Submersible vs Above Ground Well Pump

Water pumps have become a necessity in most households and commercial premises. They are used for a wide variety of functions including; irrigation, creation of waterfalls, firefighting, sewage treatment, seawater processing, and many others. The submersible vs above ground well pump debate is subject to a number of factors. However, you need to understand the differences between the two since each one has its pros and cons.

The Submersible Well Pump

Just as its name suggests, the submersible well pump belongs in the water. Its entire body is in the water and it does not require priming. All that is required of the user is to turn it on for it to work. This type of well pump can be moved around and therefore it should be moved in the right area. Otherwise a bad area will limit its power.

The fact that submersible well pumps can be carried around affects the size one will buy. Choosing the correct size is mandatory since failure to do so will make it difficult to move around the unit. These units are also susceptible to overheating. This is due to the fact that the motor for a submersible well pump is placed in an airtight sealed compartment. Heat accumulates within the compartment and that means the pump is limited in terms of the power attained before it overheats. However, the continuous flow of water helps prevent overheating.


  • Low risk of water leakage and electric contacts.
  • Pumps water over greater distances.
  • Portable.
  • No need to be primed before operation hence saves time.


  • Difficult to identify damages such as rapture.
  • More costly to purchase and maintain when compared to ordinary pumps.


Above Ground Well Pump

This pump gives an impressive overall result when compared to the submersible well pump. It can be quite large as it can be and carries more power. It also needs to be primed so as to keep the water flowing. Furthermore, more effort may be required during installation depending on size.

The above ground well pump is more tasking to install than the submersible type and tends to be often stationary. In terms of efficiency, it moves a larger quantity of water over long distances. It is particularly ideal for fast pool drainage.  Since they are exposed to the air, the motor cools down more quickly and greatly minimizes chances of overheating.


  • No overheating is possible.
  • Good flow rate.
  • Electrical issues reduced.


  • Requires extra effort for installation.
  • Difficult to carry.
  • Expensive to buy and install.


A Final Word

If you are price-conscious ,then the submersible pump wins the day. Above-ground well pumps will suit those on larger budgets. If you need a pump for pool and large pond circulation then the on-land pump will be the best choice. The submersible pump does an excellent job for drainage. It is ideal for above-ground pools that can be disassembled when no longer required. It is portable and thus can be moved easily from one area to the other with ease.