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What Size Pump Do I Need For My Pool

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What Size Swimming Pool Pump Do I Need

How To: Size A Pool Pump

When trying to find the right size pump for your swimming pool, there is generally one specification that you should be aware of – flow rate.

Flow rate

Flow rate is the volume of liquid that passes through the pump per minute.

For swimming pool pumps, flow rate will range from 30L/PM to over 5000L/PM.

To find the correct pump size for your swimming pool, you need to find the flow rate that corresponds with the volume of water in your swimming pool.

To do this, follow the simple steps below.

Step 1: Multiply your pools volume in litres by two

This will give you the litres per day that the pump needs to circulate so that the water will turn over twice.

Step 2: Divide your new swimming pool volume by 1440

This will give you the number of litres per minute that the pump needs to circulate so that the water will turn over twice.

Step 3: Match the L/PM with the correct swimming pool pump

When purchasing a swimming pool pump, your pump will have a Maximum Flow Rate in the specifications tab. Make sure to match your L/PM with the correct swimming pool pump.

If you found the above confusing, then take a look at the calculations for a pump below.


Step 1: Multiply your pools volume in litres by two

My pool is 25 metres in length, 10 metres in width and 1.5 metres in depth.

I then times my new swimming pool volume by two – 375,000 x 2

This equals 750,000 litres.

Step 2: Divide your new swimming pool volume by 1440

There are 1440 minutes in one day.

750,000 ÷ 1440

Calculate Maximum Flow Rate

The size of your pools pipes determines the maximum flow rate.

Count the number of intake lines for your pool and refer to the common pipe sizes below:

  • For each 1.5-inch intake line, the maximum flow rate is 42 GPM.
  • For each 2-inch intake line, the maximum flow rate is 73 GPM.

Example: Two 1.5-inch intake lines = 84. The maximum flow rate is 84 GPM.

This number is important because your pool filter has a maximum flow rate, which is measured in GPM. The pool pump’s GPM rating should be below the pool filter’s maximum flow GPM rating.

If the pool’s turnover rate is higher than the filter’s maximum GPM, the filter is undersized and will not work properly. If the filter is undersized, it should be replaced, or the pump should be undersized to prevent damage to the filter.

What Is A Gfci

Youll see this acronym as you browse the best pool pumps, and GFCI means ground fault circuit interrupter. What youre getting is a simple but effective circuit breaker. This electronic device helps to prevent anyone from suffering an electric shock. If there is any discrepancy in electricity flow, the circuit breaker kicks in for safetys sake.

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Pool Pump Sizing Recommendations

If you are operating a salt water system and want the best efficiency while providing adequate chlorine production and circulation we have a few recommendations. The goal is to use the smallest and most energy efficient pump for your unique pool and system. A pool pump timer is an affordable device that will also help reduce operating costs while adding simplicity to your pool system.

If you use a low powered high efficiency pump and run it 24hours it will cost less than running a larger pump. The pool will be under a constant low level of filtrationand stay in perfect condition around the clock. Variable speed pool pumps or multi-speed pumps are becoming morepopular because they can operate at a low setting for longer periods of time, consume less energy while keeping your pool sparkling clean and healthy.

If you operate a shared spa, in-floor cleaning system, solarheating system or pressure side cleaning system you may have to use a largerpump but for most pool owners we recommend a variable speed pump. A two speed pump may cover theincrease in flow rate at different settings or you can possibly use a boosterpump.


Please use all appropriate and proper safety precautions when attempting projects on this website. All projects are attempted at the reader’s own risk.

Pool Heat Pump Sizing: How To Size Your Heat Pump

How to Find the Right Size Pool Pump
  • |February 24, 2021

Heating the water in a pool makes swimming more enjoyable for everyone.

With different types and sizes of heaters available, heat pumps are an energy efficient and effective solution to warming up pool water.

But if youve decided to go electric, youll need to figure out how to get the correct pool heater pump sizing for your pool.

Important: This article is about sizing electric pool heat pumps, not gas pool heaters. If youre looking for the latter, please read our article on sizing a pool heater.

Skip to:

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What Size Pump Do I Need

Ideally, you want a pool pump that can cycle all of the water in your pool through the filtration system once every 12 hours. To figure this out, you need to know how many gallons of water are in your pool.

This is pretty easy to do with some simple math using the following formulas:

  • Rectangular Pools: Length x Width x Depth x 7.5 = gallons
  • Round Pools: Diameter x Diameter x Depth x 5.9 = gallons
  • Oval Pools: Width x Length x Depth x 6.7 = gallons

So, when considering some of the more popular sizes of above ground pools, a 24-foot round pool has roughly 13,593 gallons of water and a 15 x 30-foot oval pool has about 10,000 gallons. This means for a 24-foot round pool, you need a pump that circulates 27,186 gallons per day. For a 15 x 30-foot oval pool, the pump has to circulate 20,000 gallons a day.

