Quick question on Amps on a pool pump

My neighbor was telling me about how her electrical bills were very high, much higher than mine. So I offered to do a limited (free) inspection just to see if I could find anything obvious.

One potential issue is her pool pump is drawing more amps than my pump.

Her pool pump is rated for 7 Amps.
There are two hot wires going from the timer box disconnect to the pump.
Using a clamp meter, I registered 6 amps on each wire.

Am I correct the pump is still just pulling 6 Amps?

I don’t add the 6 and 6 together, right?

Thank you.

Sounds like the pump is 240 volts, not that the voltage matters in this scenario, in a two wire circuit the current will be equal in both conductors.

Thank you!

And 240, I hadn’t considered that. No, I didn’t ask, but it would make a difference in trying to approximate how many kilowatt hours she is getting billed for are from the pump. :slight_smile:

Her pumps running from 10am to 10pm? Most pool timers I see run 4-6 hours a day. Might wanna check with a service tech to see why its running so long for.

When comparing a 120 volt pump drawing 7 amps with a 240 volt pump drawing 7 amps the 240 volt pump will consume about 2X the power of the 120 pump, but the 240 volt pump would have a larger HP rating.

From T430.248 of the NEC a 120 volt/7 amp pump will have a HP rating of 1/3 HP, a 240 volt/7 amp pump would have a HP rating of 3/4 HP.

General power consumption:
120 volts * 7 amps = 840 watts
240 volts * 7 amps = 1680 watt

Back when I had a pool, my pump could be wired for either 120 or 240. When wired for 240, it ran on half the amperage required for 120.

I doubt the issue is the pump. Maybe it’s lifestyle. Maybe she has kids who are running in and out all the time. My youngest would come in from playing outside when it was hot, and open the freezer and just stand there, letting the freezer cool him off. Electric water heat with a teenage girl is a recipe for 3 digit electric bills.

When I was first married, I had a house trailer with only central electric heat, so I installed a huge window air conditioner. Many times in the spring, I’d get home from work, and find “The Battle of Appliances” occuring-heat and a/c running at the same time!

That would be correct for a dual voltage pump, 1/2 current but same power consumption.

In my area, a pump has to run 8 hours in the summer or else water will get green. I run mine far less in the winter though. But yeah, I did point out 12 hours is a bit high.

As for her pool service tech, I determined he is ripping her off.

He charged her $500 to install a new motor that should have only cost $200, on an old pump, when replacing the entire pump with a newer vari-speed pump would save her a ton of money off her electric bill.

As for the issue, I went back the next day, and turned off all the breakers, and then turned them on one by one to isolate which circuit was the problem. Well, she didn’t tell me she had two freezers hiding in her garage. lol.

Two freezers cycling on when the pool pump is also running is a huge draw. Plus AC in the afternoon, plus normal household stuff. In LA, the more you use, the more they charge per Khw.

Thank you to all the replies. I have learned a lot!