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With VFD Booster Pumps

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With VFD Booster Pumps


The Importance of Pressure

Correct pressure is vital to total system performance—and ultimately—water conservation. We often talk about excess pressure and associated water waste, but what happens when you don’t have enough pressure?


VFD - Sprays and rotors don't fully pop
VFD - Nozzles don't achieve the desired distance
VFD - Water does not reach the last drip emitter

Sustainability Suffers Under Inadequate Pressure

As a consequence of inadequate pressure, there is an inconsistent distribution of water throughout the system. This causes some areas to get wet while others remain dry. Oftentimes, the end user will run the system longer to reach the dry areas while simultaneously over-saturating the wet areas. Ultimately, low pressure uses more water than necessary to keep plants from wilting or dying.

VFD - Sustainability  Chart - Desktop
VFD - Sustainability  Chart - Mobile

How to Boost System Performance
& Conserve Water

Booster Pumps make up for a lack of necessary pressure at the source and help provide constant, consistent, and sufficient pressure throughout the system. It’s common for the pressure at a given site to fluctuate depending on time of day, or to change over time as the demand on the primary water source increases due to nearby development. Booster pumps ensure that these fluctuations in pressure don’t affect the system's performance and that the unique pressure demands of each station are met.

VFD - How to Boost

Product Pressure Requirements:

Depending on the valve's distance and elevation from the POC, as well as the type and number of devices it is servicing, dynamic pressure requirements can vary greatly. Below are the different types of emission devices and their required pressure for optimal distribution uniformity.








3/4” ROTORS PRS 45


1” ROTORS PRS 70-80



The History of Booster Pumps

Historically, booster pumps had just two modes: “ON” or “OFF.” While this did provide adequate pressure to the system, always using the pump at maximum capacity—regardless of how much suction or boost was needed—wasted power. This also stunted the life of the pump and was harder on the irrigation system.


Increase Efficiency with Variable Frequency Drive (VFD)


By ensuring that a booster pump has a Variable Frequency Drive (VFD), irrigation systems that require a booster pump can save up to 20% more energy. VFD’s save energy by delivering the expected flow at the lowest suction/boost possible. A VFD gradually ramps the motor up to meet the actual flow and pressure demands of the system while simultaneously varying the frequency and voltage supplied to the motor. This not only saves energy, but expands the life of the pump and the system by offering a longer-lasting and energy-efficient, irrigation solution.

VFD - Increase Efficiency

Exactly How Much Energy
Will a VFD Save You?

The demand on a pump is ever-changing. Energy savings will depend on the fluctuation of flow and its difference to the maximum capacity of the pump.


If you are running a 60 HP pump capable of 600 GPM at full capacity for a station that only needs 400 GPM or 40 HP, then you are wasting about 20 HP for the duration of that station's runtime. The VFD allows you to reduce the horsepower required to match the need. In this scenario, you would expect to see a 30% power reduction by using a VFD to decrease the max capacity from 60HP to 40HP.

Customized Rain Bird® VFD Pump Stations

Rain Bird is proud to offer a variety of irrigation pump station options to meet your specific application needs. Every Rain Bird pump station is custom built to the requirements of your site, for the most efficient performance possible.


Golf Pumps:



VFD - Customized Stations

Building a More Sustainable Future

If you’re curious about how to save more money or use less energy, VFD Booster Pumps are just the beginning. Our irrigation experts are here to help you conserve resources and minimize waste at every turn. Please join us in our mission to build a more sustainable future together.