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Best Pool Cover Pumps 2020 – Reviews & Buying Guide

Last Updated: July 29, 2020

a pool-cover pumpWhy is it that pools can require just as much maintenance when they are closed as they do when they are open? When the pool is closed down, and you can’t get any enjoyment out of it, the maintenance projects become even more annoying.

One of the main issues you will run into as a pool owner with a cover on your pool is water. Too much rain or snow accumulating on your pool cover can cause problems.

The easiest way to remove it is a pool cover pump. We did some reviews of the best pool cover pumps on the market. Take a look and grab one quick before more water accumulates.

Comparison of our Favorites in 2020:

Image Product Details
Best Overall
Winner
WAYNE 1/4 HP Pool Cover Pump WAYNE 1/4 HP Pool Cover Pump
  • Knows when to turn on and off
  • Energy efficient
  • Anti Freeze technology
  • Second place
    Little Giant Automatic Pool Cover Pump Little Giant Automatic Pool Cover Pump
  • Easy to use
  • Has a manual and automatic mode
  • Has a 25-foot long power cord
  • Best Value
    Third place
    Fibropool Electric Pool Cover Drain Pump Fibropool Electric Pool Cover Drain Pump
  • Lower price model
  • Pumps water fast
  • Comes with its hose
  • LITTLE GIANT Pool-Cover Pump LITTLE GIANT Pool-Cover Pump
  • Very affordable
  • Can pump 550 gallons per hour
  • 25’ power cord
  • Splash Pools Universal Pool Cover Pump Splash Pools Universal Pool Cover Pump
  • Cheap
  • 500 gallons per hour
  • 5 Best Pool Cover Pumps – Our Reviews:

    1. WAYNE WAPC250 1/4 HP Pool Cover Pump – Best Overall

    WAYNE WAPC250 1:4 HP Pool Cover Pump

    The Wayne WAPC250 ¼ HP Pool Cover Pump is our number one pick for a pool cover pump. There are lots of positives about this model, and very few negatives. For starters, this pump can sense when it needs to work. It is equipped with iSwitch technology that turns the pump on and off by sensing water on top of your pool cover. The iSwitch technology is an incredible feature. For those that don’t have the time or patience to check on the pool after each snow or rain, the iSwitch does it for you.

    With this set-it-and-forget-it, model, you also get a strainer base for the pump to sit in. This base filters debris to minimize clogging, and it helps the pump stay more balanced and upright.

    The Wayne Pool Cover Pump is energy-efficient, has high flow, and it does not use any oil. Another great thing with the iSwitch technology is that it has automatic freeze protection to prevent pump damage when water freezes.

    Aside from its price, which is quite fair considering the iSwitch technology, this Wayne Pool Cover Pump has no downsides.

    Pros
    • Knows when to turn on and off
    • Energy efficient
    • Leave it plugged in and forget about it
    • Anti Freeze technology
    • Oil-free
    • High Flow
    Cons
    • Priced higher than other models but still a good value

    2. Little Giant APCP-1700 Automatic Pool Cover Pump

    Little Giant APCP-1700 Automatic Pool Cover Pump

    Coming in a close second is the Little Giant APCP-1700 Automatic Pool Cover Pump. This model is priced almost the same as our number one choice. Similar to the Wayne model, this automatic pool cover pump will automatically turn on in two inches of water. Unfortunately, two inches of rain is a bit higher than the ¾ inch of water that the Wayne will recognize.

    This Little Giant has a removable intake screen for easy cleaning and maintenance. With a built-in handle, this pump is easy to place precisely where you need it and get it out when you are finished. The power cord is 25 feet long.

    If you don’t want the pump running on manual mode, there is a switch that you can manually use as well to turn it on and off. The Little Giant APCP-1700 will attach to a ¾” garden hose, and it has a side discharge to make it very simple to get the water from your pool cover. This is a great unit; the reason it does not make it to the top is because of the two-inch automatic water removal height. It just kicks on a little later than we felt like it should for the price you are paying.

    Pros
    • Easy to use
    • Has a manual and automatic mode
    • Has a 25-foot long power cord
    Cons
    • Will not switch to automatic until it is at 2 inches
    • Higher price than other models

    3. Fibropool Electric Pool Cover Drain Pump – Best Value

    Fibropool Electric Pool Cover Drain Pump

    Next on our list is the Fibropool Electric Pool Cover Drain Pump designed for both in-ground and above ground pools. The Fibropool is a lightweight model that will not pull your cover down further than it needs to be.

    The Fibropool model comes with a 16-foot power cord, so it is quite a bit shorter than the Little Giant we mentioned in option two. This may work out fine for some pool owners, but others could have several extension cords connecting to this unit. Extension cords are not an ideal situation around water.

    This model will pump fast; the rate is almost 600 gallons per hour. Hopefully, you won’t have 600 gallons of water that need removal, but if that were to happen, you would be all set within an hour.

    You won’t need your hose when working with the Fibropool Pool Cover Pump as it comes with a 16-foot removal hose to get the water over the edge of most pools. Also, the outside of the Fibropool is made of an ABS casing that is impact resistant and weather resistant. This durable model will hold up to mold and mildew and should last you for quite some time.

    The Fibropool Pool Cover Pump is considerably less expensive than the other options that we have mentioned in this review. It seems that because it is cheaper it is not built with the same level of quality and features as the Little Giant 1700 or the Wayne.

