If you happen to have a swimming pool in your backyard, then you are probably aware of how indispensable a pool pump is to your pool. Many people consider the pool pump to be the heart of any swimming pool system. A pool pump essentially creates the flow of water, which circulates chemicals uniformly throughout the swimming pool. This helps to keep the swimming pool clean for use.
Finding a pool pump, however, is not always an easy task. With thousands of products currently being offered in the market, looking for the best pool pump can be very time-consuming. Nevertheless, shopping for a pool cleaning system doesn’t need to be a frustrating experience. With the right information at hand and some dedication, it is possible to find a good pool pump without much hassle.
In this article, we are going to review some of the best pool cleaning units currently on sale. We hope that by reading these pool pump reviews, you will be able to choose the most suitable pool cleaning system. Whether you are purchasing a pool pump for your new swimming pool or upgrading your existing pump, these high-performance units will be at your service. But first, it may be helpful to consider what precisely a pool pump does and why you need it.
What does a Pool Pump Do?
The pool pump exists to serve one primary function – keeping your swimming pool clean. If a swimming pool is left stagnant, bacteria, debris and algae begin to build up, thereby making the pool unsuitable for use. The pool pump remedies this problem by pushing pool water through a filter to capture the debris and clear the bacteria.
Therefore, to keep the pool clean and healthy, all the water should be run through the filtration system every day. This can, however, is only achievable if you use an efficient pool pump. For this reason, it is crucial to carefully evaluate the options available, before settling on the most ideal pool pump for your swimming pool.
Pool Pump Anatomy
The pool pump is a complex system with specialized parts, designed for different functions. Here is the basic anatomy of a pool pump and the role that each component plays in the pool cleaning and filtration:
- Electric Motor – This spins an impeller which drives water from various drains into the filter and backs out to the water inlets.
- Strainer Basket – This collects all leaves and other debris before directing pool water into the pump.
- Filter – This catches small debris which may have passed through the strainer basket.
- Pipes – These are responsible for draining water into the filter and pumps as well as redirecting clean water back into the pool.
Pool Pump Types
If you have been thinking about buying a pool pump for your swimming pool, you will be pleased to find out that there are different options to choose from. Here are the different types of pool pumps available for your pool cleaning needs:
1. Single Speed Pumps
Single-speed pumps are very popular with pool owners due to their affordability. They are also highly efficient although they typically require large amounts of energy to perform optimally. These pumps usually operate with 3450 RPM( revolutions per minute).
2. Dual Speed Pumps
These pool pumps usually operate on two-speed settings – 1725 RPM and 3450 RPM. These pumps are ideal for spas where the low speed is crucial for filtration.
3. Variable Speed Pumps
These pumps have customizable speed features which can be easily set by the owner. This makes them a lot more cost and energy-efficient than single-speed pumps.
What Size Pool Pump Do I Need?
Regardless of whether you are purchasing an in-ground or above ground pool pump, size is a critical parameter to consider. The size of your pool pump can significantly determine the cost of purchase, maintenance as well as performance. In light of this, you must understand how to size a pool pump.
When sizing a pump, the first thing you need to do is to determine the volume of your pool. You can easily calculate this formula:
Gallons = Depth (ft) x Width (ft) x Length (ft) x 7.5.
This formula specifically applies for rectangular shaped pools. If your swimming pool is circular, you can determine its volume. This can be achieved by multiplying:
Gallons = Diameter x Diameter x Depth x 5.9.
After calculating the average volume the pool, you need to calculate the number of gallons per hour (GPH) required to pump all the pool water in 8 hours. To do this, divide the volume by eight.
Once you have determined the flow rate, you have to figure out the average feet of head (FOH) for your pool pump. Fortunately, you can access this information by going to the website of your pump’s manufacturer.
WHEN SHOULD YOU RUN THE PUMP?
Most pool owners prefer to run their pumps during the night when electricity rates are low. However, since pools most pools are used during the daytime, it may be wiser to run the pump. You should also note that algae and bacteria tend to thrive during the daytime when there is sunlight. In light of this, it is more prudent to run the unit during the day.
How long do I Run My Pool Pump?
