Boonville City Public Works Dept. Director M.L. Cauthon updated the city council on furnishing lift station pumps that will need to be updated. This was due after lack of support by the current company.

“For decades we have used Gorman Rupp J Series submersible electric pumps at most of our sanitary sewer lift stations. We still do. The Gorman Rupp pumps were considered top-of-the-line equipment. In addition to being very good hardware, Gorman Rupp factory and distributor support was available,” Cauthon stated in a memorandum. “Four years ago, Gorman Rupp sold the J Series pump line, as we know it, to a Danish Company, Grundfos. Gorman Rupp continued with a new line of submersible pumps that weren't compatible to the J Series and Grundfos dropped all support for the J Series. The first indication we had there was a change or problem with the J Series pumps was when previously common parts were not available. Unavailable, without notice or explanation. Upon inquiry, the Gorman Rupp factory and the distributor's representatives were silent to a point of ignoring us. After a while, the distributor's representative admitted that the J Series pump line had been sold and all support had been discontinued.”

This news prompted the public works department to locate spare parts themselves.

“That supply of pump parts has gone along in bridging the lack of support for the equipment. At the same time, MECO Engineering began the research into a replacement for the Gorman Rupp J Series pumps. Along with the WWTP staff, MECO's engineers determined the most critical pumps for replacement first are two 54 hp pumps; one in lift station one and one in lift station two. To determine a replacement; power and performance parameters, physical size and plumbing connection arrangements were considered. Cost and servicing distributor were also evaluated. Pumps from three manufacturers / servicing distributors met the requirements: Flygt, Ebara and ABS,” Cauthon added.

According to Cauthon, Vandevanter Engineering offered two Flygt pumps for a base price of $56,488 with a $59,964 option; Alliance Pump and Mechanical offered two Ebara pumps for $50,969 and FTC Equipment offered two ABS pumps for $48,514.

“We have experience with smaller Flygt pumps. We don't have experience with Ebara and ABS pumps. We have limited experience with Vandevanter Engineering and no experience with FTC Equipment,” Cauthon stated. “We have considerable experience with Alliance Pump and Mechanical. For more than 25 years Alliance Pump and Mechanical has provided, installed and repaired all manner of equipment, large and small, in routine and emergency situations, at the water treatment plant, wastewater treatment plant and lift stations. Alliance Pump and Mechanical provided after hours, on-site repair and other assistance for the duration of the 2003 raw water pump house loss of pumping incident. They also were on-site within hours of the 2014 JD lift station explosion incident. Alliance Pump and Mechanical has been and continues to be most responsive and dependable.”

He added that these pieces of machinery are critical.

“When buying and using machinery that is subjected to the demands of a sanitary sewer lift station, much of the success we should experience with that machinery will be a direct result of the support that comes with the purchase,” he stated.