There are many different pumps that can be used to supply water to the system. The most common pumps are centrifugal pumps or vertical turbine pumps. Centrifugal pumps are surface mounted and use suction to bring the water from its source into the pump. Vertical turbine motors are mounted directly over the water source and have a pipe and series of impellers in the water directly beneath it. Vertical turbine pumps, though generally more expensive than a centrifugal pump, offer less maintenance and are simpler to operate.
An intake structure is usually required when drawing water from a creek, canal, or stream. Sufficient water must be diverted to the intake of the pump system, and a coarse screen should be installed to prevent fish, logs, and other large debris from entering the system.