Estimating Pool Pump Electricity Costs

Introduction – Pool Pump Costs

Owning a pool is both a luxury and a responsibility. Beyond the joy and relaxation, there’s a significant aspect many pool owners grapple with: the energy consumption and cost of running pool pumps. This guide not only explores the mechanics behind pool pump energy use but also navigates through strategies for minimizing costs, highlighting the role of energy-efficient models, and providing actionable insights for savvy pool maintenance.

Cleaning pools is a summer rite of passage for young people with too much time on his or her hands

Understanding Pool Pump Energy Consumption

At the heart of pool maintenance, the pool pump plays a crucial role in maintaining water clarity and hygiene. Yet, its operation is a major contributor to household energy consumption, particularly if your pump is outdated or inefficient. The main factors influencing a pool pump’s energy usage include horsepower, the pool’s volume, and whether the pump operates at a fixed or variable speed.

Decoding the Impact on Your Electricity Bill

To effectively manage and reduce the costs associated with running a pool pump, a clear understanding of its impact on your electricity bill is essential. Recent innovations in pool pump technology, exemplified by industry leaders like Pentair and Hayward, offer advanced energy-efficient models capable of providing significant savings.

Estimating Pool Pump Usage

Estimating the usage of a pool pump for an average home pool of 20,000 gallons brings practicality and efficiency into focus. It’s recommended to recycle pool water once per day means one needs to cycle 20,000 gallons of water. Let’s assume a hypothetical pool pump which has an efficiency of 13.1 kgal/kWh. Then let’s break down the calculation into simple steps:

  1. Calculate the Energy Required:
    • The pump efficiency is 13.1 thousand gallons per kilowatt-hour (kgal/kWh), which means it can pump 13,100 gallons of water using 1 kWh of energy.
    • To recycle 20,000 gallons of water, the energy required is calculated as the total gallons divided by the pump efficiency in gallons per kWh. This gives us 20,000 gallons
    • 13,100 gallons per kWh=1.53 kWh13,
    • 100 gallons per kWh
    • 20,000 gallons​=1.53 kWh.
  2. Calculate the Daily Cost:
    • With the cost of electricity being $0.17 per kWh, the daily cost to run the pump for recycling 20,000 gallons of water is 1.53 \text{ kWh} \times $0.17 \text{ per kWh} = $0.26.

Therefore, it requires 1.53 kWh of energy to pump 20,000 gallons of water, costing about $0.26 per day. This step-by-step breakdown showcases how efficiently and cost-effectively a pool pump can operate, aligning perfectly with the principles of eco-living. ​

Pool Pump Efficiency Values

The ENERGY STAR program, known for its energy efficiency ratings, has recently released data on certified pool pumps that can help consumers make informed decisions.

We analyzed pool pump manufacturer data provided to ENERGY STAR, focusing on the “Weighted Energy Factor (WEF) (kgal/kWh)” column, which represents the energy efficiency of pool pumps. A higher WEF value indicates better efficiency, meaning the pump can circulate more water while consuming less energy.

Our analysis revealed a wide range of WEF values among the certified pool pumps, with some pumps being significantly more efficient than others. We found that the average WEF value was 8.80 kgal/kWh, while the most efficient pump had a WEF of 13.1 kgal/kWh.

Calculating Your Pool Pump Costs

This will empower you to make informed decisions about managing your pool in an eco-friendly and cost-effective manner. To start, you’ll need to know your pool’s volume in gallons and the efficiency of your pool pump (in gallons per kilowatt-hour or gph/kWh). With these figures, you can determine how much energy is required to cycle your pool’s water daily.

ItemDescriptionYour Input
Pool Volume (gallons)Total volume of your pool.
Pump Efficiency (gph/kWh)How many gallons your pump moves per kWh.
Local Electricity Rate ($/kWh)The cost of electricity in your area.
Daily Energy Usage (kWh)Calculated: Pool Volume / Pump Efficiency.
Daily Cost ($)Calculated: Daily Energy Usage * Electricity Rate.
Annual Cost ($)Calculated: Daily Cost * 365.

