Midwest Piggery has been breeding pigs for over 30 years.
A mid-sized enterprise, the piggery raises the animals and then sells them to market.
As part of the piggery’s recycling philosophy, all pig waste is collected and broken down before being used as fertiliser on the grounds.
Midwest Piggery principal partner and manager Mat Collier said, “We collect the pig waste in what we call sump pits.”
“The effluent is then pumped from the sump up to a holding dam.
“It then moves progressively through a series of dams before the effluent is eventually ready for use as a fertiliser.’
To move the pig waste from the sump to the holding dam, the piggery was using three market-leading helical-rotor pumps – also known as progressive cavity pumps.
Located at ground level and attached to a suction lift, the pumps were proving increasingly inefficient and costly to maintain.
“After we bought the helical-rotor pumps, we quickly discovered that they have a very fine tolerance,” Mat said.
“The suction hose started to block continuously and, if the pumps ran dry, the motor would burn out and the rubber stator would melt.
“Not only did we have to remove the choke, we had to replace the stator, which was incredibly awkward and frustrating.
“Getting to the stator was difficult enough, then we had to literally peel away the melted rubber that had stuck to the equipment.
“Every time we had to clear the choke and replace the stator, it took a good 3-4 hours of our time.”
The process proved not only time intensive, it was also very costly.
According to Mat, a new stator cost about $1000 and, because the pumps were choking and burning out with increasing regularity, the cost to replace the stator was also rising.
In one year alone, the piggery had spent about $10,000 on new stators.
Fed up and frustrated with the helical pumps, Mat started to search for a far more efficient solution.
Coincidentally, Mat’s father-in-law had previously read an article on Hydro Innovations and the Gorman-Rupp pumps that it supplied, drawing Mat’s attention to it.
After reading the article, the trial period that Hydro Innovations was happy to provide prospective customers particularly appealed to Mat.
“Having paid and used a series of pumps – including submersible ones in the past – I didn’t want to spend any more money on pumps that could not do the job,” Mat said.
“So, coming across a supplier that was happy to let the pump prove itself before I bought it was great.”
After reviewing the piggery’s requirements, Hydro Innovations suggested that Mat install a Gorman-Rupp T2A3-B wastewater pump fitted with a 4kW motor – a compact model that would provide both the flow and pressure that Mat needed.
According to Hydro Innovations general manager Garry Grant, the Gorman-Rupp T2A3-B is a rugged self-priming centrifugal solids-handling pump.
Very easy to maintain, the pump has an external removable flap valve that can be removed and inspected without the inconvenience of disconnecting the piping or draining the pump casing.
In addition, if any choking does occur, the pump can be easily and quickly unclogged via the removable cover plate.
The design of the pump also allows users to adjust the clearance externally to ensure optimum performance without having to pull it apart.
The removable rotating assembly allows the shaft to be inspected or replaced simply by loosening four bolts from the drive end of the pump, eliminating the need to disturb the pump casing or piping.
Garry was more than happy to have Mat trial the pump for 90 days, however within 60 days, Mat was convinced the Gorman-Rupp T2A3-B could do the job effectively and purchased the pump.
“Within two months of having the pump installed at the piggery, I knew it was capable,” Mat said.
“It moves more liquid than the previous pump and is extremely easy to maintain, which for me is the major bonus.
“The open impeller design makes it very simple to remove any blockages.
“I only have to loosen two bolts to get inside the pump and clear it, which takes me just 15 minutes.
“And, of course an added bonus is that we no longer have to waste money purchasing stators.”
So impressed was Mat with the performance of the Gorman-Rupp T2A3-B, he purchased a second pump and is now considering a third pump.
“It’s great to see there are still suppliers that will stand behind their products and let you trial them before buying,” Mat said.
“If Hydro Innovations hadn’t let me trial the pump, I doubt I would have bought it upfront because I have been burnt so many times before.
“After all my negative experiences, the Gorman-Rupp T2A3-B is far more than I hoped for.”