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Why Does My Pool Pump Keep Tripping the Breaker? – 9 Reasons

Written by Edwin Jones / Fact checked by Andrew Wright

why does my pool pump keep tripping the breaker

Your pool breaker keeps tripping every time you turn it on, which happens once in a while. Or your pool pump trips breaker after a few seconds of running, frustrating you right now.

For your information, the pool pump breaker keeps tripping due to a problem in the pump unit or the intrusion of rain water. But before you can address this problem, you first need to know its possible causes.

So, why does my pool pump keep tripping the breaker? Find out here to address it, check out its nine possible causes.

9 Possible Causes of Pool Pump Breaker Trips


If your pool pump trips breaker on starting or even while running, you can consider repairing your unit to save some money instead of replacing it. The most basic troubleshooting step is cleaning the motor, which almost everyone can do. However, always remember to turn off or disconnect first your pool pump connection to prevent electrocution.

1. Moisture in the Motor

Your pool pump’s motor is kept away from the water. Still, your pool pump tripping breaker after rain can occur. If this moisture gets through the pump motor coil, it may result in a short circuit and immediately trip its breaker.


To address this kind of problem, open the outside cover of the motor and use a blower or a heat gun to speed up its drying process. Furthermore, covering your pool pump will also help prevent this problem from happening again.

2. Dirt in the Motor

The dirt on your motor pump can also be why your breaker trips. If the pump motor gets too much dirt or dust, it will have to work harder, overheating the engine.


To clean the dirt on your pump motor, you can open the motor cover and use a vacuum and a brush. You can also use an air compressor to blow off dirt your brush cannot reach.

3. Damage Wiring

As your pool pump ages, its wiring also gets old. This may be the reason your pool pump breaker trips. The wire’s insulation may not be enough to hold the current, resulting in power leakage between wires and causing a short.


This kind of troubleshooting can be done by a professional, so I highly suggest calling a certified electrician to address the problem in the electrical wiring of your pool pump. It is better to spend a small amount of money than to add damage to your unit or your electrical system.

4. Bad Motor Winding

Although the pump motor has five or ten years of warranty, it may not last that long. The life of the pump motor also depends on how you use it. In fact, using your pump motor continuously is better than frequently turning on and off your unit.


The explanation for this is that the motor begins to break down after a certain amount of years using your pool pump due to wear and tear. When it happens, the motor draws too much current due to low resistance caused by the windings.

You can use a multimeter to test the resistance of your pump motor. If your motor has no resistance or low resistance, it means the motor winding is faulty. However, repairing defective motor winding must be done by professionals.

5. Underrated Breaker Amp for the Pool Pump

Installing an underrated circuit breaker for your unit may result in overload. This problem occurs when you change your pump motor to a higher one and forget to consider the breaker rating. In some instances, the breaker will not trip as it takes time before it reaches its tripping level.


Typically, a pool pump needs a 20-amp to 30-amp breaker rating. Furthermore, keep in mind to always check your pool pump’s rating if it fits your current circuit.

6. Loose Terminal Connection


A loose connection may result in circuit breaker trips. Ensure that all your pool pump connection terminals are tightened after installing them. And if you find out that you have a loose terminal connection, never tighten it while it has power. Always confirm that it has no power before doing anything to your unit.

7. Damaged Pump Bearings


Damaged bearings are another factor that makes the motor work harder. Your pool pump’s bearing may rust with time, making the motor difficult to spin. You can check if the motor cover gets hot or if the shaft spins freely. Remember to hire a professional to repair and replace damaged bearings.

8. Pump System Blockage

If you experience sudden tripping of the pump breaker a few minutes after turning it on, there could be possible blockages somewhere in your pump system. The presence of blockage may appear, especially on the suction side. It can also be the reason why your pump works harder, drawing too much power.


If you feel that its suction or output isn’t as strong as it used to be, there might be a blockage somewhere in its pipes. If that is the case, you need to hire a professional to find and remove the blockage.

The best way to prevent this problem in the future is by ensuring that your filter is intact and that there’s no debris near the water inlet.

9. Damaged Circuit Breaker

After considering the above possible causes, you can also check if your circuit breaker is damaged. See first if there are some burn marks around the breaker itself. You can also use a multimeter to see if it provides the expected power.


If you have a damaged circuit breaker, replace it immediately with a new one. Remember to check the correct amp rating and circuit breaker type for your breaker replacement.

Additionally, you may check this video made by Askthepoolguy, where he deals with a similar issue. The video is exciting as the professional pool guy shares some tips from his decades of experience.


The detailed answers to many people wondering ‘why does my pool pump keep tripping the breaker?’ are presented above.

In case something happens to your pool pump trips breaker right away after you turn it on. Hopefully, you know how to address it now.

The information also gives you an idea of resolving every possible cause of the issue. You can also prevent some future problems through regular cleaning and maintenance.

So, did you experience some of the issues above? Share your solution in the comments below!

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