When buying the best pool pump, your most critical considerations will be the amount of energy the pump will use when cleaning/heating your pool and the strength of the device you will require to effectively clean/heat your swimming pool. This comprehensive guide will help you get the best pump.
Table of Contents
- 1 What is a Pool Pump?
- 2 How Does A Pool Pump Work?
- 3 Three Types of Pool Pumps
- 4 Factors to Consider When Buying the Best Pool Pump
- 5 Sizing Your Swimming Pool Pump
- 6 Which Pool Pump Brand Should You Buy?
- 7 Top 10 Pool Pumps Review
- 8 Best Single-Speed Pool Pump
- 9 Conclusion
What is a Pool Pump?
A pool pump is a unit that is in control of your entire pool water circulation system. All the operations of circulation, filtration, and cleaning depends on the operation of the pump, and without the pump, the water will become stagnant (hence the filter won’t work, too).
How Does A Pool Pump Work?
Your pool pump pulls the water via the skimmer and the primary water drain, pushes it via the filter, and then back via the primary returns. Generally, a pool pump consists of 3 major sections:
- An Electric Motor – It uses either 110v or 220v (depends on your pool size) and returns at a high speed of 3,450 RPM. It is cooled by air and hence not fully covered to enable for an efficient cooling process.
- The Impeller – It is installed at the end of the motor’s shaft, pulls the water in through the hair and down lint trap at the tail of the pump and then pushes it up via the pump to the filter.
- The Hair and Down Lint Trap – It is located at the end of the pool pump to prevent dirt from entering the system. It has a basket for collecting any material that might clog the system.
Three Types of Pool Pumps
There are three major types of pool pumps that you may choose from:
- Single-Speed Pump
The single-speed unit is the cheapest compared to other pumps; that is why it’s the most popular unit out there. The system is able to remove dirt and debris with a single pump. It works with 3,450 revolutions per minute (RPMs) on a single motor. The single-speed pool pump is quite efficient but it consumes a lot of energy. Although it is cheap, it might increase your electricity bill if you don’t shut it off when not in use.
- Two-Speed Pump
This pool pump is able to change its speed. You may change it from 3,450 RPMs to 1,725 RPMs when needed. It is suitable for spas where the high speed is required during the jet action and a lower speed during filtration.
- Variable-Speed Pump
Variable-speed unit offers you savings. With this unit, you may choose the speed that you want to use (flow or speed rate). It often cut the electricity bills compared to the other pumps and does a better filtration. Therefore, if you are searching for a unit that saves you money and is efficient, the variable-speed pump might be the way to go.
Factors to Consider When Buying the Best Pool Pump
When considering purchasing a pump, it is best you do your research before you hit the market. There are a few factors that you will need to understand in order to get the most efficient unit for your spa or pool, including noise, energy rating, size, and functionality.
Generally, the lowest wattage pump (the smallest size) is not necessarily the best unit for your spa or swimming pool, as an undersized system won’t work effectively, risking an unclean pool and damage. You might save $50 today, but it will cost you $200 to operate every year.
The quality/cleanness of water in your swimming pool begins with its turnover or how long it will take to move it in your facility. This means that the volume of your facility is an important factor you need to get right. The pump size should match the pool size. We would suggest you know the surface area and/or depth, width, and length dimensions before you consult an expert for the right measurement.
You need to know the outline of your swimming pool plumbing, installed devices, distances, among other things. This might require consulting the original installer but it will save you time and money down the road. It is worth noting that the most efficient swimming pool plumbing often has pipes with a huge diameter with minimal or no bends.
Swimming pool pumps might use 70% of the energy associated with the expenses of operating your pool, so go for an energy saving pump that will save you energy costs while being efficient. The energy rating of pool pumps is outlined on the state’s website here. Going for a unit with variable speed cater for different facilities functions, which save on energy and money. Go for quality, reputable brands. Today, you may purchase a digital pump that is controlled by a simple switch of a button, which is more efficient because the system automatically switches back to low speed after the heavy work is done.
The other thing to consider when buying your pump is its noise output. Buy a unit that is quiet to operate so you may operate it during the night when electricity is cheap, without being a nuisance to your neighbors.
