When visiting any mine or quarry, it is not unusual to see small amounts of liquid leaking from wet process equipment, such as slurry pumps. Depending on the gland seal type, a small amount of clear liquid leaking can be a sign of a healthy operation.
However, significant increases in product leakage from pumps could indicate that there may be an issue with the gland seal. Alternatively, the hydraulic end may have worn and needs replacing.
Liners inside slurry-handling equipment are designed to contain the product, while providing a low-turbulence and efficient flow path through the pump; excessive wear leads to inefficient operation and a reduction in throughput.
Continuing to use worn-out liners will expose the pump outer casings to the abrasive slurry, which can cause irreversible and expensive damage. Therefore, it’s not economical to avoid the cost of a new set of liners if you subsequently need to replace a whole pump or cyclone.
Product leakage is a clear sign that liners may need replacing. If you notice excessive leakage, have the equipment inspected for damage or wear immediately. Rapid wear or changes in wear rates may indicate changes in the process, incompatible materials or misapplication of the equipment.