The Best Pool Pumps of 2017 – Comprehensive Guide

To pump or not to pump? That is the question. But if you ask that query, it is like asking if your heart should or should not pump. Pumps are like human hearts, they are the center of the pool’pool pumps circulation system. By pulling water from the pool through the skimmer and main drain, pushing it through the filter, then returning it to the pool through the main returns, it keeps the water clear and clean. And who wants cloudy and filthy water? No one.
A swimming pool should have at least one pump—it’s a necessity. After all, a sanitary pool will always be more presentable and more attractive to swim in.

MODELPRODUCT DIMENSIONSITEM WEIGHTUSER RATINGPRICE
Hayward SP2610X15 Super Pump
Hayward SP2610X15 Super Pump
10 x 12.3 inches
40 pounds
4.6/5

$$$$
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Intex Krystal Clear Sand Filter Pump 28651EG
Intex Krystal Clear Sand Filter Pump 28651EG
27.1 x 17.6 x 25.5 inches
17.7 pounds

4.5/5

$
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Pentair 011018 IntelliFlo Variable Speed
Pentair 011018 IntelliFlo Variable Speed
28 x 12 x 15 inches
47 pounds
4.5/5
$$$$$
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Hayward SP1580X15 Power-Flo LX Series
Hayward SP1580X15 Power-Flo LX Series
8.5 x 10 x 22.5 inches
26 pounds
4.4/5
$$
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Pentair 340039 SuperFlo
Pentair 340039 SuperFlo
28 x 13 x 15 inches
38.8 pounds
4.3/5
$$$
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Top Pool Pumps Reviewed

Are you now curious about “What is the best pool pump?”In that case, let this guide help you find the pool pump for your needs by giving you detailed pool pump reviews. Proceed and have fun reading!

#1 Hayward SP1580X15 Power-Flo LX Series

Hayward SP1580X15 Power-Flo LX SeriesFor $170, you can get this Hayward SP1580X15 PowerFlo LX pump with a strainer that’s a high-performance pump designed for above-ground pools. It features a heavy-duty motor that offers reliable performance and muffled operation; a 100% drip proof, heat-resistant double-sized seal that allows for long motor life, rated at 1.5 HP; an extra-large debris basket that extends time between cleaning by keeping pool maintenance to a minimum; and an exclusive corrosion-proof reinforced thermoplastic housing that performs well regardless of the weather. The basket even has a clear cover to let you see if it needs cleaning. Talk about practicality and convenience! No wonder it’s the best pool pump for the money.

Durable? Check. Quiet? Check. Energy efficient? Check! The SP1580X15 PowerFlo LX pump continues to wow its customers with its value and performance until now. It’s one of the top-notch pumps that are built to last; one of the few, actually. You won’t even have trouble with the installation process—it’s foolproof and hassle-free.

However, you may dislike the fact that it has no on-off switch; you have to plug and unplug it to turn it on and off. Some customers also mentioned that it worked for only two months and that it made a screeching noise before it stopped working. At the end of it all, it’s still the best pool pump on the market.


#2 Pentair 011018 IntelliFlo Variable Speed

Pentair 011018 IntelliFlo Variable SpeedPrepared to spend $925? Don’t worry, every penny will be worth it with the Pentair 011018 variable speed pool pump. For that price, you’ll be able to save up to 90% energy compared to a traditional pump. In addition, you’ll be able to enjoy taking a refreshing dip in your pool thanks to its quiet operation.

The Pentair 011018 features eight programmable speed settings and a built-in timer that assures optimum speed and run times for efficiency and savings. The built-in diagnostics even protect the pump for longer life. Thanks to its ultra-efficient, permanent, ever-reliable magnet motors that are similar to those used in advanced hybrid cars, you can be sure of the successful function of this pump. It also accurately matches the motor speed according to what your pool needs. It also provides superior water quality, better filtration, and lower operational costs by running longer at lower speeds. What’s more, its totally enclosed fan-cooled (TEFC) motor design extends its life as well.

