The 10 Best Submersible Pumps

Updated May 10, 2018 by Brett Dvoretz

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We spent 47 hours on research, videography, and editing, to review the top options for this wiki. When you have to move a substantial amount of liquid, you'll need a submersible pump that is specially 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 wet 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.

10. Esky EAP-03

9. Little Giant 6-CIA

8. XtremepowerUS X6045

7. Wayne Waterbug

6. Eco-Flo SUP80

5. Kedsum 770GPH

4. Hallmark Industries MA0414X-7A

3. Wayne CDU980E

2. Superior Pump 91250

1. Tsurumi HS2.4S-62

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 May 10, 2018 by Brett Dvoretz

A wandering writer who spends as much time on the road as behind the computer screen, Brett can either be found hacking furiously away at the keyboard or perhaps enjoying a whiskey and coke on some exotic beach, sometimes both simultaneously, usually with a four-legged companion by his side. He hopes to one day become a modern day renaissance man.


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