How Much Does a Pool Cost Per Month in Electricity?

how much does it cost to run a pool pump per month

Having a swimming pool right in your own backyard is one of life’s luxuries. Imagine all the fun activities you can enjoy, especially during hot summer days. Aside from being able to dip into its cool water anytime you like, a swimming pool can boost the value of your home. 

However, despite the advantages swimming pools offer, pool ownership is not to be taken lightly. If you’re seriously considering installing one, you should first look into the operating costs of a swimming pool. Because no matter how delightful having your own dipping hole is, you’ll need to spend a significant amount for its upkeep. 

To help you understand the investments you’ll make, let’s see how many greenbacks go into pool maintenance. This includes the electrical costs of running swimming pools. 

Swimming Pools

Basically, swimming pools are pretty simple structures. They’re large holes filled with water. But they serve various purposes. A swimming pool can serve as a relaxing retreat, a fun activity zone, or a training area. The pool’s purpose will determine its type, which, in turn, will affect its construction process and, ultimately, its cost. 

When planning for a swimming pool, you’ll need to seriously consider your options before you make the investment. In doing so, you’ll be able to calculate and budget for the expenses associated with owning a pool, such as electrical costs, chemicals for pool maintenance, and the like.  

Let’s see how much you’ll spend for an average pool. 

Installation Costs

We mentioned that the type of swimming affects the expenses associated with its installation. For example, above-ground pools typically cost less to build than other types of pools. Because they sit on the surface of your yard, they’re easier to construct. Expect to spend between $1,698 to $5,969, with $2,850 being the average installation cost of a professionally-installed above-ground swimming pool.   

On the other hand, an in-ground pool is built directly into the landscape, making the construction process more complicated than an above-ground pool. This drives up its cost to around $25,000 to $50,000.  

Aside from the pool type, other factors that determine the installation costs include the swimming pool’s depth, size, shape, and construction materials. You’ll also need to consider the additional expenses for lighting, diving boards, slides, pool cover, and fencing. For example, LED lights cost between $200 and $1,500, depending on the size and type.  

Maintenance Costs

Pools come in all shapes and sizes, but most work in the same way. Using filtration and chemical treatment, they keep the water they contain clean. The water is pumped from the pool through the filtering and chemical treatment system and back to the pool. Aside from the pool pump that helps keep the water clean, a heater or heat pump may also be necessary to keep the water at a temperature comfortable for swimming. 

All these mean that operating a pool requires a significant amount. Pool pumps often run on electricity, which can drive up your electric bill. The monthly electrical costs of running pool pumps range between $20 and $30.  

Running an electric pool cleaner costs about $700 to $2,000 a year. You’ll also have to spend on keeping the water at the correct pH level. This involves testing the water with a pH tester and adding chemicals. This can cost you between $20 to $50 a month if you buy and add the chemicals yourself. To keep the pool free of leaves and other debris, you may want to hire professional pool cleaners to do the job. Doing so will add around $100 to $150 to your average monthly cost. 

Electricity Costs of an Inground Pool

The pumping system keeps the water of the pool clean. You have an option of pool pumps to do the job. However, whether you choose a single or a variable-speed pump, you’ll inevitably increase your home’s energy consumption and your monthly electric bill.  

Let’s look at the different types of pumps and how much they can drive up the average monthly cost of maintaining your pool. 

Variable Speed Pumps

As its name implies, a variable speed pump lets you operate the equipment at varying speeds or RPMs (revolutions per minute). This allows you to draw only the power you need at a given time. For example, if you’re circulating the water to keep the chemicals active, you can use a low speed compared to when you’re vacuuming the pool or using the spa.

This feature of the variable speed pump makes sense because the lower the RPM, the less energy it consumes, which can help you save money. A 2-speed or variable-speed pump consumes between $20 and $50 worth of kWhs monthly. 

Single Speed Pumps

In the olden days, pools used this technology. While variable speed pumps give you varying speeds to choose from, a single-speed pump runs at only one speed, at a whopping 3,400 RPMs. Operating at that high speed consumes a lot of electricity, which can increase your monthly electric bill. Thus, when it comes to energy efficiency, variable-speed pumps are better options than single-speed pumps. 

Using a single-speed pump will typically add about $75 to $150 to your pool maintenance costs. 

Heaters/Heat Pumps

Heat pumps run on electricity instead of gas or propane. As such, they can impact your electric bills depending on how you use them. A heat pump doesn’t generate heat but instead draws in warmth from the outside environment using a fan. 

A heat pump is a relatively energy-efficient way to keep the pool’s temperature optimal. However, several factors determine how much energy it consumes and how fast it can heat or cool the water. The monthly costs associated with running a heat pump are around $50 to $150 on average.  

