Having a swimming pool in your backyard can feel like a luxury, but it can be costly to run and maintain. Have you ever felt like you’re paying too much on your monthly electricity bill in the months you run your pool? Let’s look at the average monthly costs of running swimming pools and the factors contributing to your monthly bill.
- Some factors that determine your monthly electrical costs include: location, the pump you use, the size of your pool, and how long the pump runs.
- The average cost to run a pump can range from $13 to $50 a month, depending on whether you have a variable speed pump, a dual speed pump, or a single speed pump.
- The median monthly cost to run a pool heater is $120-300, but it can drop down to less than $100 if you use it alongside a solar pool cover.
What Factors Determine Your Monthly Electrical Costs?
Like an electrical bill, many factors make up the final cost of your pool’s electrical bill. These factors and other pool maintenance tips are below.
A significant factor in your monthly electric bill is the area you live in and the electricity rates in your region. Some places will have higher rates than others. If you’re concerned that your monthly bill is too high, look at the standard electricity rates in your area. The weather will also play a significant factor. If you live in a colder climate, you may be spending more on your pool heater costs.
What Pump You’re Using
The type of pool pump you use can also impact your monthly bill. Some pumps are built to be more efficient, while others will use more power. The horsepower of your pump is another measurement that will help you understand how much power it will use. Most pool pumps are between 0.5 to 3 horsepower, with a 3-horsepower pump being the most expensive to run.
I’ll explain the estimated cost of running some more common pumps below.
Size of Your Pool
The size of your pool can also contribute to your monthly electric bill in some cases. If your pool has a heater or heat pump, the amount of work it needs to do to heat a larger pool versus heating a smaller pool is significant. If you don’t know the size of your pool, use our pool volume calculator.
How Long Your Pump is Running
Another factor is the amount of work your pump is doing. If your pump runs all day, it will use a lot of electricity daily. If you have a heater for your pool, consider only having it turned on when the pool is used to save electricity. If your pool catches much debris from nearby trees, putting a cover over the pool may help offset the amount of work your pump needs to do when it isn’t being used.
Lighting is another part of a pool that runs off of electricity. The cost to keep your pool lights on will vary depending on the type of light bulbs you use and the extent of your pool lighting. In general, halogen light bulbs tend to use up more energy and are, therefore, more expensive to run, and LEDs are more energy efficient.
Estimated Electrical Costs for Your Pool
As I mentioned above, the type of pump, heater, and light bulbs you’re using can impact how much you are paying for your electric bills. Here’s a look at the estimated cost of running this pool equipment.
Variable Speed Pumps
Variable speed pumps are the most energy-efficient of the leading pump options as they can regulate and adjust the amount of power they use based on their task. If your pool pump is Energy Star rated, the average expected annual cost for running a variable speed pump is around $125, or roughly $10.41 per month, making it the most affordable option to run year-round. That said, most variable-speed pool pumps cost slightly more to run, with an average cost of around $13 per month or $156 annually.
Dual Speed Pumps
Dual speed pumps are less energy efficient than variable speed pumps but are still much more efficient than single speed pumps because they have a high speed and a low speed. The low speed is used for regular daily circulation, while the high speed is used for shocking and heating the pool.
Dual speed pool pumps cost around $25-$30 per month to run or $300-$360 annually.
Single Speed Pumps
Single-speed pumps tend to use more energy than variable speed and dual speed pumps, as they cannot regulate their energy use in the same way as variable speed pumps. The single-speed pumps run at their maximum speed regardless of their task, thus wasting energy and costing you more per month.
The average expected annual cost for running a single-speed pump is around $600, or $50 per month.
The cost of using a heat pump for your pool depends on two things: the size of your collection and the temperature you are heating your pool to. Larger-sized pools and high temperatures will use MUCH more electricity than heating a smaller pool or choosing a lower temperature.
Your pool’s temperature is obviously up to personal preference, but a lower water temperature might be an excellent place to start if you want to cut costs.
Use this pool heater size calculator to break down the annual cost of running a heat pump in different regions and different temperature zones. Depending on your area and the expected period of use (summer versus year-round), the median monthly price point for the heat pump system is between $120-$300. This number will be much less if you only plan to heat the pool by a few degrees or if your pool is smaller than the average pool.
It is also worth pointing out that there is a significant drop in the cost of running a heat pump if you use a solar pool cover. Adding a solar pool cover can reduce the average price to $25-$100 per month. Check out my top-rated pool covers for specific recommendations.
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Now You Know… Electrical Costs Can Vary
While many factors determine the cost of running a pool, that doesn’t mean it has to be costly. If you’re looking to lower the impact of running a pool on your electricity bill, you may want to consider changing your pumping system to one that is more energy-efficient. Now that you know what to look for on your next bill, you’ll be in a great place to make changes if necessary.
Want to learn how to lower your pool electrical costs or need some more specific recommendations? Feel free to reach out to me; I am happy to advise you on this!