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Thread: Bearing replacement on a Pentair Whisperflo pump?

  1. Back To Top    #1

    Join Date
    Jun 2014
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    Tomball, TX
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    Bearing replacement on a Pentair Whisperflo pump?

    Hi All,

    I'm 90% confident that my motor bearings are going on a 2.5 HP Pentair Whisperflo pump. I'm familiar with what it sounds like when the impeller has junk stuck in it (a swishing sound) vs. this sound which is more of a loud whining. I don't know the age of the pump but it could be as old as 12 yrs but it's not leaking and is still running, albeit loudly. I've called around and no one seems to be willing to work on the pump, some companies going so far as telling me that the whole pump needs to be replaced if the bearing are shot!

    I'm willing to attempt the bearing replacement on the motor myself. I've found a Youtube video that does a pretty good job at showing how to do it. I'm willing to buy the bearing puller and bearings (if I can figure out which ones to buy) and that would cost me ~$50-$60. As with everyone these days, my time is limited (we have a 1 year old son!) and I'd love to be able to find someone to replace the bearings for me instead.

    Options:
    1. do it myself (worried about potential pump downtime in the heat of Houston summer, had a battle with algae last year that I'd prefer not repeating.)
    2. buy a new motor (~$300?)
    3. buy a new pump (~$650 online for a direct replacement or should I get something newer/better/different?)

    I'm a little more confident about messing with the motor vs. replacing the whole pump because I worry about getting all the PVC pipes to fit together etc.

    Any advice out there?

    Thanks in advance,

    Derek

    PS I've got a 16,000 gal. pool with a D.E. filter and a 2.5 HP Pentair Whisperflo pump

  2. Back To Top    #2
    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: Bearing replacement on a Pentair Whisperflo pump?

    Welcome to TFP!

    Personally, I would buy a new two speed motor, or if you don't have a spa or other large water feature a new motor and a new impeller (making it a smaller pump). Large pumps waste a lot of electricity. A two speed running on low speed can save you 50% of your electric bill, a smaller two speed could save you even more. If you do have a spa or large water feature, you may well need 2.5 HP to run the spa, but could use low speed for circulation.

    But if you tight on cash and are feeling in a DIY mood, it is certainly possible to replace bearings yourself. Another option is to take the motor to a motor repair/rebuild shop and have them do it. That won't cost much, but does mean dismounting the motor yourself and then reinstalling it, and could take a few days depending on how busy they are.
    19K gal, vinyl, 1/2 HP WhisperFlo pump, 200 sqft cartridge filter, AutoPilot Digital SWG, Dolphin Dynamic cleaning robot
    Creator of PoolMath and Pool Calculator. Other handy links: Support this site, TF Test Kits, Pool School

  3. Back To Top    #3
    bobodaclown's Avatar
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    Re: Bearing replacement on a Pentair Whisperflo pump?

    Get a re-manufactured 2-speed motor, get the best of both worlds, save money on electricity, save money on the price of a new motor. You're local pool place will mount the motor on the housing part for a nominal fee (check around, $20-$30).
    Remember you'll also need to replace the shaft seal. It's about $10 and should be replaced when ever you replace the motor. (A leaking shaft seal allows water to the bearings and such.)
    Here's a link to a video showing the removal of the motor.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CuLtT_fe8B8

    Good luck keep us updated.

    Here's an idea on the motor complete with timer: http://www.ebay.com/itm/2-HP-2-Speed.../151028486448?
    17K Kidney Shaped Pool Concrete (Diamond Bright) Pool, 3/4 hp 2 speed 115V Sta-rite Duraglas PEA5D-180L/P2R5D-181L (Impeller C105-92PS Diffuser C1-216P), 1.5 piping, Pentair CC100 Filter , Heat Siphon 100K BTU Heat Pump Pool Heater, Flow meter Blue White Flowmeter Model No. F-30150P, Hayward Astrolight SP0581N, SWCG CalimarTitanium Edition TE45 , Dolphin Nautilus Plus with CleverClean, Lakeland Florida

  4. Back To Top    #4

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    Re: Bearing replacement on a Pentair Whisperflo pump?

    Thank you for such quick replies!

    I do have a spa so I guess I still need something at least 2HP? I'm not familiar with 2-speed pumps but it seems that these days most people are running them and apparently the lower speed is all that is neccessary for circulation? If I do go the new (or rebuilt) motor route, how can I determine if it will fit on my Whisperflo pump? I'm also not sure how this will tie-in to my existing timer (an analog clock type thing). How does the motor know when to run at full speed vs. slower speed? Would I need a new timer system? Not sure if this is relevant but I do have a booster pump meant to run a Polaris (which is also old and doesn't really pick up bottom debris very well anymore, I've just been vacuuming the pool manually from time to time).

