If supplying power for an electric pump is not practical, the alternative is a traditional engine drive “trashy”. When faced with this scenario, there are two options: a wet prime pump, where water is added to the pump chamber to prime the unit, or a dry prime pump which uses a vacuum pump or compressor to assist with priming.

The huge advantage wet prime trash pumps have over dry prime is their simplicity. They don’t require complicated priming apparatus in the form of complex compressors or vacuum pump systems. Conventional dry prime pumps use an induction style system not designed for trash handling.  

Wet prime trash pumps are easy to set up, use and maintain. With fewer moving parts, they are also the most reliable!

“Dry prime pumps have the ability to ‘snore’. That means they will automatically reprime as the water level varies,” Aussie Pumps’ Product Manager, Brad Farrugia, said.

“However, for straightforward water transfer or dewatering a flooded construction site, a simple wet prime pump is a more cost-effective option,” Mr Farrugia said.

To transfer typical construction site water, industry experts recommend heavy-duty trash pumps capable of handling silt and sand laden water without ‘choking’.

Aussie Pumps produce a complete range of trash pumps from 2”- 6” in what they call “Mine Boss” configurations. These pumps come designed for tough work at construction sites.  

Aussie’s Mine Boss range of trash pumps come with super heavy-duty 38mm full galvanised frames with lifting bars and E-stops, battery isolation and optional bunded trays, or even wheel kits. These machines are built like tanks!  

The lifting bar, at the point of perfect balance, is designed into the frame to enable the unit to be moved easily by crane or excavator where necessary.

Aussie wet prime trash pumps are designed to handle solids in suspension, and that means big, open ‘non-clog’ style impellers. The ability to handle solid laden liquids includes flood water, slurry and even effluent with solid concentrations up to 25 per cent of the liquid volume. They can deliver flows of up to 6,000lpm and heads as high as 47m.

The self-priming range will draft water through a vertical lift of 7.6m. No mechanical priming aids are needed and that includes foot valves.

“A lot of contractors use dry prime pumps for site dewatering because they don’t understand how simple the wet prime principle is,” Mr Farrugia said.  

Self-priming or wet prime pumps just require the pump cavity to be filled prior to starting for the first time. The pump will subsequently self-prime as long as there is water above the impeller. An internal check valve ensures the prime is held once the pump stops. The simplicity is what makes these pumps so popular and wet prime pumps can last 20-30 years with regular maintenance.

“Trash pumps have lower investment and maintenance costs compared to vacuum primed pumps,” Mr Farrugia said.  

Further information on Aussie’s wet prime transfer pump range and free copies of the Aussie Pump Smart Guide are available from Australian Pump Industries at

Lauren ‘LJ’ Butler is the Assistant Editor of Utility magazine and has been part of the team at Monkey Media since 2018.

After completing a Bachelor of Media, Communications and Professional Writing at the University of Wollongong in 2014, and prior to writing about the utility sector, LJ worked as a Journalist and Sub Editor across the horticulture, hardware, power equipment, construction and accommodation industries with publishers such as Glenvale Publications, Multimedia Publishing and Bean Media Group.

©2024 Utility Magazine. All rights reserved


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