Energy Saving Tips

Pool Pumps

Put Your Pool
On An Energy Diet

Since the swimming pool and its equipment are major users of water and energy, you have a unique conservation opportunity.  By reducing the pool's energy and water use, you will benefit the environment and receive substantial savings on your utility bill.

Put your pool on a energy diet !

Filter Pumps
Length of Operation
A pool filter pump is often one of the larger users of electrical energy at a home.   You can save energy and money by reducing the operating time of the filter pump.

Time requirements for pool filtering vary from home to home due to differences in pool volume and equipment, the amount of use and environmental factors.  As a general rule, one complete water turnover every 24 hours will provide adequate filtering for a non-solar, single-family residential swimming pool.

You have an excellent opportunity to save energy and money by resetting the filter pump time clock tripper devices to reduced hours of operation.

Monthly Energy Consumption
(Kilowatt Hours) of Various Size
Swimming Pool Pumps

Per Day

1/2 HP

3/4 HP

1 HP

1-1/2  HP

2 HP

2 38 kWh 52 kWh 64 kWh 98 kWh 126 kWh
4 79 kWh 104 kWh 128 kWh 196 kWh 252 kWh
6 114 kWh 156 kWh 192 kWh 294 kWh 378 kWh
8 152 kWh 208 kWh 256 kWh 392 kWh 504 kWh
10 190 kWh 260 kWh 320 kWh 490 kWh 630 kWh
12 228 kWh 312 kWH 384 kWh 588 kWh 756 kWH
14 266 kWh 364 kWh 448 kWh 686 kWh 882 kWh
16 304 kWh 416 kWh 512 kWh 784 kWh 1008 kWh
18 342 kWh 468 kWh 576 kWh 882 kWh 1134 kWh

Example: A pool owner has a 1-1/2 HP filter pump motor and filters the pool 12 hours a day, using 588 kWh per month  By reducing the filtering hours to four per day (which uses 196 kWh monthly), the pool owner realizes a monthly savings of 392 kWh. If your electricity cost was 13 cents per kWh, that would be a savings of $611.52 per year.

Listed below are the pool filter operating recommendations established by the California Swimming Pool Industry Energy Conservation Task Force.

Reduce filter operating times to no less than four to five  hours per day during the summer and two to three  hours per day during the winter period. This will reduce annual electrical consumption by 40 to 50 percent. Normal and heavier swimming use may require as much as eight or more hours filtration per day. Should water clarity or chemical imbalance indicate inadequate filtration, immediately operate the filter until acceptable water clarity has again been established. If additional filtration is still indicated, increase filter operating time in one-half-hour increments until the water remains clear and properly balanced chemically. When the pool is being heavily used, it is recommended that the pool be operated manually and that the filtration system be run under such conditions. Under no circumstances should the water quality of any swimming pool be so poor that the main drain cover is not clearly visible from the deck.

Time of Use
As a pool owner, the demand for electricity is highest  in the winter from 5:00 am-7 :00 am and in the summer from 2:00 pm-8:00 pm .  By not operating your filter pump during these hours, you can help reduce the demand on the member system, which may delay the need for new power plants and help keep future rates low, benefiting all customers.

Time Clocks
A time clock is a necessity in giving you day-to-day, automatic control over the filter pump's time of use. If your pool doesn't have a time clock, install one today, and the investment will pay for itself in a reasonable period of time.

Good pool energy management includes checking the time clock every month or so to determine that the trippers are set correctly and that they are securely in place.

How to Install or Reset Time Clock Trippers 
1. Turn off electric power to the time clock.
2. Install or reset trippers to show the minimum or selected operating hours and off-peak time-of-use. Be certain trippers are securely fastened.
3. Make sure the time clock is set to the correct time of day.
4. Turn on the electric power to the time clock.

Preventive Maintenance
Follow a regular program of preventive maintenance for pool pump and filter. Backwash or clean the filter as recommended by the manufacturer to obtain maximum efficiency. Maximize water recirculation by removing foreign materials from the strainer baskets in the pump and skimmer regularly.

Automatic Pool Cleaners
Usually three to four hours of daily operation during the summer and two to three hours daily in the winter are sufficient. Start the pool sweep 15 minutes or more after the filter pump is Use a Leaf Skimmer to Help the Cleaner Alongrunning and stop the sweep 15 or more minutes before the filter pump. On unusually dusty days, increase cleaning time in half -hour increments until the pool is clean. Use a wall brush and leaf skimmer frequently to help the cleaner along.

Decorative Lighting
Turn off or reduce the use of decorative lighting in and around pool areas when you are not using the pool.  However, one light in the pool is a good security and safety measure.

Pool Heating
Water Temperature
Maintain a 78°F or lower temperature.  Be certain that you are using an accurate pool thermometer. 

For pools that are only used on the weekend,  water temperature should be reduced by eight to ten degrees during the week. The thermostat should be  reset to 78°F  before use.  Heat pool only during the summer swimming season.  Shelter the pool where possible from the prevailing winds by using well-trimmed hedges or other landscaping, cabanas or fencing as windbreaks.

Solar Pool Heating
Swimming pool heating is the most popular and cost-effective application of solar energy. As conventional fuels become more expensive, solar energy becomes a more attractive way to provide heat for your pool. If your pool is in direct sunlight now, it is already using and storing solar heat.

In an active solar pool heating system, filtered pool water is pumped into the tubing of the collector panels. The sun's heat is transferred from the panels to the water, and the heated water is returned to the pool. Automatic controls are available to turn on the system when there is enough sun to heat the pool water and off when no heat is needed.

In many cases, the existing pool filter pump and plumbing can be used to circulate water through an added-on solar system. Solar pool heating systems are especially effective during the summer months and can assist a regular pool heater in the spring and fall.

A solar pool heating system can be a significant investment. The savings from energy not purchased may more than pay for buying the solar equipment over its useful life.

If you are considering the installation of a solar pool heating system, compare price estimates. Ask for references and investigate the quality of the systems. Be sure you understand the performance guarantee.

Preventive Maintenance

Follow a regular program of preventive maintenance for pool heaters.  An annual inspection and, if applicable, de-liming of the heat exchanger when necessary will maintain heating efficiency.

Pool Chemicals
Add chlorine during the evening hours whenever possible.  With reduced filtration time, it is particularly important to maintain an adequate chlorine residual or level at all times. To do this on pools with erosion type chemical feeders, it may be necessary to supplement chlorine feeding by hand.

Maintain pool PH between 7.2 and 7.6.  Make certain that the pool is treated annually with 30 to 50 parts per million of cyanuric acid conditioner (chlorine stabilizer).
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