With summer fast approaching, it’s time to check your pool pump and filter systems to ensure all components are in working order. The main components of your pool system are the pool pump, filtration and chlorination equipment. Without these components operating correctly, the pool’s cleaning, filtration and sanitization processes can be severely affected. That’s why choosing the best pool pump for your swimming pool is the key to keeping your pool sparkling.
As the pool pump is the most important component of your swimming pool’s filtration, cleaning and health system, it’s important that the pump installed is designed to suit your pool. Even if you have the best pool cleaner on earth if your pool pump isn’t right for your pool, you’ll struggle to keep it sparkling clean.
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Best Pool Pumps Compared
|Pump model||Motor||Suitable for||Speed rating|
|Hayward SP2610X15 Super Pump 1.5 HP||1.5 HP||In ground pool||Single and double|
|Zodiac Jandy PHPF1.0 PlusHP 1-HP Full-Rated High Head||1.5 - 2.0 HP||In ground pool||Dual|
|Pentair 340039 SuperFlo High Performance Single Speed||1.5 HP||In ground pool||Single|
|Waterway Plastics Ph1150-6 1.5 Horsepower Hi-Flo||2,500 gallons per hour||Above ground pool||Single|
|Intex 28633EG Krystal Clear Cartridge Filter||1.5 HP||Above ground pool||Single|
|Pentair DYNII-NI-2 HP Dynamo Single Speed||0.5 HP||Above ground pool||Single|
|Harris H1572729 ProForce 1||1.5 HP||Above ground pool||Variable|
|Pentair 340039 SuperFlo||1.5 HP||Above ground pool||Variable|
|Hayward W3SP3206VSP TriStar VS Variable-Speed||1.85 HP||Above ground pool||Variable|
|Hayward SP1580X15 Power-Flo LX Series||1.65 HP||Above ground pool||Variable|
|Harris H1572729 ProForce 1 HP||1.5 HP ||Above ground pool||Single|
How to choose a pool pump
For in-ground pools, the pump is self-priming and installed above the waterline of the pool. The inground pool pump needs to be capable of sucking water from the pool via a skimmer box and bottom grill then through the pump filter then into the main swimming pool filter.
For most in-ground pools, the main filter is a sand filter where the pool water is filtered as it passes through the sand with dirt and other contaminants captured by the sand, allowing clean water to be returned to the pool.
For above-ground pools, the pumps are not self-priming and operate on the principles of flooded suction gravity and atmospheric pressure to feed water to the pump without requiring a lot of suction or vacuum pressure.
1- Pool water volume
The first thing to do when searching for a new pool pump is to work out what size pump you need. This is determined by the size of your swimming pool. To calculate the water volume of your pool in gallons use this simple formula – Pool length (ft) x width (ft) x average depth (ft) x multiplier.
- To determine the average depth, measure the depths at the shallow and deepest end, add these measurements then divide by two.
- To determine the multiplier, for rectangular, square or free form pools, the multiplier to use is 7.5.
- For round or oval pools, the multiplier is 5.9.
The end result of these calculations will provide you with the overall water volume of your pool in gallons. for example, the total volume of water for a rectangular pool measuring 30ft long x 15ft wide x 5ft (average depth) x 7.5 (multiplier) = 16,675 gallons
2- Saltwater vs Chlorine Water Pool Pumps
The same type of pool water pump can be used for either saltwater or chlorine water pools as both require chlorine to clean and sanitise the pool, the difference is in the application methods.
With a saltwater pool pump a little more care needs to be taken to ensure there is no salt build-up within the pool pump parts, and pool pump housing.
Salt Water Pool Pumps
A significant advantage of saltwater swimming pools is the automatic and steady supply of chlorine being produced by the chlorinator and fed back into the pool.
The function of the chlorinator is to convert the salt in the water into measured levels of chlorine.
Chlorine Water Pool Pumps
To clean and sanitize freshwater pools the pool water first needs to be tested and if required the correct levels of chlorine added manually, this process needs to be done regularly especially in summer.
3- In-Ground vs Above Ground Pool Pumps
Contrary to popular belief, there are some differences between pool pumps required for In-ground and above ground pools.
In-ground pool pumps
An Inground pool pump is required to suck water from the pool and are generally installed above the waterline and at a distance from the pool requiring arguably more complex plumbing.
Above ground pool pumps
An above-ground pool pump is generally installed close to the pool on an external base well below the waterline. They are gravity-fed therefore the plumbing requirements are very much simpler and less expensive than the plumbing required for in-ground pools.
