The pump is the most important piece of equipment for your above ground pool; without it, your filter and chlorinator cannot clean nor sanitize your pool. When selecting the right above ground pool pump, it’s important to find an efficient, durable, and easy-to-maintain piece of machinery. Here are a few pump models we think you should consider.
Best Budget – Pureline Pure Pro XL
The best bang for your buck in the above ground pool pump category is the Pureline Pure ProXL, far away. Featuring a tried and true pool pump design, the Pure Pro XL gives the budget-conscious pool owner a great option for their above ground pool of any size. The Pure Pro XL features rotatable housing allowing you to adjust the discharge port, to make the pump a top or side discharge. This is especially important when coupling the pump to a cartridge with an especially low inlet port like a Pentair Clean & Clear, Hayward Star Clear Plus, or Jacuzzi CFR cartridge filter.
Best Overall – Runner-Up – Waterway Hi-Flo II
When reviewing the designs and the overall specs of the Hayward PowerFlo LX and the Waterway Hi Flo II Above Ground Pool Pump, they are strikingly similar. The key area the Hi Flo II falls short is the long-term parts availability. Waterway and Hayward are the two biggest manufacturers in the pool industry, their equipment is ubiquitous in America’s backyards. However, Hayward has a much wider network of online and local brick-and-mortar parts dealers. Not everyone can offer you the whole pump and their replacement parts like InyoPools can; Hi-Flo II Pump parts and PowerFlo Matrix Pump parts.
Hayward has a wider reach and availability. This means in 3-4 years when you need a new pump lid, PowerFlo LX gasket kit, or pump housing you’ll find plenty of options online if not locally.
Best Overall – Hayward Power-Flo XL
The Hayward Power-Flo LX is our choice for the best above ground pool pump because of its time-tested design, versatility, and reliable performance. The Power-Flo XL is one of a series of Hayward’s above ground pool pumps which includes the Power-Flo and Power-Flo Matrix.
The Power-Flo LXmatches the flow rate capacity of Hayward’s flagship above ground pool pump, Power-Flo Matrix. The XL achieves this with an essential-only design which enhances its versatility. The modular strainer housing can be removed from the main pump housing, making it useful for spa pump duty as well. The extra large strainer basket means fewer required service events needed during the swim season. After all, pools are for swimming, not maintenance.
Like the other pumps mentioned on the list, The Power-Flo LX has a rotatable pump housing discharge port, allowing it to replace top and side discharge pumps. The simple design means all maintenance points for the pump are easily accessible and require only a screwer driver or wrench.
One of the most important things for the long-term life of your pump, the Power-Flo LX’s parts are widely available online and from your local pool equipment dealer.
Honorable Mention: Hayward Power-Flo Matrix
The Hayward Power-Flo Matrix has similar specs to the LXBut some of Hayward’s design choices are what makes it the bridesmaid to the PowerFlo-LX. The two main points of concern are the Strainer Retainer ‘C’ Clip and the Pump Strainer Lid.
The C-Clip is a plastic horseshoe piece that holds the straining housing at the front of the pump housing (Key 3, in the Diagram). We’ve taken apart a few new Matrix Pool Pumps, and the C-Clip always stuck out as a weak point. The C-Clip feels like it is made from light-duty plastic. In order for you to remove the clip or install it considerable force is required to get the clip over the sport hole The C-Clips feels fragile when it is brand new; after a few seasons exposed to the elements and general wear and tear, we’ve had quite a few pool owners complaining of it breaking while servicing.
The strainer housing’s lid features a hooded lid with two handle ears (i made that term up). I much prefer the Power Flo LX’s lid which gives you a single handle that can be easily turned into a fulcrum for a vicegrip, lid wrench or other tools in aid of removing the pump strainer lid.