Now, heres where it gets a little tricky. Some above ground pool pumps are specified in gallons per minute and not gallons per hour. So, youre not quite done with your calculation. To convert to gallons per minute, you have to divide the gallons per day by 24 hours and then by 60 minutes. In our examples, the 24-foot round pool, you need 27,186 gallons cycled per day. This is about 1,132 gallons per hour or 18.8 per minute.

The 15 x 30-foot oval pool is a little easier to figure out. You need a pump that circulated 20,000 gallons a day, or 833.3 gallons per hour, or about 14 gallons per minute.

For Kidney Shaped And Irregularly Shaped Pools

Depending on the actual shape of your pool, the calculations can be quite distressing. One good way to go about this is to divide your pool into rough rectangular and circular sections, calculate the volume for those sections and add them all together.

The formula for each irregularly shaped pool is as unique as the design of the pool itself, so if you need help on determining the volume of your irregularly shaped pools, give us a call or reach out via the contact us page and well be happy to help you out.

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Calculate The Flow Rate

Flow rate how many litres the pump moves per minute . This is calculated using both the pools volume and turnover time.

Turnover time is the time it takes for a volume of water equivalent to that of the pool contents to make one pass through the circulation system.

The following turnover time is accepted in the pool industry under residential pools.

– Indoor Pools – 4 hours

– Outdoor Pools – 6 hours

So lets say you have an indoor 56,000 litres pool and a pump that has a turnover time of 4 hours, you can then work out the flow rate of your pump. For example:

Turnover time = 4 hours x 60 minutes = 240 minutes

Flow rate = Divide the volume by the turnover time = 230 litres per minute.

Swimming Habits Vs Swimming Pool Heat Pump

What size electric heat pump should you get for your pool?

Your swimming pool habits won’t necessarily impact the size of the heat pump, but they will influence the heating speed needed. Stronger heat pumps will naturally have a much better ability at quickly heating a pool. Even if you live in a warm environment, you might choose to purchase a strong heat pump to accommodate your constant use of the pool. That said, heat pumps are designed to provide resilient and reliable heating in a wide range of climates, so a standard-sized heat pump should suffice.

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How To Calculate The Number Of Gallons In Your Pool

  • The formula for this is: length x width x depth x 7.5 =
  • To calculate the Average Depth: If the shallow end is 3 feet and the deep end is 9 feet, and assuming the slope of the pool is gradual and even, then the average depth is 6 feet
  • Change metres to feet: 1 metre = 3.28 feet

Example: Rectangular shape pool

pool is 9m long x 4.5m wide x an average of 1.2m deep

pool is 29.52 feet long x 14.76 feet wide x 3.94 average feet deep

29.52 x 14.76 = 435.71. 435.71 x 3.94 = 1716.71. 1716.71 x 7.5 = 12,875.38 gallons

The calculations for different pool shapes are below.

For a kidney shaped pool measure the both the longest width and the shortest width of the pool.

Average Depth = / 2

Gallons = x Length x Average Depth x 3.38

What Does A Pool Pump Do

An above-ground pool pump has one very important job: move the water in the pool through the filter. Think of it as the heart of your pool. The pump circulates the water, cycling it through the filtration system where dirt and debris are removed. The filter is also where the water is sanitized and the chemical reactions that keep your pool water safe take place. Without a pump, the water wouldnt be able to travel through the filter and stay clean and safe.

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What Size Swimming Pool Heat Pump Do I Need

BackWhat Size Swimming Pool Heat Pump Do I Need?

  • What Size Swimming Pool Heat Pump Do I Need?

What Size Swimming Pool Heat Pump Do I Need?

Heat pumps are one of the most cost-effective ways to heat your pool! Its energy efficiency is unmatched, and the benefits of utilising a heat pump are countless. Here at 1st Direct Pools, to ensure that you select the right product for your pool, we’ve put together this guide that will help you to invest in the perfect sized swimming pool heat pump.

Find The Perfect Pump

Do I Need To Run My Pool Pump Everyday?

Youve done the hard part, all the calculations to determine exactly what size pool pump will filter your pools water in a day. But before you run off to the store, lets talk about a couple of other considerations you should think about.

For example, you have three speed choices for your pump. They are:

  • Single-speed pumps. When pool pumps were first invented, they were all single speed. Some states, like California and Arizona, dont allow them anymore because they use so much energy.
  • Dual-speed pumps. These pumps have two speeds: low and high. The high-speed setting is equivalent to a single-speed pump, while the low speed is much less. Depending on the size of your pool, the low speed may not be enough to turn over the water in your pool within a day.
  • Variable speed pumps. These pumps are more energy-efficient because they use a magnet motor as opposed to the induction motors the other two types use. Magnet motors produce less friction, which increases efficiency. Theyre also quieter than the other types. You will pay more for a variable speed pump, but save in the long run.

