How much can I save and is it worth spending the money to get one of these pumps installed?
There is no doubt that the new variable speed pumps can achieve a huge savings over the old single speed pumps. The permanent magnet motors offer a
baseline savings of about 30% over traditional induction style single
speed pumps. The big savings comes from slowing the pump speed and
therefore reducing the load against the pump motor. This is where these
pumps can save up to 90% of electric use by running more hours at a
slower speed. The biggest factor is going to be how much does it cost to run your pump now.
Are all variable speed pool pumps created equal?
No they are not. There are differences in motor design and efficiency. The pumps also vary in size and features. Here is the link to the California Energy Commission specs on variable speed pumps Excel file. Here is the abbreviated Pdf. file version. Look at the motor efficiency percentage and you will see it goes from 58% to 92% depending on the make and model. We recommend the Pentair Intelliflo line of pumps because we feel they offer the highest efficiency and were built from a proven pump platform.
Are there any downsides to these pumps?
If you have a line carrier type remote control system these are sold under the names Aduadyne, Leviton, Powerhouse X-10 and Radio Shacks Plug & Power. These systems send signals through the electrical system to remote modules to control different functions. At certain speeds the drives in the new variable speed pumps can drown out the signals of the above mentioned remote systems causing them not to work. If you have this type of control system we recommend replacing the control system with a new pump installation.
Will the Intelliflo pump work with my existing equipment?
Yes. The pump has the ability to run at different speeds for different needs to work in harmony with your existing filter, heater, spa, salt system and water features. If necessary we can install a controller to interface with your existing switches and controls.
What affect is running the new Intelliflo pump more hours at a slower speed going to have on my pool?
First off the filter is going to work more efficiently. The slower the flow rate the more effective a filter becomes. To maximize savings you will have less water flowing in things like skimmers, return lines and spa overflows. Slowing down the amount of filtered water coming back to your pool can have some affect on care and maintenance in that the filtered water will not come in with as much force as the old pump. Things such as installing inlet eyeball fittings will increase the velocity of water coming back in to the pool to resolve these issues. To get skimmers to work with less flow weir doors are a necessity. Also plugging off the drain line in the bottom of the skimmer will also make a skimmer work better on less flow. When you have one of these new pumps installed there are many things like this that can be done to maximize energy savings and not sacrifice water quality. Going green does not have to turn your pool green.
I have a spa that waterfalls into my pool when the filter runs will the waterfall still work if I install this pump?
Yes it will. The nice thing about these pumps is if you want the same flow as your old pump you can simply set the speed of the new pump to flow the same and still cut energy usage by 30%. It gives you the ability to set the pump to the exact speed you desire therefore allowing you to choose how much you save.
How do I achieve the highest energy savings with these pumps?
The way to maximize savings is by running the new pump as slow as possible for 24 hours a day. In our test video we had a traditional pump flowing 80 gallons per minute(GPM) using 2000 watts per hour. Cost to run that pump is .50 cents per hour. On the Intelliflo pump at its lowest setting it was flowing 20 GPM and using 70 watts per hour. At this setting the cost to run the Intelliflo pump is .02 cents per hour. The Intelliflo pump can run 24 hrs a day for less than it costs to run the old pump for one hour. Some pools may become harder to maintain(especially in the summer) at this low of speed. Again the variable speeds allow you to set the amount of flow and savings.
What are the typical savings on an installation?
We have been averaging 50% to 70% savings on the installations we have done.