should i run my pool pump in freezing weather

Should I run my pool pump in freezing weather?

This article will answer your question and teach you how to run a pool pump in freezing temperatures without causing damage to the pump or the pool.

In cold weather, you should keep your pool pump running to prevent the water from freezing. The filtration pump, however, must be kept on at all times, while the heat pump should be used only when absolutely essential.

Keep reading to learn more!

How Pool Pumps Work

how do pool pumps work

The pool pump is the circulatory system’s heart, since it provides the flow of water that enables chemicals to circulate uniformly throughout the pool.

Thus effectively cleaning it and transporting waste through the circulation system and out of the pool. 

Pool owners with in-ground pools may select between single-speed and variable pool pumps.

The following are significant differences:

The Speed

Unlike its variable-speed counterparts, single-speed pool pumps can’t be programmed to change their speed.

They may be operated at a range of speeds based on the demands of your pool and your desire to save money on electricity.

The Energy Savings

savings in energy

Over the course of a year, a variable-speed pool pump may save your energy costs by as much as 95 percent compared to a standard-speed pump.

The Automation

Complex automation systems may be designed around variable-speed pool pumps.

This let you set timers for the pump to run at different speeds at different times of the day. 

Should I Run My Pool Pump In Freezing Weather?

snow in pool

A large swimming pool would cost a lot of money to maintain open when the water freezes in a few hours, but If you have a small pool, you may be able to not only maintain it operational but also use it to combat the cold weather.

If the water in your pool didn’t flow, it would rapidly turn into a stagnant bog, home to algae and other ugly things.

Poor circulation is one of the most critical components in keeping your pool clean and swimmable.

The pump, the initial component of your pool’s filtration system, generates this.

In this case, you can run a pool pump in freezing weather; the pool pump draws in water and then pushes it through the filter. 

Whatever kind of filter you have will only function if water flows through it. This is how the filter captures trash and microorganisms.

To keep the water in the pool clean and clear, it must be filtered at least once daily.

Continue reading to learn how to run a pool pump in freezing weather.

How to Run a Pool Pump in Freezing Weather

run pool pump freezing weather

Weather, particularly in the winter, may be quite unpredictable.

If you own a pool in a warmer region, sudden cold temperatures and harsh winter weather may inflict significant damage to the pool, particularly if you are unprepared.

When winter storms and cold spells are predicted, using a pool pump might help avoid significant damage.

Here are some tips to help you use your pool pump in cold weather without damaging your pool or equipment.

Running pool pump in freezing weather involves two basic steps.

  • Pool Pump Circulation Setup
  • Priming the Pump and Filter

Pool Pump Circulation Setup

pool pump setup

To remove debris and impurities, pool pumps circulate water from the pool through the filter and back into the pool.

For gravity feeding, most pools have the pump located in a concrete pit or recess next to the filter, below the water level.

To eliminate large junk, water entering the pump input first goes through a strainer basket in the pump housing.

The water then passes through the filter and, if present, the heater.

Water returns to your pool through return jets installed in the pool’s walls. If you spend much time in the pool, the pump may operate continually to ensure proper filtration and circulation.

Many home pool owners attach their pumps to timers to restrict circulation to periods when the pool is most active.

Priming the Pump And Filter

priming pump and filter

A primed system indicates that all components, including the pump, filter, and pipelines, have enough water to function properly.

Your pool pump setup may sometimes lose its prime, allowing air into the system and preventing water movement.

Pockets of air are often trapped within pool pumps.

There is a possibility of getting air into the pump whenever it is not working full of water, such as when the pool is closed or re-opened for the season, especially in freezing weather.

Before using an air-filled pool pump, you must first blow out the pipes with water to remove any air and replace it with water.

This is the pump priming technique. 

Follow these instructions while priming a pool pump.

It's something you should expect to do on occasion as part of pool care throughout the colder months.

1. Turn Off the Pump

If you need to prime your pump, be sure that the power button is actually in the off position or that power has been withdrawn from the device.

