the field, because they are bolted to the mating flanges. This will be covered in more detail in another newsletter. Factory installed control cables are an alternative to traditional control rods with the spherical style.
- * Inexpensive and easy to install
- * Excellent for isolating vibration and absorbing noise
- * Good for compression from thermal growth
- * Available in a variety of elastomers
- * Any diameter can be accommodated
- * Reducing designs available
- * Not recommended for high temperature applications and with certain chemicals.
Braided Hose Connectors
The flexible portion of these metal connectors is a corrugated stainless steel with a stainless steel braid, and the fittings are carbon or stainless steel. The braided connectors can not compress or extend, and therefore do not compensate for most thermal expansions. They are not expansion joints. The most popular end fittings are carbon steel flanges and male thread ends on small diameters, but grooved ends and others are available. No control units or tie rods are needed with these connectors, as the braiding prevents thrust loads from being transferred to nozzles and anchors. See a collection of stocked braided connectors at Click Here
- * Good for higher temperature applications
- * Lasts longer than rubber
- * Never requires control units or tie rods
- * Available with any type fittings
- * No axial compression
- * Sound absorption not as good as rubber
- * Does not perform well in short face-to-face application
Metal Bellows Connectors
Metal bellows connectors are expansion joints that react much the same way as rubber connectors, because they can compress. They are used in higher temperature applications where compression may be required due to thermal expansion. Tie rods will prevent the joint from overextending, and eliminate thrust loads until the joint compresses. The tie rods are added at the factory on these connectors. See a basic Bellows Connector at Click Here
- * Handles compression caused by thermal expansion
- * Excellent for high temperature applications
- * Can be designed for higher pressure applications
- * Ideal for applications with many chemicals, except those that are highly corrosive
- * Relatively stiff
- * Poor lateral movement capability
- * More expensive
- * Poor sound and vibration dampening characteristics
This should start you on the proper choice for a flexible connector on your pump. Choosing the right flexible connector for your pump requires careful consideration of a variety of factors. By taking into account the operating conditions, material compatibility, size and length, type of connector, and ease of installation, you can ensure that your pump operates efficiently and reliably over the long term. For more information, contact the Easyflex Engineering team at [email protected]
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E-mail: [email protected]