Pool Pump Energy Savings

Pool Pump Energy Savings

Numerous past discussions on this forum have encouraged a careful analysis and optimization of current home energy usage prior to adding a solar PV generator and battery system to the home. I couldn’t agree more. As a case in point I’m pleased to share this recent real-life energy reduction project for our own home with hopes the hard data will help others save $$ as well.

Pool pumps are everywhere in FL and the southern US. Most everyone knows that traditional pumps use a lot of energy, but it’s hard to know exactly how much energy and its associated cost. Some folks are aware of the new variable speed pool pumps now available using less energy, but it’s hard to know exactly how much less and how much of a cost reduction opportunity is really available. Trying to read and interpret all the marketing noise and motor labels can be very confusing.

Given this situation I’m pleased to share our data from a recent pool pump upgrade as shown below:

Pool Pump Energy Summary KW Daily KWH Monthly KWH Monthly Cost
Old 1 HP Fixed-Speed Motor 1,480 10 311 $40
New 1.5 HP Variable-Speed Motor 150 1 32 $4

Net Savings: 1,330 9 279 $36

Hard to believe, right? I would be 100% skeptical if I hadn’t taken the measurements myself using our own proven solar/energy monitoring systems. The information is accurate for our small 8-10K gallon pool. The savings are real and substantial. Imagine the impact for those with larger pools!

In this case the cost of the new pump was about $300-400 higher than a traditional pump, but as you can see those costs are recouped within a year or so. Even better, this equates to roughly a 10% reduction in the total energy use of our entire home, which means additional savings from a smaller solar PV generator. In our case we already have the solar generator, but rather than adding panels we are reducing loads in preparation for a new M3.

Morals from the story:

- Consider changing out your old pool pump before installing a new solar PV generator.
- Next time your existing pool pump goes out install a new variable-speed pump.
- Use the new pumps on all new home construction or pool renovations.

Wishing everyone blue skies and megawatt hours!

Babaron | August 11, 2018

Very interesting and helpful info here, Patrick. I remember reading that somewhere but I had no idea the difference was that much. Thank you!

mcdonalk | August 11, 2018

If you have an in-floor cleaning system, you may still have to run the pump at full speed for some time to drive the cleaning system. Also, if you have a salt-water chlorinating system, the system will not turn on when the flow is reduced too much. We have a variable speed pump, and we have to run it at full speed for some time to effectively use our infloor cleaning system, and we have to run the pump at about half speed to actuate the switch for the automatic chlorinator. Overall, though, we are realizing some net savings, but not of the magnitude that you enjoy.

Patrick | August 11, 2018

We're lucky - our pool is small and screened so we rarely ever have to vacuum. The new pump just runs quietly at about 1,000 RPM (can't hear it) using about 150 watts. Amazing.

dmastro | August 14, 2018

I have salt chlorination, waterfall, pool sweep, and solar heating - all of which require the pump be run at higher speeds. There are several mitigating factors that people need to consider when installing a variable pump to be certain they will be able to run at the lower speed often enough to realize acceptable ROI.

alienglishbond | August 18, 2018

I have water pumps which take slow energy. But after getting repaired by mechanic,
it takes more energy.
Jamia and amu are the .........,.
I dont know how to make it run in its early way.