Pool maintenance can be a time-consuming thing to do, more so when one doesn’t have the proper tools to keep it clean and sanitary. Not that it’s hard, but more from the fact that heavy usage requires filtration that can be costly in funds.
After going through multiple pool filtration systems, I’ve found that the best method to maintain pool cleanliness while keeping electrical expenses down is by using a variable-speed pump.
Variable means that you can control the speed of filtration, to the point where it runs slowly or fast, all based on the user’s wishes. The best variable speed pool pump products are featured below, picked for durability, pumping, and ease of control.
The best unit from the list is shown at the end, so stick around to see which product you think will come out on top. Let’s get started!
Variable Speed Pool Pumps: My Top Picks
Hayward W3SP2603VSP Super Pump VS Variable-Speed Pool Pump for In-Ground Pools
The Hayward Super Pump is a 1.65-horsepower pool filtration system. It’s the best Hayward variable speed pool pump for people that wish to do little to get it working on the first attempt. That means you can skim through the instruction manual and know how to use everything in just a few minutes after unboxing. But what are its other attributes?
Take a look at the strainer on the product’s description page. You’ll notice that it has a transparent lid at the top. This makes it easy to see when it becomes filled with debris. This piece is also referred to as a debris bucket. It’ll keep you from having to go back and clean it too often since you’ll know exactly when it’s full.
The inside of the unit is swelled. Pieces are made to last, whereby they can be accessed through bolts numbering four. This is what you’ll do when it’s time to install the pump. After that, you’ll be ready to go.
When evaluating this Hayward product, most consumers liked how easy the controls are to learn, along with the strong design features of the exterior. It’ll obviously get through years of pumping without breaking down.
However, the motor could turn off on its own if things get too hot. While this probably won’t occur but on rare occasions, people living in hot regions may experience this at a slightly higher rate.
In the end, the Hayward Super Pump is recommended to all homeowners and property managers that want to keep their pool clean and reduce their energy consumption at the same time.
- The strainer cover is see-through, making it easy for users to see when then the filter basket needs to be cleaned
- Interior pieces are accessed through only four bolts; can be quickly installed
- Holds enough leaves and other debris to avoid checking at frequent intervals (for cleaning)
- The motor may shut off if it gets too hot
Pentair EC-011057 – IntelliFlo VS+SVRS Variable Speed Pool Pump 3HP
The Pentair 011018 IntelliFlo is a pool pump for people that have used other products from the company. If you have older pumps made by Pentair, they’ll likely fit on the new model. But that’s not all.
This pump will never produce enough noise for you to want to shut it off. The motor is very quiet and stays that way for the entirety of it. It’ll also keep energy costs low, all while filtering out chunks of debris and gunk from your pool.
The frame of the pool is very tough. You could leave it outside with your all summer and winter long, and the pump will work when the season is in again. Operation is pretty simple, which also includes programming. Just read through the guide to attach it correctly to your power source.
Most variable speed pool pump reviews look for ease of assembly and flow rate. This unit excels at both without being a burden to the noise (because of noise). But some may find the unit a bit difficult to program, more so for people that have never used a pool pump before. Consider using a video guide if you have trouble understanding the included instructions.
- Pipes are the same size as other products from the same company, making installation quicker (if they were used prior)
- Doesn’t make too much noise when running, even at max HP
- Lowers home energy costs over many competing pool pumps
- Some users may find the pump difficult to program on the first try
Pentair SuperFlo® VS Variable Speed Pool Pump
The Pentair 342001 is a 5 HP variable speed pool pump, built to last in any backyard/pool environment. It has a powerful motor that rotates and pumps water with consistently high flow rates, keeping your pool looking spotless at all times.
If you’re worried about loud motors, don’t be with the Pentair 342001. People that have used such pumps before with this problem know that the noise level can reach decibel levels that are close to a motorbike. But with this pump, things will stay silent on most occasions.
The pump’s height is quite low, giving it a small profile that won’t ever feel out of place in your backyard. And its entire body is lined with aluminum, a preventative method for keeping the motor from getting too hot during operation.
Consumers love how well the 342001 performs on medium to a large-sized pool with near-excessive debris. For anyone that has a large family using the pool throughout the day, this filter is a great way to keep the water spotless.
- The sound level stays at an acceptable level, with the motor running at a low hum
- Has a short height that allows it to be positioned in any corner without getting in the way
- The aluminum lining keeps the heat level down while lowering the chances of motor failure
- Needs excessive lubricant in order to function properly
XtremepowerUS 2HP In-Ground Swimming Pool Pump Variable Speed
The XtremePowerUS is a 2 HP variable speed pool pump that’s lightweight and easy to manage. One of its major advantages is how well it handles airflow to the engine. Still, that’s not the only reason for you to consider this one before the others shown.