It’s proven and tested to be dependable and of premium quality. That is why it’s widely known as the best variable speed pool pump. It’s also Energy Star Certified, which means it meets the strict energy efficiency criteria set by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the U.S. Department of Energy.

Despite all that, a few customers complained about its supposedly long life. Some said it wasn’t built to last, by noting that it worked great for less than six months only. Others also raised a stink about the poor service of the company.


#3 Hayward SP2610X15 Super Pump

Hayward SP2610X15 Super PumpFor Only $385: Efficiency, Dependability, High Quality

The Hayward Super Pump includes all the best features you could expect from a pool pump and from Hayward. It’s made for in-ground pools and spas notwithstanding the type and size.

It highlights a large see-through strainer cover that allows you to see when the basket requires cleaning and eliminates the guessing part from your end. It also features a super-size, 110-cubic-inch debris basket that has an extra leaf-holding capacity with its load-extender ribbing that ensures free-flowing operation. Not to mention, it’s exclusive service-ease design that gives simple access to all internal parts for added convenience. All that for only $385!

The Hayward Super Pump also works using a heavy-duty, high-performance motor with air-flow ventilation for quieter, cooler operation. The exclusive swing-away hand knobs also allow for easier strainer cover removal, without needed any tools, clamps, and loose parts.

This pump combines proven, quality performance and efficient, reliable operation. It even self-primes; has heat-resistance, industrial size ceramic seal for long-wearing; and has a mounting base that provides stable, stress-free support coupled with versatility for any installation requirement. Super, indeed!

The only complaints about this by a few customers were about the bad bearings which were grinding and that some of the pumps were defective out of the box.


#4 Intex Krystal Clear Sand Filter Pump 28651EG (for Above Ground Pools)

Intex Krystal Clear Sand Filter Pump 28651EG If you can’t spend much, maybe the Intex Krystal Clear is the pool pump you’re looking for. Priced at only $155, it is capable of keeping your above ground pool water clean, soft, and refreshing for swimming. This Intex product features a built-in 24-hour timer that adds to the trouble-free experience with maintaining a cleaner, clearer pool. You’ll love the all-natural sand that provides exceptional water filtration as the 6-function control valve allows you to filter, backwash, rinse, recirculate, drain, and close the system. It clearly takes pool pumping to the next level with the convenience it offers.

The strainer basket also offers easy cleaning and prolongs the life of the sand. This pump, generating a pump flow rate of 3,000 gallons per hour, is ideal for above ground pools 16’ and above. It also requires no maintenance except the replacement of sand every after five years.

The system flow rate of the Intex Krystal Clear Sand Filter Pump is 2,450 gph (9.2 m3/hr). It includes a pressure gauge, a heavy duty tank, and a powerful motor (.95 HP).
For all that, a few customers still said they have lost pressure after just three weeks. It first sucked and returned full force but then it stopped working efficiently .According to one, it failed to meet the warranty requirements according to the company located in California.

There were a few complaints but compared to the positive reviews, it’s still one dependable pump.


#5 Pentair 340039 SuperFlo

Pentair 340039 SuperFloThis Pentair SuperFlo single-speed, 1-1/2-horsepower pump priced at $350 moves more water more efficiently for lower operating cost. You’d appreciate its quiet operation thanks to its superior internal flow design which reduces hydraulic noise. The thick walled body parts, heavy-duty 56 square flange motor, and highly engineered hydraulics are just some of its features.

The large strainer basket also extends the time between cleanings, allowing you to swim more instead of cleaning. Plus, its see-through lid makes you inspect it fast and easy if it needs cleaning. This pump also has self-priming for quick, easy start-up.

This pump has all the features you’re looking for in a pump—whether it’s for your spa or pool, it’s a perfect choice. Why? Because it’s energy efficient, easy to maintain, and produces almost zero noise. And because it’s designed with innovative materials, it will certainly stand up to the most demanding installations and conditions. Purchasing this would be a wise investment.