When dealing with water and electricity, take extra measures before commencing your activity.

2. Switch To Recirculate

recirculate water

Your pump’s multiport valve may be adjusted to recirculate water. This will send water into the pump and recirculate it back into the pool.

When set to recirculate, the water avoids the filter and flows straight into the pump, ensuring that there is water in the pump.

3. Allow Air to Escape

Open the air relief valve on top of the filter to relieve excess air pressure in the lines.

4. Empty the Pump Basket

Remove any dirt from the basket and rinse it with a hose. Inspect for wear and tear and replace worn-out components such as o-rings as required.

clean pump basket

5. Fill the Pump Basket with Water

Fill the pump basket carefully with a garden hose and replace the cover.

6. Open the Air Release Valve and Turn on the Pump

Once the pump basket has been filled and tightened, open the air release valve and turn on the pump.

7. Check the Flow of Water to Your Pump

Within thirty seconds, water should be flowing continuously.

If the flow is not constant, switch off the pump and repeat the preceding procedures.

Examine all of your hardware for signs of wear and tear. Close the air pressure release valve after the water is continuously flowing.

Types of Pool Filter

types of pool filter

Pool filters come in various styles and use various materials to filter the water.

The most basic kind is a standard replaceable filter cartridge in a canister fitted after the pump in the discharge line. 

These are primarily utilized in lower volume above-ground pools and need little care from periodic filter replacements.

Sand filters in bigger in-ground pools employ a bed of industrial-grade silica to filter the water as it percolates through the sand under pump pressure. 

Another kind of filter medium is diatomaceous earth. The porous powder has excellent filtration characteristics.

Both sand and DE filters need occasional backwashing to keep the filter clean.

The Pool Filter Settings

pool filter

Pool filter multiport valves offer general settings that work with all major sand and DE filter manufacturers.

The “Filter” option cycles water through the sand or DE media, then out the filter and into the pool through the return port.

This is the default setting for regular pump and filter operation.

The Backwash 

The “Backwash” option reverses water to flow through the filter media to flush away impurities.

Use this setting during routine maintenance or when the filter pressure suggests a clog.

During backwash, unclean water leaves the filter through the waste port and drains into the sewer.

valve for pool filter

The Waste

The filter is bypassed when the valve is set to “Waste.”

Water from the pump enters via the pump port and exits straight into the sewer through the waste port. This option allows you to vacuum the pool or reduce the water level.

The Recirculate

“Recirculate” also skips the filter but sends the circulating water back to the pool rather than down the drain.

This option comes in handy when conducting certain chemical treatments that might contaminate the filter medium. “Closed” stops all water from entering the pool.

Note To Take

pool pump notes

To prepare your pool for impending harsh winter weather, operate your pool pump and filter before the water freezes and during the freeze period.

Power shortages during extreme weather might damage your equipment. When your equipment loses power, water may freeze, causing harm.

Here are the measures to take if you decide to operate your pool pump and filter continuously:

1. Clean or backwash your pool filter before freezing weather and low temperatures. This ensures that water flows properly during the cold.

2. Continuously run your pool pump and filter. Moving water freezes at a slower rate.

3. To guarantee proper water flow, use a variable speed pump at greater speeds during the freezing period.

4. Pump motors need attention. If it’s noisy, the bearings may be faulty. When temperatures get above freezing, have the motor serviced.

5. To avoid freezing, wrap blankets or towels around plumbing lines. Pool noodles may also be used as pipe insulation. To guarantee proper water flow, open all lines.

When a valve is turned off, no water flows through the pipe, and there is a risk of freezing damage.

6. Heat lamps, electric heaters, portable gas heaters, or blankets, should not be used on or near your pool pump or filter because they might harm equipment or start a fire.

Final Verdict

Should I run my pool pump in freezing weather?

Running your pool pump in freezing temperatures is a great idea. You should do it regularly as long as your pool is not in danger of snowing in. 

Constant movement will prevent your pool water from freezing, allowing you to heat the pool and swim whenever you choose.

Thanks for reading!