Mike W, is this a storable pool?

They are selling these in North Dakota. Can you call this a storable pool?
How would you inspect it, permanent or storable?

Personally I don’t understand why they can sell it but I am not the AHJ in Minot


man…now my opinion does not count…thanks alot Greg…I will refrain from my opinion…lol

I would call it a body of water.

Here is how the NEC defines pools

Permanently Installed Swimming, Wading, and Therapeutic Pools. Those that are constructed in the ground or partially in the ground, and all others capable of holding water in a depth greater than 1.0 m (42 in.), and all pools installed inside of a building, regardless of water depth, whether or not served by electrical circuits of any nature.

Storable Swimming or Wading Pool. Those that are constructed on or above the ground and are capable of holding water to a maximum depth of 1.0 m (42 in.), or a pool with nonmetallic, molded polymeric walls or inflatable fabric walls regardless of dimension.

Here is what the IRC call a storable pool

**STORABLE SWIMMING OR WADING POOL. **Those that are constructed on or above the ground and are capable of holding water with a maximum depth of 42 inches (1067mm), or a pool with nonmetallic, molded polymeric walls or inflatable fabric walls regardless of dimension.

Based on the definitions of both the NEC and IRC I see a storable pool.

What do you see and explain why you give your answer please.

Here is how the NEC Handbook See’s It…ENJOY !

Originally, storable pools were not specifically addressed in the

NEC. Article 680 was
written to provide guidance relative to permanent, in-ground pools and their unique
construction requirements because of the unusual earth-water-electricity-human body
environment created in the finished product. The conductivity of moist concrete or
metal walls buried in the ground, the incorporation of large masses of reinforcing steel,
and the inclusion of stainless-steel handrails and diving-board stands, as well as 120-
volt lights in the pool structure, all called for the strict wiring, bonding, and grounding
requirements of Article 680.
Storable pools, on the other hand, are intended to be temporary structures, without the
need for special wiring or modification to the pool site. They are usually sold as a
complete package, consisting of the pool walls, vinyl liner, plumbing kit, and
pump/filter device. A storable pool is often disassembled and stored during the winter
months. Regional preferences, weather patterns, economic considerations, and design
characteristics of the pool are all factors influencing this action. The original Article
680 definition of a storable pool was ``One that is so constructed that it may be readily
disassembled for storage and reassembled to its original integrity.’’
Part III of Article 680 was created to address the special equipment specifications of
storable pools, and Underwriters Laboratories developed testing and labeling criteria
for listing the pump/filter units designed especially for these pools. This equipment has
the following characteristics:

  1. It must have an approved system of double insulation or the equivalent.
  2. It is permitted to have a flexible cord equipped with a parallel-blade,
    grounding-type attachment plug for electrical connection.
  3. It must have a grounding conductor included in the flexible cord.
  4. The flexible cord is not limited to 3 ft, as required in 680.7, and is specified
    by UL to be not less than 25 ft long. This length was chosen to discourage the use of
    extension cords.
    The UL labeling requirement for these listed units includes the wording Do Not Use with Permanently Installed Pools.'' In some cases, consumers and swimming pool installers, however, have found it desirable to use these pump/filter units on any aboveground or on-ground pool, regardless of the pool's dimensions orstorability.’’
    Storable pools are supplied as two distinct types. One type is intended to be
    disassembled at the end of each swimming season. The second type, by the nature of
    its construction, can be disassembled, but manufacturers recommend leaving it
    assembled. The pools in the latter category frequently require special modification to
    and preparation of the pool site, making them impractical to disassemble. Draining
    these pools, especially the larger ones, increases the likelihood of costly damage
    caused by shrinkage of the vinyl liner material.
    The main factor differentiating the two types of pools is wall height. Generally, pools,
    other than the inflatable type, intended to be disassembled at season’s end have wall
    heights of 42 in. or less, while those not intended for disassembly have wall heights of
    48 in. or more. The surface area of the pools is not a factor. Inflatable pools are treated
    as storable pools regardless of their wall height.

