Pool Pumps and Pool Filters

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Having the correct pump installed at your pool is essential to the optimal functioning of your filtration system. If the pump is too small to push the volume of water contained in your swimming pool within a given time then the chemicals will not be circulated sufficiently for efficient sanitation of your pool’s water.

Pool pumps have specific flow rates which indicate the speed and volume of water being moved by the pump at a given point in time. Flow rates are a consistent value provided there are no external obstructive forces. These obstructions would be the filter, the Barracuda (pool vacuum) and the 90° elbows along the piping system.

The filter, if the sand is old, dirty and clogged, causes back-pressure in the pump as the flow of water is obstructed within the filter itself. This is evident when the pool vacuum pipe is pushed out of the weir vac lid at the instant that the pump switches off. Another influencing factor in this phenomenon would be if the breather pipe (a small diameter pipe inside the filter which allows the filter to equalize the pressure inside) is also blocked.

The length of pipe along which the water needs to be pushed (ie: from the pump to the pool), along with each of the 90° elbows along that length of pipe are definite obstructions within the pool’s circulation system. Each 90° elbow provides the same amount of resistance (roughly) as that of a 6m length of 50mm pipe. This means that the further the pump is from the pool and the more complex the piping system is (ie: number of elbows) going back to the pool (along the return pipe), the more resistance in the system and therefore the less efficient the system will operate.

The automatic pool cleaner (Barracuda, Kreepy Krauly, etc.) which is on the suction line, has a different kind of negative effect on the flow rate as the pump has to work extra hard to suck water through not only the underground suction line, but also the pool vacuum pipe. This means that the longer the pool vacuum pipe is, the less suction the pump will generate and ultimately the less effective the system will operate. By plugging in the vacuum pipe you’re essentially lengthening the suction line. The pool cleaner’s pipe is typically ribbed which most probably adds to the loss of suction but since the pipe needs to be able to bend quite a lot this ribbed profile is necessary.

Locating the weir in the middle of the longest side of the swimming pool will allow for a shorter pool cleaner pipe. This will drastically reduce the wear on the pump itself and therefore should increase the lifespan of said pump. It will also drastically improve the cleaning action of the automatic pool cleaner which is the single best thing for any swimming pool!

In conclusion, it is important to make sure that your filter sand is replaced at least every 2 years (at same time unblocking the breather pipe!!), the pool pump is located as close to the pool as possible, and that the weir is located as close to the middle of the pool as possible. This combination of regular servicing of the pool filter, and the correct placement of the pump as well as the weir, will certainly make your pool maintenance a breeze.

Good luck and good swimming!

Swimming Pool Pump

Swimminig Pool Pump

Swimming Pool Filter

Swimming Pool Filter