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How to Choose a Solar Water Pump with the Right Flow?

How to Choose a Solar Water Pump with the Right Flow?

Aug 8,2022
Choosing the right solar water pump for your farm can feel difficult because there are several things you should consider and you have to tie these to your specific farm.

Unfortunately, some farmers end up disappointed when their solar pumps don't pump water as fast as they expected or needed. However, this is not the case - a properly sized solar pump should provide you with all the water you need.

This blog is designed to help you decipher what the flow you see on the pump box refers to, what factors on your farm affect how much water you need and how to use your pump most efficiently.

Pump manufacturer flow

First, the flow rate mentioned by the pump manufacturer is usually the maximum flow rate for that pump.

This usually means it will be measured under optimal conditions - low pump head and strongest sunlight. It's important to keep this in mind as we take into account factors that affect the flow and the amount of water required.

What flow rates mean for irrigation on your farm:
What affects flow rate?

1. Total lift/slope of the land

The greater the vertical distance the pump needs to lift the water, the harder it will work. That means more energy is used to lift the water, and your pump won't be able to lift as much water to that height.

2. Sunlight level (climate)

The brighter the sun, the more energy the solar panel can capture and convert into pumping energy. So if you want to irrigate in the morning or at night or on a cloudy day, when the sun's rays don't have as much energy, you won't be able to pump out as much water.

3. Pipe size (back pressure)

Just like lifting the water higher, back pressure also reduces the amount of water you see coming out of the end of the hose. Back pressure is usually caused by pumping water through a tight space, which consumes more energy because the pump has to force the water through a small hole. Using a hose that is too small or has a kink or blockage in the hose can cause excessive back pressure.

4. Pump efficiency

Different pump designs have different efficiencies. As energy is lost through the system, inefficient pumps will use more energy per liter of water pumped. Pump efficiency is often not clearly shown in the pump's marketing materials, but it's worth asking your pump dealer as it relates to the amount of solar PV required for the system.

5. Amount of solar PV

Using pumps to increase the amount of solar PV will increase flow as more energy is available to pump water.

However, don't always assume that the more pumps you have with solar PVs, the higher the flow, many inefficient solar pumps will pile up on the PVs to make up for the energy lost in the system, in which case you'll end up paying more There is no benefit.

6. Don't be fooled by HP

Like the number of solar PVs, the horsepower rating (HP) of the pump can be misleading. For solar water pumps, if HP is stated, it usually refers to the largest solar panel that can be used by the system. If the pump is inefficient and just uses more energy, it doesn't always mean you'll get more flow. Always check HP and specified flow.

What traffic do you need?

The six factors above affect what the pump can deliver to your farm... But how do you calculate how much water is needed to get to your farm in the first place?

1. Land area (the area you want to irrigate)

The larger the area you are irrigating, the more water you will need.

2. The soil on your farm

Clay holds water close to the surface, it floods easily and requires less water application than fast free-draining sandy soils.

3. The crops you want to grow

Different crops have different water needs, and it's a good idea to plan and understand which crops you want to grow before investing in irrigation.

Examples of water-intense crops:






Examples of crops with low water requirements:



Sweet potato



If you're not sure about the water requirements of the crop you're growing, it's best to consult an agronomist.

4. Your irrigation application method

You can use a solar pump to apply water to crops in several different ways. You can use furrow irrigation, hose-pipe irrigation, sprinkler, or drip irrigation.

If you want to use furrow irrigation, you need higher flow because this method floods the land quickly, on the other hand, drip irrigation uses slow drips to irrigate over a longer period of time. Drip irrigation requires lower flow rates than furrow irrigation.

The above details how to choose a solar water pump with a suitable flow rate. If you want to buy a solar water pump, please contact us.

TPON is a professional custom solar water pump manufacturer. All the important parts of the solar water pump are manufactured and processed by our factory. The workshop is equipped with automatic winding machines, finishing equipment, advanced assembly lines, and precision testing machines. Each solar well pump will be rigorously tested before leaving the factory to ensure product quality. Every month, we export at least 15,500 solar water pumps to all over the world, which have been well received by countless buyers. TPON solar well pumps never stop the steps of improving and innovating our solar pumps to meet different market demands.

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