Variable Speed Pool Pumps
Owning and operating a pool can have a huge impact on your energy and water use so the savings you pocket from being efficient can be substantial. A good deal of energy can be saved by downsizing your pool pump, but you can also save significant energy by reducing the amount of time it's running and reducing pool water temperature. Making the above changes can save you up to 75% of annual pool energy use.
Pool Pump Sizing
The efficiency of your pool pump is dependent on both size and design. Size determines how much energy the pump will use, so purchase the smallest pump that will adequately clean your pool. Most residential pools can function on a 0.75 horsepower pump. Use a pool supplier’s design chart to determine the correct size pump for your pool, or ask the pool supplier for assistance. When downsizing to a smaller pump, you'll also want to use a larger filter that can handle 50% or higher than the pool’s design flow rate. You'll also want to design the pipes so that they're smooth curves, either by replacing elbow pipes with 45 degree ones, or with flexible pipes. This improves the efficiency of water flow, decreasing the hydraulic resistance and requiring up to 40% less electricity to operate. If you're replacing your current pool pump, also consider upgrading from a 1-speed to a 2-speed or variable speed pool pump.
You can also conserve energy by decreasing the water temperature. While 78°F is the temperature of pools used for swimming competitions, most people keep their pool somewhere between 78°F and 82°F. For each degree warmer you keep your pool, you may be paying 10-30% more in energy costs. Consider using a solar heating system to heat your pool, although if you choose this option, be aware that you may need a larger pump to accommodate the additional power to pump water through the collectors. Also, be sure to turn the heater down or off if you're on vacation or during cold seasons when you don't use your pool. You can also save water and energy by using a pool cover. About 70% of energy in pools is lost by evaporation at the surface. While a pool cover can help, consider a transparent cover that allows the pool to still absorb heat from the sun. An outdoor pool absorbs 75-85% of the radiation it receives, and is a crucial heat source that allows the heater to work less.
Shift the hours your pool pump operates to before 11 a.m. or after 6 p.m. on Reduce Your Use days and you may earn a bill credit. Sign up for alerts or learn more.