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Thread: How long to run pool pump in the winter?

  1. #1
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    How long to run pool pump in the winter?

    Hi everyone. This is the first winter that we have to maintain the pool ourselves. I am practicing BBB so the pool water is very clear. I keep the FC level at a minimum of 7. In the summer, we run the pool pump for 7 hours daily. Last winter, we reduced its run time to 5 hours daily as we were instructed to do so. Is that too long or not long enough to keep the pool clear in the winter? The water temperature as of yesterday was 64 degrees. Thanks for your help.
    IG pebbletec pool: size of pool: 27,000 gal; filter: cartridge - Hayward Superstar Clear; pump size: 1.5 HP; TF 100 Test kit - got it on 7-29-10; The Pool Cleaner-4-wheel suction model; Pool calculator: http://www.poolcalculator.com/; bleach calc: http://troublefreepool.com/files/BleachCalc262.exe

  2. #2
    Senior Member Richard320's Avatar
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    Re: How long to run pool pump in the winter?

    Mine survives fine on 3 hours in the winter. I calculated once that I get a full turnover in about 4, but no one's swimming in it, I don't get a lot of debris, and like you, the water's cold.
    16K freeform gunite with spa; Pentair 4000 DE filter; Century Whisperflow 1 HP; Pentair Minimax heater.
    Troublefree does not mean Maintenancefree. It's like brushing your teeth: You can spend a couple minutes a day and pennies a week or go to the dentist once a year and spend several thousand dollars.
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  3. #3
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    Re: How long to run pool pump in the winter?

    I cut back to about half a turnover per day when the water gets colder (< 60ºF).
    16,000 gallon outdoor in-ground 16'x32' plaster pool; Pentair Intelliflo VF pump; Pentair IntelliTouch i9+3s control system; Jandy CL-340 square foot cartridge filter
    12 Fafco solar panels; Purex Triton PowerMax 250 natural gas heater (200,000 BTU/hr output); automatic electric pool safety cover; 4-wheel pressure-side "The Pool Cleaner"

  4. #4
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    Re: How long to run pool pump in the winter?

    "I keep the FC at a minimum of 7"

    What is your CYA at?
    1971 San Juan Fiberglass pool 12,000 gallons
    New Pentair Whisperflow 1hp
    New Pentair FNS DE filter 64sq
    All 1.5" piping and no heater
    1 skimmer, 1 main drain, and 2 returns

  5. #5
    Senior Member mas985's Avatar
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    Re: How long to run pool pump in the winter?

    Quote Originally Posted by chem geek
    I cut back to about half a turnover per day when the water gets colder (< 60ºF).
    That's what I do as well. When it gets below about 50, the SWG shuts off so sometimes I'll go down to a 1/4 turn or even shut off the pump for a few days until it warms up some. I also tend to let the FC drop with the run time so even with a CYA of 80 ppm, a FC of 1-2 ppm seems to be enough with the water that cold. It seems that algae doesn't grow or at least grows very slowly below 60 degrees.
    Mark
    Hydraulics 101; Pump Ed 101; Pump and Pool Spreadsheets; Pump Run Time Study
    18'x36' 20k gallon plaster/gunite pool, 1/2 HP 2sp pump, Aqualogic PS8 SWCG, 420 sq-ft Cartridge Filter, 450 sq-ft EPDM Solar Panel, 6 jet spa, 1 HP jet pump, 400k BTU NG Heater, ThePoolCleaner, DIY Acid Dosing

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    Re: How long to run pool pump in the winter?

    Quote Originally Posted by vln
    "I keep the FC at a minimum of 7"

    What is your CYA at?
    My CYA is at 40. I keep minimum FC at Mustard Algae level since I had it more than once this year before I found this forum.
    IG pebbletec pool: size of pool: 27,000 gal; filter: cartridge - Hayward Superstar Clear; pump size: 1.5 HP; TF 100 Test kit - got it on 7-29-10; The Pool Cleaner-4-wheel suction model; Pool calculator: http://www.poolcalculator.com/; bleach calc: http://troublefreepool.com/files/BleachCalc262.exe

  7. #7
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    Re: How long to run pool pump in the winter?

