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Hayward Super Pump VS Pentair SuperFlo

Pentair Superflo VS If you are looking for a comparison between the Hayward Super Pump and the Pentair SuperFlo variable speed pumps then this article will give you a direct comparison between the two. If you were looking for single speed pumps then you will find the single speed versions of these two pumps reviewed in this article on pool pump reviews.

The Super Pump VS from Hayward and the Pentair SuperFlo VS represent the entry level pump offerings from the two biggest names in the industry. If your goal is to reduce the costs of your electricity usage then either one of these pumps will do that rather effectively. You may not have the same level of control, and energy savings potential, as you would with the flagship VS pumps from either company (the EcoStar from Hayward and the IntelliFlo from Pentair) but either option will be a much better choice than a single speed pump. There is not too much difference between the Super Pump VS and the SuperFlo VS, and that is the way the manufacturers have designed the products. The SuperFlo was the first of the two to offer a 110 volt power option, which was an advantage for a short period of time if you lacked a 220 volt circuit at your pool pump location. Now, both the Hayward and Pentair version are available in 110 volt and 220 volt options.

Flow Rate Comparison Between Super Pump & SuperFlo

There are a few key metrics that you can look at when trying to determine which pump would make the smarter purchase. The first think to consider is the performance of the pump. If the pump flow rates are not equal then you may be able to identify a specific quality that you want your pump to have. Consider the following flow rate characteristics for these two pumps:

Hayward Super Pump VS (115 volt model SP26115VSP)
Horsepower: 0.85
Max flow rate: 82 GPM
Flow rate at 30 ft head at 3000 RPM: 50 GPM

Buy this pump from Amazon.com
Canadian shoppers can buy this pump from PoolSuppliesCanada.ca

Hayward Super Pump VS (230 volt model SP2603VSP)
Horsepower: 1.65
Max flow rate: 106 GPM
Flow rate at 30 ft head at 3000 RPM: 60 GPM

US shoppers buy this pump from Amazon.com
Canadian shoppers buy this pump from PoolSuppliesCanada.ca

Pentair SuperFlo VS (model 342001)
Horsepower: 1.65
Max flow rate: 113 GPM (103 GPM when used on 110 volt option)
Flow rate at 30 ft head at 3000 RPM: 83 GPM

US shoppers buy this pump from Amazon.com
Canadian shoppers buy this pump from PoolSuppliesCanada.ca

It is important to note that more flow is not always better. You might be inclined to think that whichever pump moves the most water is the best but this is not the case. In most cases you will not need the full flow rate of the pump which is why you are shopping for a variable speed pump in the first place. It should also be noted that as pool pumps become more and more powerful, they can begin to exceed the maximum designed flow rates for other equipment on the pad. The biggest concern is sand filters. If you have a sand filter you should look into the maximum designed flow rate for your filter to make sure the pump you install will not overdrive the filter. You can see a list of the most common sand filters and their maximum designed flow rates in this article on pool filter reviews

The reality is that flow rate is important, but not the most important thing you should look at when comparing these two pumps. A pool pump is capable of meeting and exceeding the average pool turnover requirements multiple times over per day. This is why a variable speed pump is useful since you can vastly reduce the amount of water that you are filtering daily. Some people do this already by simply shutting off their pump for part of the day. While this will use less electricity, it does so at the expense of the proper circulation and filtration of your pool water. You can get away with running a single speed pump for only a handful of hours per day but that is a long way from saying it is ideal for your pool to do so. Also, if you have a salt system then you will not be able to generate chlorine any time your pump is off - just another way where variable speed pumps are superior to singe speed.

Flow Rates & Electrical Demand For Pool Pumps

If you are going to make an informed decision on your pool pump purchase you need to be aware of an important aspect to how pool pumps operate. The law of affinity for pumps is an important concept that you need to understand to appreciate the advantages of the variable speed motor design. In simple terms, any reduction in motor RPM by half will reduce the power the motor needs to operate by 8 times. This means that using a variable speed pump is more than just a linear increase in efficiency compared to, say, a two speed pump. Dialing down the RPM on the motor drastically reduces the power the motor needs to operate.

For this reason, the maximum flow rate for each pump becomes very relevant. Simply knowing which pump can move the most water is not especially important, until you consider that the lower the motor RPM, the lower the electrical demand. A motor running at full speed, 3450 RPM, might use around 2000 Watts of power, while the same motor at 1800 RPM would use only around 250 watts. This non-linear drop in electrical demand is the foundation of the technology that variable speed pumps are built on. At the lowest end of the spectrum, around 600 RPM, this example pump would only be drawing a scant 9 watts of power. People who argue that variable speed pumps do not save you all that much money do not understand this important law of electrical consumption in relation to motor RPM.

