The basics of swimming pool maintenance.
New swimming pool owner's questions.
Help getting started with daily pool care.


Postby sparkwatercleaner » Sun 09 Sep, 2007 16:28

Hi there!
I'm in charge of the swimming pool and I've read that the filter has to run for 6/12 hours a day, but the problem is that my mother won't let me turn the pump on while somebody is swimming because she is afraid someone gets an electric shock. I've told her that the pump is grounded to earth and has a GFCI, but she won't let me turn it on neither.
Another problem is that I'm the only one in the family who knows how to turn the pump on. Also, the pump is controlled automatically by a timer, so I must programme it to run very early in the morning and very late at night. If I do so, a lot of stuff sinks to the bottom of the pool during the day, so I have to vaccumm more frequently. To make matters worse, I cannot turn on the pump mannually because I've got to go to school.
Anyone knows if swimming with the pump on is dangerous?
Has anyone died because of this?
What do I tell to my mother?
Any suggestions?

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Postby wiz28 » Wed 12 Sep, 2007 19:48

You will not get electrocuted. Thats what the GFCI is for. It is a safety feature just like you have in the bathroom. It will shut the pump off in a split second if it senses an overload. So tell your mother to stop worrying.
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Postby Backglass » Thu 13 Sep, 2007 20:00

If it is a GFCI, it will have a "Test" button. If you press the button, and the pump shuts off, you have nothing to worry about...that is why they exist.

Unfortunately though, there is no cure for rampant paranoia. :lol:
I'm no expert...just a long time pool owner. The real experts are at www . troublefreepool . com

Download Bleachcalc free at troublefreepool . com /files/BleachCalc262.exe and start saving money on chemicals.

Postby sparkwatercleaner » Sat 15 Sep, 2007 20:45



Postby Guest » Wed 01 Aug, 2012 08:50

GFCI's do fail. In my 20+ years experience as an electrician
"I have seen multitudes of failed GFCI's. The scary part is that they have failed in the ON mode. In other words the power stays on and there is no protection. I have also found many of the devices wired improperly so that they will not work from day one.

My advice, which manufacturers have always included, is to test the device on a regular basis. I would not rely on just the test button when it comes to pools. I would purchase a plug in GFCI tester (approx $10 at many home improvement stores). Use this to test your rececptacles outdoors and around the pool.

A word of warning - if you have an above ground pool and the pump is installed properly, the receptacle that needs to be tested will be a locking type. The tester mentioned above will not fit in this receptacle. Check with a reputable, knowledgeable electrician to inspect your wiring. If you have an older style GFCI, have it replaced. :shock:

Seen it from the Sho-me state.
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Postby czechmate » Wed 01 Aug, 2012 17:07

[quote="Pool User"]GFCI's do fail. In my 20+ years experience as an electrician
"I have seen multitudes of failed GFCI's. The scary part is that they have failed in the ON mode.

This very interesting claim. I have 48 years experience as an electrical designer and a wiremen licenced in several states here in US. I have worked on many highrises, refineries, powerhouses and Alaska pipeline. Never have i seen nor did I hear a supported claim about GFCI failure.
Connected properly, breaker will react to any miniscule difference in current going out to the circuit and current returning back to the neutral. This difference is constantly compared in 2 coils. If the magnetic force in either coil is different it will cause instant trip. The amount of current needed to trip is not dangerous to a person!
Any substantiated claim of a GFCI breaker nondependability or fairly frequently malfunctioning would be disastrous to a particular manufacturer, therefore quality control is essential to its production.
That is why properly connected GFCI breakers DO NOT FAIL.
Claiming "multitudes of failing breakers" is therefore an obvious and irresponsible hoax.

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