On the other hand, one customer mentioned that it barely lasted for two years and after such time the motor became completely rusted and deteriorated. He said other parts rusted as well and that it’s a big waste of money that offered disappointment after two years. The noise was another complaint by a few, despite its claim to have a quiet operation.


Pool Pump Buying Guide

Here are the factors you have to consider when choosing the best pool pump for your needs:

1. Price and Brand

  • The prices of pool pumps range from $30 to $24,500.
  • The price, of course, depends on the quality, features, size, and brand of the pool pump.
  • With a limited warranty, your choices will also be limited. But you don’t have to worry since we have presented the best ones per price range already.
  • If you’re willing to spend for a high-quality one, you may do so. Just make sure you really need that expensive pool pump.
  • I suggest you purchase one from the best brands which are Blue Wave, Hayward, Intex, Jandy, and Pentair.

2. Quality

  • If you want an excellent, advanced pool pump, then you should shop for a pump that has no corrosive metal internal parts. Or else, you’ll be forced to purchase another one after a short period of time.
  • The body should be thick and the walls should be protective.
  • Quality walls are made of plastic such as Noryl Plastic used in the car industry.
  • Again, opt for a pool pump from reputable brands.

3. Power and Capacity

  • The power of pool pumps is commonly measured by horsepower (HP).
  • The higher the horsepower, the greater the volume of water the pump can circulate.
  • Pool pumps have as little as .75HP to as much as 2.5HP.
  • Remember that you have to be cautious when you choose the power of your pump, though it depends entirely on you, your pump’s performance will be at stake if you choose the wrong one.
  • If your pump is too large, it can damage your pool. If it’s too small, it can be ineffective.
  • Take into account that your pool pump’s horsepower fits the size of your pool and your filter system.
  • However, you should focus more on the size of your pool instead of trying to match it with your filter.
  • A good rule of the thumb is the bigger and deeper your pool is, the more powerful your pump should be in order to move the water successfully. It’s usually measured in liters per minute or L/min.
  • Don’t forget to identify the volume of your pool right after it’s installed, otherwise, you have to calculate it. The volume is needed in order to pick the right pump. It’s a crucial measurement you have to get right.
  • To calculate it, determine the pool’s surface area. If your pool is rectangular, you just have to multiply the length by its width. If it’s irregularly-shaped, you need someone else’s help.
  • You also have to determine the depth of your pool which is hassle-free if your pool floor is leveled. If it’s not, then you should add the maximum and minimum depths and divide by two to obtain the average depth of your pool.
  • Your pool volume figure will be obtained by multiplying your average surface area with your average depth. You then have to multiply that to 1,000 and you’ll have your volume in liters.

4. Efficiency

  • Your pool pump, depending on its size, can use as much as 70% total energy consumption.
  • Therefore, you should also take note of the energy efficiency of the pool pump
  • A variable speed pump is a little expensive but is more energy efficient because it can adjust its speed for various types of job. Others even include automatic controllers that switch the pump’s speed in between tasks.
  • Variable speed pumps are capable of using higher speed during hefty pool vacuuming and can also adjust to a lower speed for regular filtration cycles.
  • On the other hand, fixed speed pumps work at the same speed regardless of the job. Because of this, they consume much more energy when compared to a variable speed pump.

5. Flow Rate and Turnover

  • The best thing to do is divide the pool’s volume by the turnover rate in minutes before finding out the perfect flow rate for your pool.
  • To determine the turnover measurements, just bear in mind that the turnover rate measures the minimum time it takes for the water in your pool to cycle through the filter. It’s normally between 6-12 hours.
  • After knowing the turnover rate, you can now calculate.
  • If your pool volume is 60,000 liters and your turnover rate is 7 hours (420 minutes), you would want a pump that can turn over 140 liters of water per minute. That isn’t much, so a .75HP pump would be ideal for the task.
  • The smallest pool pump size for your pool is always preferred. This way, you don’t have to risk damaging a larger pump. Better safe than sorry!

