How To Troubleshoot a Pool Pump Motor - Motor Fails to Start


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If you've had your pool pump motor a while or just installed a new one and it decides not to start, here is a list of steps to check to get it up and running. Be careful. If you are unfamiliar with electricity, consider having a professional electrician look at your motor.

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Step by Step


Step 1

BE SAFE - Before you even touch the motor, MAKE SURE THE POWER IS OFF. Always turn the power off at the electric service fuse or breaker box. To prevent electrical shock, use a meter to check for electrical shorts and be sure the motor is securely grounded and bonded in conformity with local codes. Do not work on electrical devices if water or moist conditions are present and cannot be avoided.

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Step 2

CHECK BASICS - Check the obvious first. Are the power switch and timer on?

Step 3

CHECK BREAKERS - Check for blown fuse or circuit breaker. If fuses are used be sure fuses are the proper size or type.

Step 4

CHECK CONNECTIONS - WITH THE POWER OFF, check all connections on the terminal board. Verify they are correct by consulting the wiring diagram on the motor. Make sure all connections are tight including the ground wire.

Step 5

CHECK VOLTAGE - Check the voltage at the terminal board after first turning the power back on. Be sure to TURN THE POWER BACK OFF after completing this step. Note: Voltage at motor terminals should be + or – 10% of the voltage on the nameplate. If the voltage is high, contact the local Power Company. If the voltage is low check the wire size of the power line from the electric box to the motor. See our guide and "How to Select the Correct Wire Size for Your Pool Motor".

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Step 6

CHECK LINE OVERLOAD - Check for overloading from other equipment on the same circuit as the motor. Remove some of these equipments off the pump circuit or add a new line to the pump.

Step 7

CHECK WINDING CONTINUITY - Inspect motor windings for continuity.

Step 8

CHECK PROTECTOR CONTINUITY - If the protector tripped, wait until the motor cools down and then restart the motor. Check protector for continuity.

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