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Thread: How many times per day should we run our pumps

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    robdac's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2014
    Weston, FL

    How many times per day should we run our pumps

    All these "how long should I run my pump" threads got me thinking;

    1. What is the current philosophy as to how many times per day we should run our pump? I assume most people only run them once a day but my pump comes on twice a day. Any advantages or disadvantages?
    2. Assuming constant hourly electric rates is there a better time to run the pump?
    3. Does #2 change if using a SWCG?
    11K gal IG screened-in plaster pool w/ spa
    pentair 150 cartridge filter, Pentair Intelliflow VS pump,
    Aquarite AQR15 SWG, AquaCal Heatwave Heat Pump, TF-100 test kit

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    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Orlando, FL

    Re: How many times per day should we run our pumps

    Since I only have one pump, I run it constantly from 930-245pm to catch the heat for the solar. I have always run it only during the day for a set amount of things and then off. If the pool were to stop being clear, I would consider another method.
    Sharkline Reprieve 15x52 (3/14). Still using Intex 2650 Sand Filter with Hayward Power-Flo Matrix 3/4 HP pump (6/15). Solar Cover cut into strips for easy removal, (2) 2*10 Space Saver solar panels. Swim Jet HD Robot (by Aquabot) (3/15). Chlorine Liquidator (4 gal). 4 person hot tub. Hard pipe is the way to go for improved flow! Retired Lil Shark (3/15). Starite Max E Therm 333k BTU Propane Heater w/ 24 gal tank (7/15).

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    JasonLion's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Silver Spring, MD

    Re: How many times per day should we run our pumps

    1) As many different times spread around the clock as you can conveniently program on your timer/automation system.
    2) Not really.
    3) Not really.
    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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    Mod Squad pooldv's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    DFW, TX

    Re: How many times per day should we run our pumps

    The same amount of total run time per day spread out over multiple times per day will keep the surface skimmed a lot better. Like four one hour runs vs one four hour run.
    TFP Moderator
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    2012 build and pics, 20k gal gunite, black onyx pebblesheen, OK flagstone, IntellifoVS, cart filter w/Pleatco, IC40 SWG, Solartouch, 5 12'x4' solar panels, HP50HA heat pump, 8mil solar cover, borates, TF-100 test kit, SONOS, Doheny's Discovery Robot, hot tub on bleach

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    Defgufman's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2015
    Savannah GA

    Re: How many times per day should we run our pumps

    I run once per day for six hours, and occasionally more if there are a lot of swimmers.

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    H-12 1/2 Mike's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2014
    Highland Village, TX

    Re: How many times per day should we run our pumps

    I now run 24/7 @ 1100rpm (except when polaris is running) and found the pool to be much cleaner and the cost to be much less than when it was running for 8
    hrs at 2000 rpm.

    16,400 gal gunite, intelliflo pump, 400k btu heater, polaris 360, aqualink RS-6. Highland Village, TX.
    16,400 gallon
    Cartridge Filter
    Intelli-Flo @ 2000rpm

  7. Back To Top    #7
    BoDarville's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    DFW, Texas

    Re: How many times per day should we run our pumps

    There are so many variables in determining pump run time that there is no single right answer. It's something that is very specific to your pool, equipment, location (not just geographic but also proximity to trees, dust, etc. that can get blown into the pool), whether you have solar heating, and whether your pool is SWG or manually chlorinated to name some of the more common variables. Using me as an example, I have a single-speed pump and a manually chlorinated pool. I run the pump on an as-needed basis. I manually run the pump - it is not on a timer unless I'm out of town. During the swim season, I usually run it for around 30-40 minutes per day - during and right after adding chlorine. I also make adjustments for events like pool parties, when an unusually large amount of debris gets blown into the pool, or if I'm adding more than just chlorine to the pool (usually that's muriatic acid). If I had a 2-speed or variable-speed pump, I would run it at a lower speed for a bit longer period of time.

    Note that my approach will not work if your pool is SWG, you have solar, or you have an unusually large bather load on a fairly regular basis.
    Gold Supporter, TFP Lifetime Supporter, 26,680 gal Plaster IGP 3.5 - 10' depth / Attached Waterfall Spa, Manually Chlorinated, Triton Sand Filter, 1.5 HP * 1.1 SF = 1.65 SFHP 1-speed Pentair WhisperFlo WF-26 Pump, 400K BTU NG Teledyne Laars Series One Heater, Polaris 360, Test Kit Comparison, Chlorine/CYA Chart, SLAMing Your Pool, OCLT
    A good test kit is an investment, not an expense.

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    jrs_diesel's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2014
    League City, TX

    Re: How many times per day should we run our pumps

    I have a mechanical Intermatic timer, and have mine set for two on-off times for a total of 3 hours runtime (winter settings). 1 hour in the morning, and 2 in the evening. Now that the water is warming up and summer is coming, I plan on expanding the pump time for the morning and evening runs, plus add a mid-day run as well.

    If I have a lot of people swimming, I'll usually walk over and use the manual switch to turn the pump on. The timer turns it off the next time an off time comes around.

    That's about the best I can manage with the timer and a 2 HP single speed pump. Seems to be the best balance for clean water and my electric bill. My pump is getting old and whenever it quits, I am looking forward to replace it with a variable speed one.

    20K IG gunnite pool
    2HP Hayward single speed pump
    Cartridge filter

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