Each swimming pool includes a circulation system that maintains the pool’s water quality. The swimming pool pump is a vital component of this system.It acts like the heart where it pumps water throughout, like the circulation system. It must be in excellent functioning order at all times in order to execute this duty. However, no matter the quality or the brand of your pump, it will need to be replaced at some point. You probably wonder when to replace a pool pump.
After a lengthy winter or an endless summer, your swimming pool pump may have problems. If the pump won’t turn on or it makes unexpected noises, then you might start to wonder if you should replace your pool pump motor, the bearings or the whole pump. You may want to try to replace the motor or bearings before replacing the pump.
There are numerous factors to consider when determining the best way to maintain your pool pump, including the time required to disassemble the pump and diagnose the problem, the length of time required to wait for a service technician to install a replacement, and the possibility of receiving bad advice and paying more than necessary. Trust Toronto Pool Supplies’ experts when deciding what to do with your pump.
How to Check Your Pool Pump Health
A good rule of thumb is to set a price point for replacing or repairing. If the cost to repair is less than 70% of the cost to replace the pool pump, repairing is financially wise. However, if the price to repair the motor is close to the cost of a new pump, then buying a new pump makes sense, as it comes with a warranty for the near future. Pumps average from $300 to $1,200 depending on the type.
Check the Housing
The motor and outer casing are the most expensive components of the pump. If the housing is fractured or damaged, it is possible that the inside workings are as well. When all damaged components are added together, repair costs may surpass replacement prices. It makes sense to replace the pool pump.
Know the Age
Pumps that are in their second or third decade of life might be too costly to repair. Eventually, parts become too challenging to find, and technicians do not know how to fix older pool motors. Aging pool pumps are not as efficient as new ones, so by replacing your old and worn down pool pump, you could save money on your energy bills.
If you have an older pump made of metal, you might struggle to find replacement parts. Today’s manufacturers use composite materials that weather the elements better than the bronze or cast iron dinosaurs. These older types are also often single-speed pool pumps. In the long term, a variable speed pool pump will be more energy efficient. When components become outdated, they become prohibitively costly, making it prudent to replace the complete pump.
The Sound of Silence
If your pool motor fails to operate at all, it may be irreparable. Silence does not necessarily indicate that nothing is operating, but it might indicate that a wire is disconnected or a gasket is misaligned. If the wires and gaskets are checked and nothing turns on, the pump may be fully dead and will need to be replaced.
How to Replace Your Pool Pump Motor
Pool pump motor replacement is a common practice among pool owners. The most typical causes for replacing a motor are failed bearings, corrosion on the interior and/or exterior of the motor, failed start and run capacitors, and motor age.
- Safety Glasses
- Closed-Toed Shoes
- Replacement Motor
- Go-Kit specific to pump
- Pool and Spa Lube
- 9/16” Socket or Wrench & 7/16” Wrench
- Standard and Phillips Screwdrivers
- Strap Wrench or Impeller Puller
- Shut off power to the pump at the breaker to prevent unintended operation of equipment and for safety precautions. Remove the electrical whip from the rear of the motor. Mark the hot, neutral, and ground wires with tape and a pen.
- Depending on the pump model, remove the clamp assembly or 9/16” bolts holding the seal plate to the pump housing. Remove the engine and rear of the pump carefully from the housing and set them on a table or workbench.
- Remove the diffuser.
- Grip the back of the motor shaft with the 7/16″ wrench or a comparable size wrench to prevent it from rotating.
- Using the strap wrench or impeller, puller remove the pump impeller. Note: Remove any locking screws from the impeller before trying to remove it. The locking screw will be reverse thread.
- Remove the pump seal plate using the 9/16″ socket or wrench.
- Remove the mechanical pump seal from the seal plate and impeller.
- Wipe down and clean the components being reused during assembly.
- Using the appropriate Go-Kit (per the pump model), replace the mechanical pump seal. Note: When installing the mechanical seal, use extreme caution to avoid touching the white ceramic or black graphite surfaces with your hands or other impurities.
- Remove the new motor from its packaging and place the seal plate on the motor in the appropriate orientation and complete installation with the 9/16” bolts.
- Use the 7/16” wrench to hold the rear of the motor shaft and prevent the shaft from rotating. Install the impeller on the now secured motor shaft until the impeller is hand tight. Note: Ensure that the impeller locking screw is installed if necessary. Install the diffuser in the appropriate orientation.
- Bring reassembled motor and rear of pump to pool area and slide the motor and rear of pump into the pump housing. Utilize the clamp assembly or 9/16″ bolts to secure the seal plate to the pump housing.
- Connect the electrical whip securely.
- Turn on the breaker to provide power to the motor.
- Turn on the pump to test for leaks and pump operation.
There you have it. You now have the know-how to replace a pool pump motor. If any of this seems daunting, be assured that we are here to assist you.
How to Replace Your Pool Pump Bearings
With just a little time and technique, you can replace your own pool motor bearings.
- Nut drivers, Screwdriver, Hammer, Pliers
- Bearing Puller and Tamping tool (or Pipe)
- Spray Lubricant (WD-40)
- Shut off power at the breaker.
- Remove motor from pump housing. Remove wiring harness from rear of motor.