Because the majority of pool pump brands have large baskets that capture debris, some may overlook this feature. The XtremepowerUS maintains a very large container that’s easy to clear out, no matter how long the leaves have been on the inside.
If you’ve had problems starting up pool pumps in the past, the problem would never emerge with the XtremepowerUS. That’s because it’s self-priming, so it’ll start up quickly once the motor is activated.
Users find that the pump works quickly on most occasions, but may sometimes flow slowly based on how well the fitting and o-ring are built on the device. In some pumps from this company, they might not seal completely around the pump/hose and leak.
This issue might not happen to you, but it has been documented. But if it does, a quick o-ring replacement should fix leakage from happening.
- Good ventilation from the powerful fan keeps the motor from getting too hot
- Has a large basket that’s easy to clean
- Doesn’t need to be primed
- The o-ring and fittings may not form a leak-proof seal around the pump
Hayward SP2303VSP MaxFlo VS Variable-Speed Pool Pump
The Hayward SP2303VSP is great for pool owners that have small pools in a small backyard. There are several reasons behind this, although you could use it for larger properties and get good filtration results all the same.
The motor is fast but produces no loud racket. And it doesn’t matter what voltage you purchase the pump in; it’ll sound and operate the same on the 115 and 230-volt versions. Just look at your outlets to see which adapter is compatible with your pool. For most people in the US, this would be 115 volts.
The SP2303VSP is very lightweight and handles. Put it in any corner of your pool and the machine will move quickly in getting your pool cleaned, even when it’s very dirty. Run it for about eight hours, less if you have the motor on a high setting.
Many Hayward variable speed pump review posts approve of the way that the SP2303VSP collects and dispenses leaves and debris from the bucket. Yet some were taken aback by how smaller it is compared to other models.
You won’t have to empty it on a daily basis, but its interior dimensions are a little smaller than what one might expect. Other than that, there’s hardly anything wrong with the Hayward SP2303VSP.
- Very quiet operation; barely makes any noise at all
- Can be acquired in either 230 or 115 volts
- Weighs less than 50 pounds, very easy to move and handle
- The debris bucket isn’t as big as some of its competitors
Hayward W3SP15932S PowerFlo Matrix Dual-Speed Above-Ground Pool Pump
This Hayward pump, known as the SP15932S, is the best dual-speed pool pump you’ll find around. Dual speed is technically variable (since there are two-speed options) but different from others marketed with such a label.
Since there are only two-speed choices, you can save even more energy with a dual-speed pump than one with variable speed. Just run the SP15932S on the low setting when under ordinary conditions, increasing to the second level when multiple people are in the pool.
This pump has a thermal overload protection feature that keeps the engine from rotating when it’s too hot. This adds longevity to the motor since excessive heat is how most of them fail in the first place.
The Hayward SP15932S is a great product that works well in everything it’s advertised to be good at. You could encounter some difficulty in opening the lid of the debris basket if it is closed too tightly. Try to give the top some slack and this won’t happen.
- Has a low profile that isn’t too large or wide; lightweight design
- The thermal overload feature prevents the motor from running when it gets too hot
- A long power cord that can reach nearby outlets (in most medium-sized homes)
- Difficult to open the debris bucket
XtremepowerUS 1.5 HP Variable 2-Speed Swimming Pool Pump
The XtremepowerUS 1.5 HP runs fast and doesn’t get scorching hot when left on for long hours. It’s built for outdoor usage and can be left outside for as long as you want it to stay there; not susceptible to breaking in hot or cold weather.
The exterior consists of a stainless steel finish that will never rust or stain, no matter how long you keep it in your backyard. It has four variable speed settings, from powerful to the lowest motor RPM speed.
A digital display near the panel indicates the level of wattage being consumed for each setting. If you find one set is draining too much energy to run, simply lower the motor to an acceptable speed for you.
Overall, users liked the XtremepowerUS 1.5 for its strong exterior and easy-to-understand digital screen/configuration layout. Give it a try if you want something that won’t break down on you after a month has passed from using it.
- Not prone to outdoor damages or dents; bolt never rust
- Has four-speed settings in all, along with a timer for cutting energy costs
- The digital display shows the amount of wattage being used
- The motor emits a loud whirring noise at most speeds
Pentair 011519 WhisperFlo High Performance Energy Efficient Single Speed Up Rated Pump
The Pentair 011524 WhisperFlo is the best 2 HP pool pump around. The motor is very fast and dependable, never running too hot. It has a fan that runs quietly so the neighbors will never be awakened by you simply attempting to clean your pool.
