Hydraulic Pump for Log Splitter

What Size Hydraulic Pump Do you Need for your Log Splitter?

Hydraulic Pump

Hydraulic Pump

Log splitters are amazing devices. They provide assistance in splitting logs that make the entire process easier. The design of the log splitter is what makes it so fascinating. It is composed of a two-stage hydraulic pump. Now, first time log splitter users may not know what this is and some people who have been using them for years may still have issues learning the inner workings of the device as well. No matter your knowledge, today you will learn how they work, and check out our best log splitter reviews page. Doing so will give you a better understanding of what size hydraulic pump for log splitter you need.

What is a Hydraulic Pump

Firstly, let’s take a look at what a hydraulic pump is. They are typically used in hydraulic drive systems. Their purpose is converting mechanical power to hydraulic energy. The system really is quite complex and is hard to break down into an easier to understand definition. However, the pump uses water flow to generate a hydraulic system that provides adequate force in a specific area.

How do Two Stage Hydraulic Pumps Work

Many devices that use two-stage hydraulic pumps are costly. Log splitters are no exception. The mechanism is quite intricate and does a lot. In short though, the pump offers cylinder speed and force that translates to a small portion of engine horsepower. So, think of how your car works and is capable of moving the weight of the car. It uses horsepower. The same thing happens in log splitters, just on a much smaller scale.

Inside of the log splitter, you can expect to have:

  • Filter
  • Unloading Valve
  • Check Valve
  • Reservoir
  • Three-position directional control valve
  • Main system relief
  • Double-acting cylinder

The two stage hydraulic pump system typically holds two different hydraulic pumps. One is larger and the other is lower. This entire system is unique which is why they can be so costly!

Log splitters can produce anywhere from 5 to 12 horsepower. They are unique in that both high flow or high pressure can be produced.

What Does the Log Splitter Pump Affect?

Log Splitter Pump

Log Splitter Pump

Now that you have a little better understanding of the log splitter pump, we can go over what exactly it affects when splitting the wood. In short, the pump correlates to the splitting force and speed of the log splitter. So, the bigger the cylinder in the pump, the bigger the wood that you can split. Bigger pump means larger cylinder which ends in a much higher splitting force. On the downside, bigger pumps require more fluid which in turns makes it slower. So, you can really only choose speed or power when deciding on what size hydraulic pump for log splitter to use.

Choosing a Size for your Log Splitter Pump

Now, the best way to choose the correct size for your log splitter is to use determine what you are looking to improve in your pump: speed or splitting force. There are different sizes of pumps available on the market and calculating the necessary information to make a decision is easy.

Here are some common sizes and speeds:

  • 22 GPM Pump: Takes approximately 3.6 seconds
  • 16 GPM Pump: Takes approximately 4.9 seconds
  • 13 GPM Pump: Takes approximately 6.0 seconds
  • 11 GPM Pump: Takes approximately 7.1 seconds
And of course, the further you go down in GPM pump size, the larger the cylinder and the more force that is exerted in your log splitter.


In the end, the choice is yours on which direction you want to take with your log splitter pump size. There is no need to stress too much over it, however. Pumps are on the more expensive side, but looking over why you use your log splitter in the first place will make deciding what to improve easier. For those who go camping a lot and need firewood fast, getting a smaller cylinder size would be best. You would not be splitting larger pieces of wood and you can build your wood faster. Check out how to split large logs and the best way to split wood.