In an ideal world, you should be able to run your pool pump all-day long. However, in the current economy, your electricity bill would skyrocket if you operated the pump 24/7. In light of this fact, you need to know the optimal duration for running your pool pump to keep your pool sanitized without spending too much money.
There are several factors which determine the amount of time you need to run your pool pump, including the volume, flow rate and the number of users. If a lot of swimmers, for instance, uses your pool, you will likely need to run the pump for long.
If you are wondering how long you need to run your pool pump, here is an easy formula which can help you determine that:
Pool volume (gallons) ÷ Flow Rate (gallons per hour) = Hours to run the filter for one turnover
The average turnover rate for pools is as follows:
- Swimming pools – 8 hours
- Wading pools – 2 hours
- Spa pools – 1 hour
Pool Pump Troubleshooting
Just as is the case with other machines, pool pumps are prone to malfunctioning due to technical hitches. When this happens, the performance of the pump may become compromised, causing your pool to become a filthy mess. For this reason, it is crucial to identify any emerging issues and resolve them promptly.
Here are some of the problems you may experience with your pump and how to go about fixing them:
1. Failure of the Pump to Turn On
If you notice that your pump won’t turn on, this could be indicative of a poor electrical connection due to blown capacitors or high voltage. You should carefully check your connections to ensure the cables and cords are not broken or loose.
2. The Pump is Operational but not Pumping
This is usually a sign that there is an interruption in the water flow or suction caused by clogging. In such a case, you need to check the strainer basket for any debris which may be causing the blockage and remove it.
3. The Pump is Leaking
A leaking pump is often a sign that either the impeller casing or shaft seal is broken. You will need to get replacement parts and have them installed in the pump system.
4. The Pump is Too Noisy
If your pump is making too much noise when running, it could possibly be due to bad bearings in the motor. If this is the case, you will need to hire a professional to inspect it and conduct the necessary repairs.
How Do Pool Pumps Work?
A pool pump typically has a rotating motor and an impeller which drives the water from the drains and into a filter. Before the water passes through the pump, it is forced through a strainer basket which collects debris and leaves which would otherwise clog the pump. Next, the water passes through a filter which sanitizes it before it is redirected back into the pool.
COMPARISON OF 10 Best Pool Pumps (Inground/Above Ground)
Intex Krystal Clear Sand Filter Pump (16 inches)
Hayward SP2610X15 Super Pump
Intex Krystal Clear Sand Filter Pump (12 inches)
1. Intex Krystal Clear Sand Filter Pump for Above Ground Pools (16 inches)
The Intex Krystal Clear Sand Filter Pump is one of the best pool pumps in its class. This high-performance pump for above ground pools has a 6-function control valve which allows for efficient filtration and circulation. In addition to this, the Intex Krystal Clear Sand Filter pool pump comes fitted with a 24-hour timer which allows for effortless and reliable pool cleaning every day. The all-natural sand removal system has exceptional filtration properties for keeping above-ground-pool water clean, clear and refreshing all day long.
This Ultra-Modern Pool Cleaning Unit Comes With The Following Features And Specifications:
- Dimensions - 27.1 x 17.6 x 25.5 inches
- Weight – 40.9 pounds
- Pump Flow Rate – 3000 GPH (gallons per hour)
- System Flow Rate – 2450 GPH
- Pump Motor HP – 0.75 HP
- Pump Motor Capacity – 0.59
Intex Krystal Clear Sand Filter Pump is advantageous for use in above ground pools due to its low cost of maintenance. The cartridges are usable for up to 5 years without the need for replacement. This makes it a very affordable option for pool owners who desire to keep their swimming pools sanitized without spending a lot of money.
2. Hayward SP2610X15 Super Pump 1.5 HP Pool Pump
Hayward is a company whose name has become synonymous with pool pumps thanks to the robust and reliable products which they make. Like most other Hayward pumps, the SP2610X15 is a workhorse whose performance is unrivalled by many similar products in its class.
This highly dependable pool pump comes with swing-away hand knobs which allow for easy strainer cover removable without the need for extra tools. The strainer cover is also see-through, which enables pool owners to see when the debris basket is due to be cleared. In addition to this, the Hayward SP2610X15 super pump’s debris basket is spacious enough to hold leaves and other large debris that are cleared from the pool. Moreover, the installation process is easy, thanks to its quick 4-bolt access which allows for hassle free mounting and setup.
