Eliminating Ragging & Clogging

Aug. 8, 2018
Westfield, Ind., lift station combats ragging with solids-handling pump

Westfield, Ind., is a growing suburb of Indianapolis and was voted by CNN Money magazine one of the top 50 best places to live in 2013. It has a population of 30,000 people, and recent growth spikes have resulted in construction of multiple subdivisions and other community projects. The Grand Park project was started in 2012 and is the largest sports complex in the Midwest.

The rapid growth of the city and the construction of the sports complex put added pressure on the area’s infrastructure, including the wastewater lift stations. Citizens Energy Group manages the municipality’s wastewater lift stations, and its affiliate Citizens Wastewater of Westfield LLC—collectively “Citizens”—owns and operates the combination water, wastewater and natural gas utility in the city. Citizens serves about 800,000 people and thousands of businesses in the Indianapolis area.


One of the 26 lift stations that Citizens is responsible for supporting is the Tomlinson Road lift station, which supports the Grand Park Sports Complex and a retirement home. The duplex lift station previously operated with two 10-hp non-clog pumps and was clogging multiple times a week because of the high volume of hand wipes and other materials that cause ragging. The lift station also deals with changing flows due to the intermittent use of the sports complex. The clogs were causing frequent, unnecessary maintenance trips, up to 40 hours of overtime per week and off-hour interruptions for the service crew. The area’s growth required a look at some possible upgrades. 


Citizens worked with American Pump Repair & Service Inc. to design a better solution. American Pump Repair & Service is a pump distributor that specializes in providing, servicing and maintaining pumps for municipal, commercial building and industrial customers.

American Pump Repair & Service reviewed the lift stations requirements with Citizens and recommended upgrading the lift station with two Barnes 6SHV solids-handling 60-hp pumps. The Barnes vortex design and features could solve the ongoing ragging issue. Randy Higginbotham, wastewater supervisor for Citizens, became interested in a Barnes solids-handling pump after touring the Crane Pumps & Systems manufacturing facility and solids-handling test lab.

Crane Pumps & Systems is a manufacturer of pumps, accessories and services based out of Piqua, Ohio. Crane Pumps & Systems provides solutions for municipal, commercial, industrial, residential and military market segments. These markets are served through six historically reputable brands: Barnes, Burks, Crown, Deming, Prosser and Weinman.


Citizens chose Barnes SH Series for reasons that include the attractive five-year warranty, competitive lead-time and maintenance saving plug-and-play feature. The Tomlinson Road lift station was upgraded with a new rail system to better accommodate the area’s growth, as well as two Barnes 6-in. Vortex 60-hp pumps. The SH Series pump eliminated frequent expensive service calls and equipped the lift station for future growth. The larger pumps and vortex design by Barnes provides a clog-free solution by handling ragging and a high volume of solids.

Learn more about this case by watching this video on the Westfield, Ind., SH Series case study.

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