The 8 Best Submersible Pumps

Updated September 11, 2017 by Jeff Newburgh

8 Best Submersible Pumps
Best High-End
Best Mid-Range
Best Inexpensive
We spent 47 hours on research, videography, and editing, to review the top options for this wiki. When you need to move water, you have to have a submersible pump that is especially designed to work underwater without affecting its electrical components. Our comprehensive selection includes models ideally suited for everything from home aquariums, ponds and fountains to bigger jobs, like clearing a flooded basement or removing large amounts of sand and silt. When users buy our independently chosen editorial picks, we may earn commissions to support our work. Skip to the best submersible pump on Amazon.

8. Kedsum 40W

Good for small to medium-sized aquariums, fountains, or hydroponic environments in either fresh or saltwater, the Kedsum 40W features convenient suction cups for both vertical and horizontal mounting positions, while its small profile makes it easy to disguise.
  • quiet operation
  • low power consumption
  • needs cleaning often
Model pending
Weight 2.4 pounds
Rating 3.6 / 5.0

7. Esky EAP-03

The Esky EAP-03 is a compact, unobtrusive, and quiet solution for maintaining your indoor aquarium. Its stepless knob water flow adjustment dial makes it easy to operate, while its sealed structure serves to protect itself from excessive water leakage.
  • lifetime support guarantee
  • user manual is included
  • rear cover is a bit flimsy
Brand Esky
Model pending
Weight 1.9 pounds
Rating 3.9 / 5.0

6. Superior Pump 91250

Designed as a powerhouse in a very small frame, the Superior Pump 91250 is perfect for use as a domestic solution for draining standing water from your swimming pool, pond, fountain, or flooded basement. It moves 30 gallons of water per minute to 1/8-inch from the ground.
  • compact and durable
  • split capacitor motor
  • the power cord is short
Brand Superior Pump
Model 91250
Weight 7.6 pounds
Rating 4.1 / 5.0

5. Little Giant 6-CIA

Ideal for residential use, the Little Giant 6-CIA has an epoxy-coated, cast iron motor housing that is oil-filled for lifetime lubrication and rapid heat dissipation. Its diaphragm pressure switch automatically engages the unit when submerged in 7-10 inches of water.
  • strong polycarbonate cover
  • thermal overload protection
  • switch needs replacing often
Brand Little Giant Outdoor Li
Model 6-CIA
Weight 17.9 pounds
Rating 4.1 / 5.0

4. Watershed Innovations HydraPump

Thanks to its heavy-duty, copper-wound 120-volt motor and corrosion-resistant ABS plastic material, the Watershed Innovations HydraPump has been crafted for longevity and for moving large amounts of both clean and dirty water quickly with minimal effort.
  • on-board garden hose attachment
  • pump is easy to transport
  • good choice for use in emergencies
Brand Watershed Innovations
Model pending
Weight 11.2 pounds
Rating 3.9 / 5.0

3. Hallmark Industries MA0414X-7A

At its core, the Hallmark Industries MA0414X-7A has a high-efficiency and hermetically sealed motor that is thermally protected to prevent overheating, while also designed to use low amounts of energy to get the job done. It also has a built-in check valve.
  • sealed ball bearings
  • built-in capacitor start
  • has an internal control box
Brand Hallmark Industries
Model MA0414X-7A
Weight 28.2 pounds
Rating 4.6 / 5.0

2. Wayne CDU980E

The innovative Wayne CDU980E offers a top suction pump design that minimizes both air locks and clogging caused by debris found at the bottom of sump pits. Its vertical float switch has also been tested to as many as 1 million cycles.
  • flow rate of 4600 gallons per hour
  • stainless steel motor housing
  • assembled in the usa
Brand Wayne
Model 58321-WYN3
Weight 22.4 pounds
Rating 5.0 / 5.0

1. Tsurumi HS2.4S-62

Perfect for environments with a lot of trash, the Tsurumi HS2.4S-62 provides a semi-vortex urethane rubber impeller for superior pump performance and a built-in, shaft-mounted agitator designed to suspend solids and move large amounts of sand and other bulky materials.
  • silicon carbide-faced seals
  • double-shielded for longevity
  • 2-inch discharge
Brand Tsurumi
Model HS2.4S-62
Weight 29.1 pounds
Rating 4.9 / 5.0

Pumping Up The Competition

Water represents a double-edged sword at times, meaning that it can have positive or potentially disastrous effects on its surroundings. While gaining the ability to maintain complete control over this natural resource is an unlikely eventuality, the submersible pump can facilitate the process of moving large volumes of water in a more efficient manner.

