What happens if I don't run my pump for a week?

Jon Burk

May 1, 2010
The automatic timer on my pump has died, and I've got an imminent week-long trip coming soon. Energy concerns being what they are, I don't relish the idea of leaving it running for a week.

So I'm wondering what happens if I don't run the pump for the week? I'm not afraid of dirt and leaves, but I don't want to face a green pool upon my return.


TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Feb 23, 2008
Denton, TX
You very well may end up with a green pool.

When you cannot circulate water, the water stagnates and chemicals tend to settle out in the lower levels of the pool. It makes it almost impossible to add any chemicals because you don't have a good way to mix the water.

Now, if you bring the FC up really high, you can provide some protection there. Filtration however, is a very necessary component to maintaining the pool water for any length of time and without the pump, the filter is taken out of the equation.


Well-known member
Jul 1, 2009
What kind of timer is it? A dial type (intermatic) should be fairly easy to replace. If you have an electronic system then its more difficult. May be able to bypass the existing timer and install an inexpensive timer inline with the pump.

Jon Burk

May 1, 2010
It's a dial-type. I've called around, and the local stores don't seem to have the same model. I found it online, but I don't think it can be shipped in time.

Maybe I'll uninstall it and take it in to find a similar unit. It looks like it just plugs in with four colored wires (black, white, orange, blue).


Well-known member
May 13, 2010
Mountain View, Arkansas
I run my pump 24/7 and it really doesn't hit the electric bill as bad as I thought. So if you have to leave it running for a week it shouldn't make a big dent in the electric bill. Having to spend the money on getting the pool back in shape will probably cost more than leaving it on anyway. I would make sure you fill the pool water as high as you can though since you will be gone for a week.


Mod Squad
TFP Expert
Apr 4, 2007
SW Indiana
I just had a neighbor come over every day and flip the switch. One day on and one day off is tolerable compared to being off for a week.


Well-known member
May 25, 2007
Absent a good neighbor, weigh the cost of the added electricity bill for leaving it on versus the chemical and time to clear a green pool.


Jun 20, 2010
Leave the pump on for a week - trust me.

I had my pump die a few years ago - it was off till they put in a new one. (it needed a week since the first repair guy tried to scam me ..long story :( ) The water looked SCARY. green and full of junk!!

So yes unless someone can come in and turn it on and off every day - leave it on.

If you leave it on - make sure water does not go below the skimmer or it will suck air. As some above suggested fill the pool with extra water


In The Industry
Aug 2, 2008
Conway SC
I need to chime in on this one.. I always leave my pool off a good amount of time.. Before I take off for Vacation or If i see bad / cold weather in the forecast, I shock it at a very high level and go.. Never ever had I had a issue. Maybe Im lucky?? I do have full sun on my pool for 12 hours also with a solar cover on it.

I do not have cheap electricity here in NH.. If I run my pump 24 hours a day on low setting that's approx $63.00 month. If I run it on high for 10 hours a day on high setting that approx $90.00 a month, So most of the time I run it on Low for about 15 hours a day which is about $40.00.. Remember, these numbers are Approximates.

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