How To Replace a Pool Motor Shaft Seal

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If you see water leaking out of the bottom of the pool pump assembly, it's a good indication that you may have to replace the shaft seal within the motor pump assembly. As shown in the pool pump cut away, the shaft seal is located in the motor pump assembly behind the impeller. Although this description is specific to a Hayward pool pump, many of the steps can apply to other models of pool pumps.

Things You'll Need

Video

Step by Step

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Step 1

The first step is to turn off all power to the pool pump. For maximum safety turn off the power at the circuit breaker to the motor.

Step 2

Next you will want to remove the motor pump assembly from the wet end housing. Remove the four 9/16" bolts that bind the motor pump assembly to the housing. Note: some Hayward pool pump models have six bolts.

Step 3

Now pull the assembly apart from the pool pump housing.

Step 4

After the assembly is out, you should see the pool pump diffuser and diffuser gasket on the end of the assembly. If you do not see the diffuser or its gasket, check inside the housing.

Step 5

If the pool pump diffuser came out with the assembly, pull the diffuser off the assembly. You may have to pry it off gently with a screwdriver. Now you will see the pool pump impeller. The shaft seal is behind the impeller so you will now have to remove the impeller.

Step 6

To remove the pool pump impeller you will twist the impeller off in a counter clockwise motion. The impeller cannot be freed from the motor shaft without first securing the motor shaft.

Step 7

Move to the other end of the motor shaft in the back of the motor assembly. Take off the two screws that hold the back cover onto the pool pump assembly.

Step 8

You will see the pool pump motor wiring and capacitor. You will have to remove the capacitor to gain access to the end of the motor shaft. Capacitors store power. To avoid a possible shock, lay a screwdriver across the two leads to short out the capacitor. These capacitors sometimes burst when shorted out, so it is a good practice to place a cloth over the capacitor and to wear eye protection.

Step 9

Now unscrew the single screw that hold the capacitor in place and push it out of the way. No need to disconnect capacitor from leads.

Step 10

Place a 7/16" wrench on the flat end of the pool pump motor shaft to secure the shaft from rotating.

Step 11

At the pool pump impeller end, twist off the impeller, counter clockwise. You may have to use a strap wrench to gently free up the impeller.

Step 12

Now you will see the motor shaft seal. One half on the pool pump impeller and the other half in the seal plate on the shaft.

Step 13

Inspect the threads on the inside of the pool pump impeller. If these are badly worn, you will have to replace the impeller.

Step 14

Stand the motor up on end and gently remove the white ceramic seal inside the seal plate. You may have to use a small screwdriver to gently pry out the seal. If the seal plate lifts off, it may be simpler to push the seal out of the seal plate from the other side.

Step 15

Set the new seal on the shaft inside the seal plate - white side up. Be very careful NOT TO TOUCH the white ceramic side of the seal with your hands. If necessary, gently seat the seal with the blunt end of a screwdriver.

Step 16

Grab the seal on the pool pump impeller and twist it off. Make a note of how the seal is positioned on the impeller so you know how to place the new seal. It is possible to place this seal upside down. Note: You may have to also have to remove the metal collar if the new shaft seal also has one. Several people have written in saying that the new seal won't fit because they were trying to place the new collar on top of  the old one.

Step 17

Now push the other half of the new seal onto the pool pump impeller. Place the new seal on in the same postion noted above. Again, DO NOT touch the bearing (top) surface of this seal.

Step 18

With the wrench securing the back end of the motor shaft, screw the pool pump impeller back onto the shaft (clockwise). Hand tight is sufficient.

Step 19

Inspect the diffuser gasket for wear. Replace if required. Put a thin coat of lubrication on the gasket.

Step 20

Snap on the pool pump diffuser - no screws are required. Ensure that the part of the diffuser labeled "TOP" is aligned with the "TOP" labeled on the seal plate.

Step 21

Slip the motor assembly into the housing.