Sizing Your Swimming Pool Pump
Although the filter might be oversized, a pool pump needs to fit perfectly to your pool. The best pool pump will filter through your swimming pool in 8 hours – that is the aim. You need to know the right numbers, and here are the 2 numbers that you should keep in mind.
- Desired Flow Rate (Gallons Per Minute – GPM) – This is the amount of GPM your pool pump requires to pump so as to circulate your entire facility in 8 hours.
- Resistance (Feet (ft.) of Head) – This figure is the average length (in ft.) it takes for the skimmer to reach the pump. If your pool has a single skimmer, this is the number you will take. However, if you pool has at least 2 skimmers, you need to find their average length.
Note: If you are looking for an above ground pump, you do not need to know the Feet of Head number; only the GPM.
Inground or Above Ground Pool: The Difference
Before you hit the market, you need to know whether you have an inground or an above ground swimming pool. This is vital since it determines the location of the pool filter.
- If the intake to the filter is situated above the ground pool pump, you will require a top-mount unit.
- If the intake is on a similar level to the pump, you will require a side-mount unit.
- DE and cartridge filters require side-mounted pool pumps while sand filters require top-mount pumps.
Which Pool Pump Brand Should You Buy?
Choosing the right pump remains a big issue for all pool owners. One of the key considerations is the brand. Start by searching for the top brands from reputable manufacturers who have been around for years and produce different models as well as the size of pumps.
We will recommend our choice after the following review of the top 10 pool pumps on the market today.
Top 10 Pool Pumps Review
Best Single-Speed Pool Pump
Hayward SP2610X15 Super Pool Pump
The Hayward SP2610X15 Super Pool Pump is a top rated single-speed pump for inground pool and spa and is one of the most famous pumps on the shelves; actually, it is often used in tutorials to educate the mechanics of swimming pool pumps to buyers. It is widely known for its high performance and durability. The Norly impeller inside this unit is energy efficient and operates at low horsepower while providing high flow rate enabling you to save cash. In addition, this unit is self-priming due to its built-in diffuser.
The pump features a large transparent 110 cubic inches dirt basket which is uniquely designed to need minimal maintenance. It is quite easy to install this unit as it requires no tools to open or screw – the strainer is also easy to open and has no moving parts.
- The pump is very efficient and saves energy and hence money.
- It requires low maintenance.
- It is a strong and durable unit.
- The product is pretty light, weighing only 39.3 pounds.
- SP2610X15 is designed to enable easy access to internal parts.
- Made out of perma glass which is corrosion-free and enable the motor to last for many decades.
- Has a low power motor.
- Needs winterization.
Pentair DYNII-NI ¾ HP Pool Pump
The Pentair DYNII-NI ¾ HP Pool Pump is a quiet, super reliable, and efficient performing Dynamo pool pump with amazing hydraulic engineering to offer that much-sought combination of longevity, quiet operation, and efficiency. All its parts are designed for optimal performance and great results for above ground pools. The unit comes with a 34-horsepower motor with cord self-priming design to ensure durability and has reinforced fiberglass of additional durability and strength. The pump comes with a large capacity basket for collecting any debris and features a clear lid for better viewing.
It also comes with a strong impeller for amazing flow rate and it’s very easy to access the drain plugs pump parts, which also happens to be made of a fiberglass reinforced material for long life and superior strength. Furthermore, the pump comes with a metal motor base for durability and strength, offering decades of services.
- Easy access discharge system that changes between vertical and horizontal for fast service.
- Comes with a 3-feet standard cord.
- Self-priming design that guarantees long life service.
- Comes with a large capacity basket with a clear lid.
- Unique impeller and diffuser for amazing flow rates.
- Reinforced fiberglass of durability and strength.
- Power cord might blow out after a few uses.
- Hard to get replacement parts.
Best Dual-Speed Pool Pump
Hayward SP15932S PowerFlow Matrix Pool Pump
The Hayward SP15932S PowerFlow Matrix Pool Pump might be a great choice for people searching for above ground pools pumps. With just a simple push of a button, it changes from vertical to a horizontal position which offers you more flexibility on where and how you use your device around your swimming pool. Best for an above ground facility; it also works well for Intex pools.
