6 Best Variable Speed Pumps for Swim Pools

Michael Butler
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Powered by electric motors, the positive pressure created by a variable speed pump improves efficiency and performance.

Among the factors influencing your choice of which variable speed pump to purchase, are size, price, warranty coverage, the pump type and the flow rate needed.

The pump type refers to how the device is made, either it’s an air-over, an air-to-water, a water-to-air pump or a diaphragm pump.

The type of flow rate needed, is how many gallons of water per minute are needed to be pumped at a single time.

The products reviewed here are selected based on their performance at various flow rates and are capable of delivering between 1 and 2,000 gallons per minute.

To help you find the right one for your pool of any size, including your patio or garden area, here’s an overview of the 6 best variable speed pumps for swimming pools.

NameCategoryProduct
Pentair SuperFlo VS Variable Speed Pool PumpBest OverallPentair SuperFlo VS Variable Speed Pool Pump
Hayward SP15932S PowerFlo Matrix 1.5 HP Dual-Speed Above-Ground Swimming Pool PumpBudget PickHayward SP15932S PowerFlo Matrix 1.5 HP Dual-Speed Above-Ground Swimming Pool Pump
Hayward SP3202VSP 1.85 HP Variable-Speed Pool PumpUpgrade PickHayward SP3202VSP 1.85 HP Variable-Speed Pool Pump

1. Pentair SuperFlo VS Variable Speed Pool Pump

Our rating: 9 / 10

Pentair SuperFlo VS Variable Speed Pool Pump

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Pros:

  • Variable speed
  • Extended warranty
  • Durable
  • Out of the way float switch

The Pentair SuperFlo VS pump promises to increase filtration capacity by up to 25% when compared to traditional pumps. It is also the easiest variable speed pump to install. It can be installed inline with any filter or booster pump. The SuperFlo is intuitive and easy to install on your own.

Water passes through a tight seal on the bottom of the float switch, creating a complete circuit. This then turns the pump on.

This pump is ideal for installing on your own in your house. It is easy to install and will keep up with the water pump for an entire season or more.

2. Pentair 011018 IntelliFlo Variable Speed High Performance Pool Pump

Our rating: 8 / 10

Pentair 011018 IntelliFlo Variable Speed High Performance Pool Pump

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Pros:

  • Variable speed
  • Interlock indicators
  • Pressure release system

3. Hayward W3SP2303VSP MaxFlo VS Variable-Speed Pool Pump

Our rating: 8 / 10

Hayward W3SP2303VSP MaxFlo VS Variable-Speed Pool Pump

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Pros:

  • Variable speed
  • Quiet
  • Pump performs well
  • VEPR motor

The Hayward W3SP2303VSP is one of the best variable speed swimming pool pumps on the market but it can also be a little expensive depending on your needs.

Variable speed pumps are used on smaller pools instead of regular pumps because they are much more energy efficient and provide the same water flow. Energy efficiency is important and pool owners are always looking for ways to cut costs.

This variable speed swimming pool pump is easy to install, you will need an AC/DC converter to use it and it can be installed above or below ground.

4. Hayward SP3202VSP 1.85 HP Variable-Speed Pool Pump

Our rating: 8 / 10

Hayward SP3202VSP 1.85 HP Variable-Speed Pool Pump

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Pros:

  • The best pump for your money
  • Hayward is a tried and trusted brand
  • Variable Speed allows pump to work when it needs to, less energy used
  • Solid construction

Cons:

  • Less power than other pumps
  • Push buttons are a little difficult to push

1.5-Horsepower

When it comes to hardcore pool pumps, there are a number of brands which offer some great products. In deciding which was the best variable speed pump for a Swimming pool I have chosen the Hayward SP3202VSP.

Even if you have a smaller pool, you want to make sure you get the most out of your pump without paying more than necessary. The Hayward series features 2-3hp pumps that give you variable speeds and made of solid metal and resin.

5. Hayward SP15932S PowerFlo Matrix 1.5 HP Dual-Speed Above-Ground Swimming Pool Pump

Our rating: 6 / 10

Hayward SP15932S PowerFlo Matrix 1.5 HP Dual-Speed Above-Ground Swimming Pool Pump

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Pros:

  • These pumps are designed to run up to 40,000 hours, which is longer than most on the market.
  • The dual pump features not only a variety of speeds but also a variety of uses.
  • This product offers a wide range of power for many different projects.

Cons:

  • It is not as quiet as some may want it to be.
  • Although shallow, the top of the pool needs to be higher than 6 feet in order for the pump to run correctly on dual speed.

