Should a pool pump motor last more than 2 years?

sersee

Well-known member
May 23, 2014
189
South Jersey
Hi,
We have a 20 x 40 in ground rectangular pool with a salt system and vinyl liner. Last year we put in a new salt system per the helpful people on here , so I am back to ask for advice.

In May of 2019, our pool pump( Hayward) started making a lot of noise and burnt out. We had our pool installed in 2014. We had the pool company come out and they installed a UST1152 Super Pump 1-1/2 HP and the Super Pump Seal.

Fast forward to yesterday... Our pump is now running very loud again. It sounds like it is overworking. It's a constant high pitched humming I guess is how I would describe it. I called the pool company who installed it and they told me it only has a one year warranty. So now they will charge me $150 just to come out and then if the pump needs a motor, it is $599.

Shouldn't a motor last more than two years? I don't know anyone else having to replace their pumps or motors after two years? Does it mean maybe the pump isn't right for the pool? Any advice? thank you!!
 

mas985

TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
May 3, 2007
14,735
Pleasanton, CA
Pool Size
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Plaster
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A pool pump motor should last more than 2 years. However, a seal failure can cause premature bearing failure if not identified early. In this case, it isn't the fault of motor but of the seal. It just presents in the motor. This is why it is very important to periodically inspect the pump for leaks under the motor. Given the symptoms you are describing, this is what I think may be going on. If the seal is not installed properly, this can lead to premature seal failure and then premature bearing failure.
 

Mike1162

Silver Supporter
Jun 13, 2015
1,104
N Tonawanda, NY
Motors have vents that can get plugged from debris & lead to overheating & premature failure. You can also have low voltage getting to the pump. How far is the pump motor from the electrical panel? Are you on a 15 or 20 amp circuit?
 

sersee

Well-known member
May 23, 2014
189
South Jersey
A pool pump motor should last more than 2 years. However, a seal failure can cause premature bearing failure if not identified early. In this case, it isn't the fault of motor but of the seal. It just presents in the motor. This is why it is very important to periodically inspect the pump for leaks under the motor. Given the symptoms you are describing, this is what I think may be going on. If the seal is not installed properly, this can lead to premature seal failure and then premature bearing failure.
We have not seen any evidence of a leak at all
 

sersee

Well-known member
May 23, 2014
189
South Jersey
Motors have vents that can get plugged from debris & lead to overheating & premature failure. You can also have low voltage getting to the pump. How far is the pump motor from the electrical panel? Are you on a 15 or 20 amp circuit?
I don't know about the 15 or 20 amp circuit. The pump motor is pretty close to the control panel
 

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mas985

TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
May 3, 2007
14,735
Pleasanton, CA
Pool Size
20000
Surface
Plaster
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
Sometimes the leak can be very small and slow so it may not show up on the ground. Look where the motor mates with the wet end.

A high pitched noise from the motor is almost always the bearings which in turn is almost always caused by water penetration. Was the area ever submerged under water?
 
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Mike1162

Silver Supporter
Jun 13, 2015
1,104
N Tonawanda, NY
Looks like the pump & motor stay outside all year long. I'd add some unions and move it inside for the off season. That's also a good time to clean the vents. The circuit breaker in the house will have 15 or 20 on it. Should be at least 20 for a 1.5 hp.
 
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sersee

Well-known member
May 23, 2014
189
South Jersey
Looks like the pump & motor stay outside all year long. I'd add some unions and move it inside for the off season. That's also a good time to clean the vents. The circuit breaker in the house will have 15 or 20 on it. Should be at least 20 for a 1.5 hp.
I don’t know what unions are but will yell my husband. So we should keep the pump inside?
 

JamesW

TFP Expert
Mar 2, 2011
28,255
If you get a flashlight and look under the pump, you can actually see any leaks from the seal.

You have to get just the right angle to see below the pump where the seal is, but you can do it.
 
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sersee

Well-known member
May 23, 2014
189
South Jersey
Sometimes the leak can be very small and slow so it may not show up on the ground. Look where the motor mates with the wet end.

A high pitched noise from the motor is almost always the bearings which in turn is almost always caused by water penetration. Was the area ever submerged under water?
My husband was looking for a leak but didn’t see anything . Maybe he missed it.

No the area was never submerged. Do I just have the pool company put in another motor? I’m not sure what to do.
 

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sersee

Well-known member
May 23, 2014
189
South Jersey
If you get a flashlight and look under the pump, you can actually see any leaks from the seal.

You have to get just the right angle to see below the pump where the seal is, but you can do it.
If I find a leak what do I do with that? Tell the pool company? Do I need another type of seal?
 

JamesW

TFP Expert
Mar 2, 2011
28,255
This is the angle you have to use.

Look into the gap with a flashlight to see beneath the pump.

If there is debris, you might need to use a wire to clear out the debris so that you get a good look.

Use eye protection when working so close to the motor.
InkedHayward Superpump 333_LI.jpg
 
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sersee

Well-known member
May 23, 2014
189
South Jersey
We ended up having it replaced since it went caput. We aren't knowledgeable with this kind of thing and had to unfortunately pay the pool company to put a new one in.

Im so annoyed we had to buy another pump after two years. They left us the old motor and we can see how corroded it is around the seal. I am assuming this is because it was leaking like you said?

So my question now is, what do I do to prevent this in the future? $600 every two years for a new motor is ridiculous. I am concerned they are not using the correct seal? I have a salt water system, should I have a certain kind of seal? Would it be best to call the pool company and ask them to put the right seal on (if this is the issue)?
 

JamesW

TFP Expert
Mar 2, 2011
28,255
As you can see from the reference posted earlier, there are different quality levels of seals.

The PS-3868 is the minimum acceptable seal, in my opinion.

You should install the seal with seal installation lube and nothing else.

You should check the pump for leaks on a regular basis to catch any leak as soon as possible.

I recommend checking once a week for seal leaks by looking under the pump with a flashlight.

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JamesW

TFP Expert
Mar 2, 2011
28,255
At 3,450 rpm, the seal will rotate 1 billion times in 201 days.

So, that is a lot of wear on the seal faces.

That's why the "Ozone/Salt" or the silicon carbide seal are the right choice instead of the cheapo seal with a plastic primary ring.
 

Mike1162

Silver Supporter
Jun 13, 2015
1,104
N Tonawanda, NY
Our pool season is only 4 months long. If our pump runs 6 hours a day then that's "only" 150 million revolutions. I never realized what a workout these pumps get. Do you know what kind of a seal comes standard in a Hayward Super Pump? To the best of my knowledge I've never had a seal fail. Now that you've enlightened me I think I'll change the seal & bearings this winter.
 

JamesW

TFP Expert
Mar 2, 2011
28,255
I suspect that the OEM seal is probably a carbon primary ring, but I am not sure.

They might not use the exact same seal on all pumps.

You would have to verify with Hayward to see what they will tell you.
 
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