Most swimming pool owners have a few common questions such as, should I turn off the pool pump when raining or is it safe to run a pool pump and pool filtration system during a storm. 

This blog will help you know what you should do with your swimming pool equipment in the event of heavy rain or storm.

While it’s true that most pool pumps are designed to withstand rain, and the extra filtering may help clean your pool of the impurities that rain adds to your pool’s water, certain weather conditions may cause damage to your pool’s pump. 

For example, running the pump during lightning or electrical storm is never a good idea. Any power surge or lightning strike could damage your pump permanently.

When is it not safe to run the pool pump in the rain?

pool pump in rain

Most of the time, running your pool pump in the rain is completely safe. Rain shouldn’t prevent it from performing the function for which it was created.

However, if the area where the pool pump is situated has drainage issues, that could be a concern. Pool pumps are typically waterproof and made to survive splashes and rain, but they are not made to be submerged in standing water. It’s a good idea to get the drainage problem taken care of by a professional. 

Also, if your pump’s location is prone to flooding, you should unplug your pump before the rainfall and switch it off at the breaker. Switch it back on only after the area dries out thoroughly.

If your pool pump’s manufacturer declares it rainwater safe, you can leave it on while it’s raining. 

But, we cannot stress enough that in case of an electrical thunderstorm, you must switch off and unplug your pump as well as all outdoor electrical devices

What’s the impact of heavy rains on your pool?

The weather affects an outdoor swimming pool considerably. If you’re looking for ways to maintain healthy pool water for swimming all year round, you’ll have to understand what happens to your pool during and after heavy rainfall.  

Rainwater brings about a change in the water’s pH and alkalinity 

A pool’s pH level is the measure of its acidity. Too low or too high pH levels indicate that the pool water may not be safe for swimming. For example, imbalanced pH could lead to skin or eye irritation. Also, it makes the chlorine present in the water ineffective in killing the pool algae and bacteria. Furthermore, pool water that’s too acidic could corrode pool equipment and basic water could cause pool scaling or staining.

You can take the help of a good quality pool testing kit to evaluate the pool water and add chemicals accordingly.

Adds impurities into the pool water

Rainwater adds contaminants such as bacteria, debris from your pool deck, bugs, soils, and pesticide run-off from your home garden into your pool.

All these make filtering your water and adding chlorine even more important. 

Causes pool flooding

Rain in pool pump

A flooded or overfull pool ends up reducing the strength of water-sanitizing chemicals. If the water level is not checked, the cleaning chemicals may spread into the areas, garden, or lawn surrounding the pool. 

Advantages of running a pool pump while it’s raining

A pool pump helps to minimize the above problems caused by the rain. Moreover, it helps:

  • Circulate the rainwater 
  • Filter out the impurities 
  • Control algae by removing organic matter

How can you ensure the pool pump is running smoothly?

When your pool pump has an important role, it must be maintained properly. Keep in mind that a pool pump runs continuously many times and needs to be in top shape. By the way, it can consume 3,000 to 5,000 kWh per year. 

You can follow a few steps to ensure that the pump is in good condition:

  • Clean the pump strainer and skimmer baskets so that there’s no leftover debris.
  • Check and adjust the water’s pH level. 
  • Shock your pool
  • Maintain the right chemical balance. 
  • Add the sanitizing chemicals or an algaecide as required.
  • Keep your pool clean with the help of a pool net. 
  • Reduce the water levels if there’s heavy rainfall in the weather forecast.
  • Ensure the pool pump doesn’t get submerged in water.
  • Before an electrical storm, switch off your pool pump at the breaker and unplug it from the power outlet.
  • Cover it with a large plastic tarp or waterproof covering to protect the pump from rain. 
  • Keep your pool toys and pool furniture indoors if you anticipate a thunderstorm brewing.
  • After heavy rains or a storm, run your pool pump and filter continuously for 24 hours. 

Read more: Drainage issues

Last thoughts

If you have a pool, you probably wonder, should I turn off pool pump when raining? Well, now you know that it is safe to run your pool pump when it rains – unless you experience heavy rainfall or a storm. In such a case, it’s best to unplug your pump and store it properly. 

Otherwise, during light rain, you can stick to your regular pumping and filtering schedule throughout the pool season.

Should I turn off pool pump when raining? was last modified: December 28th, 2022 by Ramona Sinha
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