You waste a lot of energy, just in the process of converting solar energy to AC (Alternating Current).
You waste even more power running a less efficient AC powered pump, this includes variable speed pumps.
If you want the most energy efficient pump, then nothing but a Brushless DC powered pump, or complete solar powered pool pump system will do.
Just in recent years has solar technology become affordable. Or should I say, the return on investment is finally realistic. In the past 5 years alone, solar panels have dropped in price by 75%. Now add the efficiency of a less expensive 3 phase DC motor, and the investment has never made more sense. You can recoup your total cost of equipment in just over a year (one season). A dollar saved, is as good as a dollar earned…
You can now run a pool pump, or any water pump for that matter, completely off the grid, and in most cases, get a complete set up (DC pump, solar panels, and controller) for less than $1200.00 – $1800.00. And that’s before a federal tax credit of 30%, bringing your total investment down to just $800.00 – $1170.00.
Solar Powered Pool Pumps
DC Pump Motors With Brushes
There are a lot of variables when choosing the right DC powered pump. I still see DC pumps with brushed motors, selling for over $800 + outrageous shipping fees. Don’t make the mistake of buying one of these overpriced and outdated pumps.
Brushless motors are the way to go, they last longer, 10 years or more (no brushes to replace), and brushless motors are 10% more efficient than those with brushes. Even if we aren’t paying for electricity anymore, why not use the extra capacity elsewhere (landscape lighting, radio, water features etc…).
Brushed motors still have a place in other industries, but when you are looking for speed and efficiency, as we are with our pool pump application, brushed motors are silly, especially if you are looking for a maintenance-free option.
DC Pump Motors With High & Low Pressure
Even if you only have an above ground pool, you need a pump that can move water through a restriction, like for instance, “your pool filter”. Or in the case of inground pools, just normal lengths of pool plumbing. There are low-pressure pumps and high-pressure pumps. Choosing one capable of supplying enough head pressure is important. Some considerations include filter type, plumbing distance, plumbing diameter, pool size, amount of sun available.
I am working on sourcing solar pool pumps, but as for now, I do not have a system. There are a couple pricy options from Sunray Solar and a Few Lorentz dealers. But nobody smart enough to put a straightforward affordable package together.
I believe once someone prices it right, this will be the only way pool owners power their pool pumps.