Renting an industrial vacuum pump has advantages for short-term trials, emergency backups, seasonal capacity augmentation, and more.
By: Rob Kalfs & Mike Makie, Kerr Pump & Supply
A vacuum pump represents a large capital expenditure. When the need for vacuum pump equipment arises, particularly if the need is emergent or temporary, renting could be the right choice.
Uses of Industrial Vacuum Pumps
Industrial vacuum pumps are critical equipment in chemical, food processing, pharmaceutical, aerospace, and other industries. A small sampling of applications for industrial vacuum pumps includes a variety of distillation, industrial drying, and evaporative processes.
- Leak testing of hydraulic brake systems in new cars.
- Testing altitude simulation in aerospace applications.
- Thermoforming (vacuum forming) of plastic parts.
- Vacuum hold down.
- Vacuum handling (pick and place).
- Pneumatic conveying.
- Evaporation to eliminate excess moisture in pharmaceutical production.
- Pre-evacuating gas cylinders before filling.
- Drying produce after washing by applying latent heat and changing the phase so the lettuce remains unaltered.
- Removing gas from glass bottles before filling.
- Removing gases liberated during a plastic extrusion process (including volatile chemicals).
- Addressing the hazards of hydrocarbons, along with some relatively toxic and flammable substances from chemical vapor deposition (CVD) furnaces on an aircraft manufacturing line.
When Buying an Industrial Vacuum Pump Makes Sense
When purchasing capital equipment such as a vacuum pump, costs include the equipment’s purchase price, insurance premiums, maintenance, and repair fees. If a company has the financial ability to buy and retain the equipment, the one-off price of procuring the pump might be the only high cost a company incurs, and other expenses are usually considerably lower.
If the equipment will be used for years, buying a pump is often more economical in the long run than renting, particularly if the equipment is in frequent use.
When Industrial Vacuum Pump Rental Makes Sense
When a vacuum is an essential part of a process or when it enables a process to be more efficient, renting a vacuum pump may be the right choice under certain circumstances, particularly for short-term use.
An industrial vacuum pump is generally a large capital expenditure. Realistically, an investment in a vacuum pump does not always fit a company’s budget. Renting allows a company to get the equipment needed while preserving capital and minimizing the effect on cash flow. Rental expenses can normally be deducted as a business expense (although owned equipment can usually be deducted or depreciated as well, albeit with a greater upfront cost).
Apart from cost considerations, renting can be the better option for several scenarios, and it is good to be aware that some companies specialize in supporting short-term rental needs with equipment matched to the application.
During emergencies, maintenance and expansions, interim vacuum pumping solutions may be required. In at least three scenarios, vacuum pump challenges can be best addressed through rental:
Vacuum pumps sometimes need to be taken offline to be rebuilt, and they can also fail at the least convenient times. Any amount of downtime quickly becomes expensive. An emergency rental quickly replaces a failed unit and gets the process up and running until a new or rebuilt vacuum pump can be available. Rentals will often be delivered to the facility the same day for emergency situations. In some cases, startup assistance may be available, and the vacuum pump will arrive ready to run.
Renting can be a flexible solution when users need to increase production capacity without capital expenditures, either due to increased seasonal demand or short-term projects. Renting ensures a facility has the most updated equipment available without the burden of storing or maintaining it, to take advantage of seasonal opportunities.
For any number of vacuum pump applications, it can make sense to rent a vacuum pump on a trial basis before deciding on a purchase. When there is any question what the right model is for production needs, renting the industrial pump helps provide assurance it is worth the purchase price.
Renting enables operators to try out the full range of features within the facility to get a better idea of how it suits the application needs. If needs change, the company has the flexibility to change to a different model or completely change the process while avoiding the sunk costs and regular maintenance costs that come with owning equipment.
Rent the Right Industrial Vacuum Pump
Industrial vacuum pumps are specialty items available in a wide range of specifications. The ideal type and size of industrial vacuum pump, seal construction, and material construction depend on the application. Whether renting or buying a vacuum pump, careful evaluation and selection will help users come to the right pumping solution.
Rental vacuum pumps are available in a diverse variety of technologies:
- Oil-lubricated rotary vane vacuum pumps.
- Dry running claw pumps.
- Liquid ring vacuum pumps.
- Piston vacuum pumps.
Regardless of whether a user is renting or buying an industrial vacuum pump, they must consider whether their application requires a lubricated or dry pump, whether chemical resistance is necessary, the range of flow rates and pressure level ranges required, and any specific motor requirements. Knowledgeable, experienced professionals are the best choice when determining the most appropriate vacuum pump equipment. Learn more about Kerr Pump & Supply Vacuum Pump Rentals
Rob Kalfs is vice president of sales at Kerr Pump & Supply, with over 32 years of experience in the pump industry. He can be reached at Rob@Kerrpump.com.
Mike Makie is air products manager at Kerr Pump & Supply, with industry and product knowledge built through hands-on field and classroom experience with air products, including industrial blowers, vacuum pumps, and systems. He can be reached at Mmakie@Kerrpump.com. For more info, visit kerrpump.com.