How Long Should I Run My Pool Pump? Keeping Your Energy Bill Low

pump system

Installing a swimming pool in your property can be very expensive. Fortunately, you will only have to spend a fraction of the installation cost when it comes to filling the pool with water and maintaining or keeping it clean on a regular basis.

One of the ways that you can keep your pool clean is by making sure that your pool pump is running. Pool pumps are made specifically for pool sanitation. It utilizes a transport system as well as a filter that is designed to remove contaminants and microorganisms that can cause water-borne illnesses.

Although a pool pump is an important accessory that has to be turned on frequently, you actually need to know how long you should keep it running. This is because you can end up damaging it or end up having a large energy bill by the end of the month if you will use it for prolonged periods of time.

How Long Should I Run My Pool Pump? Keeping Your Energy Bill Low

How Long Should You Let The Pool Pump Run?

a pool pump

Basically, you should never try to run the pool pump 24 hours a day and seven days in a week. This is because you can easily end up paying thousands of dollars per month if you do this. What’s more, letting it run for extended periods of time is actually not necessary for as long as the pool has a balanced chemistry.

The pool pump is not the primary means of sanitation in most cases, this is why you should only consider using it sparingly or when you see that the swimming pool water is no longer clear. You can also let the pool pump run longer than usual after a pool party.

Some experts recommend that you run the pool pump at least 8 hours per day. But of course, it will all depend on how powerful your pool pump is and how big your swimming pool is. In most cases, an 8-hour cycle will allow the pump to process all of the pool water.

pool pump

There are those however, who say that running it 8 hours per day is not actually necessary. This is because most of the time, the water in the pool does not have to be filtered and because if you chlorinate the water properly, you can still make it clean without running the pump.

You need to keep in mind that the pump consumes a lot of electricity. As a matter of fact, a 1 Horse power pump that will be used for 4 hours will cost you as much as $21 on average. If you let the pump run for 6 hours, it will cost you $31, and $41 if you let it run on a full 8-hour cycle.

Making The Right Calculations

a pool pump indoor

So you can avoid overspending, you need to use a bit of math. You can actually calculate precisely how long you should let the pool pump run. To do this, you will have to know how many gallons of water your pool holds. You should also know how many gallons per minute can your pool pump process.

You can try to search for the GPM or gallons per minute of your specific pool pump by taking a look at its specifications in the owner’s manual. As soon as you have both figures, you should then divide how many gallons that your pool can hold by the GPM. Divide the answer by 60 minutes after.

pool pum working

This will help you to know exactly how many hours you will need to run the pool pump so that it can make 1 full cycle. For example, a pool that holds 24,000 gallons of water with a 1.5 HP pool pump that has an 80 GPM flow rate can completely turn over the pool in just 300 minutes or 5 hours.

This is why some experts will not automatically recommend that you turn on the pump for at least 8 hours per day. Instead, they will recommend that you try to calculate the correct amount of time and try to assess the actual condition of the pool since you might need 2 cycles for a heavily used pool.


When it comes to knowing how long you should run the pool pump, you can simply follow the standard of running it 8 hours per day. But what I recommend is that you try to know how much the pool has been used recently and that you try to calculate the exact number of hours that the pump needs to run.

Keep in mind that these pumps will consume a lot of electricity and you can easily end up having to pay hundreds or thousands of dollars if you allow the pump to run needlessly all day and night. To keep your pool’s energy consumption low, focus on using the pool pump correctly.

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