How to Install a Pool Pump? The Ultimate Guide

by James Williams

A pool pump is invaluable to any swimming pool. It circulates the water in the pool and filters small debris and any dirt that may have gotten into the pool water. Not only can it help keep the pool clean, but it can also help you balance the chemical levels you require in your pool and prevent algae growth.

However, as with any of your other equipment, your pool pump can lose its effectiveness over time. Then, you will need to replace your pump. Here, we’ll discuss the things you need to know to get started with the pool pump installation.

Variable Speed Pool Pump
Variable Speed Pool Pump

Choosing the Right Pump

Making a sound decision on this part of the process makes your work 50% easier. If you can choose a pool pump that fits your setup, then it’s already a job half done. The decision to choose the right fit depends on a few details you have to look out for.

Pool Size

It’s obvious that the size of your pool would matter for choosing a pump. However, what’s not obvious is that you should measure your pool by how many gallons of water it holds and not by the dimensions of the pool.

Measuring your pool by the quantity of water it holds gives you the option of finding out which pump you need. Keep in mind that the industry standard is to filter the total volume of water 3 times every day.

Let’s assume your pool holds 1000 gallons of water. You want to run your pump for no more than10 hours a day. So your pump needs to be able to filter 3000 gallons of water every 10 hours, or 300 gallons every hour, or 5 gallons per minute.

Intake Point Height

Take note of the distance between the ground and intake point from where your pump will get water fed into it. You should look to buy a pump with an input port height lower than that of your plumbing system. Otherwise, you will need to go through a lot of plumbing to fit your pump.

Flow Rate of the Filter

Do not buy a pump that would exceed the flow rate of the filter you are using. Check the model of the filter and find out what’s the maximum flow rate of it. Otherwise, you’ll risk damaging your filter.


Make sure to take note of the voltage of the outlet the pump will be connected to. If the outlet voltage is 115V and the pump requires 230V, it will not run.

Pipe Size and Type

Your plumbing system may use a pipe size and type your new pump isn’t compatible with. So, be careful from the get-go and look up which type of pipe you are using and the size. Generally, you will be using ‘Schedule 40 rigid PVC’.

Tools Required

Installing a pump is a considerable job, and it requires a few tools that you may not have readily available. Early preparation helps, and you should familiarize yourself with the tools you will need to use. They are –

  • Philips-Head Screw Driver
  • PVC Pipe Cutter/Hacksaw
  • Electricians’ Needle-Head Pliers
  • Thread Seal Tape
  • PVC Pipes
  • PVC Primer and Glue
  • Elbows
  • Unions

Now that you wave picked an ideal pump for your pool and have all your tools ready, it’s time to get started with the installation.

How to Remove the Old Pump

Here we will describe the process for you:

Step 1: Disconnect the power connection to the pool system. You need to unplug the existing pump if there is one and take all the plugs out of the outlets. It is best if you turn off power at the circuit breaker.

Step 2: Shut off the water supply to the current pump. You should close both the input and output valves.

Step 3: Remove the wires coming out of the old pump to any electric connection.

Step 4: Cut the pipes connecting the old pump to the plumbing system. Be careful not to cut too much as you won’t be able to attach union or elbows if you cut too much.

Step 5: Unbolt the placeholders and take out the old pump. Keep the placeholder bolts safe as you might need them later.

New Pool Pump Installation

For this stage of the process, you need to connect the pump both to the plumbing system and to the electrical system. Make sure to use insulated tools to keep yourself safe through any electrical work.


Below is the process for plumbing:

Step 1: Align your pump’s input and output ports with the intake point and the discharge point of your plumbing system.

Step 2: Estimate where you need to attach new unions and elbows for the system to work the best.

Step 3: Attach unions to your plumbing system where needed. Use the primer glue for attachment and use thread seal tape to ensure there are no leaks. Allow the glue to dry overnight or 24 hours if you can.

Step 4:Attach unions to the input and output ports of your pump.

Step 5: Using your PVC pipers and elbows, connect your pump’s input and output ports to the input and output lines of the plumbing system.


Here we have the electrical pool pump installation:

  • Step 1: Read the instruction manual given with your pump and take note of the electrical scheme.
  • Step 2: Take off the panel on the back of the pump motor and access the electric connections for the motor.
  • Step 3: Follow the instructions to attach the negative, positive, and the grounding wire to the pump. Connect the wires to an outlet through a plug.
  • Step 4: Reattach the panel.

Finishing Touches

We have listed the finishing touches below:

Step 1: Check to see if all the pipe joints are well sealed and that the glue has dried up.

Step 2: Restore power to your pool system.

Step 3: Open the valves to the input and output lines of your system.

Step 4: Give power to your pool pump and turn it on.

Step 5: Check if the water is flowing through the pump to the pool, if the flow rates are okay and if there are any leaks.

If everything checks out and your pump is steadily churning out water into your pool without any leaks, then you are good to go.


If your pump is not working properly or if there are any leaks, then you need to fix the problem as soon as possible. Running your pump on a faulty setup will probably damage your pump and void any warranties. Here are a few things you should look out for.

Pump Body Leaks

If your pump is leaking water from anywhere on its body other than the connection ports, then the pump is faulty, and you should return it as soon as possible.

Connection Point Leaks

If there are leaks at the connection points of your pump, you can clean the connections and stop activity at the pump. Wait for the connections to dry up and apply thread sealing tape. If the leak isn’t stopping at all, you need to call a professional.

Flow Rate

If there aren’t any leaks, but the flow rate is not optimal, then you should look at the size of the pipe you are using and if that is compatible with your pump.

Associated Risks

Installing your pool pump by yourself has some risks linked with it. Most of the major manufacturers of pool pumps require that you provide a “proof of professional installation” to avail of the warranty for your product.

It is also worth mentioning that if you don’t have any experience working with electrical instruments or plumbing instruments, it can turn out to be a bad experience for you, and you also risk damaging your electrical and plumbing system.


Now that you know everything you need to about pool pump installation, you can get started on yours and enjoy a sparkling clean pool all year long.

Related Post: Top 10 Pool Pump Cover Ideas For You. 

About James Williams

Hi, This is James from HomerDIY. I have great experience in writing about everything related to Pump and DIY tools. For the last few years, I am researching the different types of tools and sharing my opinion on this blog.

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