Can I save money installing a variable speed pump?
The answer is Yes, Yes, and Yes.
A variable speed pump (VSP) is the one thing you can install for your pool that will actually save you real cold hard cash.
Why, because a VSP uses a magnetic motor that uses less energy than a traditional single speed pool pump and can adjust speeds to increase or decrease the flow rate. When installed and programmed correctly, you can see savings of $20.00 to $120.00 per month each and every month.
Also, once you get into a tiered electricity rate structure, you can get bumped up into a higher electricity rate.
So why is the broad range of $20.00 to $120.00? It all depends on the Horse Power (HP) rating of your existing pool pump that you are replacing. For instance, if you have a small ½ HP pump, that pump consumes approximately. 1240 watts when it is running. That is the equivalent of turning on (12) 100 watt light bulbs in your home. If you have a larger pump, say a 2.0 HP pump. That puppy consumes approximately 2400 watts when it is running. That is the equivalent to turning on (24) 100 watt light bulbs in your house, yikes!
Now replace that old pump with a VSP, which remember, can have the speeds and flow rate adjusted, and now that pump can operate at around 300 watts, the equivalent of (3) that’s right, (3) 100 watt bulbs at a low speed and lower flow rate. When you need a higher speed for you pool vacuum, of better skimming you can set a high speed for those needs and you can typically operate that same pump at approximately 990 watts. That’s the equivalent to (10) 100 watt light bulbs on in your house only for the time you need the higher flow rates. Again, I want to stress the “when installed and programmed correctly” part. Far too often we see pumps not programmed properly and on some high settings can operate at 2700 watts. That gonna be (27) 100 watt light bulbs.
Variable Speed Pool Pumps should always be installed by a professional to optimize the pump’s performance and efficiency. In California, a valid contractor’s license is required to install a VSP.