Step 22

Replace the four bolts evenly. If bolts were numbered 1 though 4, replace bolts in this sequence - 1, 3, 2, 4 - to ensure that the motor is set properly inside the housing. Loosely tighten bolts in this sequence, then go back and tighten them down again in this sequence. If pool pump has 6 bolts, replace bolts in this sequence - 1, 3, 5, 2, 4, 6.

Step 23

Replace the capacitor on the backside of the assembly. Make sure the plastic strip is in place between the clip and capacitor so that the capacitor does not short out.

Step 24

Replace motor cover and secure with two screws.

Step 25

Prime pump by removing strainer lid and filling strainer with water. Replace lid.

Step 26

Reset circuit breakers and start pool pump.

Comments

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(1 to 40 of 132)

 Posted: 2/5/2019 

I absolutely cannot get the white ceramic seal with rubber ring to fit in. Seems like everyone else is not having a problem but mine is too tight to even start in the cavity. Why is mine not fitting?
 Reply

InyoPools Product Specialist  Posted: 2/6/2019 

Try wetting the rubber around the ceramic with water. That usually helps slide it into place. If that doesn't work, let us know the model of the pump and the part number of the shaft seal. 
 Reply

 Posted: 2/6/2019 

Tried water, did not work. I placed the rubber seal part in the cavity first and then froze the ceramic part in my freezer for an hour, for contraction. After removing it from the freezer it slipped right in the rubber seal already in the cavity. No force was needed. Piece of cake when using that method.
 Reply

 Posted: 2/4/2019 

Whoa, I messed up....I was careful not to touch the white ceramic side, but not so with the seal that meets up with it. What can I do? I have not replaced the wet end as of yet.... thx
 Reply

InyoPools Product Specialist  Posted: 2/4/2019 

Hello Edison - Wipe off the seal the best you can. It should be ok.
 Reply

 Posted: 12/3/2018 

I installed a brand new motor Hayward Tristar motor HP1.85 SP3200EE. When hooked up and turned it on, it hummed. What would be the problem. Any recommendations please. TJones
 Reply

InyoPools Product Specialist  Posted: 12/4/2018 

Hello Teresa - a humming pool pump motor that is not turning is a common sign of a bad capacitor. Testing for a bad pump motor capacitor is relatively easy. If the capacitor checks out, then you may have a bad phase winding. I would start troubleshooting the capacitor and move on from there.
 Reply

 Posted: 12/29/2018 

Which motor will be compatible for my pump the pump I do have. SP3210Z2BER, PART#7-K56AA13A04-05 SERIAL#11213J2, FRAME#Y56Y, TYPE CXCP,HP 1.0/.12,VOLT 208-230,AMPS SF 8.5/1.5,RPM 3450/1725, HP 1.85 , CODE N, INSUL CLASS F, ENG/OD,AMB /C FFORM KJM. I am having a hard time finding this pump or compatible one TJones
 Reply

InyoPools Product Specialist  Posted: 1/2/2019 

Hello Tereasa - It looks like you have a 1HP 2-speed Hayward Tri-Star pump. The replacement motor is part number SPX3210Z2BER. We recommend replacing the shaft seal when you replace the motor. The shaft seal is part number 5250-250.
 Reply

 Posted: 1/2/2019 

What will be compatible to the SPX3210Z2BER/SP3210Z2BER ? hOW DO YOU LOCATE SPEED/ SINGLE OR 2 SPEED?
 Reply

InyoPools Product Specialist  Posted: 1/3/2019 

The SPX3210Z2BER is the direct replacement for your current motor. Another option would be a variable speed motor. The variable speed model would be part number ECM27SQU.
 Reply

 Posted: 11/23/2018 

I notice there was no impeller ring on this pump. I have an SP3007X10 Super II 1 HP. Should it have the impeller ring or not?
 Reply

