Should I buy a 110 bar or 1000 bar PSP two speed pressure test pump or a range in between?

It is a good question. The answer is it depends what pressure you are testing to. But which pump gives you some headroom for the future? And also allows for safety factors in your test pressure?

What are the standard Pressure Ranges?

From our PSP two speed hydrotest hand pumps, we can offer you 110, 170, 310, 450, 700 and 1000 based on the same rugged unit. This covers a massive range of pressures. The low pressure stage remains the same at a useful 50cc per stroke. Technically, a user could buy the extra set of parts and swap from one to the other but we have never once been asked for this over 25 years and over thousands of units.

What do we think is the most useful range?

We are fans of having 700 bar testing capacity in your pocket. The low pressure stage is still 50cc, so you are prefilling and getting the pressure up to 60 bar before you switch to high pressure. You will be pumping a few more strokes than a lower pressure model, but the hand load is lower, so it isn’t a massive deal. Maybe that is what we have learned over 40 years.

Can I use a PSP pressure hydrotest pump for low pressure testing?

Yes, you can. Keep in mind that the 50cc low pressure stage is a useful displacement even for low pressure testing. That provides you with a very useful low pressure test pump anyway for your site or shop.

What about hoses and can I use plated steel fittings on water?

700 bar hoses and fittings are mainstream. By that we mean that 700 bar multispiral or thermoplastic hoses are readily available and 700 bar rated fittings are common. It is good to have them stamped 700 bar. When you are ordering your hoses, we would state on the order “for 700 bar service.” Remember to decide whether you are running on oil or water so your hose isn’t contaminated with oil. We have written a quick paper on choosing between oil and water. 316 Stainless 700 bar fittings for water service are readily available in place of plated carbon steel oil fittings. You can use plated steel on water but we aren’t fans at all. They will corrode quickly. Our experience is never to get oil and water mixed up. You will find very fine droplets of oil in your water test fluid for ever and the only solution is to strip down the pump, degrease and rebuild with new seals. You might even colour code or label up oil and water service.

Could I just buy a 1000 bar pump and know it would cover all possible requirements?

Why haven’t we said buy a 1000 bar pump that will cover all future requirements? You could, but the hoses and fittings are more specialist and quite expensive. We would buy Parker Polyflex 1000 bar hose from the excellent Hydrasun but you might well be in for twice the price and find the hose is really quite rigid compared with 700 bar. I suppose we are saying be careful in buying a 1000 bar pump without investing in the expensive 1000 bar fittings and hose to go with it. Anyway, the requirements of the job will govern what you require. The PSP-10 1000 bar two speed hand pump is a still a great unit and takes you into 1000 bar high pressure water (or oil) at a reasonable price.

Our suggestion is that a 700 bar pump is the answer unless you have a good reason for 1000 bar. In reality, a 700 bar pump gives you the room for cope with safety factors and proof testing for a large proportion of commercial hydraulics which is maybe running at 200 bar to 400 bar. Watch our video on the difference between functional, proof and burst testing. If you have a 1.5 times safety factor, that works really well with 400 bar working pressures.

Why do people use two speed hand pumps instead of cheaper single speed pumps like the MP or MZ?

You may still be wondering why people use two speed pumps and whether a simple MP or MZ-trough pump will do the job. Sometimes you just don’t need a two speed pump. Sarum Hydraulics have done a great application note on this question and also on the basics of two speeders.

Do I need protection from fluid sprays or bursts while I am pressure hydrotesting?

As always, never run a pump, hoses or fittings at over their working pressure. As with all pressure testing, carry it out safely. If you need some sort of protection against fluid spraying out or more serious protection from materials breaking off and becoming projectiles, read our white paper. Our MTE enclosure is a good cost effective starting point. Do you need to understand more about safety protection for pressure and burst testing? Another useful Sarum Hydraulics paper.

If you have any questions on our equipment or you application, contact us. To see the full range of Sarum Hydraulics’ equipment including more specialist kit like ATEX/IECEx explosion proof hand pumps, rugged low corrosion offshore equipment and cost effective pressure testing or cycling rigs, look at their web site. After over 40 years, Sarum Hydraulics are the hand pump experts.

At Pump Shop Pro, we are pleased to offer their Micropac pressure test pumps through our web shop. Professional kit for professionals who need to get a job done.

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