Some Basic Info:

The Hydraulic Ram Pump is a means of moving water uphill without electricity. 

Watch this video to understand what the Ram Pump is and how to install it as well as get it running:

1. Water Source

Do you have the flow required to run the Pump? The Ram Pump will need a continuous flow of water to operate.  Determining the flow rate will help determine the size pump that you need. Measure your gallons per minute by placing a 5 gallon bucket in the water and collect all the water while timing how long it takes to fill the bucket and divide the gallons of water by the time in seconds and then multiply by 60 seconds to get GPM.  Example: 5 gallons filled in 6 seconds :   5/6=.833   :   .833*60= 50 gallons per minute.     The Flow rate for a ram pump needs to be enough to supply a continuous flow to the pump.  Each pump size below will have the needed flow rate listed.

Check out this video to help you with measuring flow rate:


2. Feet of head (fall of water into the pump)

There is a ratio that determines the results of the pump and that is 1′ of head will give you 7′ of lift.  So if you have one or more feet of  drop in your water source than you are ready for a ram pump. Without this feet of head you will not be able to use the ram pump. Watch this video showing a simple way to find the feet of head:

3.  Delivery height required

How high do you need to pump water? check the feet of head that you have falling into the pump from the source. The ram pump will have a 1:7 ratio of feet of head to lift. So if your required lift is 50′ and you have 4′ of head you will not be able to reach the desired height. because  7*4= 28′ .  You would need approximately 7.5 feet of head for a 50′ lift because 7*7.5= 52.5′.

I have tested a 1-1/4″ ram pump up to 70′ of lift running off 12′ of head. Check that out here:

 4. Ram Pumps

There are several styles of ram pump but they all work on the same principle. You can purchase PreBuilt pumps from Land to House here: Ram Pumps. These pumps are assembled and ready to attach to a drive pipe. Select the size that you need that is appropriate for your water flow and pumping needs.

This figure should help you understand the components of the Ram Pump setup:

ram components1

5. How do ram pumps fair in the cold?

Because the water inside the ram pump is always moving they are very resistant to freezing. Just make sure that you have the delivery pipe open and not closed off. If you close off the pipe then the water inside will freeze. Check out this short update on a ram in cold weather:

6. Can a Ram Pump work underwater? 

Several people have asked the question and I have the answer. You can watch this video and see for yourself:

The pump will work underwater and does add a little more feet of head to the pump as the pump goes under. Now I have no way of testing a pump deeper then what I have in this video but I assume that there is a point where the water pressing down on the pump will stop it from working.

7. Is there a way to increase the pumping height of a Ram Pump?

Yes there sure is!  Every time the pump runs through its cycle water is pressed into the pressure tank and then out the delivery pipe. Now the water that is in the delivery pipe is always pressing down on the pump. So if you place a one way check valve in the delivery pipe to prevent so much water from pressing down on the pump you can increase the potential of the system. What does all that mean? Well watch this video and find out:

 8. What if the feet of head is over several hundred feet?

If you need to run your drive pipe over a distance of more than 100′ you will need to install a stand pipe. This is important because if you have a drive pipe that is to long your pump will work slow and lose potential. So use a pipe that is larger than your drive pipe to span the long distance and then use a pipe that will stand up tall and match the original source. From the stand pipe you then have your drive pipe. Watch this video and it will all make since.

Do remember to buy a ram pump from my store. I would love to sell you one. 🙂 Click here.

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