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Maintenance Tip:  Cavitation Failure Analysis

Cavitation is caused by the presence of gas bubbles under high pressure being suddenly subjected to a low pressure.  This causes the bubbles to burst (implode) and release energy to the metal surface, which causes the fracture of small, minute pieces of metal from the base casting.

cavitated rotor

Possible Causes


Seal Water/Liquid Compressant

  • Incorrect seal water (liquid compressant) rates
  • Operation of liquid compressant above its
     vapor pressure
  • Liquid compressant saturated with minute
     gas bubbles under pressure
Possible solutions


Seal Water/Liquid Compressant

  • Ensure proper seal water/compressant rate
  • Lower vacuum
  • Change liquid compressant
  • Remove bubbles from liquid compressant

Blocked Discharges

  • Discharge port, pump outlet or
     drain blocked

Blocked Discharges

  • Unblock all ports, outlets and drains

Improper Clearances

  • Clearance wide on pumps operating at
     high vacuum levels

Improper Clearances

  • Ensure proper clearance is maintained

Improper Working Pressure

  • Working beyond maximum operating
     pressure (vacuum or compressor)

Improper Working Pressure

  • Lower operating pressure

A Nash Field Service Technician can help you diagnose a cavitation issue, and a Nash WebSentry can alert you about poor conditions before problems begin.  For more on these options, use the links below.


To see this maintenance tip in pdf format, click here 

To see a list of our field service offerings, click here 

To read more about the WebSentry Process Monitor and Datalogging system, click here 


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