Some of the features and specifications of the Hayward SP2610X15 pool pump include:
- Dimensions - 29.8 x 11.3 x 10.8 inches
- Weight – 39 pounds
- Maximum Discharge Pressure – 50
- Horsepower – 1.5 HP
The Hayward SP2610X15 is a self-priming pump with a suction lift of up to 10ft above sea level which makes it adaptable to different sized pools, tubs and spas.
3. Pentair 011018 IntelliFlo Variable Speed High-Performance Pool Pump
If you are thinking of acquiring a pool pump which is highly energy efficient without spending a fortune, then the Pentair 011018 IntelliFlo pool pump is an option worth considering. This variable speed pool pump saves up energy up to 90% compared to other pumps which can ultimately help you cut operational costs by up to $1500
The Pentair 011018 IntelliFlo pool pump comes with eight programmable speed settings and a built-in timer for optimal performance. It also comes with an enclosed fan-cooled (TEFC) monitor, which helps reduce operational noise to ensure the system works quietly and efficiently.
Pentair 011018 IntellFlo also possesses built-in diagnostic systems to ensure durability and longevity of the unit.
This highly versatile pool pump comes with the following features and specs:
- Dimensions - 28 x 12 x 15 inches
- Weight – 47 pounds
- Voltage – 230 V
- LCD Display
The Pentair 011018 IntelliFlo is without a doubt one of the best inground pool pumps for pool owners who desire peak performance with minimal or no background noise. Thanks to its easy installation requirements, setting up this pump will be less hassle free compared to most similar products in its price range.
4. Intex Krystal Clear Sand Filter Pump for Above Ground Pools (12 inches)
The Intex Krystal Clear Sand Filter pump 12” is the smaller sibling of the 16” Intex pump for above ground pools. This device packs the power to keep your pool clean and sanitized all day long. Like other Intex pool pumps, the Intex Krystal Clear Sand Filter pump 12” uses sand as its filter media thus guaranteeing maximum efficiency and durability. Due to its choice of filtration media, this work-horse pump is incredibly cost-effective as well.
The 6-function control panel of this Intex pool pump allows for easy activation of several operations including rinsing, filtration, draining and backwashing.
In addition to this, the Intex 12” incorporates hydro-aeration technology into the filter pump for improved circulation and filtration.
The pool pump also comes fitted with a strainer basket which makes pre-filtration a lot easier.
This super pump comes in the following specifications:
- Dimensions - 15.4 x 23.2 x 22.2 inches
- Weight – 37.4 pounds
- Pump Flow Rate – 2100 GPH
- System Flow Rate – 1600 GPH
- Horsepower – 0.30 HP
Intex Krystal Clear Sand Filter pump 12” is ideal for use in pools with a capacity of 2,800 gallons to 12,800 gallons.
5. Hayward SP15932S PowerFlo Matrix 1.5 HP Dual-Speed Above-Ground Swimming Pool Pump
The Hayward SP15932S PowerFlo Matrix is a powerful super pump designed for performance in above-ground pools as well as on-ground pools. This heavy duty pump comes with a high-performance monitor with thermal overload capacity. This allows the pump to work optimally for prolonged periods without breaking down.
The high-performance impeller of the Hayward PowerFlo helps protect the unit from getting clogged by leaves and other debris. The pump is also very adaptable as it can be configured horizontally as well as vertically depending on convenience.
Another great feature of the Hayward SP15932S PowerFlo Matrix is its industrial-size strainer basket which can collect large amounts of debris. This makes the unit very ideal for small family pools and large public pools.
So why is it considered one of the best above ground pool pumps? Well, here are the specifications.
- Dimensions - 23.4 x 11.8 x 9.2 inches
- Weight – 32 pounds
- Horsepower – 1.5 HP
- Voltage – 115 V
- Speed - Dual
Thanks to its corrosion-resistant body, the Hayward SP15932S PowerFlo Matrix pool pump guarantees years of service with minimal maintenance. If saving money is a priority for you, then this is a pool pump worth checking out.
