Do I Need a Booster Pump for My Pool?

If you own a swimming pool, there is a good chance that you may have heard the term booster pump. And the question that arises in your mind when you hear the term is: do I need a booster pump for my pool? If you are looking for an answer then we are here to provide one.

Well, you definitely need a booster pump for your pool provided that you use pressure-side cleaners to clean your pool. If you do not use pressure-side cleaners, you can still use a booster pump but you do not need it as a must.

There are some really great qualities of a booster pump that will help your pool to have a good water flow. And it will help you have a better pool experience. Let’s discuss when and why you must have a booster pump and when you should avoid it. It will help you make up your mind.

Do I Need a Booster Pump for My Pool

When should you use a booster pump?

In some particular situations or to obtain some good results you need to use a booster pump. Let’s discuss them.

If you are a pressure-side cleaners

If you use a pressure-side cleaner at your pool, then you cannot avoid a booster pump. You need it to create enough pressure for the pressure-side cleaner to work. The main pool pump cannot create adequate pressure for the pressure-side pool cleaners. Because they work at very high pressure.

Better pool ambiance

You don’t want your pool water to be stagnant. It should have enough flow going on in it. And the booster pump really helps with this. It creates additional pressure in the water which creates water flow. And that’s definitely better for the pool ambiance.

Additional support

It is never bad to provide your main pool pump with some additional support. A booster pump will enhance the capability of the main pump. It will ensure better flow, better filtration, and overall, a more consistent and steadier pace of the pool water.

When shouldn’t you use a booster pump?

Booster pumps are great for your pool, no doubt about that. But there are situations where installing a booster pump is just wasting your money. Such as…

Clogged water pipes

When the water pipes are clogged with debris and other stuff, the pressure will drop dramatically. You must clean this first. With clogged water pipes booster pumps cannot help you. This is going to be a complete waste of a project.

Undersized pipes

This is a result of poor pool design. The plumbing is very important for a pool. Undersized pipes will cause the same problem as clogged pipes which is drastic pressure drop. And using booster pumps is not going to solve your problem.

Faulty valve or pressure regulator

These components regulate the water flow and water pressure in the swimming pool. Now if they become faulty, they are going to give wrong signals and this can make pressure drop. You must solve this problem before using a booster pump.

Can You Add a Booster Pump to an Existing Pool?

You most definitely can. It is a very simple process. If you haven’t added a booster pump to your pool while constructing the pool, you can just add one right now. You will just need to make some changes here and there and a booster pump is added to the pool.

How to install a Booster Pump to Your Pool?

Let’s see the process of installing a booster pump to your pool.

The electrical part

  • Use a 20-amp service breaker for the pump because the starting current can exceed 15-amp.
  • The pump comes with a 240v rating. But can also be used with 120v. Adjust the voltage by following the instruction on the nameplate.
  • Use a separate time clock for the ON/OFF system of the pump. Manual switches are usable too.

Preparation of plumbing

  • The booster pump needs a dedicated return line.
  • And this line needs to be situated upstream of all other air-inducing instruments.
  • If you have a heating system installed in your pool, the booster pump inlet needs to be tapped into the return system downstream.
  • Keep the inlet three feet away from the heater discharge.
  • You will need an automatic override to shut off the pump if the pump is installed in a non-flow pipe when the solar system purges.
  • The booster pump inlet needs to be higher and upstream.
  • Also, keep it as far as possible from the chlorinator.

Plumbing 

  • Use rigid PVC pipes for the return line.
  • The diameter of the pipe should be between ¾”-1½”.
  • Soft PVC and poly pipes are not used.
  • The inlet connection line for the booster pump should be ¾” in diameter.
  • Avoid tapping at the top of the pipe that is horizontal.
  • 90 degrees street ells will help you minimize the bends and loops.

Pump installation

  • Use four expansion anchors made of concrete to stabilize the pump in its place.
  • To rotate the volute first remove it and clean the RTV sealant from all components.
  • Dry all the components thoroughly.
  • Now apply a volute of 1/8” bead on the volute.
  • After reinstalling the O ring without sealant orient the volute as needed.
  • Reattach the volute.
  • Now the quick connect retainer rings need to be onto pump discharge and supply ports. Use clear silicone as thread sealants.
  • Now cut the hose with clean-cut and with no more than 30 degrees off a straight edge.
  • Connect the hose and quickly connect and make sure the hose is flush on the hose barb base.
  • Now pull and twist the sleeve over the hose while keeping the hose at its place.
  • Make sure the sleeve goes as far as possible over the hose.

Check the water flow

  • After the installation is complete the water should flow from the line if you turn on the pump.
  • If not then double-check the whole installation process.
  • Or you can install an on the return line. Install it after the pump inlet.
  • Install smaller eyeball fittings in the return line.

Winterize the pump

  • If your area goes below the freezing temperature in the winter then it’s a good idea.
  • To winterize your pump first pull out the drain plug and drain all the water.
  • Disconnect the plumbing hose from the inlet and outlet.
  • This will prevent it from freezing damage.

FAQs

Let’s check out some commonly asked questions below.

Can you run a Polaris without a booster pump?

Yes, you can. For that, you need to buy the right Polaris. You will need a Polaris with an improved vacuum, large throat, large filter bags. Polaris makes pumps with these special features. If you buy one of these then you no longer need a booster pump.

Which Polaris does not need a booster pump?

The Polaris Vac-Sweep® TR36P is a specially made pool pump with advanced features like a triple jet vacuum, large throat, and larger filter bag space. With these qualities, this Polaris doesn’t need a separate booster pump.

Can you use a pool pump as a booster pump?

It is not going to give you the expected result. You can try but you won’t be happy with the result. The booster pump works with a little water flow at high pressure. But the pool pump works with large water flow at low pressure. So, the expectation is not going to be met.

What is the difference between a pool pump and a pool motor?

A pool pump is used to make the water flow to keep the water clean. It creates pressure that causes the water to flow. On the other hand, the pool motor is the device that runs the pump. Motors convert electrical energy to mechanical energy that runs the pool pump which cleans the pool.

Does a pool pump use a lot of electricity?

A pool pump uses an awful lot of electricity. It is the biggest electricity consumer in a house alongside air conditioners. Study shows that on average a pool pump can add up to 300$ extra to the electricity bill of a pool-containing house.

Conclusion

After all the discussion we just had, your question: do I need a booster pump for my pool should be answered. For further clarification, you need a booster pump for your pool when you are using pressure-side pool cleaners. If you don’t use them then you don’t need a booster pump.

But even when you don’t need a booster pump as a must, you can still use it as additional help to your main pool pump. The booster pump will help the main pump create enough pressure for better filtration, better water flow, and a more consistent and steadier pace of pool water. So, think about it.

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