- Remove pump diffuser. With pliers/wrench, grasp it at the back of the motor and spin the impeller counter-clockwise off the shaft.
- Lubricate 4 through-bolts with WD-40. Gently loosen and remove through-bolts. Make a mark or scratch over the end bell and body of the motor to facilitate alignment later.
- Use a flathead screw driver and small hammer to loosen and pry off the front end bell (the end where the impeller attaches).
- If entire rotor does not come out, pry off the rear end bell.
- Clean the bearings and look closely at the bearing number. Look for 202, 203, 303 or 304. Buy these at a motor shop or online.
- Using bearing pullers, pull off the old bearings. Clean the shaft and press the bearing into position on the shaft using a tamping tool or a piece of pvc tubing.
- Reassemble the rotor into the stator, secure the end bells in the marked or scored positions made earlier, and tighten down the through-bolts.
- Reassemble the impeller, wear ring (if present), reverse threaded impeller screw (if present), diffuser and wiring to rear of motor.
- Test motor wiring by turning motor on briefly. Reinstal the motor in the pump, filling it with water, and savouring the new quiet!
How to Replace Your Pool Pump
Pool pump motors may not last more than 10 years before needing replacement. This article reviews how to install a pool pump when an old one needs to be replaced or upgraded.
Step 1: Turn off Power to Pump
It is important to turn the power off to the pump and filter before removing it. If the pump motor is hardwired into the breaker, you may either unhook it or turn off the circuit.
Step 2: Stop Water Flow From Pool
To remove the old pool pump you will need to stop the flow of water from the pool to the pump. Once the clamps on the hoses are removed, the water will drain from the pool. Remove the basket from the skimmer and cover the opening with a rubber stopper. You will also need to do this for the water inlet jets too so the water does not backwash out of the pool.
Step 3: Disconnect Hoses from Pump
Adjustable clamps are used to connect the hoses from the pipes to the pump. These clamps have a little screw that allows the band around the hose to be loosened or tightened. To release the hose, use a screwdriver to back out the screw. Keep a small pail nearby to collect any residual water in the hoses. Disconnect the hose from the inlet and output of the pump.
Step 4: Disconnect Pump from Filter
The pump is attached to the filter through a tiny tube that is clamped in place. Additionally, there are four little bolts on the bottom of the pump that secure it to the pump assembly’s bottom panel. Remove the bolts with a socket wrench and disconnect the hose leading to the filter.
Step 5: Remove the Old Pump
If you are only replacing the pump, you will need to lift out the old pump and then set in the new one. If you have the identical model, it will fit perfectly without modification. If you are replacing the complete filter and pump assembly, you must remove it and replace it with a new one.
Open the pressure release valve on the pump to release any trapped pressure and then shut it. Detach the incoming wires from the old pool pump using needle-nose pliers or a nut driver. Remove any nuts holding the pump in place. These may be required to secure the new pump, so have them handy. Disconnect the pipes leading to and from the front input and rear discharge ports of the old pump using a PVC pipe cutter. Allow sufficient pipe to remain intact to connect a union or other fitting. Remove the old pump.
Step 6: Install the New Pump
After putting the new pump in place, you may want to wire the pool pump before attaching the plumbing, as the installed plumbing may limit your access to the pump motor.
Confirm the voltage specifications. Above-ground pool pumps are typically 115 volts and come with a wire to connect into a grounded outlet. The motors for in-ground pool pumps are delivered
at 230 volts but may be converted to 115 volts. Unscrew the rear end of the motor’s cover using a screwdriver. To ensure safety, wire using insulated equipment.
The three wires should be fed via a conduit fitting and into the motor’s rear. Connect the power wires to the power terminals and the ground wire as directed by the manufacturer. With a screwdriver, replace the motor cover and reset the circuit breaker.
Determine the size and placement of the new unions, PVC fittings, and o-rings that will be required. As needed, replace PVC fittings on the plumbing lines. Thread seal tape should be applied to the unions to provide a tight seal. Attach the unions to the front input and rear discharge ports using PVC primer and cement and then to the PVC pipes.
Allow the glue to cure according to the manufacturer’s guidelines, which may take up to eight hours. Anchor bolts may be used to secure the pump if necessary. Open the intake and output water valves. Check the water flow to ensure the pump is operating correctly.
Step 7: Connect pump to filter
Connect the pump to the filter through the hose and clamp that you disconnected previously.
Step 8: Double Check All Connections on Pump
Secure the pump to the bottom plate with the bolts and make sure they are tight. Connect the hoses to the pump’s inlet location and secure them using hose clamps.
Step 9: Prime the Pump
Remove the rubber stoppers from the skimmer and inlet water jets. Reconnect the pump to ensure proper functioning. You may need to prime the pump first by directly injecting water into it. This initiates the suction necessary to drain the pool of water.
Step 10: Dive in!
Congratulations! You replaced your pool pump! All that is left to do is plan a pool party.
If you have some basic knowledge and the right tools you should not have to hire a professional to install a pool pump and filter, even given the need to rewire and replace the plumbing for the unit. Make sure you have an energy-efficient water pump in good working order as part of your pool maintenance. Toronto Pool Supplies is your DIY headquarters. Looking for a product to complete your project? We have a huge selection of everything you need to maintain your pool.