ok to use breaker as switch for pool pump?

The regular switch for the pool pump is, well, out by the pool. Out the back of the house, across a lawn, through a locked gate, etc. The circuit panel is conveniently located in my central utility/laundry room, and the pool is on its own circuit. Would it be appropriate or safe to use the circuit as the switch on a daily basis, on then later off once per day through the summer? I know some people put a timer on the pool pump - is there something I can buy at the big box and hook up simply, or is it something I need an electrician for?
Thanks,
Karen
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a breaker is not a switch, and will quickly wear out if you use it as one.
if you have to ask, yes, you need an electrician to install either a switch or a timer.
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bullshit. hundreds of business's use the breakers for lightswitches. on and off once a day. never a problem
s

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charlie wrote:

loads like a pool pump. 15 and 20 amp breakers are rated for switching loads, including fluorescent lighting. Higher current loads shouldn't be switched using a breaker.
Is it safe to do so? Sure. Will it fail? Perhaps...when it does install an appropriate switch. Best to install the switch now, rather than when it isn't convenient. Better solution is to install a clock driven switch.
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KLE wrote:

A breaker IS a switch. Lots of businesses shut breakers daily and they don't wear out even with years of use.
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company every day for the last 10 years (and who knows how many before that by the company who occupied our space before us, we inherited the sticker that says "lights in warehouse" from them). If the breaker does break, then you can hire an electrician to replace the breaker and wire a switch if you haven't figured out how to do that yourself by then.
The breaker should be GFCI (unless the one by the pool is), you can turn it off by the test button if you want. If nothing is GFCI, then maybe you should have an electricial look at it.
A typical 30A GFCI breaker cost about $30 but an electrician will cost $150 plus the $30 part nominally.
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The panel itself is pretty new, we had it upgraded when we moved in, it was inspected, the pool breaker was labeled as such in the old panel, so everything there is as it should be. I also specifically took the electrician outside to check the pool set-up (because there was a lot of DIY evident around the house) and he said it was very well done, nothing for him to change or improve. Thanks for the info, guys. Using the breaker will be a lot easier.
Karen

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Not to mention, if a breaker does go bad, its $3.50 and 6 minutes to repair.
s

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S. Barker wrote:

That's right. Pick one up at Home Depot or Loew's and just plug it in. (after removing the panel cover of course)

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There's no reason not to use the breaker to turn on and off the pump. Typical time clock needs to be installed by an electrician, or at least someone familiar with wiring methods and materials. The pool motor should be GFCI protected as well
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wrote:

Breakers OK to use as a switch will have SWD molded on the side or written on the label. Most are.
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Rather than go to a big box store, go to a real electrical supply house where they will most likely have what you want. Probably cheaper too.
There are certain types of breakers that are rated for switching. They are SWD rated and the breaker itself will be marked as such. SWD breakers are designed for daily use such as you propose, not for a hundred times a day as part of a process.
It is possible the breaker you have is rated so you can check it out buy pulling it our of the panel. Removing a breaker is not difficult and is safe as long as you turn off the main and use care. Most times you just remove one screw and pry the breaker out. If it was my house, I'd probably use the existing breaker anyway and replace it with an SWD if it started to fail.
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A number of posters including myself commented on replacement if it fails. That's obvious if the lever gets loose or breaks or if you cannot turn it on but how would one know if it failed in such a way that it would not trip at all or at the specified current. Based on that, the SWD switch replacement up front might be a good thing.
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