4- Types of pool pumps
Single Speed Pool Pump
This pump is very common and affordable compared to other pool pumps. This pool pump can remove debris and other dirt with one pump. A single-speed pump is very efficient but users a more significant amount of energy compared to other types. While the initial purchase price is relatively low compared to Dual Speed and Variable Speed pool pump, its energy running cost is high.
Dual Speed Pool Pump
Dual speed pool pumps are capable of changing speeds, from 1,725 RPMs on low speeds to 3,450 RPMs when needed. This type of pool pump is commonly used in spas where the low speed is needed during filtration and higher speed during jet action.
Variable Speed Pool Pump
The variable speed pool pump is the most efficient type of pool pump as it delivers significant energy savings. This pool pump can be programmed for different speeds for different times of the day for various applications, for example, standard filtering and vacuuming. The variable speed pool pump changes its speed to meet programmed settings that result in a superior energy-saving and overall cleaning and filtration process.
5- Noise Levels
To ensure we maintain good relations with our neighbors it is a good idea when purchasing a pool pump to take into consideration the noise generated by the pool pump.
As the pool pump runs for many hours the constant “whirring” sound of the pump can be an annoyance. If you have any bedrooms that might be located near the area where your pool pump will be located, you’ll want to take into account the noise level of the pump you choose.
6- Operating Efficiency (Running Cost)
With energy costs continuing to rise, owning a pool can significantly increase your electricity bill. Most pool owners will tell you that running a swimming pool is high on the list of main household expenditure. That’s why it’s essential to choose a pool pump that delivers energy savings while ensuring the pool cleaning process is effectively maintained.
One way of reducing the overall home energy usage cost, including running the pool pump, is the installation of a home solar power system. Although there’s the initial purchase cost of the solar power system to take into account, the reduction in annual home energy cost can be significant.
To protect the pump and further reduce the pool pump running cost it is essential to ensure the pool pump and filter are regularly cleaned. Blocked filters cause the pump to work harder drawing more energy and if not attended to could ultimately cause damage to the pool pump motor.
7- When to run your pool pump and filtration system
When and how long to run your pool pump is determined by the seasons.
Running a pool pump in summer
In summer, the pool pump and filter need to run more frequently due to the frequency of use and effect of the sun reducing the chlorine level in the pool.
As a rough guide, during summer, the pool pump and filter should be run during the day time for a minimum of around eight (8) hours.
This can be achieved by setting the pool pump timer for a continuous period of eight hours or two four-hour periods.
Running a pool pump in winter
In winter the recommendation is to run the system for between four to five hours a day. This period can be reduced if a pool blanket is used.
8- Is it compatible with your pool control system?
Check that the type of pump you choose is compatible with your swimming pool automation system. Popular systems are IntelliTouch, EasyTouch and SunTouch Pool Control Systems.
Best Pool Pump – Inground Pools
1- Hayward SP2610X15 1.5HP Single /Dual Speed In-Ground Pool Super Pump
This Hayward SP2610X15 1.5HP Single/Dual Speed In-Ground Pool Super Pump is a single/dual speed pool pump that is possibly one of the best swimming pool pumps on the market. The large-capacity self-priming pump uses advanced technology while the construction of the pump is durable.
Specifically designed to suit in-ground pools and spas; this Hayward pool pump features a large see-through strainer with a super-size debris basket and a design that most users find easy to use.
The pump has a high-performance motor with airflow ventilation, and it is designed for a silent and cooler operation that helps to expand its lifespan.
The Hayward in-ground pool pump is a self-priming centrifugal pump with a vacuum chamber, commonly known as a pump housing.
The pool pump housing is filled with water to create a vacuum that continues to draw the water from your pool or spa. The pump housing remains full of water while the pump is on, and will remain full or partially full when the pump is off.
The motor rotates at a pre-selected speed when it’s powered on and cycles from high to low speeds during its operation. One advantage of this Haywood in-ground pool pump is its internal diffuser eliminates any air entering the pump housing through the suction pipes.
2- Hayward SP2603VSP Super Pump VS 1.65 HP Variable-Speed In-Ground Pool Pump
This Haywood Variable-Speed pool pump has a permanent magnet enclosed fan cooled motor and delivers 90% energy savings compared to single speed induction motor type pumps.
The variable speed pool pump is fully programmable and comes with a digital control interface that rotates to four different positions and can be wall-mounted for ease of access and viewing.
