Variable speed pump for the swimming pool – it’s the buzz word in the swimming pool world these days. But do variable speed pool pumps work or are they just a marketing gimmick?
A Little Background
Variable speed motors have been around for a long time but it’s only very recently that manufacturers have started pushing them heavily and for consumers to start raving and talking about them.
It’s often difficult to “believe” the reliability of these energy efficiency claims when they come from the very people who are selling the products, right?
Well, here comes Energy Star. Finally, last year, the voluntary organization that tests many household appliances came out with a list of Energy star rated swimming pool pumps and it turns out that those who passed have either a dual, multi or variable speed motor.
So in response to the question, Do variable speed pumps really work, your quick answer would be a big yes (but so do dual and multi speed pumps)
It’s Not All About the Speed Of Your Motor
There’s one thing that makes pool pumps very unique to other appliances in your house. Saving on electricity bill is not just a case of plug and play. It’s much more complicated than that.
This means that if you want to save on energy bill, don’t just look at the pump you’re buying, you need to look at the whole system. You MUST change the way you run your swimming pool than the way you use too. This is extremely important.
If you’re running a variable speed pump but are not implementing the other important changes in your pool, then that money you spent on your variable speed pump has served no purpose at all.
So What Do You Need To Change In TheSystem?
- Run the pump at the lowest flow setting possible. This means you may have to run it for much longer than you use to.
- Only run the pump on a high setting for vacuum cleaners and other equipment that need higher flow
- Check on the size of your pipes. Generally, bigger pipes are recommended.
I can not underestimate the importance of changing the way you run your pool. The main reason why people may start to complain about their variable speed pool pumps not really saving as much energy as a company claims is because they have been running it the wrong way.
Check out the best rated Energy star pool pumps in the market.
What’s Unique In Variable Speed Pool Pump Motors?
Motor – same as the one used in hybrid cars. This means they’re quieter than traditional pool pumps
Enclosed motor – Not only does this contribute to the quietness of the motor, but it also protecs it from the elements and bugs! This means it lasts longer than traditional motors.
Already, California now has a law that pool pumps with greater than 1 THP must use dual or variable speed pumps. Not long now, and many other states will have this law too.
So really, buying a variable speed pool pump is something that you need to do sooner or later.
- Energy star website
- http://www.nrel.gov/docs/fy12osti/54242.pdf : US department of energy guideline to changing single speed to variable speed pool pumps.