We interview Scott from Waterway, an expert on spa pumps and jets.
What should they look for when they’re replacing their spa pump?
Ideally, Rob, if they can get us anything, the best thing to do is get us the information right off our Waterway label. Every pump will have two labels on the motors. There will be our label here that you see that has the serial number. It has the part number and it has the model number. Then there will also be a motor manufacturer label on those motors. In these instances, this pump here, this is by US Motors. That’s actually the label for the motor manufacturer themselves.
In this case, this is by Century, which is another motor manufacturer. We use a number of different vendors for motors. This is their particular label. The thing that we run into is that these labels can be helpful but it’s only going to give us information pertaining to that specific motor, where for what we need to be able to find out when determining the whole pump, which is what end and the motor, this is the most ideal label.
The part number will tell us exactly what this specific pump is. If for some reason, that label has been damaged or we can’t read it really well because as time goes on, the stuff fades out or motors get hot, things of that sort, then the back of the model number can help us determine a lot of that also. Those are the best things to look for. All the different models that we have, this one here, you see our Viper, Executive and the EX2’s.
You’ll also find that you’ve got different inlet and discharge configurations. Especially on the Executives and on the EX2’s, those we have in two different configurations. Those can be in also in the two and a half or two inch. If we don’t have the label information, then at that point, you got to fall back. It’s helpful to get pictures of what that wet end is. If we have to rely on the motor manufacturer label, we can at least figure out what the horsepower is.
With the wet end, we can then determine, “Okay, what’s the size of that inlet, what’s the size of that discharge.” If we got a picture of that wet end, we can make a quick determination. Especially with the Executive and the EX2, they’re very similar in looks but they’re not the same. Their lineups are a little bit different. We need to know what size that discharge would be on those particular ones to make sure we get everything to match up properly.
What measurements does a homeowner need to replace a spa jet?
To be honest with you, I do go by the outside diameter because that will give us what that union connection is. From there, we can make the determination whether it’s a two and a half or a two-inch size connection. The ID is not going to help us at all, so always go to the outside. From there, we can sit there and backtrack it through the union itself and get that right size. The only other thing to double check too would also be what size is the motor as far as frame-wise because of pump motors, there’s what they call 48 frames and 56.
48’s are a little bit smaller, like what you see here with this spa flow here, where the 56 is a larger diameter. That information is usually on the motor manufacturer’s label, so if we can read that, we can get it real quick. If not, there again, that’s where we can try and make that determination off the pictures too if it has to be. Ideally, like I said, if we got this label and we can read it, the part number will tell us everything we need to know and that’s the easiest and fastest way to do it.
Further reading: How To Identify Hot Tub Jets