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What Is Involved in Hydraulic Pump Testing?

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  • Written By: Malcolm Tatum
  • Edited By: Bronwyn Harris
  • Last Modified Date: 05 September 2016
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    Conjecture Corporation
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Hydraulic pump testing is an essential process in the maintenance and upkeep of any system that includes hydraulic pumps. While the exact process will vary depending on the configuration of the motors used to drive the pumps as well as the intended use of the pump, there are several checkpoints that are highly likely to be included in any testing strategy. These checkpoints include evaluation of the quality of flow and pressure at each port of the pump, the function of the case drain, and the revolutions per minute that are generated by the hydraulic motor.

Pressure and flow are essential to the efficient function of any type of hydraulic pump. Any type of hydraulic pump testing will include measurements of both the flow of fluid through the system and the amount of pressure that drives that flow. The current pressure level should be within the acceptable range set by the manufacturer, resulting in a flow of hydraulic fluid that in term helps to keep the wear and tear on the machinery within acceptable parameters.

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Flow and pressure are also key to the function of the case drain feature that is part of the pump design. With this facet of hydraulic pump testing, the goal is to make sure the drain is exhibiting acceptable levels of flow and pressure that result in maintaining a safe temperature for all the components of the pump. In the event that the pressure level is not within acceptable standards, this could be a sign that one or more components are in need of replacement.

Checking on the revolutions per minute (RPM) rate is also a key element of any type of hydraulic pump testing. A lower number of revolutions per minute could mean that something is creating friction that results in the slower returns, or that one or more components are worn and should be replaced. The testing helps to reduce the potential for any type of permanent damage to occur, requiring costly repairs or possibly even replacement of the entire pump.

Hydraulic pump testing will also involve evaluating the condition and functionality of oils and filters that are utilized as part of the ongoing operation of the pump. It is not unusual for testing to occur on at least a quarterly basis, with many companies choosing to perform some level of testing on a monthly or even bi-weekly basis. The frequency of the evaluations as well as the scope of the testing will vary, depending on the complexity of pump design and the amount of use involved with the machinery.

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