Swimming Pool Pump - 2 Questions

I have a 1hp pump for an in-ground pool. I don't know how old it is - we bought the house almost 3 years ago. I have 2 questions:
1) At the end of last season and again this spring, when I turn the pump on it often just sits there and hums for a few seconds, then the breaker trips. I have to go reset it and repeat a few times before finally the pump starts to go. Then it works fine. It's just starting that is a problem. Does this mean I need a new pump? Or just a new motor? Or is there something else wrong?
2) I'd like to have a timer hooked up to the pump, so it automatically starts and runs overnight. Hopefully this will save on some energy cost from leaving it run longer than it really needs to. How expensive are there, and how difficult are they to hook up? My pump is attached to the a switch mounted on the wall behind it so its accessible.
Thanks!
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Matt Kruse
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Most of them are rebuildable, new bearings, new capacitor, clean the start contacts. Some pool supply places do it as a service for about half the cost of a new pump motor. Any decent motor shop could do the same.
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Matt,
Have the "start capacitor" replaced. If you have a "Leslie's Pool Supply" store nearby, they will usually do this for a reasonable charge. They can also advise you on a timer however, you can most likely beat their price at HD or W W Grainger.
Now, as far as day / night pump use, I suspect most of the respondents here don't even own a pool. In the Atlanta area, in the early part of the swim season, I run my pump during the day. This circulates the water warmed by the sun. Later in the summer, the pool temp. can actually be too warm. Then I run the pump at night to help cool it. Finally, if you need even further cooling, you might consider buying a small fountain that can be attached to the water "return" in the pool and operate it at night. This will definitely lower the temp.

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I'm not sure why you think it necessary to imply other posters don't even own pools.
I keep mine covered at night to reduce heat loss. Not running the pump at night helps too.
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On Thu, 04 May 2006 13:35:34 -0400, Dan Espen

Different techniques for different parts of the country, I suspect...

You must live up north... I'm in the Houston area and a few years ago, I had a house that had a pool... During the latter part of the summer, the water temperature gets into the 90Fs... More like jumping into lukewarm bath water than a refreshing cool dip in the pool on a hot day... Even using a sprayer to expose the pool water to more of the night air didn't make an appreciable difference... There were no trees shading the pool, so it got full sun exposure a good part of the day... I considered building some sort of very large shade arbor over the entire pool to cut down on the solar energy being received by the pool... Something like in the following link, but considerably larger...
http://www.deckandgazebodesign.com/houston_shade_structure/images/IM000334.JPG
When you live in a very hot climate, if you want a cool pool, you either have to remove the heat from it or prevent the heat from getting into it... Although it would be possible to create some sort of refrigeration unit to reduce the temperature, I suspect the electricity costs would be unreasonable... Reducing the solar input into the system would definitely be cheaper...
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Yep, I'm in NJ. I've been to Houston, the climate was great but I found the flat terrain a bit unnerving. I suppose you get used to it.
Our pool is in partial shade. It can reach 90F, when I run the heater. Without that, a peak temperature in most years is 82F.
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On Sat, 06 May 2006 09:21:00 -0400, Dan Espen

All the terrain you could ever want... Concrete and billboards, interspersed with highway overpasses... <grin>

82F sounds refreshing... Nothing quite like a cool pool on a hot day... Of course, in Houston, it ended up being a hot pool on a hot day... Not quite the same...
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