InyoPools Product Specialist  Posted: 11/26/2018 

Hello John - There should be an impeller ring on the Hayward Super II pump. You can view the part schematic on our Super II parts page. The impeller ring is key 7.
 Reply

 Posted: 11/17/2018 

Great guide, really helpful! Could you let me know which shaft seal I would require for a Hayward Super Pump being used on a Salt Pool?
 Reply

InyoPools Product Specialist  Posted: 11/17/2018 

You would require this Hayward Super Pump Salt Water Shaft Seal.
 Reply

 Posted: 8/16/2018 

Hello Lori - We have a guide titled "How to Replace the Governor on an A.O. Smith Motor". This would be the only content available that may help you reassemble the governor.
 Reply

 Posted: 7/15/2018 

I used a wrench to hold around the governor to turn the impeller off and the springs fell off. We ended up taking off the governor, now in 4 pieces. Can you show me how to put it back on? Thanks!
 Reply

Anonymous  Posted: 5/12/2018 

This video was extremely helpful! Thank you for posting.
 Reply

 Posted: 10/13/2017 

Takashi - No, water heated to 88-90 degrees would not damage your pump motor. It sounds like the bearings are going on your motor. This is usually due to the motor running dry for a period of time or failure to replace the shaft seal when a motor is replaced. The old shaft seal breaks down quickly and sprays the motor coils internally. If this is not the case, I’d talk to the supplier and see if they will replace the motor.
 Reply

 Posted: 10/9/2017 

Hi, I accidentally left my pool heater running for a week which heated the pool temperature to around 88-90 degrees. Now my pool motor makes a loud screeching noise. Do you think the water temperature ruin my motor? I just replaced the motor five months ago. Thank you.
 Reply

InyoPools Product Specialist  Posted: 7/3/2017 

Anonymous (shaft seal) - Thank you for your feedback. You are correct. The silver metal piece that is shown in the picture after the seal is removed, does have to be removed to allow the new metal piece to slide on. We do say this in the text, but it may be confusing with it not removed in the picture. I changed the picture.
 Reply

Anonymous  Posted: 7/1/2017 

Step 16 makes it look like the silver metal piece should remain on the impeller, but this piece is part of the replacement kit, embedded in the rubber/ceramic part with the spring. After some confusion, I pried this piece off using a small screwdriver blade. Then the kit part fit on perfectly. Now all is well, with a dry pump room floor for the first time this season.
 Reply

InyoPools Product Specialist  Posted: 6/22/2017 

Poolprobs - I know of now way to pressure check underground lines by yourself. Have you checked for a clogged impeller? That is one of the most common (and simple to fix) solutions to low water flow. See our guide on "How To Clean Out a Pool Pump Impeller".
 Reply

 Posted: 6/20/2017 

Since opening pool this year large amount of air bubbles coming from return jets. Pressure is steady 9/10 and color in pool is good, however it seems not enough suction from Skinner basket especially when trying to vacuum. Have changed vacuum hose, sealed o-ring, replaced pvc union at pump intake and tested for clog in Skimmer line with bladder hose and feeding snake through line. My water level is unchanged and no suds sucked on with soap water test. Is there a way to pressure test the underground lines myself? Otherwise I may be trying shaft seal replacement as last check? Not sure how else to better my suction?
 Reply

 Posted: 6/4/2017 

I just completed this whole process on my Hayward SP2510X15, It was working ok last winter, but this year I was getting bubbles coming through, The intake pipes seemed ok, so I bought the kit and followed your instructions,
I'm happy to say it's back to working like normal. Thank you so much for the step-by-step instructions, I wouldn't have attempted this without them!