This unit comes with an effective industrial sized basket which enables for extended periods of use without needing to empty the waste. Although its motor is heavy duty, it is still power efficient and deals with the toughest jobs possible while offering a high performance of any two-speed pump. The unit is pretty quiet when in operation at low-speed setting. It weighs 4 pounds and measures 23 x 10 x 11 inches.
- The unit works with both intex and above ground swimming pools.
- It is energy saving and produces enough power when operating in the high-speed
- It is very easy to change from horizontal to the vertical
- The unit comes with a one year warranty that guarantees to service in case of breakdown.
- The pump doesn’t come with a hose.
- Needs to keep running when at low speed.
Pentair 011486 WhisperFlow Pool Pump
The Pentair 011486 WhisperFlow Pool Pump is a superb unit for people looking for a quiet-operating pump. It features a uniquely designed Funnel-Flow diffuser as well as a high-efficiency impeller that allows for less instability within the pool pump leading to a much smoother and quieter operation.
It comes with an oversized basket to minimize the frequency of cleaning and it uses minimal horsepower to offer the perfect water flow making it energy efficient. Actually, the pump provides the highest output of any two-speed pool pump with minimal energy usage. The unit was also made to be corrosion and heat resistance, rust resistance, and has been made to last for years.
- Highly compatible with other cleaning systems, filters, and jet action spas.
- It is very quiet when operating, quieter than most 2-speed pool pumps.
- It is well-designed to be durable.
- Comes with a great strainer basket to hold lots of dirt.
- Corrosion and rust free unit.
- Comes with a one-year limited warranty.
- Limited due to its low power motor.
- The warranty only applies if you seek professional installation.
Best Variable Speed Pool Pump
Hayward SP2302VSP Max-Flow Pool Pump
The Hayward SP2302VSP Max-Flow-Pool Pump is among the simplest variable speed units to program out there. It features a built-in clock which makes it easier to set the pump compared to other traditional countdown timer models. Its digital interface enables the owner to read the power usage for the unit and offers customizable speeds. This great unit is suitable for both above ground and inground pools and features a 2-way rotatable user border screen so that you may program and read it from any direction.
The unit is one of the few pool pumps on the shelves that enables the user to customize the timing, speed, and the priming-time. This offers you more options when setting your pump for your personal needs. The device is energy star certified and is 100 percent compliant with the pump industry guidelines. In fact, it is one of the most energy-efficient pumps in the industry today.
- Comes with the latest permanent magnet as well as a fan cooled motor for durability and optimal efficiency.
- It features a stainless steel shaft and built-in skimmer to prevent rust.
- It is an energy efficient unit which also happens to be quiet.
- Comes with an easy to program pump and shows energy usage on a digital interface.
- Has a huge debris basket.
- Features lots of customizable options, hence, ideal for all your needs.
- Needs at least 230v to work.
- Self-installation will void the warranty.
Pentair 011018 IntelliFlo Pool Pump
The Pentair 011018 IntelliFlow Pool Pump is considered to be among the most energy efficient units on the market today. It features an 8-speed setting that enables you to customize your pump to your needs. By using the right speed for your swimming pool, you will save the energy and also prolong the life of your pool pump. This system produces up to 90 percent energy savings making it the perfect unit for the money.
In addition, the pump has a built-in diagnostic system that helps to keep the system working at the desired rate. The pump is able to operate up to four times quieter than most pool pumps out there today. It measures 28 x 12 x 15 inches and weighs 47 pounds.
- An energy efficient pool pump that saves you money.
- Features a built-in diagnostic system that aids to keep it working for many hours.
- Comes with a one-year warranty.
- Operates 4-times quieter than other pumps on the shelves today.
- Comes with 8-speed settings that enable you to choose your desired setting.
- Often breaks after a few years of use.
- Repair parts are quite expensive.
Pentair 342001 SuperFlo Pool Pump
The Pentair 342001 SuperFlo Pool Pump saves up to 80 percent of the energy that other units need in order to work effectively. It comes with a built-in time clock with sufficient memory that lasts for 24 hours and is pretty easy to program it to three different speed settings. The device is quite affordable when you compare with other models on its class, but still provides the efficient of top-rated units.
