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# Calculating

How to calculate the Pump Head for Open and Closed Systems

6/27/2012 Vemco,Inc.

## Ca alculatin ng Pump p Head

B Beforewecandiscusspump phead,wemu ustunderstandthedifferen ncebetweena anopenhydro onicsysteman ndaclosed h hydronicsyste em.Itisimportanttoknowwhetherthepump p servesa anopenorac closedsystem,becausethep pumphead c calculationdep pendsonthetype t ofsystem mthatthepum mpserves.
terruptsforce Inaclosedsystem,thefluidisnotexpose edtoabreakinthepipings systemthatint edflowatanypoint.Inan o opensystem,it i is.Inaclose edsystem,the efluidtravelsthrough t acon ntinuousclose edpipingsyste emthatstartsandendsin t thesameplace ethereisno obreakinthe epipingloop.The T vastmajo orityofhydron nicpipingsyste ed.Themost emsareclose c commonopen nsystemisthe ecoolingtowe erportionofachilledwater rsystem,asde epictedbelow w.Abreakinthepiping s systemoccurswherethewa aterexitsthespraynozzles, ,andisexpose edtoairinthefillsectiono ofthetower.T Thewater c collectsinthecoolingtower rsumpbefore ebeingpumpe edaroundthe eloopagain.N Notethatthec chilledwaters sideofthis d diagram(theright r side)isclosed.Because eitisclosed,an a expansion tankabsorbsanythermale expansionoft thefluid. O Opensystemsdontrequire eexpansiontanks,astheflu uidisnaturally yfreetoundergothermale expansion.

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## Ca alculatin ng Pump p Head

S So,forhydron nicapplication ns,wecansay ythat: 1. Forclo osedsystems: :Pumphead=thesumofall a frictionpre essuredrops Where: onpressuredr rop=pipingpressure p drop+terminalun nitpressuredr rop+sourceu unitpressured drop*+ Frictio valvepressuredrop p+accessorie espressuredro op. pensystems:Pump P head=thesumofal llfrictionlosse esplusthesta aticliftofthefluidplusthe epressure 2. Forop head. t boiler,chiller,orheatex xchanger,whi ichcreatesthe ehotorchilled dwater. *The"sourceunit"isdefinedasthe S StepsinCalculatingthePum mpHead B Basically,weneed n toplugvaluesintothe eproperformu ulaabove. S Step1:Layoutthepipingsy ystemusinglo ogicalrouting gasdetermine edbythebuil ldingrequirem ments.Notee each t terminalunitand a itsGPM. S Step2:Selectpipesizesfor reachsegmen nt,basedonproper p velocity yandpressur redrop. T ThegraphsbelowarefromtheASHRAEFundamentals F Book.Recom mendedveloc citiesare:
o o

o 2"andUnd der:2fpsmini imumto4fps smaximum PipeSizesof PipeSizesof o over2":.75 5ft.ofP/100equivalentfe eetminimumt to4ft.ofP/10 00equivalent tfeet maximum

## Ca alculatin ng Pump p Head

T Therecommen ndedrangesensure e thatthepipingsyste emwillbequie et,consumere easonablepumphorsepow wer,andbe ndedbasedonthefactthat r reasonablyeco onomicaltoin nstall.Notethattheminimu umvelocitiesa arerecommen tlower v velocitieswillallow a airtoco ollectathighpoints, p withth hepossibleres sultofairbind ding.
O Oncethelayou utandpipesiz zeforeachsectionhasbeendetermined followthesesteps: S Step3:Determ mineFrictionDuetoSource e,Terminalan ndAccessory EquipmentIn ncluding:
o o o

dterminalEqu uipment:Cons sultmanufactu urerscatalogs rselections. Sourceand sorcomputer Accessoryitems i includefilters,straine ers,checkvalv vesormultipu urposevalvesthatcouldha avea significantpressuredrop pthatwouldnot n becovered dundertheeq quivalentfeet tofpipingrule eofthumb. inevalveDPrefer r tocurves sorCvratings s.ACvisdefin nedastheflow watwhichthe evalvewill Todetermi havearesistanceof1PS SIG(2.31feet) ).Sincethepre essuredropis sproportional ltothesquare eoftheflow hefollowingfo ormulatocalc culatethepre ssuredropthroughthevalv veforanyflow wrate: rate,useth PDInFeet=(FlowRate/ /RatedCv)2X2.31

