Loud Pool Pump

Why Is My Pool Pump So Loud?

Trust us when we say, everyone (and their neighbors) hates a loud swimming pool pump. Depending on where you place your pump, the screeching of the bearings can actually become unbearable and possibly cause a rift between you and your neighbors (we’ve seen it before). If your pump is running loud, the first thing you want to do is simply listen to it to determine if the noise is coming from the wet end of the pump or the motor.

Pump Noise

Some pumps naturally make a lot of noise, while others are produced by manufacturers whom have made extra efforts to design quieter pumps (such as the Pentair Whisperflo). There could be several reasons why your pump is making a loud noise. What kind of sound is the pump making? If it sounds like there are small rocks in it, this can be from the pump vibrating on the pad it sits on, or it could be cavitation.

Impeller damaged by cavitation.
Impeller damaged by cavitation.


Cavitation happens when the pump cannot get enough water fast enough, or the pump is starved for water. The pump impeller is spinning a lot faster with not enough water and it begins to beat the air molecules out of the water. Over time, as the pump sucks in air, the pump can lose its prime. Once this happens, the pump will run dry and the water that is left in the volute will boil and steam.

Once the water starts to steam, you have to worry about the rest of the pump functioning correctly. The steam will rise up and potentially cause the shaft seal inside the pump to fail. When this happens, the suction side fitting in your pump can also start to melt and become loose.

If the pump runs too long, the impeller will start to get really hot. Inside the impeller shaft is a brass insert that will separate when the impeller shaft gets hot enough. Once this happens, the impeller will start to rattle around inside the pump, causing a loud, uncomfortable noise

Internal Blockage 

A blocked impeller.

Another area in the pump you should pay close attention to is internal blockage. Sometimes debris will get pulled into the pump that will cause it to make a grinding noise. Also, there are some pumps that if the impeller is touching the face of the volute, it will cause a grinding sound.

Motor Noise

Now, if your pump sounds like a small litter of cats are screaming at you (and your neighbors), then the culprit is probably the motor. Typically, this indicates the bearings on the motor are starting to go bad. Bearings are mounted onto the pool motor to help reduce the friction as the electromagnets make the motor shaft spin. This is a high wear and tear item within the motor. Although bearings are relatively cheap to replace, the labor is intensive. Most motors have two different sized bearings and usually require a special bearing puller to remove them.

Don't be THIS guy.
Don’t be THIS guy.

The first thing you should know is you cannot lubricate the motor bearings. You will either have to change the bearings or replace the entire motor. Keep in mind, your motor comes with a one year manufacturer’s warranty but it will not cover damage due to seal failure.

There is something you can try before running out to a repair shop. You can grab a regular hammer and forcefully tap the top of the motor casing a few times. Sometimes jarring the pump motor a few times will knock off surface rust between the motor’s armature and the motor windings. This does not always work, but it’s worth a shot.

If you feel you cannot change the bearings yourself, you can take the motor to a local small motor repair shop or simply purchase a brand new motor. INYOpools.com offers low, competitive pricing and free shipping on replacement motors. Feel free to give us a call at 877-372-6038 and we can price a new motor and shaft seal for you.

22 thoughts on “Why Is My Pool Pump So Loud?

  1. My parents have a pool and they asked my to take a look at their pump. I’m not an expert, but I am pretty handy with home repairs. It is interesting how similar the pump in that picture looks to the type I use in my aquarium. If they work the same way, I’m sure I’ll be able to diagnose the cause of their noisy pump.

  2. My pump has always cavitated if I adjust the valves so that the cleaner functions. IMO none of these pool builders know how to read a pump curve or select the appropriate pump for a specific installation

  3. Maybe the solution is to use a variable speed pump and a flow meter and set it at a compromise between low power consumption, moderate flow and low noise.

  4. What causes it to have a steady loud high tone pitch (just below high c on a piano) is it just a loud ass pump and is supposed to sound this way or is something wrong with it as it hasnt always been this annoying although it seems to run at least 22 hours a day and night . Its an airbnb house but i can contact the owner

    1. Unfortunately, I do not have perfect pitch so I had to youtube what a high C sounds like. The only clear one I found was for a single note played for about two seconds, so I it wasn’t the best example. it may just be the sound of an older motor. Over time, a motor’s mild hum may mature into something louder. This progression is not usually a sound of concern.

  5. Motor is making a very loud noise and pump will not rinse. Heat advisory next two days. Do I leave it off? We just got back from vacation pool needs to be vacuumed and chlorine adjusted. Help..

    1. If the pump is still working, and the filter is able to filter, I would go about business as usual. If the rinse is not working, it will mean you will have some residual dirt enter the pool after backwashing but that can be vacuumed easily.

      The loud noise is likely the bearings. When they do quit, you’ll have to replace the motor or replace the bearings.

  6. My pump is making a really loud noise, tried everything above except changing the motor bearings. What else do you recommend?

  7. I purchase this replacement pump from you fall of last heat. A two speed pump as spec. Currently at high speed it is very loud. What can I do.???

  8. Hi there, got a question.. just had my filter cartridge replaced w a sand filter , salt cell was replaced.
    However my pool it’s not clearing, when we back washed it the water was clear and clean. I have had 2 companies come on here to try to figure it out but no one can seem to have a resolution meanwhile the pool continues to get greener and greener. I also think to pump making a loud noise well at least louder than usual. We have shocked the sheheezy out of it, & its not it even clearing … Thoughts/help

  9. My pump occasionally starts up very noisily and does not suck. If I turn it off and then on again, it usually starts properly and ater sucks properly (I can see the sand filter container blow up a little). The pump has over heated now a few times because of this, but it comes back on when the temperature drops. What is the problem??

  10. Occasionally on start up I hear a high pitched noise for about two seconds then it clears up. If I stop and start the pump again, no noise at all. There is no motor vibration and with a stethoscope the bearing are very quiet. I replaced the seal and the impeller is new. I should have noted that the new seal and impeller did not correct the problem.

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