Differences Between The Super Pump VS and SuperFlo VS Pumps

Hayward Maxflo variable speed pump Since the Super Pump VS and the SuperFlo VS are made to sell directly against each other it can be difficult to find unique aspects that will define as one being potentially better than the other. One item worth noting is the difference in the lid design between the two. I have had a few elderly clients that have complained about being able to open the lid easily on the SuperFlo model. The SuperFlo VS uses the same standard Pentair lid design as seen in many other models. The lid itself can be a little sticky to remove and sometimes will take a tap from a mallet to open. While the Super Pump VS has it's own difficulties, with the relatively small twist lock knobs to hold the strainer lid on, I have not had any complaints from my clients about this design. I am sure that most handy pool owners will have no difficulty at all opening and interacting with the SuperFlo pump lid, but if you need this pump for someone who is technically challenged, or has very little hand strength, then the Hayward Super Pump VS may be a slightly better option. The gasket on the SuperFlo can also be a pain to get seated properly while the Hayward gasket seems to stay in place more easily. This is also another slight advantage for the Hayward model should the pump owner struggle with the technical challenge of interacting with the pump.

One consideration worth noting is that the Pentair pump can be wired to either 110 volts or 220 volts, where the Hayward pump can not (the 110 volt and 220 volt Super Pump VS are two different model numbers). There is a definitive advantage to operating your pump at the higher voltage however not every pool equipment pad has a 220 volt circuit available. If you go with the SuperFlo then you can operate the pump at 110 volts for now, and then switch over to 220 volts in the future once you are able to run an new electrical circuit to the pump location. This would give you the ease of installation right now, with the option to upgrade easily to a better performing pump when you are ready to renovate the electrical supply.

One thing I definitely prefer about the Pentair SuperFlo is the option to connect with a 2" female threaded adapter. Both the Super Pump and the SuperFlo have 1.5" connection ports, but the Pentair has the ability for a 2" connection where the Hayward does not. In theory you could use a 1.5" x 2" male adapter fitting, which would be almost as good, but the larger 2" port on the Pentair is ultimately better for flow dynamics.

The Hayward Super Pump VS has a specific advantage over the Pentair SuperFlo VS which is the 4 position adjustable screen. The earlier generations of the Super Pump VS used an inferior display screen that lacked the ability to change the screen orientation. This was an update that changed when Hayward ported in the display screen from their flagship EcoStar pump, which now provides not only a 4 position rotatable screen, but also the ability to remove the display and interface and remotely locate it - like on an adjacent wall. There is still a telecom cable that connects between the two so unfortunately you can not locate the display anywhere, but having up at eye level is certainly a nice option to have.

The Hayward 110 volt version of the Super Pump VS does not have the same level of integration with automation as the 220 volt model. The 220 volt model (SP2603VSP) has the same ability to tie in with control panels as every other higher end variable speed pump from Hayward. The 110 volt version of this pump (SP26115VSP) does not share this feature making it suitable for stand alone (or relay controlled) applications only.

Two Pumps Designed For The Same Market

Both of these pumps are designed to offer similar functionality, and both come with a built in 24 hour clock and timer for controlling more advanced programming schedules. If you want to control other equipment with these pumps you will require a control interface of some kind such as an automation panel with control relays. Both of these pumps are precisely the same size, with the height and orientation of the inlet and outlet ports being identical - this makes it easy to switch one brand for the other without needing to modify the plumbing.

In summary I think the Pentair SuperFlo is a better option if you have a 110 volt electrical supply for your pump. When you can upgrade to 220 volts in the future then you can simply make this change to your wiring and benefit from improved performance. If you need a very large pump, and you intend to run this pump often to meet your flow demands, then again I believe the Pentair SuperFlo to be the better option. If you have a very small pool, with minimal flow requirements, then all of these pumps might be overkill for you in which case the Hayward Super Pump 110 volt model would most likely be the best option for you. If you want the ability to rotate the interface screen, or remotely mount it at eye level, then the Hayward Super Pump will be the better choice for you.

As a final consideration you should also look at the Hayward MaxFlo VS pump which would also be very comparable to the Super Pump and SuperFlo VS pumps. If you would like to learn more about you can read this article about the Hayward MaxFlo VS pump. It has 2" union options and slightly better flow rates than the Super Pump VS which puts it more on the level of the performance of the Pentair SuperFlo.

US shoppers can buy the Pentair SuperFlo from Amazon.com
Canadian shoppers buy the Pentair SuperFlo from PoolSuppliesCanada.ca

If you are ordering the Hayward variable speed Super Pump then be sure to order either the 110 volt Super Pump or the 220 volt Super Pump version depending on which you need as you can not select voltages on these pumps.

In the USA you can buy the 110 volt SP26115VSP and the 220 volt SP2603VSP from Amazon.com.
Canadian shoppers can buy both the 110 volt SP26115VSP and the 220 volt SP26115VSP from PoolSuppliesCanada.ca.

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