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Thread: Pool Pump Recommendation - Current pump uses 2.57kW!

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    Question Pool Pump Recommendation - Current pump uses 2.57kW!

    Hi Everyone,

    I'm a relatively new pool owner (1.5 years) and I'm looking for ways to help cut my monthly electric bill. After analyzing our usage, I've come to the conclusion that the pool pump for my pool consumes roughly 33% of the electricity we use. I run the pump 6 hours a day in the winter and 8 hours in the summer.

    Here's the pump I currently have:
    http://www.amazon.com/Pentair-340040.../dp/B005ZABMHA

    Here are the spec's for my pool as best I can guess:
    10,000-12,000 gallon pool, with attached spa (with mini waterfall spillover into pool)
    2" primary piping
    Spa has 3 jets I think.

    Electrical cost is roughly $.32-$.35/kWh depending on season. I noticed that the pump uses a full 2.57kW while running (not just theoretical, but actual based on power consumption). This seems insanely high and I am looking for a more efficient alternative. I've seen this: http://www.ecopoolpumps.com/pool-pump-reviews.html which looks appealing, but reading other posts about these pumps on this forum seem to indicate they aren't as good as their site claims.

    I'm open to any suggestions around what I can do to reduce electrical consumption. I look forward to your guidance!

    -Travis

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    Re: Pool Pump Recommendation - Current pump uses 2.57kW!

    Hey Travis, I'm in the same boat. I see you have a superflo pump section. Maybe you can buy the superflo VS motor and retrofit it to the superflo pump section for less money? The superflo VS has three speed presets controllable via 3 low voltage inputs, but you can adjust the speed of those three presets in increments of 5% of something. Or, the very latest model has a clock if you don't have an automation system. If hacking isn't your thing, you could just buy the whole pump and drop it in and not worry about piping, etc. The ecopoolpump is just a fancy marketing effort for a two speed PSC AC motor. Check out the energystar website. You'll see the superflo VS ranges from around 20 gallons/Wh to around 30 gallons/Wh, if my memory serves. I wonder if your current pump is massively oversized? A VS pump allows you to dial in the required flow.

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: Pool Pump Recommendation - Current pump uses 2.57kW!

    Welcome to TFP!

    With electric rates that high you will be far better served by getting a true variable speed pump, rather than the ecoPump. I suspect the SuperFlo VS will be slightly undersized for your needs. That means an IntelliFlo (or EcoStar if you want to go Hayward). It will cost a little more up front, but more than make up for it in electrical savings. There is likely to be a utility rebate on upgrading to the IntelliFlo, worth checking into.
    19K gal, vinyl, 1/2 HP WhisperFlo pump, 200 sqft cartridge filter, AutoPilot Digital SWG, Dolphin Dynamic cleaning robot
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    Re: Pool Pump Recommendation - Current pump uses 2.57kW!

    Quote Originally Posted by robinasu View Post
    Maybe you can buy the superflo VS motor and retrofit it to the superflo pump section for less money? ... Or, the very latest model has a clock if you don't have an automation system.
    I know next to nothing about pool pumps, but am definitely willing to learn to hack my pool pump =). I've read several posts on this forum about simply replacing the motor within pump sections, but not seen any actual detail. Can you point me to any more information? What motor would you think I could replace (and what pump if I end up just replacing the whole thing)? I don't see what looks like separate pump motors sold on Amazon.

    Quote Originally Posted by robinasu View Post
    I wonder if your current pump is massively oversized? A VS pump allows you to dial in the required flow.
    I have various suspicions about the previous home owner knowing what they were doing. I would not be surprised if this is the case. In fact, the previous owner ended up foreclosing and I would not be surprised if the pool pump was a contributing factor to that in some small regard.

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    Re: Pool Pump Recommendation - Current pump uses 2.57kW!

    Good gosh that is expensive electricity! If mine was that high my summer month bills would be $1000 or more. My 1.5hp single speed pump uses 2.08kW, so I would guess your number is accurate for your pump. I would say a vs pump would be the best bet. If/when mine goes out I will be looking at a 2 speed because it's the best mix of savings vs. money spent with my lower electric rate.


