Everything To Know About 2 Speed Pool Pump

2 speed pool pump powering a gunite pool in backyard

There are many options for your new pool. One that gets talked about quite a bit is the pool pump. Often pool salespeople push the merits of higher horsepower pump where more power equals better. This is a flawed logic since the amount of pool pump you need for any given pool depends on the gallons of the pool and the size of the plumbing. In today’s pool pump market there is one option that’s often overlooked, and that’s the 2 speed pool pump.

What Is A Two Speed Pool Pump?

The more common pump today is the variable speed pump. This pump type operates at any RPM within a given range. The two speed pump is different as it has only two preset speeds it can run at. There is a high speed and a low speed. These pumps at one point were the most advanced technologically you could find for your swimming pool. Prior to the advent of variable speed pumps, the two speed was the best option. It allowed you to save money on electricity while still circulating your pool water.

How Does A 2 Speed Pool Pump Work?

They are setup to have a cleaning cycle (high speed), which usually would be for 4 to 6 hours. Then, the filtration cycle (low speed), which would be set for 18-20 hours per day. The main benefit of the two speed pump is being able to run your pump for 24 hours a day for the same electrical costs you’d have running a single speed pump for 8 hours a day. By having your water in constant motion, and constantly filtering and disinfecting, you are able to maintain a cleaner and clearer pool at all times.

luxury gunite pool with 2 speed pool pump running

Sadly, pools get dirty when they sit stagnant. Stagnant pool water means your skimmers are not skimming so all debris falls to the floor. Then, you’d only be able to remove that debris via an in floor cleaning system or pressure side pool cleaner. If you have your pump on low speed, you are still able to get some skimmer action. Low speed typically uses around 1/6 the electricity of high speed, but the gallons per minute pumping through the system is 1/2 that of high speed.

2 Speed Pool Pump Vs. Variable Speed Pump

Why would you choose a 2 speed pool pump over a variable speed pool pump? The answer to this question is, you wouldn’t. It’s true that there is a small initial cost difference between the two. However, when you add up the cost of the time clock you’ll need to buy for the two speed pump and the electrical costs over time, there is no match to the variable speed pump. Unfortunately, the benefits of the 2 speed pump have outlived their usefulness. There is a better option available for today’s pool owner. Variable speed pumps have far more capability. Additionally, they use less electricity for the same functions as a two speed pump.

Is A 2 Speed Pool Pump Worth It?

Choosing a pool pump can be a daunting process. If you choose to take the plunge with a two speed pump, you’re at least a step ahead of the single speed pump. However, we’d suggest going to a variable speed pump instead of a 2 speed pool pump for your new pool or for replacing an existing pump. Make sure to ask a professional to help you size your pool pump. There are limitations to which pumps can go on which pipe sizes. As always if you are replacing a pump on an existing system, always make sure your main drains are VGB compliant and rated for the gallons per minute of your new pump.