From the “Super Brute” pump to the “OptiSpeed” drive, manufacturers are providing contractors with practical solutions for many applications. For information on the products and services highlighted here, please contact the manufacturers via the phone numbers and Web site addresses listed below.

Check Valve Circulator Pump

The “Super Brute” three-speed pump from Grundfos Pumps Corp. (Olathe, Kan.) is said to offer flexibility, torque, and full-flow features for hydronic heating and radiant panel installations.

“This pump is designed to simplify ordering and installations for wholesalers and contractors,” said Lyndal Moore, HVAC product manager. “Contractors … would need as many as five models to get the coverage they can get with a single Super Brute.”

The pump includes a removable check valve, contributing a large flow range of 0 to 17 gallons per minute and a head pressure range of 0 to 19 feet.

The pumps come standard with cast iron housing and stainless steel interiors. It weighs 7.25 pounds, with a 115-V, 1/25-hp, two-pole, single-phase motor. The maximum fluid temperature for a closed system is 230 degrees F, with a minimum fluid temperature of 26 degrees.

For more information, call 913-227-3400 or visit

Condensate Pumps For Mini-Split A/C

Without a condensate pump, installers must rely on gravity, which usually means placing the indoor unit on an outside wall. Condensate pumps such as Little Giant’s (Oklahoma City) EC-400 are designed to remove condensation from wall-mounted, ceiling, and fancoil mini-split air conditioning equipment when gravity drainage is not possible or practical, the company says.

The EC-400 consists of two components, the pump/control and sealed float sensor reservoir. A three-position symmetrical float sensing system offers “stick-free” reliability with fully automatic on and off, plus overflow detection for a warning alarm, equipment shutdown, or connection to building management systems, the company states. The pump produces a maximum flow of 3.7 gph with a maximum head of 49 feet and is self-priming; it can be placed up to 3 feet from the water source, the company says.

For installation, intake tubing, tube clamps, adhesive tape, and vent and A/C drain tubing are included. Assembly is a four-step process that amounts to “plugging the components together with the supplied tubing and connecting to a power source,” according to the company.

The float sensor reservoir is placed in the indoor unit. The pump/control unit can be placed within 3 feet of the float sensor unit — in the ceiling void, in the conduit, or in the air handler itself.

The EC-400 is thermally protected and features an encapsulated circuit board/controller and pump. A protective cover isolates power leads once connections are made.

For more information, call 800-701-7894 or visit

HVAC Pump Controller

Bell & Gossett (Morton Grove, Ill.) has introduced the Technovar® pump controller for HVAC, water supply, irrigation, pressure-boosting, and OEM applications. This variable-frequency drive with integral microprocessor controller mounts directly on the motor.

The pump controller is said to adjust power consumption for optimal system performance. The initial system cost is reduced, the company explains, by eliminating the use of separate controls and drives.

The new controller can be installed on any U.S. Electric or Marathon TEFC motor, the company adds.

Standard programmable features include overvoltage and undervoltage protection, overload and overhead protection, adjustable acceleration or deceleration, and high-temperature alarms.

The pump controller allows the system to meet a wide range of requirements, such as multiple pump staging and sequencing of up to four pumps via RS-485 communications. The company says the control performs four basic system control methods: system curve, constant pressure, constant flow, and constant speed. Available in 1- through 30-hp models, the controller works with many commercially available sensors to measure pressure, flow, and differential pressure.

For more information, call 847-966-3700 or visit

Pump Controller-Booster

AquaBoost II pump controller and booster package kits from Goulds Pumps (Seneca Falls, N.Y.) provide solutions for municipal water district customers with low water pressure. Both domestic and light commercial applications can benefit, the company says.

As water use increases, the AquaBoost II changes pump speed to maintain pressure.

The pump controller-booster is available with a range of flow rates to handle homes with up to four baths, irrigation, filtration, and fire suppression systems. It is available as either a separate controller or as part of a complete pump package.

For more information, call 315-568-7123 or visit

A York OptiSpeed drive can be installed on most of the manufacturer’s existing centrifugal chillers. The drive works by continuously optimizing compressor motor speed to actual cooling demand.

Variable-Speed Drive Incentive

York International Corp. (York, Pa.) has a program to encourage variable-speed-drive (VSD) retrofits on centrifugal chillers by guaranteeing energy and dollar savings while eliminating upfront costs for the equipment and installation.

An OptiSpeed VSD can be installed on most existing York centrifugal chillers, and eventually will be available for other manufacturers’ models, according to York.

With its “Opti$ave Guarantee,” York says it will pay for the initial cost of the VSD equipment and installation for qualified projects. In turn, the company will charge the owner a fixed shared-savings rate for every kilowatt-hour saved during the contract period. Contract length and fees are determined after a system inspection and energy analysis, and may vary by customer.

With its onboard “Opti$ave Energy Analyzer,” energy consumption is recorded and compared against fixed-speed operation, validating the energy savings in real time, the company explains. The chiller owner receives a monthly variable charge, based on the difference between the energy savings recorded by the chiller and the contracted shared-savings rate. The shared-savings rate is structured as a percentage of the customer’s blended utility rate. This allows customers to see savings from day one.

At the end of the contract period, the VSD becomes a permanent component of the chiller system and the property of the owner. Contract terms vary by installation, depending on how quickly the energy-cost savings can pay for the VSD retrofit.

For more information, call 800-861-1001 or visit

Publication date: 04/21/2003