6. Pentair 342001 SuperFlo VS Variable Speed Pool Pump
When it comes to high powered ultra-modern pumps for modern swimming pools, few products can hold a candle to the Pentair 342001 SuperFlo VS pool pump. It is worth noting that this pump is currently one of the best variable speed pumps on the market with 115/230 V capacity. This makes it very adaptable for use with different electrical units without the need for costly rewiring. It also makes the pump very energy efficient compared to single-speed pumps.
The Pentair 342001 SuperFlo VS Variable Speed pump comes with a real-time 24hour clock and a user-friendly keypad which makes it very convenient to operate. In addition to this, the pump has an intuitive user interface which allows for easy and quick programming.
This pool pump also comes with three different speed settings and an override feature which allows you to reset the pump. You can use this feature to reverse any undesired operations. The pump also incorporates TEFC technology which enables it to operate quietly in the background.
Pentair 342001 SuperFlo VS pump is ideal for use in various kinds of swimming pools, both private and commercial.
It comes in the following specifications:
- Dimensions - 28 x 15.5 x 12.5 inches
- Weight – 52 pounds
- Horsepower – 1.5 HP
7. Intex 28633EG Krystal Clear Cartridge Filter Pump for Above Ground Pools
The Intex 28633EG Krystal Clear Cartridge Filter Pump is a modern pool pump designed specifically for above-ground pools. This professional-style pool pump comes with a built-in timer with presets of 2 to 12-hour cycles. Its double-insulated and corrosion-resistant body allows the Intex 28633EG to perform optimally in all kinds of weather without being affected by the elements. Furthermore, this sleek pump incorporates an air release valve which helps expel air that is trapped inside the filter chamber.
Another great feature of the Intex 28633EG, which gives it an edge over other products in the market is its unique hydro-aeration technology. This enables it to increase negative ions on the water surface, thereby improving the freshness of the pool water.
The Intex 28633EG pool pump also has an incredibly easy installation process. To set up the pump, you only need to attach hoses and plug in the pump to a power supply.
The specifications for the Intex 28633EG Krystal Clear Cartridge Filter Pump are as follows:
- Dimensions - 13.8 x 18.5 x 16 inches
- Weight – 19.5 pounds
- Pump Flow Rate – 2500 GPH
- System Flow Rate – 1900 GPH
- 24 Hour timer
The Intex 28633EG pump is suitable for use in pools with a water capacity of 4,000 gallons to 15,200 gallons.
8. Hayward SP2302VSP Max-Flo VSVariable-Speed Pool Pump
The pool pump is undoubtedly one of the best variable speed pool pumps at any speed. This top tier variable speed pump allows you to conserve energy and money while keeping your pool clean and fresh all day long. Whereas most other variable speed pool pumps tend to be oversized and bulky, the Hayward SP2302VSP has a low profile-medium sized chassis. This allows for the pump to be conveniently set up in above ground pools.
This ENERGY STAR rated pump features totally enclosed fan cooled (TEFC) motor, which offers high performance and reliability in all weather conditions. In addition to this, the pump comes with an industrial-sized stretcher basket which allows for easy leaf and debris removal.
This professional-grade pump incorporates a highly intuitive built-in timer which allows for easy programming. This feature gives the Hayward SP2302VSP Max-Flo VS an edge over most other pumps in its class which only have a countdown timer with limited functions. The pump’s variable speed control also enables the pump to operate quietly so that you can enjoy your day uninterrupted while your pool gets sanitized.
Some of the specifications of the Hayward SP2302VSP include:
- Dimensions - 24 x 13 x 12 inches
- Weight – 28 pounds
- Digital Control Interface
- Voltage – 115V/ 230V
- Horsepower – 1.5 HP
9. Pentair 340039 SuperFlo High-Performance Single Speed Pool Pump
If you are looking for a pump which provides top performance while being cost-efficient, then the Pentair 340039 SuperFlo is a worthy choice. This single-speed pool pump has a heavy-duty high function motor which is designed for maximum efficiency and durability. You certainly won’t need to worry about wear and tear since this commercial-grade pump is highly resistant to rust and corrosion.