The Hayward PowerFlo Matrix 1.5 HP Dual-Speed Pool Pump is a great above ground pool pump for efficient functionality.

It is also compatible with most standard sized inground pools and can quickly eliminate debris and leaves from the pool…no matter how stubborn they are.

The Hayward PowerFlo Matrix 1.5 HP Dual-Speed Pool Pump is extremely reliable and will continue to perform even with intense usage.

6. Sta-Rite P6E6VS4H-209L IntelliPro Variable Speed High Performance Pump

Our rating: 5 / 10

Sta-Rite P6E6VS4H-209L IntelliPro Variable Speed High Performance Pump

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Pros:

  • Super quiet
  • Cordless
  • Easy to install
  • Anti-clog system
  • Multiple settings
  • Very powerful

Cons:

  • Punches though your wallet
  • Pricey
  • 10-foot cord may not reach your pool

The Sta-Rite P6E6VS4H-209L IntelliPro Variable Speed High Performance Pump, 3 Horsepower, 230 Volt, 1 Phase – Energy Star Certified is the best variable speed pool pump I have ever used. Firstly, it was easy to install. I was able to hook it up myself.

The unit was also weighted so I was able to just toss it into the pool. The cord was plenty long.

The instructions are easy to follow and I recognized got all the important things were included. The pump is very easy to operate and quiet.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Are variable speed pool pumps worth it?

If you own a pool, then you are probably already aware how arduous of a task it can be to keep a swimming pool clean. If you have a larger pool then you probably have a more than just a few tasks to take care of.

Even if you may not think that a cleaner or pool vacuum is a big task, it is one that you have to do regularly and well. And its one that takes precious time away from you.

So, what if you could make a task as tedious as cleaning out your pool faster and easier? What if you had a product that could do much of the work for you and save you precious time of yours? Where you off playing with your kids, watching TV, reading, or any of the other things that you have to spend time away.

Instead of spending time on the manual labor and scrubbing the filters, you could use that time more productively.

What is the best variable speed pool pump on the market?

Pool pumps are made to circulate the water in your pool, and they come in a variety of styles.

The most common are jet pumps, submersible pumps, and cartridge filters. Jet pumps are one of the most common filtration systems in terms of circulation.

These pumps use high pressure to force water through the pipes of your pool.

While they move more water than others, they are known to break easily.

They also create a larger surface area of movement in the pool, creating waves an possible ripples in the water.

Submersible pumps are the quietest type of pump because they are completely removed from the pool. This means they are often cheaper and easier to maintain than other models. They move less water than jet pumps, but they are more energy efficient.

Cartridge filters are one of the most common types of filters due to their being spill-free.

How much electricity does a variable speed pool pump save?

Pool pumps take a great deal of energy! Each of the many popular pool pumps marketed today is unique in its motor size, power usage, and overall efficiency. Even with these variables, it is still possible to gauge the relative power of your pump based on the energy cost of operation.

Consumers with variable speed pumps that it is possible to see a significant reduction in costs for energy. It is much more expensive to operate a high speed pump, even more so when the pump is used for long periods of time.

How much does a variable speed pool pump cost?

Pool pumps are one of the biggest expenses that you will incur, and a variable-speed pool pump is one of the biggest investments you can make.

The variable-speed pool pump is able to reduce the power demanded for the same job that would otherwise be performed by a larger, more expensive pump, or it can perform the exact same job as a larger, more expensive pump.

Variable-speed pumps are to be purchased if you are looking to control your energy costs at the same high level of quality, efficiency, and reliability of a larger, more expensive pump.

As a homeowner, you will be faced with several options when it comes to the price of a variable-speed pool pump. On the low end of the spectrum there is the Single Speed Pool Pump and on the high end of the spectrum you have the Variable Speed Pool Pump. Start at the lower end of the cost scale and then move higher only if you absolutely need to.

Conclusion

Our Recommendation

NameCategoryProduct
Pentair SuperFlo VS Variable Speed Pool PumpBest OverallPentair SuperFlo VS Variable Speed Pool Pump
Hayward SP15932S PowerFlo Matrix 1.5 HP Dual-Speed Above-Ground Swimming Pool PumpBudget PickHayward SP15932S PowerFlo Matrix 1.5 HP Dual-Speed Above-Ground Swimming Pool Pump
Hayward SP3202VSP 1.85 HP Variable-Speed Pool PumpUpgrade PickHayward SP3202VSP 1.85 HP Variable-Speed Pool Pump