Energy Efficiency: The New Normal
Energy efficiency is not just inquired about in today’s world; it has become an expected feature in most goods in today’s marketplace. As more consumers are leaning “Green,” manufacturers are responding with products that are environmentally friendly or at the very least more affordable to operate with a longer life span.
The pool and spa industry- an industry not known for being quick to adapt and certainly set in its ways- has been getting plenty of help from the Energy sector lately in spreading awareness of the Green Movement. In 2015, the local energy provider for the majority of the greater St. Louis Metro Area, AmerenUE, launched a massive marketing campaign to promote a rebate program to entice consumers to update, among other things, their pool equipment to more energy efficient models. It was an overwhelming success: Prestige Pools & Spas sold more variable speed pumps for in ground pools last season than we had the past 5 previous seasons combined.
VS is for Variable Speed
As with the increased popularity that salt systems as seen in our region over the past decade, variable speed (VS) pumps are quickly becoming the item to convert your in ground pool equipment over to. So much so that newer model salt systems (like Hayward’s OmniLogic) are programmed to sync with your VS pump, allowing the user to operate their pump from the control panel of the aforementioned salt system. But just what is Variable Speed?
Per Hayward Pool Products’ website, a VS pump is“[t]he industry’s most energy efficient pool pump at any speed,” which sounds nice but is not very informative. In essence, the motor is able to run between 800rpm and 3400rpm, allowing for the homeowner to operate the motor at a higher horsepower during the day and a lower horsepower at night, all while allowing the pump to continuously run (and keep your salt system fully functional). This allows for maximum circulation during the warmer hours during the day and a reduced flow, and reduced energy consumption, during the evening hours.
The two major players in the in ground pool pump market, Hayward and Pentair, both have several different VS models available. Both brands offer units that are powered 110v and 220v. Prestige Pools and Spas carries both brands and you can learn more about them by clicking here.
What’s In It For Me Now?
The Green Movement has absorbed the old adage of “Reduce, Reuse, and Recycling.” To many people, being environmentally conscious is a reality that must be considered with every purchase. To others it’s more about the bottom line: Saving money. AmerenUE is betting it can capture the both potential types of customers all while reducing the stress on their energy grid.
To do this, they are wisely offering a rebate of $350.00 to every customer who purchases a new VS pump (regardless of brand). Prestige Pools and Spas keeps these rebate forms here in store and makes them available at the point of sale. And, thankfully, their rebate process is painless and punctual. To date we have not gotten any negative feedback from customers who’ve been through the entire process, allowing us to continue to encourage customers with in ground pools to convert their motors over to VS pumps. Still need convincing?
What’s In It For Me Later?
Savings! Though estimates vary, VS pumps can save customers up to $50 to $100 (or more) per month once you have converted over. Your exact savings are dependent upon outside temperatures, what speeds you run your VS pumps at and for how long, what size your in ground pool is, etc. but AmerenUE has a nifty energy calculator on their website that will help you quickly calculate your likely energy savings.
Flexibility is also a benefit when you switch your in ground pool over to a VS pump. With 3 programmable speeds, the VS pump has a setting for any time of day and any season. There is also a “Quick Clean” function that allows for a seamless transition when switching from lower RPMs to full RPM when attaching vacuum equipment or for back washing. You may also see a reduction in noise as most of these units are quieter than what you already have, as most units grow louder the older they get.
Okay Lets Convert!
Prestige Pools and Spas keeps in ground pool VS pumps in-stock and you can pick one up at the store at your convenience. Or you can call us at 314.821.6660 to schedule an installation: Just ask for our Service Department.
Happy swimming and good luck moving forward.