1. #1
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    Post Hale or Waterous Fire Pump

    If your department was in the market to purchase a new pumper apparatus, and had to choose between a Hale Q-Max 1500 gpm pump or a Waterous CSU 1500 gpm single stage pump, which would you spec and why ? We are talking stock program pumper fire apparatus without all the bells and whistles, not a parade piece, both model pumps are available with this engine . list any pros or cons with each pump !
    Last edited by Woodbridge; 06-24-2012 at 07:42 PM.

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    We're an all Hale department with the exception of one rig. While the Hale pumps have never let us down, there is a huge difference in the noise of the pumps due to the Hales being gear driven and the Waterous having chain drive. The Waterous is amazingly quiet compared to the Hale units. I'd consider this factor in your decision process...
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    at the end of the day, they both pump water fine, both are equally reliable. there may be a bit of difference in noise, but neither one will make you deaf.

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    In my experience working on them, the Hale pumps seem a little cruder as far as the castings and design, but I think in a good way.. Because of this I feel they are a little easier to work on.

    I can't comment much on their operation outside of what I see from a creeper or from the pump test pit.
    If you can't fix it with a hammer, you have an electrical problem.

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    Difference between me and Cutlass84, both being mechanics, is I run the pumps on every rig as the FF's do. If you don't know how to work it, your no good to the Dept. that needs to use it on a fire call.

    Hands down goes to the Waterous pumps. The Hales are OK to pump with, but from a reliability standpoint, I'd have to go with the waterous. Most simple "in house" repairs are vastly easier on a waterous pump.

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    Don't get me wrong, I'm well versed in operating a fire pump, I just have not operated from a fire scene.

    I will say I do not like the Waterous pump shift switches or manual overide cables.
    If you can't fix it with a hammer, you have an electrical problem.

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    both brands of manual over rides can be a big pain in the butt.

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    I work in the fire truck business. I work with some small departments that may be purchasing a new truck for the first time. They ask the same question, here's what I tell them:

    "The absolutely worst pump you can buy from the big three (Darley, Hale, Waterous) is exceptional."

    The pumps from Rosenbauer are also very good fire pumps. Many on here have their preference which is typical (lots of Hales in PA, Waterous in MN, Darley in IL). When I lived in the upper midwest area all I ever saw were Waterous pumps. As a government firefighter we had lots of Darleys and they were great pumps with no trouble. With proper care it would be difficult to damage any of these pumps. My position is they all work great and for the most part once the pump panel is put on rig, most people don't know whats behind it. However, given the choice, it's pretty tough to beat a Waterous chain drive pump.

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    Waterous owned and built in USA - I can call my Waterous rep 24/7 and I get an answer in a few hours. Parts have been super.
    Hale decent pump but investor owned lots of parts made off shore. HALE torrent valves we had 5 years ago sucked from the get go.

    Hale pump is working fine now that we have real valves bolted on.

    I don't wrench on our stuff, but i do teach the pump classes

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    Thumbs up

    The FDNY has used two stage waterous pumps for over 40 years since they have Mack CF engines, if they hold up in the city, they must be pretty reliable !

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    We run two engines city-wide (58 engine companies). The older ALF (2000-2004) have 1500 Hale Pumps and perform flawlessly. However, the transfer valves and relief valves were quick to fail due to rust buildup. The newer Pierce with 1500 CSU or CMU use governors, but even older Waterous pumps had much better transfer valves and relief valves. But, we have problems with the Waterous transfer case. As they get older they develop more gear noise when engaging and disengaging. We have had some help from Waterous and there are techniques to make the action smoother, but the Hale pumps have never made a sound going into or coming out of pump gear. If I could have my pick, I would take the Hale, but with a single stage and governor to avoid the valve problems. Our CSU pumps perform as well as the CMU so I have no problem with single stage pumps.

    The biggest suggestion I could make is go with an FRC governor. I know many of the others on this forum who like manual controls would strongly disagree, but after using the governor now for years, it does so much more than a relief valve and the FRC Pump Boss has been extremely reliable.