    30K gallon IG vinyl. 1.5HP 2-speed Waterway Mustang pump. 600 lb sand filter. Polaris 280. Circupool SI-60+. TF-100

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    Re: Pool Pump Recommendation - Current pump uses 2.57kW!

    Thanks Jason. What other specs should I look for when looking at the various pumps? I see that there are a few different models that mainly appear to differ in HP and with/without SVRS. I don't think I need SVRS.

    Looking on Amazon, the EcoStar seems cheaper (based on Amazon) and I think still may quality for a rebate (2015 rebate information is not posted yet, though it was eligible in 2014).

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    Re: Pool Pump Recommendation - Current pump uses 2.57kW!

    Quote Originally Posted by n240sxguy View Post
    Good gosh that is expensive electricity!
    Southern California, tier 4

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    Re: Pool Pump Recommendation - Current pump uses 2.57kW!

    If you get an IntelliFlo, you want the base model: IntelliFlo Variable Speed. There are much better prices than I currently see on Amazon, for example these people currently have it for $870.

    The main difference between the IntelliFlo and EcoStar is automation compatibility. IntelliFlo works with Pentair and newer Jandy automation systems. EcoStar works with Hayward automation systems. If you don't have an automation system, then that probably doesn't matter. The EcoStar is slightly more power efficient. Both have built-in timers for stand alone operation.
    19K gal, vinyl, 1/2 HP WhisperFlo pump, 200 sqft cartridge filter, AutoPilot Digital SWG, Dolphin Dynamic cleaning robot
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    Re: Pool Pump Recommendation - Current pump uses 2.57kW!

    I don't have an automation system so I am less worried about that. I'm leaning toward the EcoStar as it seems more energy efficient than the Intelliflow (based on this thread and associated data in the California appliances database linked therein).

    Out of curiosity, what sort of things does one automate with pool automation?

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    Re: Pool Pump Recommendation - Current pump uses 2.57kW!

    Automation systems are most useful when you have a spa. The automation system allows you to press a single button and then it changes the positions of two valves, changes the heater temperature, and changes the SWG percentage setting in and out of spa mode. Another use of automation systems is to get wireless remote control over things like fountain(s), waterfall(s), underwater lighting, and area lighting.
    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

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    Re: Pool Pump Recommendation - Current pump uses 2.57kW!

    Quote Originally Posted by mokonack View Post
    Electrical cost is roughly $.32-$.35/kWh depending on season. I noticed that the pump uses a full 2.57kW while running (not just theoretical, but actual based on power consumption). This seems insanely high and I am looking for a more efficient alternative.
    Travis,

    That is the expected consumption of a 3.5-4 hp motor. Do you *really* have that big a pump? Or need a pump that big? Or is there something else amiss?

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    Re: Pool Pump Recommendation - Current pump uses 2.57kW!

    The pump is rated at 11.5 amps and is 220V. Based on my hourly electric usage (on sce.com), our usage is .83kW before we leave for work in the morning. Then the 6 hours it runs while we're there our usage jumps to 3.4. Looking at our hourly usage over a wide range of days, I think I may have picked an odd day. Other days seem to show a 2.2kW usage.

    Maybe something is wrong with my meter in general, as I would expect the kW jump to be consistent every day, regardless of what else is going on while we are away (we turn the thermostat off when leaving for work, so no variable usage there).

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: Pool Pump Recommendation - Current pump uses 2.57kW!

    The pump you listed at the top is a 2 HP standard efficiency pump, and should draw roughly 2.2 kW +-0.2 (depending on plumbing details).

    What about a refrigerator?
    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

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    Re: Pool Pump Recommendation - Current pump uses 2.57kW!

    We have a new fridge purchased in May of '13. It is a Whirlpool and I believe is EnergyStar certified. I'd have to check on the expected usage but I don't think it is contributing as much. No other fridge or freezer. Washer and dryer (gas) are also new in '13.