    Quote Originally Posted by mas985
    I also tend to let the FC drop with the run time so even with a CYA of 80 ppm, a FC of 1-2 ppm seems to be enough with the water that cold. It seems that algae doesn't grow or at least grows very slowly below 60 degrees.
    Wow, with your CYA at 80, you only have to maintain FC at 1-2 ppm? Maybe I can lower mine to less than 7 when the water gets below 60 degrees. I am afraid to keep the FC at lower than the minimum Mustard Algae level since I don't want to get Mustard Algae again. Maybe I should start testing FC daily again to get an idea how much bleach the pool uses in the winter.

    If I did my math right, each turnover takes about 3 hours. Based on your opinion, I can turn it down to 3 hours or less when the water is less than 60 degrees. That is good news. Saves unnecessary energy.
    IG pebbletec pool: size of pool: 27,000 gal; filter: cartridge - Hayward Superstar Clear; pump size: 1.5 HP; TF 100 Test kit - got it on 7-29-10; The Pool Cleaner-4-wheel suction model; Pool calculator: http://www.poolcalculator.com/; bleach calc: http://troublefreepool.com/files/BleachCalc262.exe

  8. #8
    Senior Member mas985's Avatar
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    Re: How long to run pool pump in the winter?

    I have never had algae let alone mustard algae so you may need to keep your FC higher then me but one thing to be aware of is that chlorine extinction due to both UV and water temps tends to decrease quite a bit during the winter so you don'r need to add as much chlorine to get to the same residual as the summer.
    Mark
    Hydraulics 101; Pump Ed 101; Pump and Pool Spreadsheets; Pump Run Time Study
    18'x36' 20k gallon plaster/gunite pool, 1/2 HP 2sp pump, Aqualogic PS8 SWCG, 420 sq-ft Cartridge Filter, 450 sq-ft EPDM Solar Panel, 6 jet spa, 1 HP jet pump, 400k BTU NG Heater, ThePoolCleaner, DIY Acid Dosing

  9. #9
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    Re: How long to run pool pump in the winter?

    I have another question. I found out this morning that he pool filter was gushing out water from both side so I turned it off. I made an appointment for a pool repair service for next Monday because it is going to rain starting tomorrow until Sunday. Is it ok to leave the pump off until Monday? When I tested FC this morning, it was at 9ppm. I will try to maintain the FC at a minimum of 7 although I don't know if it is possible since it is going to rain. Thanks.
    IG pebbletec pool: size of pool: 27,000 gal; filter: cartridge - Hayward Superstar Clear; pump size: 1.5 HP; TF 100 Test kit - got it on 7-29-10; The Pool Cleaner-4-wheel suction model; Pool calculator: http://www.poolcalculator.com/; bleach calc: http://troublefreepool.com/files/BleachCalc262.exe

  10. #10
    Mod Squad zea3's Avatar
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    Re: How long to run pool pump in the winter?

    I just ended 4 weeks without a pump. You can add your chlorine manually by pouring it around the perimeter of the pool and then mix it in by brushing the walls and floor. It takes a little time and muscle but it will prevent the pool from going green.
    TFP Moderator
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  11. #11
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    Re: How long to run pool pump in the winter?

    Shoot, I ran my pump once a week last winter! I took a cue from those who close their pools. Consider this: A closed pool gets no circulation at all and it turns out fine in the spring.
    20K gal IG plaster pool, Manually chlorinated with 6% bleach, 1.5 HP Sta-Rite Dura-Glas II pump, Pentair FNS Plus 48 DE filter, Polaris 280

  12. #12
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    Re: How long to run pool pump in the winter?

    Quote Originally Posted by Beez
    Consider this: A closed pool gets no circulation at all and it turns out fine in the spring.
    Yep. I close mine down when the water hits the mid to upper 50's. The pump doesnt run for nearly 6 months and when I open in mid April, the water is still clear as crystal.
    14,000 gallon IG, Vinyl. Hayward 3/4 hp superpump, Penatair IC40 SWCG, Pentair automation, Hayward sand filter, Aqua Comfort heat pump, Hayward 400k Lo-Nox LP heater.

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