How to Oil the Motor Bearings in a Circulating Pump

  • 1-3 hours
  • Intermediate
  • 0-60
What You'll Need
Oil for lubricating
Needle Nose Pliers

If you have a boiler heating system you probably have a circulating pump. Some water heating systems are also equipped with a circulating pump if the home is large or if more than one story has a water feature, such as a second bathroom. This pump will enable that your home hot water will flow more efficiently through the home, keeping everyone comfortable. The pump has moving parts, including bearings that will need to be periodically lubricated.

Step 1: Determine Oil Level

Locate the oil level window in the side of the circulating pump. To properly determine the oil level, the pump needs to be shut off and level. The oil level should be level with the center point of the lowest roller. Keep this in mind when filling.

Step 2: Lubricating Choices

Many times, you can choose to install an automatic oil lubricating device. These can be found for very inexpensive costs to very involved systems that are not necessary in most home circulating pumps. Benefits of the automatic delivery system is accurate lubrication levels, and the proper oil will always be input. If you do not choose the automatic lubricating system and have the desire to continue manual maintenance it will help with familiarization of your boiler system.

Step 3: Locate Lubrication Ports

Turn off the circulating pump. Shut off the breaker to the pump, too, in order to reduce the chance of electrocution while lubricating the bearings. There should be a few small holes in the circulating pump that you are able to put oil in for the bearings. Many times these holes are conveniently labeled with the word 'oil' or they have caps to keep dust out.

Step 4: Determine Proper Lubrication Oil

Before attempting to lubricate your circulating pump it is very important to refer to the user's manual to ensure that you have acquired the correct lubricating oil. Different bearings require different viscosity of lubricating medium.

Step 5: Lubricating the Bearings

Once you have located the oil fill holes add a drop or two of oil in each hole, remove any cap that is in place. You may need to use a pair of needle nose pliers to remove the caps from the pump. If you use more than that the oil has the tendency to attract dust that will cause a problem by gumming up the works. Be sure to re-insert any caps that were in the holes.

Step 6: Finishing

Once you have the oil inserted into each of the lubrication holes, wipe any excess oil from the openings. This will help to reduce the collection of dust on the exterior of the circulating pump. Put the caps back into the fill hole. Turn the breaker back on for the pump, and then turn on the circulating pump. Ensure that everything is running smoothly and then turn the water back on.