Through an advanced tech, it will cost you less to operate this unit, saving you hundreds of dollars on your power bill. However, it still uses the 1½ HP pump as well as 110v-230v for better working. You will love how it is easy to use, with a great interface that is easy to comprehend. It weighs 52 pounds and measures 28 x 15.5 x 12.5 inches.
- The device features a 24 hours real time clock with great memory retention capacity.
- It is very easy to install and works quietly.
- It’s very easy to program with 3 programmable speed settings.
- It saves energy and hence operating power bills.
- Comes with a one year warranty.
- The pump often fails within a short period of use.
- Might not come with a warranty if you buy in some stores.
Jandy JEP 1½ ePump Pool Pump
The Jandy JEP 1½ ePump pool Pump features an efficient motor that makes its quiet to operate and one of the most effective pumps you will get today. It features 8 variable speed settings that enable you to personalize your setting according to your needs. These settings also enable to save energy. Jandy comes with a superb Aqua Link RS One Touch PDA that makes it easier to control it. You may use the proprietary controller also.
Included in its package are a large capacity basket, durable motor, and 1.5 Hp horsepower. It measures 33 x 15 x 18 inches and weighs 75 pounds. What makes it’s a great choice for the money is the fact that it saves 90 percent of your energy use – a highly-efficient pump that saves your cash.
- Features a high-efficient motor that saves your electricity bill.
- Produces very low noise that ensures you operate it even during the night.
- Comes with 8 variable speeds and hence made to meet all your needs.
- Features easy to read instructions and indicators and comes with a great handle on the design.
- Comes with a big basket that makes it easier to maintain.
- Not from a well-recognized brand.
- Might be hard to get spare parts.
Best Pool Filter Pump
Intex Krystal Clear Sand Filter Pump
The Intex Krystal Clear Sand Filter Pump works as good, if not better, as all other filters, requires little service, and is pretty affordable. It uses sand to clean your swimming pool water. As well as filtering, the system comes with a sole valve that enables for backwash, drainage, recirculation, and even shutting the system – hence, convenient and easy to use.
The smart pump has a built-in 24 hours timer which makes the general experience of cleaning your swimming pool enjoyable. The unit comes in 4 different models, 1050, 1600, 2150, and 3000 GPH. The strongest unit, 3000 GPH, is perfect for above ground pool as well as over 20000 gallon pool. The best thing about this unit is that you don’t need to maintain it – you only need to replace it after 5 years of effective services – and is perfect for saltwater.
- Very affordable with no maintenance cost to incur.
- Available in 4 different sizes to ensure that you get your perfect unit.
- Works very fast due to the high flow rate, hence saves power.
- One valve enables you to do all your things from recirculation, drainage, backwash, and filtering, and closing.
- Very easy to maintain and use and comes with a timer for additional convenience.
- Only suitable for custom adapters.
- Doesn’t last long – five years only.
4500GPH 19 Inches Sand Filter Pool Pump
The 4500GPH 19 Inches Sand Filter Pump is among the most effective above ground pool filter and pump systems out there. It features an easy installation method and is very easy to use. The device helps to clean your pool and free all the debris. The unit itself is a single-piece, blow-molded reservoir, set on a suitable base that connects with most pumps. It features a six-position valve as well as a high capacity sand bed that aids to trap all the debris.
It measures 29 x 19 x 37 inches and weighs 35 pounds. Its tank has a huge capacity of 175-pounds of sand, which isn’t included when buying your pump. The pump boasts of 1 horsepower, a flow of 45000 GPH and doesn’t need priming. This unit is perfect for facilities holding up to 18000 gallons of water and its filter is easy to change as well as efficient.
- The filter comes with a universal base that makes it adaptable to most pumps.
- It has an effective self-priming pump.
- It is easy to clean and efficient filter that will clean your pool with ease.
- The unit boasts of a high flow rate of 45000GPH and is perfect for 18000 pools.
- It has a strong horsepower that makes it easy to operate.
- Comes with weak clamps.
- You might need to buy additional adapters or fittings.
Factors such as your budget, pool size, time spent working, and cost of maintenance will all determine the pump you purchase. You want to ensure that the water in your facility is safe and clear to use. With that said, we would answer the question of what is the best pool pump on the market by recommending Hayward SP2610X15 Super Pool Pump. It is a top rated brand that is perfect for spas and inground pools.