How can this be a storable pool if the pump is not double insulated (25’ cord etc)
We are electrical inspectors, the electrical parts are what we look at.
When I see this equipment I am going to have to use the permanent pool rules or simply red tag the whole installation.

BTW if you go look at the Tuff Pool web site they are saying these are the pumps they provide (user manual PDF). That is a permanent pool pump!

Sorry Paul, this is an old discussion with Mike.

I am still not sure how any AHJ will allow these to be installed but the manufacturer seems to be saying you don’t have to get a permit. Certainly it “works” but it is clerarly not “legal”

I don’t believe that you asked anything about the pump motor in your original question.

The pool itself is a storable pool as defined by both the NEC and the IRC. The pump motor does not make the pool and if the unit has a Third Party label on the unit itself the code official can not inspect the internal parts of the listed equipment.

Now if you want to rephrase your question to the pump motor I must say that I can’t see the label on the motor to tell what kind o motor it is. I have seen grounding lugs on double insulated motors in the past especially on whirlpool tubs.

I have a lug on both my whirlpool tub in the master bedroom and the hot tub in the basement but both pieces of equipment have double insulated motors on them.
So are what you saying is that I am in violation of something with these pieces of equipment.

What if the motor is just listed “spa and pool pump motor” and has no cord but is double insulated? Does that make my whirlpool tub and hot tub permanently installed pools?


By being 42 inches or less of water

Yes as an electrical inspector I inspect what the electrical contractor has installed. If I find a problem with a listed piece of equipment I then call the testing lab whose label I find on the equipment.

I would agree that you could hold the job until the testing lab that labeled the equipment intervened but there is no way that you can change the definition found in the adopted code as to what the POOL is.

I suppose that any pump would work as long as it handled the amount of water in the pool. What you are questioning is the motor. I could not find the word permanent any where on their website. Would you point it out to me?

The motor does not make a pool permanent or storable. Only the water depth does this.
If the storable pool has a third party label it wouldn’t matter what kind of motor is installed it would not be in violation of the NEC.
If the motor is questionable then a code enforcement official would need to contact the testing lab that labeled the piece of equipment and not put that burden on the electrical contractor or the home owner.
If either the homeowner or contractor changed the motor would it not void any warranties that came with the pool?

Using you way of thinking to use the anti-short bushings that come with MC cable would then make the MC cable AC cable.
I once owned a Dodge that I used Ford wheels on. Did this make the Dodge a Ford?

On a closing note,
I will not rehash this with you here. If you think that a motor changes the type of a pool then so be it but there is not one word anywhere that you can find to back you up.


What kind of pool would this be, permanent or storable, if it had a internal combustion motor that worked the pump?
What if it had some type of wind mill that turned the pump?
Is the pool even required to have a pump?

How can a motor with a metal case be double insulated? When you look at the parts diagram in the user manual it is clear the water is in contact with the rotor shaft. This is a garden variety PERMANENT pool pump using a 56J case motor. They either ordered it without the REQURED labels from China or they peeled them off. You also see they only offer a 3’ or 6’ cord. Storable pool pumps have a 25’ cord as part of the listing standard.
This is sold as an assembly but there is no way it can be legal.
To start with, there is no way to deal with leakage in the motor that energizes the water and is not bonded to the ladder or aluminum tubing used in the pool structure. The gradient could easily be lethal.
People here get their shorts in a wad over a lot less dangerous things.

BTW I have no problem with this being a storable pool. I only say I would fail the connection to the PUMP. It is not double insulated I would cite 680.31 (Pumps. A cord-connected pool filter pump shall incorporate an approved system of double insulation) and feel very confident the state of Florida would back me up. “Listing and labelling” DOES NOT supercede the code.
I would also fail any other equipment that does not meet the “storable pool” standards.
They can keep the pool, they would just need to get other equipment or bring the bonding up to the standard that matches the equipment.
Do you see where I am going with this? Safety is my goal, not pedantic code discussions