Operating completely underwater, the submersible pump is equipped with a hermetically-sealed motor designed to push volumes of fluid from one place to another. This movement usually occurs in an upward vertical fashion in which a fluid substance is pumped to the surface of a well or body of water. Unlike a jet pump, which operates through the principles of vacuum suction to move liquid from a low elevation to a higher one, the submersible pump can be placed deep within a resource where it pushes liquid directly to the surface without the concern for pump cavitation.

An electric submersible pump is centrifugal in design and has one or a series of rapidly rotating impellers. Each impeller accelerates the fluid, replacing its kinetic energy with velocity. Powered with this momentum, the fluid then exits the impeller and enters a nearby diffuser, which is often made from high-nickel iron to minimize corrosion damage. The diffuser works to convert the fluid's velocity energy to a steady flow under pressure. If the pump has only one impeller and diffuser, then it's referred to as a single-stage device. Pumps with two or more impellers and diffusers are known as multi-stage units. In a multi-stage pump, fluid continues to gain velocity and pressure incrementally as it travels through each of the pump's impellers and diffusers until it achieves a total dynamic head with the right amount of pressure and energy to successfully reach the surface.

Single-stage submersible devices are traditionally used for pumping sewage, industrial slurries, and for draining shallow ponds. Multi-stage pumps are typically lowered into boreholes and used for both residential and commercial water extraction from large wells. They are also popular for use in pumping oil wells.

These types of pumps can also be small and compact in size where they are used to help regulate the water flow from within small indoor aquariums, keeping one's fish healthy and active.

Rather than operating at a distance from a body of water, submersible pumps work within the water the move, expending less energy to push their contents to the surface, whereas other pumps are forced to pull the liquid from a much higher elevation. Submersible pumps are also relatively quiet in operation and have little need for priming or maintenance.

Running The Gamut Of Choice

When choosing a submersible pump, one must consider the size of their land and exactly what they're looking to accomplish. For example, if you own a lot of farmland and want to ensure that your vegetation stays properly irrigated, you may decide to invest in one or multiple submersible devices. They can be placed within a nearby lake or reservoir for a permanent supply of fresh water. With this in mind, researching the overall flow rate of the devices you consider is important to ensure your land doesn't go thirsty.

If you're working at an industrial job site, consider a pump with the ability to move solids and debris like sand or small pieces of trash. Submersible devices with the ability to move bulky items (in addition to water) may also have a tendency to operate at high temperatures, so built-in thermal overload protection will be beneficial in such circumstances.

Should you need to drain sources of standing water from a nearby pond, swimming pool, or fountain, consider a single-stage pump, since the water won't have to travel quite so far up the unit's shaft to reach the surface. This type of pump will also come in handy if live in an area prone to flooding. By contrast, if you're going to install your pump into a deep residential well, then a multi-stage unit will work best to ensure that it can produce enough pressure to move large volumes of fluid to the surface quickly.

Finally, the motor housing for your pump should be made from durable materials such as stainless steel for superior corrosion resistance over time.

A Brief History Of Submersible Pumps

The concept of the pump dates as far back as 2,000 B.C.E. to the ancient Egyptian use of the shadoof, a rudimentary tool that made use of a long suspended rod with a bucket at one end and a weight on the other to raise water for irrigation purposes along the Nile River. This device is still used today in certain parts of the world.

By the year 200 B.C.E., Greek physicist and engineer Ctesibius invented the water organ, an air pump that used organ pipes, valves, and the weight of water. It was the principal driving design behind the modern reciprocating pump. Archimedes also designed his screw pump around the same time, which is still used to pump both liquids and solids in industrial settings.

Russian oil delivery system engineer Armais Arutunoff is credited with installing the very first submersible pump in the 1920s. By 1929, Pleuger Pumps designed the first submersible turbine pump, which was considered the predecessor for the modern multi-stage submersible pumps. The 1960s also saw the introduction of the first deep-well submersible water pump, developed by Poul Due Jensen. Both single and multi-stage devices still remain important in today's oil industry, as well as for domestic applications when it comes to efficiently moving water from within wells, managing irrigation systems, and handling any standing water that becomes a nuisance on one's property.

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Last updated on September 11, 2017 by Jeff Newburgh

A dedicated writer and communications professional spending his days lost in the intricacies of both proposal and freelance writing. When not sharing the knowledge of both fully and self-insured medical benefits to employer groups of all industries within California, Jeff Newburgh can be found at home spending time with his family and 3 dogs, pondering the next chew toy to be thrown, while kicking back and relaxing with a nice glass of red wine.

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