Thanks to its superior internal flow design, the Pentair 340039 SuperFlo has a significant reduction in hydraulic noise. This makes it possible for the pump to operate quietly in the background.
This pump also features a see-through strainer basket which allows for easy collection and monitoring of leaves and other kinds of debris. The self-priming qualities of this modern super pump also make setup and installation a breeze. The Pentair 340039 SuperFlo is ideal for use, particularly in in-ground swimming pools although it also works very well in above-ground pools too.
The unit comes in the following specifications:
- Dimensions - 27.5 x 12.5 x 14.8 inches
- Weight – 13 pounds
- Voltage – 115V/ 230V
- Horsepower – 1.5 HP
10. Harris H1572730 ProForce 1.5 HP Above Ground Pool Pump
While Harris may not be a well-known brand when it comes to pool pumps, the H1572730 is undoubtedly a force to contend with. This above-ground pool pump packs all the features for top performance while costing significantly less than the other pumps that we have reviewed.
The Harris ProForce is built from heavy-duty and corrosion-proof material. This makes the unit highly durable and efficient for both private and commercial pools. The stainless steel motor casing of the pump is reinforced with a thermoplastic body for enhanced longevity. The advanced hydraulic engineering of this unit also enables quiet operation with little to no background noise. The pump also features a large strainer basket for convenient debris removal. Moreover, the strainer basket has a see-through cover lid which allows for easy inspection during operations.
This low-cost pool pump comes with a convenient drain plug which makes cleaning and maintenance hassle-free.
Here are some of the other features and specifications of the Harris ProForce pool pump:
- Dimensions - 22 x 8 x 10.8 inches
- Weight – 22 pounds
- Horsepower – available in ¾ HP, 1 HP and 1.5 HP
- Voltage – 115 V
- Connection Sizes – 1.5 inches
WHAT TO LOOK FOR WHEN BUYING A POOL PUMP
Having a properly functioning pool pump is essential if you intend to keep your swimming pool clean and swimmable all-year-round. However, with thousands of products in the market, it is not always easy to make the right choice. Therefore, you need to properly do your homework to understand the nuances and features of the available options. Having a solid understanding of the products will help you narrow down the options to find the best fit for your pool.
There are many factors you need to keep in mind when buying a pool pump. These include:
The Size of your Pool
Swimming pools generally come in a wide variety of sizes and designs depending on the architects who construct the. In some cases, pool owners commission architects to build pools with individual specifications. In light of this, it is essential to understand the unique specifications of your pool to select the most ideal pool pump.
Generally, bigger pools require big pool pumps with enough voltage to function efficiently. The downside to this, however, is that bigger pool pumps need a lot more electricity to operate. On the other hand, a small pool requires a relatively smaller pool pump. This is likely to cost much less since the motor is also small.
The Type of Pool
When shopping for a pool pump, it is essential to factor in the type of pool you have. Swimming pools are typically in-ground or above-ground. Above-ground pools are typically served best by a top-mount pump. In-ground pools, on the other hand, require side-mount pumps to match the water level of the pool.
The Volume of your Pool
Another critical consideration to make when buying the best pool pump is the amount of water in your pool. This is mainly because the volume of your pool determines the water turnover (how long it takes to move all the water). To accurately measure the size of your pool, you will need to know the surface area as well as the length-width-height dimensions. This will help you calculate the volume of your pool and determine the right pool pump to buy. Ideally, you should consider acquiring the best variable speed pool pump that can conveniently deliver any amount of water required.
The Cost of the Pump
Pool pumps come in a wide range of prices depending on the quality and size of the unit. While some companies produce high-performance products at reasonable prices, some manufacturers do not care much for value. This results in an oversaturation of inferior products which may be cheap but breakdown easily. It is therefore vital to consider your budget but at the same time refuse to compromise on quality.
Cost of Maintenance
Buying a pool pump is one thing. However, unless you understand the cost of maintaining it, you might end up with a bad investment. It is very critical to take into account the lifespan of the unit which you intend on purchasing. You should note that some pool pumps do not have replacements and procuring parts may be more costly than the actual cost of the pump.