6. Resistance

  • This is known as the friction loss created as the water passes through the circulation system of your pool.
  • Since you already know the flow rate, you can now calculate the water resistance in your pool.
  • To know this, add up the sum of all your various pool equipment’s friction loss; that means adding up the ones from your pipes, filters, heater, and pool cleaners. The size, lengths, and types of equipment will also affect the total amount of resistance.
  • The greater the resistance, the stronger your pump should be.

7. Housing Mount

  • There are two choices for this one: a top-mount or a side-mount.
  • If the intake to your filter is above the ground or if you have a sand filter, you’d prefer a top-mount.
  • If your filter intake is at the same level next to your pump or if you have a cartridge or a DE filter, get a side mount pump.

8. Voltage

  • The voltage of the pump is one of the things you also have to consider since pumps can be hard-wired into your electricity or require an outline which you can plug into.
  • The style of your pool system also matters.
  • Determine the power going to your pump if it’s 110 volt or 220 volts. More often than not, an above-ground pool will require an 110V pump.

9. Noise

  • You have to consider the noise that your pump makes as it works.
  • Unless you’re not bothered by the output noise or you won’t bother any neighbors, then go for any pool pump without thinking of the noise.
  • In any case, however, a quiet one will be best. This way, you can have a peaceful environment and so can your neighbors.

Which Type of Pool Pump Should I Get?

There are three types of pool pumps to choose from: Single speed pumps, Two-speed pumps, and variable speed pumps.

1. Single Speed Pumps

  • These are also regarded as the traditional pool pumps because they’ve been existing and used for decades.
  • They run at a constant speed once turned on.

Pros:

  • It’s the least expensive type of pool pump
  • Available anywhere

Cons:

  • Extremely noisy
  • May be inefficient
  • One of the most expensive appliances in homes

2. Two-Speed Pumps

  • They are variations of the previous type since this one uses an induction style motor as well.

Pros:

  • More efficient than single speed pumps because they have a low-speed option
  • Can be turned to high-speed when vacuuming your pool, running a heater, or when blowing fallen leaves towards the skimmers
  • Tested and proven to last 3 to 8 years
  • Can save 50%-70% of energy cost

Cons:

  • A bit more expensive than single speed pumps

3. Variable Speed Pumps

  • This type uses a permanent magnet motor which is used in electric cars.
  • They allow you to dial in the exact flow rate you need for your pool.
  • You can run it at a low speed which can reduce the flow rate of water and friction; thus, making the system more efficient.

Pros:

  • Quieter and releases fewer vibrations
  • Run cooler
  • Guaranteed to last longer
  • Controlled digitally
  • Include advanced diagnostics
  • Believed to be 90% more efficient than single speed pumps
  • The best pool type there is

Cons:

  • They cost more.

Conclusion

There are so many things to consider before purchasing your pool pump which is why it is crucial that you read this guide again if you feel like you forgot one factor. You have to be careful about choosing one unless you’re just throwing money into thin air. In a cardiac operation, you should first examine the compatibility of the heart with the body before placing it. Likewise, the pool should be studied first for the pump to work properly.

Basically, you have to remember the acronym PUMP when buying one for your pool. It stands for:

P – Prepare your budget. How much are you actually willing to spend? How much should you spend? Knowing your budget is a significant step.

U – Understand the needs of your pool. Don’t just guess and estimate, calculate the size, volume, flow rate, etc. of your pool before buying one. Also, consider the filter system you have.

M – Mind the quality and efficiency of the pool. The brand should also be taken into consideration. If you have time, read reviews about the product before buying it.

P – Practice practicality. Be sure you’re going to purchase one that’s energy efficient, and not something that will cost you $2,000 more per month.

There are unquestionably so many choices and price ranges to choose from. I just wish I was able to enlighten you with this guide.