How to Pump Wet Wipes and Cooking Oil

Pumping wet wipes at a municipal wastewater treatment facility

Pumping wet wipes at a municipal wastewater treatment facility

Wastecorp employees read a story posted on YAHOO! from Yahoo and Thames Water’s Website (Thames water is responsible for sewer maintenance in London, England) about a “fatberg” comprised of cooking oil, wet wipes and more which was roughly the size of a Boeing 747. In our weekly global meeting, many on the call contributed to the discussion because in almost every pump markets globally, our customers have to manage either issues relating to cooking oil or solids in the sewer system.  The manufacturers of wet wipes worldwide have said that they are researching and developing new products that will help to reduce the clumping issue. But the primary contributor to this problem is not the wet wipes; no one should be dumping cooking oil down the drain – ever. As the YAHOO! article says, when you dump hot cooking oil down the drain into the cold sewer system the fat congeals and clings to anything including the wipes, toilet paper or other solids.

Related: Thames Water Press Release about the “Fatberg”

Here is North America; municipal wastewater treatment operators routinely voice their concerns to us about the use of wet pipes by the general public and then flushing them down the toilet.  “Do you guys make a pump that can better handle the wet wipes” is a question Wastecorp frequently receives at our sludge pump call centers.  Jim K. from Winston Salem North Carolina tells it like it is:

“ All these wet wipes that come into our mid-size WWTP are wreaking havoc on our pumps. We use rotary lobe pumps and progressive cavity pumps and they just clog them causing them to fail and then thousands worth of damage. We need to go a different route.  Our city engineer was looking at Wastecorp’s website and suggested we ask about either your plunger pump or double disc pump options.” We need some guidance here please.”  Jim K. – Winston Salem, NC

Well Jim, the rotary lobe and progressive cavity companies will sell you the same story: go with our pumps – they’re new. They are leaving out an important fact most lobe and progressive cavity pumps have been around just as long as plunger pumps, (+- 75 years) and most of lobe and progressive cavity pumps don’t do a good job of handling solids. When it comes to plunger pumps, they are a lot less likely to clog. The check balls and pistons move sludge and wet wipes and send them on their way. You should also consider a screen and a grinder in your WWTP process, but having a pump more capable of handling solids will go along way.

Jim, like your city engineer said, many WWTP’s your size have selected either a plunger pump or a double disc pump to manage these wet wipes. We see a lot of facilities your size going the route of the Sludge Master® PE-941 SSIII or our Sludge Pro® 4DDWP™ Double Disc Pump Series. Unless your facility has an endless budget to keep replacing rotors, stators and bearings your facility would be wise to consider other pump options. More info can be found at www.wastecorp.com

Related: Waste oil pumps and containment systems 

 

Pump Industry News: Replacing a Komline Sanderson Plunger Pump

Komline Sanderson Plunger Pump

Komline Sanderson Plunger Pump

Many of our wastewater treatment plant operators looking to upgrade their sewage pumps to the next generation plunger pumps have a wide set of options for a no piping change or little alternation to the existing set up. New sewage pumps can help make the facility more efficient and productive. This is available to all plunger pump customers including competing makes like Komline Sanderson* and Carter* Plunger Pump customers.

With a 3 hp motor, and 4″ discharge. Mike D. from Fort Worth Texas illustrates a number of pump questions we get from public utilities  operators.

“I am looking to replace 2 Komline Sanderson KS-9 plunger pumps at my wastewater treatment facility. The pump characteristics are 140 GPM at 90 ft head. We get some grit in our sewage and we have a grinder on the suction lines of both pumps. Current pump is duplex plunger pump general arrangement. What is your equivalent of this pump? Do I have to make piping changes to my effluent lines? And what other pumps do you manufacture that we could consider installing? .” Thanks, Mike D. Fort Worth, Texas

Well Mike, you have Continue reading

Resolving Sewage Pump Problems at Smaller WWTP’s

Solving Sewage Pump problems

Solving Sewage Pump problems

How to resolve sewage pumping problems at smaller WWTP’s is a question on the minds of thousands of operators worldwide. These facilities pump municipal sewage, storm water, melting snow, road grit and so much more for smaller communities. While the gallons per day pumped may not be as high as urban sewage treatment plants, the need for reliable sludge pumps is just as great. Continue reading

Sludge Pumping in New York With Sludge Master Plunger Pumps

Plunger pump

Plunger pump for sewage treatment. Pump was approved by consulting engineers to transfer primary sludge

Pumping sewage for a city of over eight million people can be a challenging task and that’s exactly what the City of New York and surrounding communities like Westchester County must contend with.  Wastecorp completed a plunger pump sludge moving project for the Ossining Waste Water Treatment Plant; a facility located about 30 miles from Manhattan and within walking distance to Sing Sing Correctional facility.  Wastecorp’s plunger pumps were approved by GHD Consulting Engineers. Mace Contracting completed the installation. See  video

Ossining replaced two existing plunger pumps with next generation Wastecorp Plunger Pumps HPE Series -triplex model HPE 1142. The pumps are designed to transfer thickened sludge to loading trucks that haul it away for sanitary treatment.  The pumps feature heavy duty 11” plungers with a guided stuffing box system to reduce wear on the packing, plungers and connecting rods read more about the guided stuffing box system.

Continue reading

The Problem of Space Constraints at Wastewater Treatment Plants

Space Saver Plunger Pumps

Space Saver Plunger Pumps

It’s a common problem faced by many wastewater treatment facilities’, how to select a pump to move heavy sludge with enough power and endurance to last through the long haul.  One solution to this problem is a pump with an in-line piping design like the Space-Saver plunger pump.  Many facilities have seen success with this pump especially those replacing a double disc, rotary lobe, or progressive cavity pump.

The Space saver plunger pump does not require a concrete base, which makes replacing any type of sewage pump quick and trouble-free. In most cases, the old pumps are simply replaced and the new Space Saver simply dropped into place.  The Space Saver is available with a 7”, 9” or 11” piston size and can transfer up to 140 GPM (8.8 lps) of municipal or industrial sludge.

In our case study feature, you’ll see a Memphis, Tennessee area sewage treatment plant which recently installed a Space Saver after trying double disc and progressive cavity pumps.  The facility operates this pump for at least eight hours each day and other than general maintenance procedures, the pumps have run perfectly. Click here for more information on the Space Saver sewage pump.