Efficient Pool Pumps
To see the most efficient pool pumps available on the market today look at variable speed pool pumps
Energy Efficient Pool Pump Options
All electrical consumer appliances come with an efficiency rating which refers to the amount of energy used and more importantly the amount of energy that is loss or wasted as heat energy and lost in transferring one type of energy to another.
Far too many pool pump shoppers purchase according to horsepower rating, which is not a direct reflection of how much water the pump will move, but instead a rating for how much it will cost to operate the pump. Choosing the correct size of pump for your pool system is a big part of having an electrically effecient pool circulation system. Lean about sizing your pool pump
How To Buy The Right Size Pool Pump
Most pool pumps actually provide far more flow than swimming pools actually need to keep clean and clear. This amounts to simply extra money spent on electricity which is not needed. In order to determine the right pump for your needs you will need to perform the following calculation:
The volume of the pool water must pass through the filtration system 3 times every 24 hours. On a 10,000 gallon pool this would mean you need to pump 30,000 gallons per day. 30,000 divided by 24 will tell you the hourly flow rate needed, which for this example is 1250 gallons per hour. To further break this down you need to determine the gallons per minute (GPM) of flow required. 1250 divided by 60 will give you the GPM needed to meet your filtration needs, in this case 20.83 GPM.
Now that you know the minimum GPM needed you need to look at the maximum GPM your filter is rated to handle as discussed in this above video
Why Do Pool Pumps Use So Much Electricity?
Pool pumps, at least traditionally, use a single speed motor which runs at 3450 RPM (revolutions per minute). A Hayward super pump, 1.5 horsepower (a very common model and size of inground pool pump) will provide up to 83 GPM which would be 4 times our required flow rate of 20.83. In theory this system could only run 12 hours per day and still double the amount of daily flow needed. However running the pump only part of the day will reduce the efficiency of your pool system and this is why two speed pumps were introduced as energy saving options decades ago.
By using a variable speed pump you can set the GPM flow (and associated RPM value) such that your pool is circulating 24 hours per day on a low setting. This gives you the benefit of the best method of filtration (24 hours per day) while using the bare minimum of electricity to accomplish this. Follow this link to see more about variable speed pumps
How To Reduce Pool Pump Electricity Costs
If buying a variable speed pump is not in your budget, even though the pump will completely pay for itself within only a few years due to electrical savings, there is another lower cost option. By installing a timer system and running the pump only at night you can reduce your electricity costs by 50%. A timer is a $25 item from a hardware store and the electrical wiring is a small job for any electrician. Using the calculations above you can determine the size of pump you need to have such that you will meet your filtration turnover every day within the set amount of hours that you wish to run your pump.
24 Hour timer 240 volt with 10amp maximum current suitable for small pumps only
Mechanical 24 hour heavy duty timer - this is perfect for almost any pool pump installation
An energy efficient pool pump is almost certainly worth a few extra dollars if you can afford this upgrade as you will get the money back throughout the lifetime of the pump. Many pool pumps can last up to twenty years so the savings can really add up over time. Two speed pool pumps, or dua speed pumps, are the next best thing to variable speed. While you are limited to a high and low setting only for the pump, this is still better than having a one speed pump that runs at full throttle at all times.
Proceed to the next section on Pool Pump Longevity