There are differing opinions about how many hours your pump should be running but there are many factors to consider.
The most important one of all is sanitisation. For correct sanitisation all the water in your pool should be turned over (that means passing through the filtration system) between one and one and a half times per day.
Look for the “Q” on your pump,(or read the handbook), most are cubic (hence Q) metres per hour. For example: Q 16 means that your pump will turn over 16 cubic metres per hour (16m3h) so if your pool is 8×4 with an average depth of 1.25 metres (40m3) the pump needs to run for a minimum of 3 hours per day and maybe as much as 6 hours per day depending on bathing load, and water temperature. No two pools are the same and other things like falling leaves, water source and most importantly water parameters have an effect on the state of your pool.
In summer months you will find six hours per day is normally the minimum. If you have a pool party it’s best to have the pool running 24 hours before and 48 hours after ( you will notice the difference if you don’t).
It’s always best to have your pump running at the hottest time of the day (this is when algae spores multiply most) so midday until six pm is ideal. Have your pump running in one hit and don’t split the timing up (a pump uses the majority of power on start-up). You may want to ignore this if your pool is surrounded by trees with falling leaves! If you don’t have a timer installed, get one put in – preferably with a memory, they are not over expensive and once you have one you’ll wonder how you did without it.
Recommended only if you are very observant and have the time to spare.
Alternatively you can start with six hours in summer then as the temperature starts to cool, cut it down by an hour at a time and if you keep a close eye on things you will find the optimum times, just watch out for the first signs of algae and the moment you notice change of water clarity, increase the time a tad and check the chemicals. You should be able to run your pump in the winter for two (or even maybe less) hours per day.
I have heard it said that the best way is to leave the pump on 24 hours per day – this is simply a waste of electricity and is only necessary in public swimming pools, excessive bathing loads or during super-chlorination. You should be able to get crystal clear water with correct water parameters, good filtration equipment and correct running times.
If you still can’t get it right, call in The Professionals – Eco-Pools
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