Pneumatic drum pumps - everything you need to know before you buy one

Drum pumps are a popular choice for a wide range of industries. They are a portable pump that can be used to empty tanks, barrels, drums, and IBCs. With many liquids transported or delivered in 1000L IBCs or 200 litre drums, these drum pumps allow for easy transfer.

As with other pumps, there are multiple power options. In this blog, our team will discuss the pneumatic drum pump, what makes it different from other drum pumps and how you can integrate one on your site.

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What is a pneumatic drum pump?

A pneumatic drum pump is operated by an air-driven motor. It achieves the mechanical work by expanding compressed air. It then converts compressed air energy to mechanical work through either a linear or rotary motion. Pneumatic drum pumps are particularly suitable for intermittent and short-term operations. Like all other variations of drum pumps, pneumatic drum pumps are used to transfer a liquid from one drum into another. These pumps consist of a pneumatic drive motor and the pump tube.

This pump tube stands as a suction tube vertically in the bunghole of a barrel or an IBC container. The immersion tube fits through the drum’s opening and is often sealed to the top of the container. The ‘pump’ itself is located within the lower end of the immersion tube. The pumped fluid flows between the sleeve and the tube to the discharge port at the motor end.


What can a pneumatic drum pump be used for?

Pneumatic drum pumps are commonly used in applications that require explosion-proof pumps. In these instances, power is required for large volume handling, and electric or manual drum pumps are not appropriate.

Pneumatic drum pumps with conductive stainless-steel tubes are typically used for transferring flammable media of different hazard classes in hazardous environments. These pneumatic drum pumps are labelled with ATEX-approval.

These drum pumps can also pump the following liquids:

  • Hydrochloric acid
  • Sofa lye
  • Formic acid
  • Sal ammoniac
  • Photo developer
  • Lime potash
  • Fixing baths
  • Acetic acid
  • Phosphoric acid
  • Fruit acids
  • Nitric acid
  • Hydrofluoric acid
  • Bleaching solution
  • Water
  • Lactic acid
  • Boric acid
  • Chromic acid
  • Alcohols
  • Soap solutions

They are also useful in mining, food and beverage and chemical industries.


Advantages of pneumatic drum pumps

The main advantage of pneumatic drum pumps is the ability to safely transfer dangerous liquids from containers - avoiding injuries, chemical splashing, leaks, and toxic fumes. Further advantages include:

  • Lightweight and portable
  • Modular design - variety of immersion tubes suitable for varying container sizes
  • Interchangeable pump tubes allow for repurposing of same pneumatic motor 


Limitations of pneumatic drum pumps

Pneumatic drum pumps can limit operators in the following ways:

  • May be designed or constructed for one type of fluid, therefore might not be able to discharge another due to differences in viscosity or chemical incompatibility.
  • Unable to pump liquids with high particulate matter or slurries


Pneumatic drum pumps are a popular choice when transferring a variety of chemical, hazardous, and flammable liquids. Their easy and safe construction ensure the integrity of your site, and protocols.

With a wide variety of pneumatic drum pump accessories available, there is a suitable option for your drum transfer needs from Global Pumps. Get in touch with our team to learn more about our wide range of pneumatic drum pumps and to see which one is right for your application.

Tags: Techniflo, Pneumatic Drum Pump


Guide To Selecting the Best Pump

If you need some guidance on how to select the right pump then you’re not alone! There’s such a wide range of pumps in Australia, from centrifugal pumps to hose pumps to diaphragm pumps. The options available to you can make it a difficult choice, so we’ve created this special guide to help step you through the process of selecting the ideal pump for your requirements.


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