Electrical Service Upgrade For A Swimming Pool? Let’s Ask An Electrician
So you just got home from the local swimming pool and spa company about 5 miles from your house. After the kids have gone to bed, you sit down with your spouse to go over the finances, and you both agree that the addition of a new swimming pool would be in the budget. Not to mention, it would be a lot of fun for the family. The next question you need to ask yourself before purchasing that new swimming pool: do I need an electrical service upgrade for a swimming pool? The answer: you need an electrician, so let’s ask one!
How Much Amperage Does Swimming Pool Equipment Use?
First of all, let’s discuss how much amperage some common swimming pool equipment requires to operate efficiently. In general, this question is going to vary greatly depending on the type of pool equipment you are using (pool heater, pool pump, pool lights, etc.), and which specific brand/model of that type of equipment (1.5hp pool pump, etc.). This, along with your existing electrical panel capacity and set-up, will determine if you will need an electrical service upgrade for a swimming pool.
Common Pool Equipment and Their Power Usage
Note: This list below is using specific brands and products that you may not be using for your swimming pool. This is just to give an idea of how many amps on average you may need for each type of equipment. Obviously, this is going to vary from person to person, depending on their preference and selection. The list below assumes equipment for an inground swimming pool.
- EcoStar Variable Speed Pump by Haywardl: 10.9 amps, 230V
- Universal ColorLogic® and CrystaLogic LED Light Fixtures by Hayward (Model LPC): 5 amps (70 watts) each, 14V
- HeatPro Pool Heater by Hayward: 40-60 amps (depending on model), 240V
- AquaRite Salt Chlorinator by Hayward: when in use depending on cell size used, 3-8 amps, 120V/240V
As you can see, heaters draw a lot of amperage, especially those for hot tubs/spas. If you are thinking of using a pool or spa heater, it may be worth the upgrade if your main electrical panel is a 100 amp panel or below that. Let’s see why…
Do I Need An Electrical Service Upgrade for A Swimming Pool?
An inspection by a licensed electrician is needed in order to fully know for certain if an electrical service upgrade for a swimming pool is necessary. To start, here are two things you can do as a homeowner to identify if an upgrade will be needed:
- Examine your main electrical panel to see if you have a 100 amp or 200 amp panel.
Most panels have a top breaker that has this information on it. When asked about a 100 amp panel for an inground swimming pool, one of our licensed electricians commented, “100 amp is weak. Possible, but weak.”
The reason for this is because if you are adding a lot of equipment, especially with a pool heater that draws a lot of amperage, you can almost max out, or totally max out the electrical panel. For example, if you have your A/C running in conjunction with a heat pump to your pool, while also running a couple of other small items in a house, you may need an upgrade from 100 amp to 200 amp.
- Are there extra spaces in your panel for additional breakers to accommodate for the amperage of the pool equipment needed?
If you have enough space without maxing out your amperage with the added swimming pool equipment, you may not need an electrical service upgrade for a swimming pool. Again, a licensed electrician will be able to identify if this is the case. If you don’t have enough spaces in your main electrical panel, but have enough space for more amperage, one option would be a sub-panel instead of an electrical service upgrade. Yet again, a licensed electrician needs to inspect and make the judgment call on this one.
Call A Licensed Electrician For An Electrical Service Panel Inspection
Before jumping the gun and getting that inground swimming pool, please call a licensed electrician for an electrical service panel inspection.
This way, you’ll know beforehand if you’ll need to spend the extra cash on an electrical service upgrade for a swimming pool without any surprises later on. It could be as simple as the installation of a sub panel that feeds into your main electrical panel.
Call a licensed pool electrician for an inspection, and quality service/installation for an electrical service upgrade for your new swimming pool. Call KB Electric LLC today! (267) 467-3178. We serve all areas of Montgomery County, Chester County, Berks County, Bucks County, Delaware County, and Philadelphia, PA.