We regularly experience self-priming pumps (such as irrigation or booster pumps) to have problems with sucking water. Problems most often occur with pumps that suck water from a source or well that is only a few metres deep. Although many people think these problems are caused by mechanical issues, in almost 99% of the cases the cause is much more simple.

Maximum intake depth
The maximum intake depth of a regular irrigation / booster pump is about 8-9 metres. The maximum intake depth should be indicated on every pump. A standard irrigation / booster pump will not suffice when sucking water at depths of 9 metres or greater.

For water levels greater than 8-9 metres, we recommend choosing a  borehole pump. This pump is placed in the source or well and is able to suck up water at greater pressures.

Air, water and hoses
A self-priming pump (irrigation /  booster pump) is equipped with a suction and drain hose. The suction hose must be submersed in water. The pump can then be started.

If the pump is unable to reach it's maximum suction power, this is most often caused by the presence of air. A small hole, poor sealing between the hose and pump or a dent in the hose can already cause the pump not to work properly.

How do I solve this problem? (step-by-step guide)

Stap 1: Check the intake depth

Try to determine at what depths the pump must suck water. If this is greater than 8-9 metres, the pump will almost never function. This is therefore the most likely reason why your pump isn't working.

Stap 2: Check whether the suction hose is constricted

Check the suction hose for dents and/or constrictions and remove them.

Step 3: Check the suction hose for holes

A suction hose is always equipped with a check valve (ensuring the water only flows one way), attached to the bottom of the hose. Remove the hose from the pump, completely filly the hose with water and reconnect the full hose to the pump. When you turn on the pump, check the entire hose for air bubbles. If you notice any air bubbles, you can quickly and easily seal any leaks with a piece of tape.

Step 4: Check the suction hose coupling on the pump

The pumps and hoses we supply are always equipped with screw thread. Even though they fit perfectly, the screw thread on the pump and hose is sometimes not completely air-tight. We recommend using PTFE tape to prevent air from entering the pump system. You can apply this tape on the screw thread of the suction hose, after which you can attach the hose to the pump. PTFE ensures that both ends connect better and prevents air from entering the pump.


Is your problem still not resolved?

Should you still have problems, you are always free to contact us. We are happy to arrange a suitable solution.

Please contact us