Inground Hot Tubs

Estimating how much it costs to run an inground hot tub can be challenging as there are several types of hot tubs, which affect their energy use. Naturally, the bigger the hot tub, the more electricity it needs for heating. The type of heater you use and how energy-efficient it is will also determine how much you’ll spend.   

All things being equal, the cost of operating a hot tub is almost the same as that of an inground pool when it comes to power expenses. Depending on the electricity rates in your area, expect to add about $100 to $300 to your monthly electricity bill if you install an inground hot tub. 

Factors Determining a Pool’s Electricity Cost

Like most electronics and electrical devices, how your pool impacts your electric bill depends on several factors. Let’s see what those are. 


Where you live is one of the most significant factors in determining how much money you’ll need to spend to own a pool. That’s because the per kWh rate varies across the country, with some areas having higher rates.  

Also, the weather can affect how much power you’ll consume to heat your pool. You’ll likely have higher operating costs if you’re in a region with a cold climate. That’s because a lower temperature will lead to more power consumption for heating the water.  

Type of Pool Pump

We mentioned that single-speed pumps use more energy than variable or 2-speed pumps. Also, some pumps are more efficient than others, which naturally affects their power usage. If you want to save money in the long run, a 2-speed pump is a wise investment. 

Pool Size

An electric pool heater will use more electricity to heat the water in a large pool than a small one. That’s because the heater must work harder to maintain the water’s temperature at a comfortable level. Pool heaters use between 3,000 to 5,000 kWh a year and how much you save on your power costs partly depends on the size of your pool.  

Pump Run Time

Do you run your pump all day? That will make it consume more energy. If you want to cut back on your power usage, consider turning off the pump at some point. Problems like debris getting into your pool can be solved by installing a pool cover, which can also help minimize heat loss. 

Swimming Pool Energy-Saving Tips

How much you spend to own a pool depends on many factors. However, there are ways to minimize the costs without sacrificing the enjoyment you get from your investment. Here are some tips. 

Maintain Clean Water

Circulation plays a significant role in keeping the water in your pool squeaky clean. If you want to maintain the cleanliness of your pool, good circulation is a must. This involves running the filtration or pump system for a minimum of 8 hours daily to ensure optimal chemical distribution. Also, check your filter every few weeks to make sure it’s clean, as a dirty filter won’t help much in keeping the water clean. 

Turn It Off at Night

Eight hours of filtration is enough to distribute the chemicals in the pool’s water, filter out dirt and contaminants and facilitate heat distribution. So if you’ve been running your pump for more than 8 hours, you can save money by turning it off at night. Of course, this is a matter of personal preference, but you won’t compromise your pool’s cleanliness if you turn off the filter system at night. 

Use Automatic Timer

If you have a packed schedule or are constantly out of the house, you obviously can’t monitor your pool system. Or you may want to avoid the hassle of turning the system on and off during certain times. In such instances, using an automatic timer to manage your pump and heater’s run time can be your best option. 

Some timers work based on the schedule you set or the water’s temperature. When the conditions are met, the timer activates the pump and heater. This happens whether you’re around or not. 


How many Hours Should a Pool Pump Run Each Day?

Good circulation is critical in keeping the pool water clean. To maintain proper circulation and ensure optimal chemical distribution, the pump should run for at least 8 hours a day. However, you don’t have to run it for 8 hours in one go. Instead, you can run it for, say, around 3 hours in the morning and another 5 hours in the evening. 

What is the Average Cost to Replace a Pool Pump?

You can expect your pool pump to last around 8 to 12 years before the parts begin to break down and the unit will need replacing. Set aside about $440 for a replacement. Prices of this pool essential range between $80 to $800, depending on the type, size, brand, and model.

How Much Does it Cost to Run a Pool Pump in the Winter?

You’ll still need to run your pump during winter, even if you don’t plan to use your pool. This is particularly important during freezing weather because water expands when it freezes. As such, it can pose risks to your pool’s plumbing system and the pump itself. How much it costs to run the pump during the winter months depends on the electricity rates in your area, the pump size, and how long you operate the unit. The good news is that you don’t need to keep the pump running for the requisite 8 hours during the winter. Four to six hours a day should be enough to maintain the pool’s water and equipment in good condition. 

Is it Better to Run your Pool Pump at Night or Day?

Running the pump during the hottest part of the day is the recommended protocol. However, that will mean increased energy consumption. If you want to save a few bucks, you can consider running the pump at night. Just make sure you turn it on for about an hour when the temperature is highest during the day to reduce algae bloom. 


Owning a pool can be a costly affair. However, there are ways to reduce the expenses associated with having one. Proper management is the key. Know what equipment to use and how to maintain your pool most efficiently. By doing so, you’ll be able to drive down the costs that come with enjoying a refreshing swim right in your backyard. 

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