Multiply this energy usage by your local electricity rate to find out how much it costs to run your pump each day. For an annual estimate, simply multiply the daily cost by 365. It’s important to note that electricity rates can vary significantly from one location to another, so checking your latest utility bill or contacting your local provider for accurate rates is crucial. To make this process easier, here’s a fillable table you can use to plug in your numbers.

Blueworks BAPVS1515-NC: A Closer Look at the Most Efficient Above-Ground Pool Filter Pump

According to the ENERGY STAR certified pool pump data, the Blueworks BAPVS1515-NC, manufactured by Ningbo C.F Electronic Tech Co., Ltd, stands out as the most energy-efficient above-ground pool filter pump on the market. With a Weighted Energy Factor (WEF) of 13.1 kgal/kWh, this variable-speed pump significantly exceeds the federal standard minimum WEF of 4.56.

The BAPVS1515-NC’s high efficiency is attributed to its well-designed permanent split-capacitor motor, which delivers a flow rate of 24.9 GPM at a head of 5.1 ftH20 when operating at its low-speed measurement point of 1350.0 RPM. At this speed, the pump consumes only 72.2 watts of power, highlighting its energy-saving capabilities.

Hayward TriStar VS 900: A High-Performance In-Ground Pool Filter Pump

The Hayward TriStar VS 900, model number SP32900VSP (115V), is a notable in-ground pool filter pump that combines energy efficiency with powerful performance. As the second most efficient pump in terms of Weighted Energy Factor (WEF), the TriStar VS 900 achieves a WEF of 12.919 kgal/kWh, more than double the federal standard minimum of 5.99 kgal/kWh for in-ground pumps.

This variable-speed pump utilizes an electronically-commutated motor with a rated horsepower of 0.85 and a hydraulic horsepower of 0.448. At its low-speed measurement point of 1004.06 RPM, the pump delivers a flow rate of 25.19 GPM at a head of 5.1 ftH20, consuming just 79.79 watts of power. When operating at its high-speed measurement point of 1994.64 RPM, the TriStar VS 900 impressively moves 48.44 GPM at a head of 19.5 ftH20, using 369.09 watts of power.

Blue Torrent BT AGV100: Efficient Above-Ground Pool Filtration

The Blue Torrent BT AGV100, manufactured by Asia Connection LLC, secures the third spot among the most energy-efficient above-ground pool filter pumps based on its Weighted Energy Factor (WEF) of 12.5 kgal/kWh. This variable-speed pump comfortably exceeds the federal standard minimum WEF of 4.53 for above-ground pumps.

Equipped with a permanent split-capacitor motor, the BT AGV100 offers a rated horsepower of 1.0 and a hydraulic horsepower of 0.508. When operating at its low-speed measurement point of 1350.0 RPM, the pump achieves a flow rate of 25.4 GPM at a head of 5.3 ftH20, consuming a modest 76.8 watts of power.

Practical Tips for Reducing Electricity Usage

1. **Adopting Energy-Efficient Pool Pumps:** Transition to energy-efficient models like the Pentair IntelliFlo or Hayward Super Pump VSP. Their variable speed settings allow for optimized energy use, aligning output with specific pool needs.

2. **Optimize Pump Operation Hours:** Consider running your pump during off-peak hours to capitalize on lower electricity rates. Moreover, minimizing the pump’s operating time to the shortest effective duration can yield additional savings.

3. **Routine Maintenance Checks:** Ensuring your pump and its components are in good working order can prevent overexertion and inefficiency, fostering optimal performance.

Going Beyond the Calculator: Envisioning Long-Term Benefits

While the upfront cost of energy-efficient pool pumps may seem daunting, the long-term benefits, both financial and environmental, are undeniable. These advanced pumps not only facilitate substantial operational cost reductions but also contribute to minimizing your carbon footprint—aligning your pool management practices with broader sustainability goals.


The pathway to optimizing your pool pump’s operational costs is paved with informed choices, from understanding energy consumption patterns to selecting the right equipment and implementing efficient usage strategies. By focusing on cutting-edge solutions like Pentair’s IntelliFlo and Hayward’s Super Pump VSP, and utilizing comprehensive tools like online cost calculators, pool owners can navigate towards significant savings. Embrace these insights and embrace an era of cost-effective, eco-friendly pool management.

Staff Writer
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