The BASCO Advisor Says...

6 Points to Help You Choose the Right Pump

Drum, Pail, and Bottle Pumps fall into three categories: Manual Pumps, Safety Pumps and Power Pumps. To choose a pump, you first need to know the chemicals to be pumped, thickness of the liquid to be pumped, the sizes of the containers involved, the fitting, the chemical compatibilities of the liquid being pumped, how much is to be dispensed per stroke or per minute, whether a food grade pump is required, and more.

Finish Thompson Chemical Drum Pump

To help you figure out which pump best suits your needs, here are six key points to consider when selecting a pump:

  1. Chemical Compatibility - make sure that the parts that make direct contact with the liquid (the wetted parts) are made of material that is chemically compatible with your product. Review the MSDS (Material Data Safety Sheet) which accompanied your product. It will break it down for you and specify the name of the chemical or combination of chemicals that make up the product you intend to pump.

  2. Centipoise – know the thickness of the liquid to be pumped - its centipoise - is the measurement of the viscosity or thickness of the liquid.

  3. Dispensing Requirements - determine how much liquid you need to dispense per stroke or per minute and how fast you want it. Hand pumps have preset amounts they can pump per stroke but when it comes to how much a hand pump can pump per minute or per hour, it all depend on the strength and endurance of the user. Power Pumps have a specified rate of gallons per minute which they can pump. The rate is dependent on the viscosity of the fluid being pumped and the power. The published “Up To” rate provides a certain GPM (Gallons per Minute) figure which provides a best case scenario and gives you a guideline to work from.

  4. Food Grade Pumps – certain restrictions apply if you are working with food or regulated substances. Food grade and sanitary pumps are available in both Manual and Power Pumps.

  5. Container Sizes – know if you plan to pump: 1) out of only one size of container, and 2) if you intend to pump the same liquid repeatedly, or 3) if you are transferring from one container to another.

    BASCO has pumps for a wide range of sizes to fit containers from one-gallon bottles to 275 gallon IBCs/Totes.

    If you are using different sized containers then you will want to find a pump that can be adaptable to all or most of them. The pump tube length determines the general size of the container that it will fit best.

    Note:  A 55-gallon pump could be used in a 30, 20, or 15-gallon drum as well if you don’t mind the fact that the top of the pump will be positioned well above the top of the smaller containers.

  6. Power vs. Manual Pumps - Manual Pumps are powered by the user but Power Pumps are available in air or electric.  Your choice will depend on what type of power you have, or plan to install, in your facility.


Questions? We have a highly trained and courteous team of Customer Service Experts ready to help answer all your questions. Contact them at 1.800.776.3786, or email us here.