3- Pentair 340039 SuperFlo 1.5 HP High-Performance Single Speed In-Ground Pool Pump
This Pentair 340039 SuperFlo 1.5 HP High-Performance Single SpeedIn-Ground Pool Pump moves water more efficiently for lower operating cost. It is entirely due to superior internal flow design that reduces hydraulic noise.
This Pentair pool pump has reliable body parts, a substantial 56 square flange motor, and highly engineered hydraulics that extends the time between each pool clean.
It also is fitted with an oversized strainer basket that has a convenient see-through lid that makes inspection fast and easy. This Pentair pool pump is self-priming for a quick, easy start-up; 1-year warranty.
4- Zodiac Jandy PHPF2.0 Plus HP 2-HP Full-Rated Two Speed Pool Pump
The Jandy pool pump offers the performance of a large pump in a small body. The compact body is an advantage if space is an issue and the Jandy patented quiet technology works well if you’re after a pool pump that isn’t noisy.
This Zodiac Jandy PHPF2.0 pool pump can save up to 60 percent on electrical consumption compared to single speed pumps. It’s great for pools, in-floor cleaning systems, areas where a smaller pump is required, spa-jet boosters, and solar energy heating systems.
5- Harris H1572748 ProForce 1.5HP Single Speed In-Ground Pool Pump
The Harris ProForce 1.5 HP Inground Pool Pump is cheaper than the big name brands without compromising performance. Constructed from heavy-duty, corrosion-proof materials with a stainless steel motor shaft, this Harris pool pump delivers results.
The reinforced thermoplastic body of the motor shaft means the Harris pool pump is built to last a long time while carborundum and graphite mechanical seals and components make it more durable.
Engineered to be highly efficient and quiet, the beautiful thing about this pump is it comes with some useful features too. For example, the strainer has a large filter basket that is easy to clean while the see-through lid has an easy to operate twist and lock system.
There’s a drain plug for convenience, and the 1.5 HP in-ground pool pump is 230 Volts.
Length: 25 inches
Height: 11 inches
Width: 8 inches (from the floor to the suction port) and 12 inches (from the floor to the discharge hose).
Best Pool Pump – Above Ground Pools
6- Waterway Plastics PH1150-6, 1.5HP Hi-Flo Single Speed Above Ground Pool Pump
This Waterway pool pump delivers a powerful vertical discharge performance and features a high flow rate for faster filtering cycles.
The Waterway pool pump includes a 1-1/2” inch union and self-aligning union discharge, large 6” pump trap, high head capability and a wet end that can be rotated for easy installation.
This Waterway Plastics PH1150-6, 1.5HP Hi-Flo Single Speed Above Ground Pool Pump comes with a 3ft cord.
7- Intex 28633EG Krystal Clear Cartridge Filter Single Speed Pump
This Intex pool pump is designed primarily for above ground pools. The Intex pool filter pump’s flow rate is 2,500 gallons per hour, and the system flow rate is not too shabby at 1,900 gallons per hour. This robust pump easily circulates and filters the water keeping the water clean and safe for swimming or relaxing in on those warm summer days.
Maintaining Intex 28633EG Krystal Clear Cartridge Filter is a simple process requiring the occasional cartridge rinse or swap to keep this pump running effectively. It uses Type B filter cartridges that need changing every couple of weeks.
This pump is the most powerful cartridge filter pump made by Intex and is a must for any above ground pool up to 24ft in diameter.
It is suitable for any Intex above ground pool and comes with a built-in timer.
8- Pentair DYNII–NI–1/2HP Dynamo Single Speed Above Ground Pool Pump
This Pentair Pentair DYNII–NI–1/2HP Dynamo Single Speed Above Ground pool pump is a solid workhorse that is quiet and efficient. If you’re looking for stability and reliability in a pool pump, then this is a pump you should consider.
The Pentair DYNII–NI–1/2HP Dynamo has a superior hydraulic system that delivers efficiency and quiet operation. This above-ground swimming pool pump is designed for longevity and to perform with a high level of economy.
This above-ground Dynamo pump has a 34hp motor and a single-speed self-priming design that will likely last a long time. Reinforced fiberglass is used for strength and there’s a basket with a large capacity and see-thru lid.
It also has a metal motor base for strength and a quick access discharge port for fast service to help minimize service costs.
Check out the Pentair DYNII–NI–1/2HP Dynamo Single Speed Above Ground Pool Pump here.
9- Harris H1572730 ProForce 1.5 HP Above Ground Pool Pump
This above ground pool pump costs less than big name brands, yet still offers outstanding results and performance. This 1.5 HP pool pump is made with heavy-duty, corrosion-proof construction.