Contrary to what people may think, the horsepower of a pool pump is very critical to its performance and efficiency. Getting a pump with the right horsepower can help you save a lot of time since it is less prone to malfunction. This can also save you a lot in the long term since the cost of maintenance is significantly reduced.
The process of Installation
When shopping for a pool pump, it is essential to learn about the process of installation. Some pumps are relatively easy to install and can, therefore, be easily set up by a casual contractor. On the other hand, some pool pumps have fairly complex installation processes. In such cases, you may need to enlist the services of a professional, which will likely cost more.
The Efficiency of the Pump
One of the most important things to consider when buying a pool pump is the energy efficiency of the unit. There are plenty of variable speed pool pumps in the market, designed for maximum energy efficiency. Buying one of the reputable variable speed pool pumps can help you keep your pool clean while also keeping costs minimal.
Different pool pumps come with different hydraulic technologies, which determine the amount of noise they make when operating. It is essential to buy a pool pump with minimal hydraulic noise. This makes it possible to use the unit during off-peak hours when electricity costs are low, without causing disturbances to your neighbours.
How to Setup a Pool Pump
Setting up a pool pump correctly is essential to proper functioning and efficiency. In most cases, you will need the expertise of a qualified professional to ensure that the unit is installed correctly.
Here is a step by step guide on how to set up your pool pump:
Select the Right Location
The first thing you need to do when setting up a pool pump is to find a suitable location to install the unit. Moreover, make sure the pool pump and filter are set up as close together as possible. It is also essential to position the pump on an even ground below the pool water level. This not only ensures steady water flow but also prevents bubbles from forming in the pipes.
Attach the Pool Pump Hoses Appropriately
Once you have selected the best location for your pool pump, the next thing you need to do is attach the pump’s hoses correctly. One hose should be attached to the skimmer pipe, and the return hose is attached to the return fitting pipe on the pool. Ensure that the hoses are tightly clamped to prevent them from coming undone.
Connect the Pool Pump to the Filter
After the pool pump horses are attached, you need to connect the pool pump to the pool filter. This provides an outlet for the filter discharge.
Before you can begin operating the pool pump, you will need to prime it first. Make sure to fill the filter with the appropriate filter medium (sand or DE) depending on the type of filter you are using.
Activate the Pool Pump
Once the unit has been primed, you will need to connect the necessary electrical connections for the pool pump and filter. The pump will then be operational.
Check if the Connections are SetUp Correctly
After you have activated the pool filtration unit, you need to carefully inspect all the pipes and hoses to ensure they are working correctly. This will allow you to identify any malfunctions and take the necessary steps to correct them.
how to size a pool pump ( Check Videos )
The difference between above ground and in-ground pool pump
A pool pump is a vital component of a pool’s filtration system. If you want to install a new pool pump or make a replacement, you need to know the difference between the available options.
Notably, there are two types of pool pumps: Above ground and in-ground pool pumps. Knowing the difference between these two pumps will go a long way to help you make the right selection for your pool. In any case, pool pumps do not come cheaply, and buying the wrong type may put a huge dent on your finances. Below is a detailed distinction between above ground and in-ground pool pumps.
What is an above ground pool pump?
As the name implies, an above ground pool pump is a type of pump designed for above ground pools. It works using suction, gravity, and atmospheric pressure to pump water out of the pool through the filtration system and back to the pool again. Given that the swimming pool is above the surface, the above-ground pump is below the water level hence it does not require priming.
What is an in-ground pool pump?
An in-ground pool pump, on the other hand, is a type of pump tailored for swimming pools built in-ground. The pump is capable of self-priming, meaning that it can drive water vertically. Considering in-ground pumps are installed above the water level, they have to lift water vertically through the filtration system.
Conclusion – So what is the best pick?
Buying a pool pump is crucial to keeping your swimming clean and healthy for use. A pool pump can go a long way in sanitizing your pool and eliminating any bacteria, algae and debris. However, selecting a pool pump is not always an easy decision to make due to the sheer number of options available.
We hope that after reading these pool pump reviews, you are better placed to make the right choice. Whether you are looking for the best inground pool pump or the best above-ground pool pump, there are plenty of units that offer exceptional performance and value.
Choose one today!