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    In my small department we have one of each: Darley, Hale and Waterous. IMHO we have had less issue and shorter down time with our Waterous.
    Make no mistake all three move water and move it well. The only difference I've seen is how often the other two have had issues (mostly valve) and how long parts/service/labor had taken. The few valve issues our Waterous had had were fixed quickly.

    Hope this helps,
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    We used to have Waterous, switched to Hales a few years back. No major issues with either. Going with Hale Q-Max for consistency now.

    As for the pump governors, we have the Class 1 Captain and they have been far easier to use/maintain than the old relief valves.

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    Our 1986 engine lost its pump and had a replacement installed by an apparatus dealer. The "new" pump was a 1970 Waterous. Despite pumping its guts out for many years with us, it has only been in the last five years or so that it has had any trouble. I can easily say it functioned well at 35 years old.

    Our newer pumpers, '98 and '11 models, both have Hales. The '98 has fought a lot of fire with no problems.

    At my old department we had two mid-70s Darleys that weren't missing a beat at 20 years old.

    Proper training, good preventive maintenance, and kind use of pumps seem to be more important than brand. As bigjim54 said, they're all good. They wouldn't have been in business this long if they weren't.
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    I've had the oppourtunity to pump quite a bit with all the big three pumps. I am least impressed with the Darleys and truthfully am not a fan. Even our mechanics hate them.

    At my other department we have a mix of Waterous and Hale pumps. Both are pretty solid, I prefer the Waterous personally as we have had quite a few problems with our newest Hale pump, especially with the CAF system.
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    My department has a pair of Hale Q-Max and one Waterous. All are 1500 gpm. Of the two, the Waterous is the most cantakerous to operate, but I'll say that I doubt its the pump as much as its the engine powering it.

    Our latest Q-Max has the TGP + governor and I really like it thus far. The others have Captain versions.

    Regardless of which you go with, be sure you have enough engine to power it.

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    We have had both brands over the years. The Waterous is quieter and we have had problems with the electric pump shift. Because of the Hale Wrap Around wear ring design the Hale seems to pump maybe 10 -15% more water during a max pump flow test than the same size Waterous with the same engine horsepower.

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    In our department we have two waterous and 5 Hale pumps. They both work fine. However do you all know that the Hale QMax is able to flow 2250 GPM with the Horsepower to drive it and correct ratio? I'm pretty sure our CS and CSU pumps are maxed out at 1500 GPM. I've been to hale pump school and they are pretty great. I guess I need to go to Waterous school to get the rest of the story. (actually went to a waterous afternoon seminar 12 years ago but really don't remember much)
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    Quote Originally Posted by spuddy98 View Post
    In our department we have two waterous and 5 Hale pumps. They both work fine. However do you all know that the Hale QMax is able to flow 2250 GPM with the Horsepower to drive it and correct ratio? I'm pretty sure our CS and CSU pumps are maxed out at 1500 GPM. I've been to hale pump school and they are pretty great. I guess I need to go to Waterous school to get the rest of the story. (actually went to a waterous afternoon seminar 12 years ago but really don't remember much)
    The difference in pump capacity is simply due to the differing models. Waterous also offers models capable of 2250gpm. http://www.waterousco.com/vehMounted/

    The one issue I had the most when selling rigs was that the "cheaper" pumps from both Waterous and Hale had differing max gpm ratings. Whereas a Hale DSD for example can run up to 1,500gpm, the Waterous CS series is maxed at 1250gpm. It was a fairly substantial price increase to be able to do 1,500 Waterous when compared to a Hale if you were only worried about the max gpm rating... (And yes I know one is a full body pump and the other a pedestal, but the ratings across the line are similar.)
    Last edited by npfd801; 12-09-2012 at 12:17 AM.
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    Default Hale or Waterous

    Like Chevy or Ford
    Some differences but both get the job done.

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    They both functions well and are equally good so i would get any of them depending on the availability and pricing.
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