The stainless-steel motor shaft has a durable reinforced thermoplastic body and is engineered for quiet operation.
The strainer has an easy-to-clean filter basket. The Harris H1572730 ProForce 1.5 HP pool pump is 115 Volts, has 1.5” connection sizes on both suction and discharge ports, 1.5” internal threading, 2.5” external thread, has a convenient drain plug and comes with standard three-prong plug connection on a 3ft cord.
Note – This pump is not for sale in the state of California.
Find out more about the Harris H1572730 ProForce 1.5 HP Above Ground Pool Pump 115V pump here.
10- Hayward SP1580X15 Power-Flo LX Series 1.5 HP Single Speed Above Ground Pool Pump
This Hayward above ground pool pump is a high-performance 1.5 HP above ground pool pump that can also be used for in-ground swimming pools.
Made of the high-strength PermaGlass XL material, the Hayward SP1580X15 Power-Flo LX Series pump has a transparent cover to let you see when the basket needs cleaning.
An extra-large debris basket allows you to go for longer periods between maintenance while heavy debris loads are easily managed by this pool pump which as rigidly constructed with load extender ribbing.
The pump’s seal is particularly robust and is 100-per cent drip-proof with a heat-resistant seal. Another feature is its self-lubricating motor bearings and shaft seals, which means no lubrication is necessary.
The 60-cycle single-phase motor is rated for 1.5 HP (115-volts) and 20-amp circuit breakers.
The Haywood pool pump’s automatic thermal overload protection kicks in to shut off the engine before damage occurs and the smarts in the system allow it to auto restart.
11- Pentair 342001 SuperFlo VS Variable Speed 1.5 HP Pool Pump
The Pentair 1.5 HP pool pump delivers significant energy cost savings due to its variable speed technology at an affordable price and is operationally quiet.
The Pentair variable speed pool pump can reduce energy costs by as much as 80 per cent, in some circumstances.
One nice feature of the Pentair SuperFlo VS Variable Speed Pump it has a graphical display that is easy to read and a reliable built-in timer.
12- Hayward SP3202VSP 1.85 HP TriStar VS Variable Speed Pool Pump
If you need a 1.5 HP full-rate or 2.0 HP pump, this Haywood variable speed pool pump will fit the bill.
The flexibility of the Hayward SP3202VSP 1.85 HP is that it can be installed in any application, with or without the Hayward automation system and you can also operate it with other competitive control systems.
Like most other variable speed pool pumps, the Haywood pool pump motor is a permanent magnet pool pump motor. It has an enclosed fan-cooled engine that delivers up to 90% energy savings over ordinary single-speed pumps.
This Haywood inground pool pump is perfect for medium to large pools and is easy to install. The pump is fully programmable and comes with a digital control interface.
13- Haywood SP2303 VSP 1.65 HP Max-Flo VS Variable Speed Pump
This variable speed pool pump delivers up to 80% energy cost savings and has a digital interface that displays the power consumption.
One of the main features of the Hayward Max-Flo VS pool pump is its customizable speed that can be changed to match the type of pool or spa you might be using it for. With programmable timers and a permanent magnet pool pump motor, this pool pump is efficient and easy to operate.
14- Pentair 011018 IntelliFlo Variable Speed High-Performance Pool Pump
This variable speed pool pump delivers energy savings of up to 90 percent. It is quiet to run, has eight programmable speed settings and a built-in pool pump timer. The variable speed pool pump also has built-in diagnostics to protect the pool pump motor and ensures a longer life.
Pentair 011018 IntelliFlo Variable Speed is compatible with most pool systems, including IntelliTouch, EasyTouch, SunTouch Pool Control Systems.
Which pool pump should I buy?
The choice of in-ground or above ground pools are determined largely by location and how much money you wish to spend. An In-Ground Pool adds a more pleasing feature to your home and garden and increases the value of your property. But an In-Ground pool is more expensive to purchase, install and maintain compared to an Above-Ground pool.
When choosing or replacing a pool pump for your new or existing pool, the type of pump is important.
If you are looking for an energy-efficient pool pump that delivers significant energy savings, the Variable Speed Pool Pump is the pump type to choose. Ease of installation, pool pump cost, maintenance and noise levels are other factors to be considered.
With regards to installation, maintenance and noise level, the three pool pump types are similar. When it comes to purchase price, the Variable Speed Pool pump is more expensive but this initial cost needs to be compared with much lower annual energy operating costs.
These annual energy cost savings can quickly offset the initial purchase price of the pump.