Did You Know?

You will hear about horsepower when you go to purchase a pump, but just because a pump has more horsepower, that doesnt mean its the right pump for your pool. You need to ensure that the pump will work well with your filter. If the pump is too strong, it can overwhelm the filter, making for an ineffective filtration system.

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What Size Sand Filter Do I Need For My Above Ground Pool

After figuring out the right pump size, the next thing that you should do is to think about the right sand filter size. With the right pool filter, you can be more confident about cleanliness and safety.

A lot of sand filters are undersized because pool owners opt for the cheapest option possible. This should not be the case. When it comes to sand filters, bigger is always better. As long as it is matched with the right pump, you will not have a problem when you choose a sand filter with a large capacity.

It is safe to go for a filter that is at least one size larger than what you think you will need. This will allow it to capture more debris, making it more efficient. This is also a good thing because it means that it will require a longer time before cleaning or replacement of the filter.

Finding the right size of the sand filter is similar to finding the right size of the pump. First, you determine the volume and the capacity of the pool. Once you have the values, divide it by eight or ten depending on the turn-over. Then, you will divide it by 60 to get the gallons per minute, and this number will be your basis as you look for the right sand filter that matches your needs.

The size of the sand filter is referred to its design flow rate, which is often expressed in gallons per minute. Check the Pump Flow Chart, which is included in the technical details that you can see in the manual.

How To Calculate Pool Pump Run Time

If you have a pool, then you almost assuredly have a pool filter pump. But how long should you run the filter pump? Knowing that a pool pump filter system is the second highest energy consumer during the summer, , we want you to get the most bang for your buck.

Lets walk through a few common questions and then breakdown the calculation behind finding the ideal pool filter pump run time for your swimming pool. We will show you the standard calculation and a simple calculation.

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Are There Other Options

Yes! Its generally better to start with the highest recommended filtration and taper down. Once you have an algae bloom or the water chemistry gets too far out of whack, it can be very difficult to get things under control.

How the water in your pool behaves depends on a lot of different factors how often you use it, how many people use it, how much direct sunlight it gets, etc. Some people feel that cycling the entire pool once in a 24-hour period is enough and you may find that it is.

Some people run the filter for eight hours overnight and turn them off during the day. Others do leave the filter off at night and do eight hours during the day or you can try four hours in the morning and four hours in the evening. It all depends on what works best with your swimming pool. Thats why its good to find a pool pump made with these options in mind. Most of them have different speed settings as well as timers so you can customize it to your needs.

How To Choose The Right Size Of Filter For Your Pool

How do I choose the right size pump and filter for my above ground pool?

Choosing the right size pool filter for your pool is not always a simple task, but it is crucial to ensuring that your pool stays safe, clean, and open. The first step when picking the right sized pool filter is picking the right size pool pump.

Choose the Right Size Pump

Many people err on the side of caution and purchase a pump that is far bigger than what they need. This can be a costly mistake. Larger pumps are more expensive, and may increase your energy bill compared to an appropriately sized pump. Worse, a pump that is too large can overpower your filter system. A pump that is too small may lack the power needed to effectively pump and filter your pool. This can lead to a buildup of bacteria and algae.

Choose the Right Size of filter

Even if you have the right sized pump, if you choose a filter that is too small, the pump will generate too much pressure, causing the filtering material to break down and rendering the filter ineffective. The pressure build-up caused by small filters causes pressure to build up in your pump, and in some cases this has resulted in explosions, or serious damage to your pump.

The correct sized filter and pump should be able to fully cycle all of your pool water in about eight hours. This simple guide will show you how to find the right sized pump and filter for your pool.

Step 1: How Much Water Does Your Pool Hold?

Step 2: Turn Cubic Feet into Gallons

Step 3: Gallons Per Minute

Step 4: Feet of Head

Step 5: Choose Your Pump

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Determine The Gallons Per Hour

Now that you know the volume of your above ground pool, the next value that you will need to determine is the gallons per hour or GPH. This dictates the volume of water that is pumped through the filter in an hour.

Going back to our example, if the volume is 24,000 gallons and you divide it by 8, then you will get 3,000.

However, most pumps will be labeled based on gallons per minute or GPM instead of GPH. If thats the case, then you have to divide the GPH by 60. In our example, it will be 3,000 divided by 60. From here, you will be able to determine that the appropriate water flow rate is 50 GPM.

Based on the calculations earlier, you are probably wondering why we used 8 in dividing the volume of the pool. This refers to the turnover time, which is described as the amount of time it takes to move a volume of water, equal to the size of your pool, through the filtration and sanitation process once. The range can also be ten hours, and if that is the case, then you have to divide 24,000 by 10 instead of 8.

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