Centrifugal pumps are commonly used at cider mills as they easily carry slurries containing suspended particles, such as the pulp and pumice which give cider its opaque appearance. The units are designed to increase the pressure of a fluid by converting mechanical energy, or electric energy in the case of electric pumps, from the engine or other power source into kinetic energy that is imparted on the fluid through centrifugal force. The resulting increase in velocity generates the pressure needed to force the fluid out or through the piping, be it that of a cider press or wastewater treatment facility. The buildup of pressure and centrifugal pull of these pumps is key to their operation. It allows for the provision of a uniform rate of flow which in turn provides the steady operation needed for such industries as agriculture, chemical processing, textiles, utilities, construction, food service and automotive which use application specific pumps ranging in size from as low as 12 Volt pumps to those requiring several kilovolts.
Specialized large and small scale trash pumps, water pumps, well pumps and more play an integral role all year round. Though the pumps themselves are relatively simple in design, without them the aforementioned industries would struggle to maintain even the simple operations, such as milk production and water purification, which billions around the world rely on. The many uses for centrifugal pumps demonstrate that the device is far from limited to seasonal cider making. Most of the industrial, commercial and even residential applications for centrifugal pumps are not seasonal at all. Like those found in cider mills, however, some centrifugal pumps do find more use at particular times or year.