Pool Pump Help: Single vs. Variable Speed Pumps

Help Choosing your Pool Pump

Whether you’re a new home buyer or just looking to upgrade your pool’s equipment, choosing the proper pool pump is likely the most important decision you’ll make. Not only is it the main driver of your pool’s operating costs, but your pool pump is vital in maintaining the overall health and cleanliness of your pool’s water.

In this article you will learn about the two main categories of pool pumps and things you should be aware of before purchasing your next pool pump. Contact Alligator Pool Services for all your pool pump questions!

The DOE Pool Pump Regulations

According to the Department of Energy (DOE), your pool pump is likely your home’s second largest power consumer (after your air conditioner of course)! Given its significant power consumption, choosing the proper pool pump is essential to keeping your pool’s annual operating costs on budget. To bring focus to this essential piece of pool equipment and its role in consuming power, the DOE enacted its Pool Pump regulations in July 2021. In short, the regulations have forced manufacturers to change production standards to create more efficient pool pumps. Not only will this save you money on the energy consumption side, but it will also extend the life of your pool equipment!

Single-Speed Pool Pumps

Single-speed pool pumps are the pool pumps with which most people are familiar. If you haven’t replaced your pump in the past year, this is probably what you have.

With single-speed pool pumps, you manually adjust the amount of time your pump runs. This is typically done with an electrical timer, but the pump’s run time is ultimately determined by the operator. Due to this manual on/off function, single-speed pumps are less energy-efficient, and thus more costly from an energy consumption standpoint. Keeping a single-speed pool pump on for a long period of time will lead to high energy costs as well as significant wear and tear on the equipment itself.

Are Variable Speed Pumps Worth it?

Many people are INSTANTLY turned-off when they see the price of a variable speed pumps. However, homeowners should discuss the decision with their local pool professional, analyze the investment payback, and learn about their benefits before deciding.

Mathematically speaking, variable speed pool pumps are almost always worth it. According to EnergyStar, a variable speed pool pump can save you up to 90% on energy costs when compared to the single-speed pool pumps! Variable speed pumps consume significantly less energy and pay for themselves over time; typically, in two years or less!

The driver of this increased efficiency is of course – better technology! Variable speed pumps sense your water’s flow rate and automatically adjust the speed to maintain the optimal flow rate. By keeping the water constantly circulating, the pump needs to work less and thus consumes less energy. In addition, this consistent, smooth, water flow rate exerts less strain on your pool pump as well as your pool filter. As a result, this combination allows for a more consistently clean pool!