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    Re: Pool Pump Recommendation - Current pump uses 2.57kW!

    Quote Originally Posted by mokonack View Post
    I know next to nothing about pool pumps, but am definitely willing to learn to hack my pool pump =). I've read several posts on this forum about simply replacing the motor within pump sections, but not seen any actual detail. Can you point me to any more information? What motor would you think I could replace (and what pump if I end up just replacing the whole thing)? I don't see what looks like separate pump motors sold on Amazon.


    I have various suspicions about the previous home owner knowing what they were doing. I would not be surprised if this is the case. In fact, the previous owner ended up foreclosing and I would not be surprised if the pool pump was a contributing factor to that in some small regard.
    I'm sorry, I don't have anymore details. Maybe you could call a Pentair parts dealer and see if just a replacement motor is less than a whole new pump by enough to be worth it. If your power company offers a rebate, maybe it's just best to buy the whole pump. This sure looks like a drop in replacement for you: http://www.poolsupplyunlimited.com/P...Fchffgod8TQArg

    I have no idea about your controls, though. Do you have the standard wheel intermatic timers? The superflo pump needs low voltage signals to control the three possible speeds and you hook up the line voltage (220V) permanently. You use the pump breaker to power it down when you need to service it. You wire it permanently because the electronics inside actually control the speed, whereas the old style motors don't have electronics. So, with an intermatic style mechanical timer (or others, too) you would disconnect all line voltage from the timers and use an existing low voltage transformer (24V) or DC power supply. This is just an example - there are lots of controls out there. Post a picture if you want.

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    Re: Pool Pump Recommendation - Current pump uses 2.57kW!

    If you are just interested in replacing the motor with a two speed, the motor you want is a B2983. You will need to replace the seal as well.

    http://www.amazon.com/Smith-B2983-2-...keywords=B2983

    http://www.amazon.com/Pentair-SuperF.../dp/B00K04AVCI
    Mark
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    Re: Pool Pump Recommendation - Current pump uses 2.57kW!

    Just to follow up - I went ahead and purchased the Hayward SP3400VSP about three months ago and am extremely happy with the results. Instead of running my pump for 8 hours a day at 2-2.5 kW, I now run it 24 hours a day at ~125 W (23 hours @ 900 RPM/65W, 1 hour at 3250 RPM/1.5kW).

    Total cost was ~$900 ($850 for the pump + ~$50 for plumbing supplies - pipe, glue, fittings, saw). SoCal Edison had a $200 rebate for replacing a single speed pump with a variable speed one, and my electrical bill is down $100-150/mo. It's been about four months now and I expect it to have paid for itself in two more months.

    I plan to try selling my old pump for $100-200 as well. If I can do that, then it will have already paid for itself.

    Thanks everyone for all of your help.

    -Travis

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    Re: Pool Pump Recommendation - Current pump uses 2.57kW!

    Good going!
    24k gallon inground vinyl liner pool, 8'-3' depth, 2 skimmers, 3 returns, basic 5 chem kit.
    Hayward: DE-60 filter, Superpump VS, AquaRite salt chlorinator w/T-Cell 15, TigerShark QC robot. Jacuzzi hot tub ~350gal. Air blower type, w/8 jets.

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    Re: Pool Pump Recommendation - Current pump uses 2.57kW!

    Well I have a ECOPUMP EP-2 and I will tell you it is by far the best pump I have had. It runs 24/7 and costs me 31 cents a day on low speed or $148 on high plus it comes with a standard 3 year warranty or for $99.00 more a 5 year warranty. I have had it now for 3 years. My old Hayward was costing me $9.48 a day. If you put it on a timer it would be even cheaper.

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    Re: Pool Pump Recommendation - Current pump uses 2.57kW!

    Glad to see someone post something positive about Ecopump! I just ordered one then came here and have read a lot of threads where people are saying they are nothing special. Our current pump which sounds awful and I think will kick the bucket anytime, is a huge energy hog. Looking forward to the Ecopump!

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