Program Updates

Manual pumps not working properly

Posted Jan 24, 2014

Aguayuda has two manual pumps installed in Guasimo and Frijol. Unfortunately, the locally made manual pumps from Bogotá are breaking down almost every month since we installed them in 2012. Due to the harsh environment in La Guajira, the check valve and gaskets need frequent replacements. The design also does not provide adequate protection for the manual pump components.

The community members of Frjiol have decided to use a different type of check valve and gasket to see if the pump will work more consistently with minimal repairs required. As of now, the results have been positive.

However, in Guasimo, the community replaced the manual pump with their old crank and rope system after being tired and frustrated the manual pump breaking down so often. The community does not want to try another manual pump due to their bad experience. They prefer to have a windmill, which is a common technology in La Guajira. Unfortunately, a windmill does not make sense at an artesian well due to the insufficient amount of water of the artesian well. The windmill will pump the artesian well dry in a matter of weeks.

The new approach with Guasimo will be to wait until we have a new manual pump installed in a nearby community that works better. Then invite members of Guasimo including the community leader and authority leader to see if they prefer the new manual pump.

Aguayuda reached out to Sean Furey from Rural Water Supply Network about his experience and recommendations regarding manual pumps. We also plan to talk to the other organizations at the PMG in Guatemala in February 2014 to see what manual pumps they have had success with in the past.

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