Differences Between Piston Pumps and Plunger Pumps

Plunger Pumps

Pumps are used to move fluids from one area to another by raising the fluid’s pressure and providing the required driving force for flow. Electrical or steam energy can be converted into kinetic motion, which is then utilized to power the pump. Due to the inefficiency of the pump and the motor, some of this mechanical energy is added to the fluid as work energy, and the rest is lost as friction. In this article, we discuss the main differences between Piston pumps and plunger pumps.

Top Difference Between Plunger pump and Piston Pump:

Piston Pumps:

The high-pressure seal reciprocates with the piston of a piston pump, which is a form of positive displacement pump.

A piston pump is made up of a cylinder with a reciprocating piston and a rod that goes through a gland at the cylinder’s end. The liquid enters through a suction valve from the suction line and exits through a delivery valve. Single-acting or double-acting pumps are available.

A piston pump’s theoretical supply is equal to the entire swept volume of the cylinders. With a volumetric efficiency of more than 90%, the actual delivery may be less than the theoretical value.

Steam or an electric motor can directly drive the piston pump.

The piston-type pump is relatively easy to build and runs efficiently over a wide variety of operating conditions. They have the ability to handle viscous liquids and generate high pressures.

It does not require priming and may function against a high head. The delivery, on the other hand, is uneven, putting an uneven load on the driving mechanism.

Because the volume provided by a well-maintained piston pump is precisely known, these pumps are used as metering pumps.

Plunger Pumps:

A plunger pump is a positive displacement pump with a fixed high-pressure seal and a flat tubular plunger that moves through it.

Plunger pumps are distinguished from piston pumps by the presence of one or more constant diameter plungers that reciprocate via packing glands, displacing liquid from cylinders with significant radial clearance. They are always single acting in the sense that the liquid is pumped from only one end of the plunger.

Pumps with one, two, three, four, five, or even more cylinders are available. The horizontal design is common in simplex and duplex apartments. Vertical designs with three or more cylinders are common. An electric motor, a steam or gas engine, or a steam turbine can all be used as the driver.


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