## Ca alculatin ng Pump p Head

F Figure2,Static cHeightExam mple S Step5:Determ minethePressureHead(So omeOpenSys stemsOnly) If fthesystemis sopen,determ minethepressuredifferent tialrequired,iifany.Dontfo orgettomulti iplypressured differentials inPSIX2.31/P PSI. S Step6:Determ minethe"Wo orstPressureDrop D Loop"an ndEstimateth heFrictionLossforthatLoo opbyUsingE Equivalent F Feet" B Becausefitting gsresultinmo orepressuredrop d thanplain npipe,weacc countforthem mbyusing"eq quivalentleng gth."The e equivalentlengthofapiping gcircuitisthe eactualmeasu uredlengthpl usanallowan nceforallthefittings(elbow ws,tees, v valves,etc.).

## Ca alculatin ng Pump p Head

T Tousethisme ethod,addthe eequivalentle engthofeachitemintheflu uidspathtoth heactualleng gthofpipingtogetthe t totalequivalen ntfeetofpipin ng.

## Shortc cutmethodfo ordeterminin ngequivalentlength:

D Designersofte enskiptheabo ovemethodandsimplymultiplytheactu ualpipingleng gthtimes1.5t to1.75togetthe e equivalentleng gth.Thisprov videsspeedan ndareasonabl lyaccuratees timationfor" "typical"hydro onicpipingsys stems.As w withanyruleof o thumb,how wever,watchout o foroddballsituations(t theboilerroom mis2blocksa awayfromthe ebuilding,a p pipingsystemwithanextremenumberoffittings,etc).Insuchsitua ations,thelongmethodpro ovidesbettera accuracy. N Nowmultiplythefrictionlo ossper100of fpipingfromtheASHRAEc chartstimesth heequivalent tlengthinthe e"worst" lo ooptogetthe etotalpipingfrictionloss.Selecttheworstloopbyins spection,ifpo ossible.Calcula ateseveralbr ranchesif t thereisadoub bt.Thefriction nintheworst tloopisusedasthefriction nhead.

## Ca alculatin ng Pump p Head

F Figure3,Wors stPressureDr ropCircuit N Notethattheworstloopissimply s thatth heloopthatre esultsinthela argesttotalpre essuredrop.D Donotaddpre essuredrops f fromotherpar rallelloops.In nthedrawingabove,assumethatthepre essuredropth hroughCoil3a anditsvalvea arehigher t thanthepress suredropthro oughCoils1an nd2.Assumingthatthebra anchpipingforallthreecirc cuitsissimilar, ,the"worst c case"totalfric ctionlossloop pisshowninlightblue.Itwo ouldbeerron eoustoaddthepressuredropsofthepipingshown inblack. N Notes ecircuitswithlesspressuredropthanthe e"worst"circu uitwillbebala ancedinthefi ieldbypartiallyclosing 1. Those balanc cingvalves(no otshownabov ve). 2. Ifther rearedifferen ntpipesizesonthecircuit,the t circuitma yhavetobea analyzedinse ections,becausethe pressu uredrop/footmayvarybysection. s Thisis sonegoodre asonforselec ctingallpiping gatthesamepressure dropper p 100.Itsim mplifiestheca alculationscon nsiderably. S Safetyfactors Y Youmaywishtoaddasafet tyfactortothecalculatedhead h fortwor reasons:

Jobsiteconditionsmay m notallow wdirectrouting gofpipingas shownonthe eplan.Extrale engthandextr raelbows tion. resultinaddedfrict Thein nteriorpipewallsbecomero oughovertim meduetocorro osion,especia allyinopensy ystems,where efreshwater makeu upbringsinasteadysupply yofcorrosioncausingoxyge en.Thisincrea asesfriction.V Varioussource es recom mmendtotalsa afetyallowanc cesof1525% %forfrictionca alculations.Notethatthefrictiontablesassumecold water r,whichresult tsinmorefrict tionthanhotwater.Theref fore,ifyouare edesigningahotwatersys stem,you alread dyhaveasafe etymarginof faround12%.Becarefulof excessivesafe etyfactors.Th heyresultino oversized pump pimpellerstha atcausewaste edenergy!

P PressureDrop pCorrectionsfor f Glycol. S Somesystemsutilizeeitherethyleneorpropylene p glycolmixturesin nlieuofwater r.Thesefluidsresultinhigherpump h headsthando oeswater.Fordiscussionsof ftheeffectsof o glycol,conta actyourlocalVemco,Inc.o office w www.vemcoin nc.com