Is your pool pump making loud humming noise?
One of the finest ways to discover possible damage to your pool pump is by inspecting for excessive sounds and vibrations.
The vibrations/noises could be caused by poor running conditions, embryonic faults, or mechanical breakdown. (Source)
That’s why it’s always recommended to monitor the noise levels of your pool pump every now and then.
In this guide, we are going to discuss different ways on how to fix a noisy pool pump.
Pool Pump Making Loud Humming Noise Causes
Below are some of the different reasons why your pool pump could be making loud noises and different ways to fix it.
1. Internal Blockage
There is a possibility that your pool pump is making loud humming noise because of internal blockage.
Sometimes, debris may get pulled inside the pump and cause a grinding noise.
Check the skimmers, and if they are clogged, ensure that all debris is removed before assembling.
Fortunately, in this case, getting your quiet pool is as easy as removing the blockage.
If you can hear a humming noise, but the pool pump will not start, you may need to check the impeller for debris.
Often, a build-up of debris will block the impeller and, in turn, disable the pool.
Shut off the pump and open it to reveal the gasket. Remove the gasket and get rid of any debris you see before re-assembling the pump.
2. Pump Bearing Problems
Bearings on the pump motor reduce the friction in the electromagnets as the motor shaft spin.
Vibrations result when the rolling elements begin to wear.
Unfortunately, it is impossible to keep on lubricating the bearings in most pump models.
Try forcefully tapping on the motor casing to see whether this will knock off any rust between the armature and motor windings.
If this doesn’t work, then it may be time to replace the bearings.
The process of changing the bearing is quite tedious, and you may need to take your pump to the nearest repair shop for the same.
The other option would be to buy a new motor.
If you have had your pump for a while, getting a new motor will be better value for your money compared to getting the bearings replaced.
3. Bent Pump Shaft
A bent pump shaft causes relatedly high vibrations, especially if the bend is close to the shaft center.
However, bends mostly occur near the coupling, and the resulting vibrations will cause humming noise.
Use dial indicators to test when the pump shaft is bent.
If this is the case, getting a new pump shaft will help resolve your problem.
4. Misalignment of the Shaft
The shaft may not be bent but misaligned. In such a case, you are better off getting a professional to fix the shaft correctly for several reasons.
One, a professional will also gauge how the shaft position affects performance and make changes to ensure optimal performance.
Also, detecting a misaligned shaft is not easy since there are sensors to detect this problem.
If you notice some oil leaks around the bearing seals, excessive coupling failure, and cracking or breaking of shafts, a misaligned shaft may be the problem.
Other signs of shaft misalignment include excess radial and axial vibrations, high temperatures close to bearings and casing, and loose coupling.
5. Pump Impeller Imbalance
If the pump impeller is imbalanced, vibrations are inevitable, and this may not be the only problem you have to worry about.
An imbalance in the pump impeller will also lead to overheating, bad bearing, and consequently, the pump will look misaligned.
Getting in a pool with an imbalanced pump impeller can be hazardous.
The mechanical packaging may fail, there may be seizing in the pool pump, and the shaft may get deflected.
The pump impeller imbalance causes a force imbalance, which is detrimental for your pump.
Cavitation results when the positive suction is inadequate.
The pressure of the impeller liquid should not exceed the pressure of the liquid-vapor inside the pool pump.
If this happens, pockets will form, causing cavitation, which then results in vibrations inside the pumping system.
In short, cavitation happens when the pump doesn’t have enough water when the impeller is spinning.
Over time, the pump sucks air, and performance deteriorates.
With a dry pump, the little water in the volute will boil and turn into steam, the steam rises to the shaft real, which may cause it to fail, and the sanction side fitting may begin to melt.
If the pump continues to run under the above conditions, the impeller gets really hot, and the brass insert inside will separate, making an uncomfortable rattling noise.
From a distance, you will hear something like a rumbling rock sound.
Aside from the vibrations, this problem overworks the pump, and the consequences can be expensive if the problem is not handled fast enough.
7. Pump Flow Pulsation
Generally, a pool pump should not be operating too close to its shut-off head.
Pump flow pulsation occurs when the pump is running while the discharge valve is closed.
If this continues for a prolonged duration, vibrations in the pump are expected, which could be why the pool pump is making a loud humming noise.
While the lack of proper feed is the number one cause of pulsation, other factors may result in this problem.
These include worn packing, piping designs that restrict flow, improper spring rates, and multiple pumps on one header.
To ensure that the pump is getting adequate flow, check the valve often, and ensure that it is open.
Also, check the packing and replace it if this is worn out.
As for piping design, you may need to get one that is not restrictive. You may also need to reduce the pumps on the header to enjoy a quieter operation.
8. New Pump Noise
Is your pump new? If this is the case, the reason the pool is making loud humming noise maybe just that is the way it is designed.
Some pumps are naturally noisy, and the only way to resolve this issue is to invest in a new quiet pump.
Fortunately, many manufacturers have gone to great lengths to produce quieter pumps.
It is also possible that your pump is too powerful in relation to your pool.
In such a case, you may need to get a much smaller one to match your pool needs.
When shopping for a new pump, check for one in the quieter varieties. There are enough options in the market, so you are guaranteed of getting precisely what you need.
The quiet running pumps may be a bit pricier, but you cannot put a price to the peace you will enjoy every day.
Final Thoughts on Pool Pump Making Loud Humming Noise
Above are some of the best methods to fix a pool pump, making a loud humming noise.
Some of these hacks are DIY- they may be time-consuming but worthwhile in the end.
However, you may opt to replace the noisy pump with a quiet pool pump, or alternatively, you can hire a professional handyman to fix the problem for you.
Meet Mike O’Connor, (a DIY enthusiast), living in Cincinnati, a city ranked as the noisiest in the USA.
As a work from home dad, I have a first hand experience of how noise can truly affect your well being.
Soundproofing isn’t something that should be taken as a hobby, it should be a skill that every homeowner should be equipped with.
Most of the work documented on this blog comes from purely first hand experience, and the products recommended work as indicated.