 Reply

InyoPools Product Specialist  Posted: 9/10/2016 

NC Pool Owner - Replace the housing gasket with a new one. Check for cracks around the housing where the gasket is placed. Then take the motor out again and check that the shaft seal is seated completely in the seal plate and that the two pieces of the seal are placed correctly.
 Reply

 Posted: 9/7/2016 

I replaced the shaft seal and still have dripping under the motor. I replaced the diffuser gasket and lunricated the housing gasket. At a dead end on what is going on.
 Reply

InyoPools Product Specialist  Posted: 8/19/2016 

PJP - The spring portion of the seal slides over the hub of the impeller and the white ceramic portion slides into the seal plate which is the side which is closer to the motor.
 Reply

 Posted: 8/19/2016 

Which way does the white ceramic portion of the shaft seal face?
 Reply

InyoPools Product Specialist  Posted: 6/30/2016 

LeeInHbg - I haven't heard of chemistry causing bubbles. As you say, you could have a blown pipe or connection underground. It doesn't take much of a break to create a suction leak even underground. You might have to have someone come out and pressure test your suction lines.
 Reply

 Posted: 6/29/2016 

I've been battling continuous air bubbles in the pump strainer which also make it through to the returns as a quite obvious stream. Have gone through all suggestions from replacing and lubing all o rings, snugging up gate valves, applying silicone to plumbing joints plus replacing all pump seals o rings and lid. Stumped. Had a pool professional out. He thinks the problem is a chemistry issue. He gets the same results with his stand-alone pump bypassing all my plumbing. Note though that I question his test scenario since his suction side hose was in my skimmer enclosure, albeit loosely. Is this possible? We use a non-chlorinated product that is hydrogen peroxide based - bioguard softswim. The only other cause I can think of is blown pipes. Given they are underground I can't imagine that much air could be entering though. Thanks.
 Reply

InyoPools Product Specialist  Posted: 6/10/2016 

Mike - Sounds like you are doing good with motors. Not sure what you mean by "a weep hole at the bottom of the impeller assembly". The only possible "gap" under the impeller might be in the housing gasket. You might pull the motor out again to see if the gasket is seated properly.
 Reply

 Posted: 6/9/2016 

I'm on my second motor in 6 years. This time I replaced all the gaskets and seals but I'm getting a drip out of the weep hole at the bottom of the impeller assembly. I have a Hayward super pump. Any sugesstions?
 Reply

InyoPools Product Specialist  Posted: 6/7/2016 

peejmeister - I would just wipe each of the surfaces good with a soft cloth.
 Reply

 Posted: 6/7/2016 

I received a shaft seal set that came in a zip-lock bag. I'm concerned that the person who placed the seal into the bag may have inadvertently touched one or both of the seal surfaces.

Is there a safe way to clean off any potential finger prints, etc.? Rubbing alcohol, perhaps?

 Reply

InyoPools Product Specialist  Posted: 6/3/2016 

Val in AZ - I would say that if your pool bubbles go away in 15 minutes, you are probably safe running the system. If you have a suction leak, the bubbles would not go away.
 Reply

 Posted: 6/2/2016 

Pump is appx 11 years old, doesn't leak anywhere. Pool has started having bubbles from the return jets when the pump starts up, they do go away after about 15 minutes. Replaced O ring on filter basket lid. Pressure is right where it should be. Any ideas?
 Reply

InyoPools Product Specialist  Posted: 3/23/2016 

danshoopty - I have not installed this type of motor. Try giving Jacuzzi a call at 450-250-4500. They should be able to help you.
 Reply

 Posted: 3/23/2016 

I am trying to replace my pump motor on a Jacuzzi pump. I have the correct pieces installed where they should be and when I try to fit the pump into the proper position, the tabs around the ring will not go all the way into the motor housing with the large nut style retainer. Any advice?
 Reply

 Posted: 2/11/2016 

Viewers be apprised that the impeller ring orientation shown in the video is incorrect. The broader, wider diameter end should be toward the pump end, not the motor end. I just had an email exchange with Inyo Pools outside of this blog and they confirm this. To clarify, I'm talking about the one piece, white, plastic impeller ring, not the impeller or seal.
 Reply