    I'll poke around on Craigslist and elsewhere to try to find someone that might be willing to do some/all of the work for me but in the mean time I may just order the parts and thinkin about it a bit more.

  5. Back To Top    #5

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    Re: Bearing replacement on a Pentair Whisperflo pump?

    You might try doing the bearings yourself. You can get a bearing puller from autozone free - they charge $30 bucks and refund you the $30 when you bring it back. I attempted changing my bearings last week but actually failed. Pretty easy getting the motor case apart but I broke three of the long bolts holding the case together - they were really rusty and snapped in a heartbeat. Then I couldn't get off the 2 tiny bolts that hold the front bearing in place - also rusty and stripped out quickly. The back bearing was a piece of cake but it was also in pretty good shape. I put it back together and am also looking around for a new motor as mine is really loud! Mine is 15 years old and looked to have gotten pretty wet a few times. You might have better luck! Not really a hard or even time consuming job. You could probably get it un-mounted and taken apart in about 30 mins and at least see how it looks.
    16 x 32 inground vinyl pool (21000 gallons) (new liner installed 2014)
    Hayward max flo pump w/ 1 HP AO Smith motor (new motor 2014)
    Hayward C1200 cartridge filter (new 2014)
    Hayward H150 heater

  6. Back To Top    #6
    bobodaclown's Avatar
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    Re: Bearing replacement on a Pentair Whisperflo pump?

    Your existing timer is just an on/off switch so you'll have to add a high/low switch. I added mine at the motor, it's a simple toggle switch, that is fed by the simple T101 Timer. Some people use a 3 way wall switch.
    Depends on how you want to do it.
    Here's a picture of mine: https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/-_...o/IMG_7977.JPG

    Here's my post when I installed it. http://www.troublefreepool.com/threa...P-2-Speed-115V
    17K Kidney Shaped Pool Concrete (Diamond Bright) Pool, 3/4 hp 2 speed 115V Sta-rite Duraglas PEA5D-180L/P2R5D-181L (Impeller C105-92PS Diffuser C1-216P), 1.5 piping, Pentair CC100 Filter , Heat Siphon 100K BTU Heat Pump Pool Heater, Flow meter Blue White Flowmeter Model No. F-30150P, Hayward Astrolight SP0581N, SWCG CalimarTitanium Edition TE45 , Dolphin Nautilus Plus with CleverClean, Lakeland Florida

  7. Back To Top    #7

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    Jun 2014
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    Re: Bearing replacement on a Pentair Whisperflo pump?

    I ordered the bearings and shaft seal and they arrived while we were out of town for Independence Day. Disassembled the motor last night and ran into the identical problem Sminor above ran into: 3 broken long bolts and still haven't gotten the 2 small bolts in the front bell housing off yet, they are very rusted in place. Going to get the bearing puller on my way home from work and attempt to get the front bell housing off somehow. I hate to scrap a perfectly good motor due to a few rusty bolts! If I can get the bearings changed, I think I'll attempt to put it back together or maybe try to find some replacement bolts. I guess at this point I'm confident I could buy a new motor and easily install it myself...

  8. Back To Top    #8

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    Re: Bearing replacement on a Pentair Whisperflo pump?

    Just wanted to update y'all on what ultimately happend. I ended up beig able to switch out the bearings and the shaft seal using this Youtube video (Part 1: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WX9O...st=WL&index=54 Part2: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nrvNZmUPRis). Although only one of the 4 long bolts was holding the motor housing together, I decided to go ahead and reinstall the motor anyway and see what happens. Well, she's running a lot quieter now and it actually works! I used a long metal hose clamp to wrap around the back of the motor and to the front of the pump to make sure the motor didn't vibrate apart (due to the missing bolts). I figure this $30 repair was worth getting a season or three more out of this motor and if it dies again, I now know how to install a new motor! Thanks again for the advice and suggestions and let this be a lesson to anyone that is in the same boat. When in doubt, try replacing the bearings and shaft seal (could also be a capacitor if it's just humming) and save yourself a ton of money! Plus you'll learn all about electric motors and learn a new skill too! You can get the parts here too although I ended going on Amazon for a little less $$: repair parts: http://wetheadpumprepair.com/store/p...l-rebuild-kit/

  9. Back To Top    #9

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    Re: Bearing replacement on a Pentair Whisperflo pump?

    That's awesome! Great job... I ended up replacing my motor with one I bought from inyopools.com. Only $140 and she's quieter than ever now.

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