If you like the idea of a pool pump that has high flow rates without the annoyance of sounding like a car engine starting, this is the pool for you. Activate either pool speed setting and your pool water will quickly circulate and filter.
Given that it operates with just two-speed settings, most users won’t use up too much power to clean out their pool. Of course, this is based on if the lowest setting is used. The highest speed option is fast but not necessary on most occasions since it requires more power.
The 011524 WhisperFlo is loved by most consumers, although some found the lack of a detailed instruction manual somewhat frustrating when assembling. Yet if you have used pool pumps before, it’s nothing that you haven’t seen before.
- Easier operation than a multi-speed pump (this product is two-speed)
- Good water flow rate at both speed settings
- Built to last for many years without getting damaged
- No detailed installation instructions
Doheny’s Harris ProForce 1.5 HP Above Ground Pool Pump
The Harris In-Ground is a good pool pump for green homes, here’s what it can do for you.
Having an environmentally-friendly home is all the rage now, and that’s a good thing. With this in mind, the Harris pump can be run from power sources that aren’t grounded to the breaker in your home. It’s perfectly safe to run it with a solar panel.
Harris’ construction is top-notch. Nothing will break, crack, or corrode. It doesn’t matter if you’re near the ocean or in a location that receives heavy rainfall. The steel pieces are built to withstand the brunt of all four seasons and continue to filter water from your pool years after the warranty has expired.
Users favored this as a unit that’s available to homeowners that need a motor and adapter that runs off 230 volts. Keep this in mind if you only use 115.
- Can be run from a solar panel, if required
- Has a stainless steel exterior (with a black finish) that’ll never corrode
- Runs at an acceptable noise level
- Has only 230-volt models
Blue Torrent Pumps Variable Speed In Ground Pool Pump
Last on the list is the Blue Torrent, a variable-speed inground pool pump for large and small-sized pools.
Motor death is a primary factor for people needing to acquire new pool pumps in the first place. This Blue Torrent will keep working years after you acquire it, keeping your energy consumption down and your pool clean for your next swim.
You can program this unit to function automatically or manually, the choice of yours to make. Operation is done from the unit itself; just read through the manual to see how it automates the pump.
Users favored the Blue Torrent for its easy-to-get-behind warranty stipulations. If you want a pump that you don’t have to worry about hiring a professional to get installed, this is a great unit to maintain your pool’s cleanliness.
- The motor is completely covered, lowering the risk of malfunction due to outdoor elements
- Speeds can be programmed to operate automatically or with manual control
- Good warranty stipulations
- It May get loud at sporadic moments
Variable Speed Pumps Info
Before you settle on one of the pool pumps featured, take a moment to go over each product’s warranty. Some of them may not allow you to return it if the assembly is carried out by yourself.
In some cases, you might have to call the company to get the latest info on their warranty info. If you’re not sure how to properly set up your pool pump, always consider consulting a professional to save you lots of time.
Also, check out our reviews about the best above-ground pool filters to effectively keep your pool clean.
Factors to Consider
Some of the best inground pool pump products will still have attributes that might not be favorable to one consumer over the other. For example, you might not care about how loud the motor is, while someone else needs a pump motor that emits hardly any noise.
Know the subtle differences between products so you won’t be surprised by the way it functions after the shipment arrives.
Furthermore, the best high-efficiency pool pump can significantly reduce your home’s energy consumption (and costs). If this is what you’re looking for, seek out Energy Star-compliant pumps.
What is the purpose of a pool pump?
A high-efficiency pool pump is taken with filtering pool water by pushing the water with a motor, reducing the number of contaminants and debris.
How can I know if a pool pump is energy-saving and fast?
Even the best pool pump can fail at being energy efficient. If you don’t want to burn too much power when you use a pump, consider getting a dual-speed brand over one with variable speed.
What about cleaning and maintenance of the pump itself?
This is very easy to do. The debris basket can be cleaned by hand or hosed down when removed from the pump’s inside. You can clean out the exterior by wiping it down with a cloth or damp towel.
So which product from above is the best variable speed pool pump? The Hayward SP2610X15 has everything that you’ll need to keep your pool clean for years to come. While the filter rate and basket capacity are outstanding, there are other brands that perform better in conserving energy (such as the two-speed Pentair 011524).
If you stick to the products shown, there’s no bad choice that you can make. Your pool will look and feel clean at all times.