Why Pool Circulation Matters the Most to Keep the Pool Healthy

Pool circulation is important in maintaining the health of your pool. Learn more about what pool circulation does, how it works, and why it is important here.

Proper pool circulation is key to stopping harmful bacteria, algae, and other microorganisms from taking over your pool. Proper pool circulation provides good airflow in your pool that balances out the chlorine levels and maintains cleanliness for swimmers of all ages.

A healthy circulation system also reduces wear on equipment, extending its lifespan with the help of regular maintenance. In this article, we dive into the importance of pool circulation, how pool circulation works, and how to improve pool water circulation.

Why Is Pool Circulation Important?

Grid for Water Circulation in Pool

A pool’s filtration system and water circulation systems need equal attention. Without good circulation, the filter gets too overworked, resulting in more accumulation of dirt and debris in your pool. The result is a neglected swimming area that looks like a jungle. In addition, the filter’s bed becomes too cluttered, preventing it from doing its job efficiently, such as removing dirt and debris from your pool.

Also, all the chemicals in your pool will be trapped in inefficient water circulation patterns throughout your entire pool without proper circulation. This can make it tougher for you to maintain healthy chlorine and pH levels because the chemicals don’t circulate evenly throughout your swimming area. 

Without proper circulation, the water will become unevenly heated throughout your swimming area too. This can result in uneven equipment wear because of uneven heating of submerged objects like hoses and lights.

How Does Pool Circulation Work?

There are many types of pool circulation pumps. Each type of pump has its purpose, but they have one thing in common: they all circulate water in the pool to keep the water clean and maintain a healthy swimming environment.

Pool Pump Next to Brick Wall

The major components of a pool circulation system include the motor powered by an electrical cord (or battery) and the pump itself. The motor moves water from one point in a pool to another.

The pump moves water through the pipes that run throughout your swimming area. Pool circulation pumps may be electric or pressure-activated.

The motor is the heart of a pool circulation system because it moves water from one place to another. If you have a traditional pool pump, your motor will be right underneath the pool. However, in a less permanent type of pump, such as a pressure-activated single-speed indirect jet pump, the motor will be mounted on the outside of your swimming area for easy access and replacement.

The pipes or piping that carry your water throughout your swimming area are typically made out of PVC plastic. The pipes can be threaded, zip-tie, or copper in design. PVC is a great material for piping because it is flexible and soft in texture.

The flow rate and pressure of the pump will vary depending on what size you need and how much water you have to circulate. High-pressure pumps will move more water faster than slow ones; however, they also use more energy to run.

Keep in mind that you need to keep your pool filter clean and adjusted to maintain a good pool filtration system.

Why Is It Important for Your Pool to Have Good Circulation?

For Filtration

Without proper circulation, your filter will not function properly. Dirty water will not be able to get through your filter, so you have to maintain it and keep it running. Also, without good circulation, the water in the pool will be undisturbed by airflow or chlorination. This causes some bacteria and algae to grow, making your swimming pool less than usable.

For Disinfection

Without good circulation, you can’t keep your pool healthy. Chlorine will dissipate in an area of your pool because of the lack of circulation. To combat this, you’ll need to add more chlorine to the water, which is simply a waste of valuable chemicals and money.

For Appearance

Without proper circulation, you’ll have trails of dirt and debris throughout your swimming area that are noticeable when swimming. The main cause for this is that your filtration system cannot keep up with the dirt in your pool, so the dirt just sits on top. A good circulation system will keep your swimming area smooth and even throughout all areas of the pool.

How to Improve Pool Circulation in Maintaining a Healthy Pool

Pool Jets

Pool Jet in the Pool

“Of the many parts that go into a pool, pool return jets are an important and multi-functional feature.”

Rick Patterson, poolonomics.com

For you to improve your pool water circulation, make sure you direct your pool jets toward the skimmer to force the water from the bottom of the pool to the top. However, all pools have different shapes and components, so you can’t always reach all areas of your pool.

Dead Areas

There are a few more things to take care of when setting up a good pool circulation routine. For example, pool ladders and stairs, often known as “dead zones,” are common sites for debris and filthy water to accumulate because these spots often do not reach the skimmer for cleaning and circulation. Also, pool jets cannot reach dead areas, so you should regularly clean these spots with a brush. 

Cleaning the Pool

Man Cleaning a Dry Pool

Cleaning your pool with a pool brush at least once a week is a good habit. This routine helps to enhance pool circulation by cleaning out places where the jets cannot reach, breaking up other debris, and washing away any algae that may have formed over time. 

Filter’s Pressure Gauge

After you have completed the procedures of cleaning out the filter and pool skimmer basket, you should check the filter’s pressure gauge to see what the pressure is reading at the time.

If the pressure is between eight and ten PSI greater than the gauge’s clean or beginning pressure, it is necessary to take further measures to clean the pool filter and lower its overall pressure.

Backwash the Filter

Now, start backwashing the filter, which means cleaning out the filter using a backwash hose. If this method does not resolve the circulation problems, you may need to replace the media in the pool filter itself. The media in a pool filter is the filtering material that is used to catch dirt.


Poor circulation prevents your pool from effectively filtering and disinfecting contaminants, so making these efforts to ensure that your pool has a good circulation is necessary for the safety of your family and anyone who takes a dip in your pool.

The world’s best sanitation and filter system will not keep a clean pool if the water does not circulate properly. A pool with good circulation requires less chemical treatment and disinfection and will be much more enjoyable and healthier to swim in.

Below are more pool articles that you will definitely find useful. Check them out! To view more pool articles, click here. Enjoy and have fun swimming!

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About the author

Brian Anderson

The rather dry pool world out there is in need of some passion to make it shine. With the help of my son Ruben and his wife Maria our mission is to help you create the favorite spot of your house - your pool.

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