Pump Testing Procedures

On arrival

  1. Determine pumps to be tested; normal operation of the pumps; source and destination of water. Determine test points, i.e. number of points and head or capacity. Can pumps operate long enough to complete tests?
  2. Complete pump test data sheet.

Test set up

Flow measurement

  1. Determine appropriate location for pitot tube.
  2. Isolate and depressurize pipe.
  3. Drill and tap appropriate size hole for pitot tube.
  4. Measure pipe inside diameter.
  5. Install pitot tube and connect manometer.

Pressure/head measurement (Datum is center line of pump discharge)

  1. Locate appropriate location for pressure gauge cocks.
  2. Utilize existing pressure gauge cocks if possible.
  3. If necessary, drill and tap hole for pressure gauge cocks if possible.
  4. If necessary, have customer install pressure gauge cocks in proper locations.

Energy input measurement to motor

  1. Determine appropriate location and method to measure kW input.
    1. Utility billing meter.
    2. Portable kW meter.
  2. Open appropriate electrical panels for inspection.

Pump speed measurement

  1. Install reflective tape for electronic tachometer operation.

Preparation for operation

  1. Open all valves.
  2. Open electrical panels.
  3. Clear area and make final safety check.

Begin test


  1. Start pump and allow to stabilize.
  2. Bleed pressure gauge cocks, install pressure gauges and check operation.
  3. Set valves for proper head.
  4. Bleed and set pitot tube and manometer.

Head measurement

  1. Verify head and record pressures.

Flow measurement

  1. Read manometer and record reading.

Energy measurement

  1. Time utility billing meter and record, or:
  2. Take kW readings at appropriate location by the single phase method and record.
  3. Measure running voltage and record.
  4. Measure running current and record.
  5. Note any unusual voltage or current conditions.

Pump speed measurement

  1. Measure pump speed with electronic photo tachometer and record.


  1. Calculate total lift and convert to feet.
  2. Calculate flow in gallons per minute.
  3. Calculate kW input to motor and convert to input horsepower.
  4. Determine wire to water efficiency.
  5. Calculate kVA and power factor.

Additional test points
The same procedure is repeated for each additional test point as determined in advance. Voltage and current readings may be omitted in subsequent test points if electrical operation is satisfactory.

Pump tests are conducted in accordance with Hydraulic Institute test standards 1.6, 2.6 & 11.6 to the extent that the pumping plant physical installation allows.

Pump Test Equipment

Hall pitot tube and manometer: 1.5%
Epic kW meter: 1.5%
Exteck kW, Volt, Amp.: 1.5%
U.S. Gauge test gauge set, 0 to 1000 PSI: 0.5%
U.S. Gauge vacuum gauge, 0 30": 0.5%
Electronic photo tachometer: 1.0%
Electric well sounder