A pump curve is usually one of the first things you should look at before purchasing a pump or when operating it. But how do you know that you have the right pump for the right job?
In short, a pump curve is a graphical representation of a pump’s performance based on testing conducted by the manufacturer. Each pump has its own pump performance curve which varies from pump to pump. This is based on the pump's horsepower and the size and shape of the impeller.
Understanding any given pump’s performance curve enables you to understand the limitation of that pump. Operating above its given range will not only damage the pump, it will also cause unneeded downtime.
This is an example of a pump curve: