An experimental investigation has been carried out to quantify the effects of surrounding fluid on the modal behavior of a reduced scale pump-turbine impeller. The modal properties of the fluid-structure system have been obtained by Experimental Modal Analysis (EMA) with the impeller suspended in air and inside a water reservoir. The impeller has been excited with an instrumented hammer and the response has been measured by means of miniature accelerometers. The Frequency Response Functions (FRF’s) have been obtained from a large number of impacting positions in order to ensure the identification of the main mode shapes. As a result, the main modes of vibration have been well characterized both in air and in water in terms of natural frequency, damping ratio and mode shape. The first mode is the 2 Nodal Diameter (ND), the second one is the 0ND and the following ones are the 3ND coupled with the 1ND. The visual observation of the animated mode shapes and the level of the Modal Assurance Criterion (MAC) have permitted to correlate the homologous modes of vibration of the fluid-structure system in air and in water. From this comparison the added mass effect on the natural frequencies and the fluid effect on the damping ratios have been quantified for the most significant modes. With the surrounding water, the natural frequencies decrease in average by 10%. On the other hand, the damping ratios increase in average by 0.5%. In any case, the damping ratio appears to decrease with the frequency value of the mode.