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One of the most common do-it-yourself fixes for a swimming pool is replacing the pool pump motor.  It's recommended to use an electrician to correctly install your pump motor.  However, many people attempt to do it themselves.  Being a retailer that sells A.O. Smith replacement pump motors, I have received feedback from many customers that are replacing their own pump motors.  It can be a relatively easy thing to do IF everything goes smoothly.  However, you can run into some problems.  

New lower 2019 prices for A.O. Smith motors.

Below is a list of the most common problems do-it-yourselfers have encountered:

  • Make sure you order the correct replacement motor for your pump model.
    • The big swimming pool pump manufacturers (Hayward, Jandy, Pentair, Sta-Rite) offer many different models of pool pump.  Be sure to identify whether your pump model requires an UP-RATED motor or a FULL-RATED motor.  Up-rated motors offer energy efficiency by being a less powerful motor that can deliver the HP as specified at a higher operational level-----translation----not as powerful as a full-rated motor.  A full-rated motor delivers the HP as specified and does NOT provide any energy efficiencies----translation----powerful and more costly operation.
    • Our website has a cross reference on the motor part number that will point you to the correct replacement motor.  Just use the Product Search function to find the motor that matches your motor part number at
  • Problems with wiring the motor - new motor seems very weak
    • Most replacement motors that don't require 220v to operate, at least A.O. Smith motors, come with the option to run on either 110v or 220v.  These motors come from the factory with a default setting that assumes that will be running on 220v.  Usually you can tell you have 220v wiring go to the motor by the fact that you have two black wires and a ground wire....NOT ALWAYS.  To properly install your motor be aware of the voltage going to the motor.  If you know for sure that you have 110v going to the motor then you can change the setting on the motor from 220v to 110v.  This will ensure correct operation of your motor.
  • Leaks in your pump
    • If you observe any leaks at your pump, we recommend purchasing a "Go-kit" which contains all the necessary o-rings, gaskets, and shaft seal to ensure your pump/motor connections are water tight.  Go-kits are available based upon your pump model (not the motor model).  See our pool pump go-kits for details.

I hope you find this information helpful.  If you have any additional questions feel free to contact us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. and we will be glad to help you find the right parts for your swimming pool needs.

One last bit of advice.  When changing your pool pump motor, ALWAYS change at least your shaft seal.  This seal prevents water from getting into your motor.  The reason you need a new motor may be because your existing shaft seal is bad.

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