    Pros
    • Lower price model
    • Pumps water fast
    • Comes with its hose
    Cons
    • Not built as well as other models
    • No automatic option to run

    4. LITTLE GIANT PCP550 Pool-Cover Pump

    LITTLE GIANT PCP550 Pool-Cover Pump

    Little Giant shows up on our list again with the PCP550 Pool-Cover Pump. This model is a much different price range and a lot less automatic, but it will still work to remove the water from the cover of your pool.

    This is a thermoplastic pump with an intake screen that will help for easy cleaning and maintenance. One of the biggest downfalls with pool cover pumps is that they will suck in more than just water and damage the machine. The intake screen helps to combat this.

    The Little Giant does come with a 25-foot power cord and will attach to a ¾ inch garden hose for ease of use and installation. We mentioned that the Fibropool model could pump 600 gallons per hour, and this unit falls just short at 550 gallons per hour. Still plenty fast enough to get your pool cover back to normal quickly.

    If you don’t want to spend a lot of money, but you want a simple manual model, this Little Giant is a great choice.

    Pros
    • Very affordable
    • Can pump 550 gallons per hour
    • 25’ power cord
    Cons
    • Not as high quality as other models
    • Does not come with its hose to pump water
    • Not automatic

    5. Splash Pools Universal Pool Cover Pump

    Splash Pools Universal Pool Cover Pump

    Last on our list is the Splash Pool Universal Pool Cover Pump. This model is not nearly as good as our number one choice, but it may work for some pool owners.

    The Splash Pools Universal Pool Cover Pump will remove water at a rate of 500 gallons per hour. This is quite a bit slower than all the other models that we reviewed. The Splash Pools pump does not come with its hose, but that is not a deal-breaker for us as most people have a garden hose that can easily attach.

    The thing that moved this unit so far down on our list is the fact that it is sold without a filter on the intake. Remember how we said that the pool cover pump would try and pull in anything on the cover? This machine pulls in leaves and acorns and sticks, and then it just clogs. It is cheap and you will have to babysit it. It only works in the manual mode, so you don’t have to worry about it being in automatic mode and burning out, but remember, this machine will clog. Some pool owners successfully installed a strainer on it themselves, but you must ask yourself if that is something you would like to get involved it. Perhaps it makes more sense to buy a unit that already has a filter?

    Pros
    • Cheap
    Cons
    • Slower pump rate
    • Clogs easily
    • Not made as high quality as other options
    • Does not come with its hose

    Buyer’s Guide

    Now that we have discussed some of our favorite pool cover pump options, let’s talk about what is essential to consider when purchasing a pool cover pump. As far as pool equipment is concerned, this little machine will cost you quite a bit less than a pool cleaner, pool pump, or a pool filter. Still, there is no sense in buying something that won’t work for you long term.

    Manual vs. Automatic

    There are two types of pool cover pumps, manual and automatic. The automatic pumps are going to be able to sense when the pool cover has too much water on it and start pumping everything out. The manual pumps will need to be turned on by the pool owner when the pool cover is ready to be pumped out.

    The price difference between manual and automatic is quite significant. Most pumps with the automatic option will be about three times as much as the manual. It is not to say that automatic is better than manual, but there are some situations where automatic makes more sense.

    If you travel quite a bit and you won’t be watching your pool cover in the winter months, it is worth getting something automatic. Also, if you live in an area that has harsh winters with quite a bit of snow, ice, and rain, you will want the automatic.

    If you are a pool owner who has only ever used a pump once or twice and it was because of a severe rainstorm, then the manual unit may work just fine. Just be honest with yourself as to how often you plan on checking your pool cover. If you know you won’t look at it for a few weeks, go with something automatic, so you don’t have to worry about your pool cover caving in.

    Size and Weight

    If you have a small pool with a very lightweight cover, you must be careful about the pump that you are placing on top of it. Make sure that the weight of the pump can be supported by the current cover that is on your pool. Putting a pump on in addition to the weight of snow and water can cause a cover to collapse and make your pool maintenance issues even worse!

    Speed

    Pool cover pumps operate at several different speeds. Some of the high-end units will pump water rapidly, and for others, it will feel like a slow drip. Keep this in mind when deciding which unit to purchase. If you are someone that is using the pump daily and continually checking on the condition of the pool cover, then speed probably won’t matter. However, if you know that you will let too much water accumulate before you address the problem, then think about something that will get water off fast. The less time the water spends on top of your pool cover, the better it is for your pool and the pump you are using.

    Universal Pool Cover Pump-Splash Pools-Amazon

    Hose Hookup

    Some pool cover pumps will come with their own hose, and others will require a garden hose to use. Before purchasing, make sure you clearly understand how the water will exit your pool cover so you can ensure that you have the right equipment for it to work. Not all garden hoses will attach to the unit.

    Power Cord

    Pool cover pumps work with electricity. Each unit comes with its power cord. Some cords are up to 30 feet long, and others are closer to 16 feet. Before purchasing a pool cover pump, measure how far the outlet is that you will need to plug the unit into.

    Price

    What can you expect to pay for a pool cover pump? It depends on the features and quality that you decide on. A good range would be anywhere from $30 to $180. Within this range, you should be able to get precisely what you are looking for to get this job done.

    Here are some other types of pumps we’ve compared:


    Conclusion

    Although choosing a pool cover pump may seem like a simple decision, it can make or break your winter. Selecting the wrong pump and facing challenges like a pool cover collapsing will make your off-season terrible. It is worth spending a few extra dollars from the start to get a unit that will take the weight and burden off of your pool cover. The Wayne WAPC250 still stands out as the best model for its ease of use, automatic option, and fair price for all that it offers. Regardless of what model you go with, the best possible thing you can do is keep a close eye on your pool cover to make sure water does not accumulate.