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Thread: Plumbing Advice for pool and spa

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    Plumbing Advice for pool and spa

    Hi this is my first time posting here, but I have been reading and learning a lot for the past year or so.
    I'm starting to plan my pool/spa for next spring and would like some advice on my plumbing. My plan is to by a 12'x24' rectangle vinyl pool kit with a 8' step and build a 7'x4' ICF (insulated concrete form) spa with NO spillover. I want to be able to shut down the pool in Sept. and run the spa in probably Dec and reopen the spa in March. Since I'm in Southern Ontario Canada I don't think it worth to try to run it all year(although I would like to). I plan on doing most of the work myself with the exception of the excavation, electrical, and pool bottom. I have a colleague that specializes in ICF and going to help with the spa.

    Could somebody take a look at is dwg and give me some advice or point me in a better direction.


    Does it make sense to have separate line for the drain and skimmer, If so what are the advantages / disadvantages.
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    Last edited by damb; 09-01-2015 at 02:36 PM. Reason: picture too small

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    ozdiver's Avatar
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    Re: Plumbing Advice for pool and spa

    Welcome to TFP, sorry for the wait.

    Separate lines for Drain and skimmer is recommended.
    If you have multiple skimmers they should be on separate lines too.
    It gives you control over flow rate (via your valves) that you cannot get via a single line.
    Lot of floating leaves, close drain and maximize flow on skimmer.
    Brushing pool, close skimmer(s) and open main drain to maximize 'suck' on the drain.
    Vacuuming, fine tune suction o @ skimmer to make vacuum suck but not glue itself to the pool floor.
    With multiple skimmers, adjust flow rate so both collect evenly.
    40k gal freeform, IG pebblesheen, 9'x'6' raised spa, 2-1/2 hp Whisperflo, 520 sq/ft cartridge, Legend w/ booster, Intellibrite 5g in pool @ spa, Rainbow 320 Chlorinator(retired),
    Mastertemp 400k BTU, 3x3 hp Whisperflo Swimjets, 2x2 hp Whisperflow for 15ton moss rock waterfall, Intelitouch Controller, 850 sq/ft Travertine deck, Gas/Wood firepit,
    Autofill, TF-100 test kit w/ SpeedStir

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    mas985's Avatar
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    Re: Plumbing Advice for pool and spa

    I would skip the pool MD and just use an equalizer line on the skimmer instead.

    skimmer-267x211.jpg
    Mark
    Hydraulics 101; Pump Ed 101; Pump/Pool Spreadsheets; Pump Run Time Study; DIY Acid Dosing; DIY Cover Roller
    18'x36' 20k plaster, MaxFlo SP2303VSP, Aqualogic PS8 SWCG, 420 sq-ft Cartridge, Solar, 6 jet spa, 1 HP jet pump, 400k BTU NG Heater

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    Re: Plumbing Advice for pool and spa

    OK. I have updated my plumbing and I think I'm headed in the right direction, however I think I may need a check valve at the spa to stop the spa from draining when in pool mode.
    Untitled.jpg
    Please any advice is greatly appreciated.

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    ozdiver's Avatar
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    Re: Plumbing Advice for pool and spa

    The ideal is to not have a situation where a pump can start in a configuration that has it sucking against closed valves or pushing against closed valves.
    That is tough to do in a single pump system, but you can minimize it.

    I would delete the manual valve on the Spa Jets; the actuator valve will provide the on/off for this. Your jets, when on, are always full on.
    The Spa Skimmer & Spa Drain can be on a single valve that can open one or the other or both but never none.
    I understand you wanting to tune the flow rate of your Waterfall. If you also what it automated then those two are needed. If possible get the pentair valves the you ca set to prevent full closure on manual valve.

    What is your thinking behind the full bypass of filter, heater & chlorinator?
    I have seen bypass of chlorinator in Spa jet mode, but not this particular setup.
    Is it for when you are running your Waterfall only?
    40k gal freeform, IG pebblesheen, 9'x'6' raised spa, 2-1/2 hp Whisperflo, 520 sq/ft cartridge, Legend w/ booster, Intellibrite 5g in pool @ spa, Rainbow 320 Chlorinator(retired),
    Mastertemp 400k BTU, 3x3 hp Whisperflo Swimjets, 2x2 hp Whisperflow for 15ton moss rock waterfall, Intelitouch Controller, 850 sq/ft Travertine deck, Gas/Wood firepit,
    Autofill, TF-100 test kit w/ SpeedStir

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    Re: Plumbing Advice for pool and spa

    Ok I see what you are saying. I have removed the manual valves @ the spa skimmer and drain and the spa jets. All the manual valves will be open all the time except for maintenance shutting down the pool in the winter.

    The bypass is there so that not all the water is flowing through the filter, heater and SWG when in spa mode. I think my filter and SWG cell are only rated for around 110-120gmp so depending on how many jet I have it maybe too much for them. I would probably have it set up for about 70 -80% of the flow to go through the filter, heater and SWG and the remaining through the bypass.

    I'm a total newbie at all of this and I'm just trying get my head around this plumbing thing.

    Untitled.jpg

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    JoyfulNoise's Avatar
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    Re: Plumbing Advice for pool and spa

    Quote Originally Posted by mas985 View Post
    I would skip the pool MD and just use an equalizer line on the skimmer instead.

    skimmer-267x211.jpg
    Agree with that but in order to convince folks you need to post that video of the dye test that shows a drain running at hundreds of gallons per minute doing absolutely nothing with the red dye floating by it. Truly a convincing argument for the ineffectiveness of main drains.


    Matt
    16k IG PebbleTec pool, 650gal spa, spillway and waterfall, 3HP IntelliFlo VS / 1.5HP WhisperFlo, Pentair QuadDE-100 filter, IC40 SWCG, MasterTemp 400k BTU/hr NG heater, KreepyKrauly suction-side cleaner Dolphin S300i robot, EasyTouch controls, city water, K-1001, K-2006 and K-1766 test kits, Mannitol test for borates

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    Re: Plumbing Advice for pool and spa

    Mark
    Hydraulics 101; Pump Ed 101; Pump/Pool Spreadsheets; Pump Run Time Study; DIY Acid Dosing; DIY Cover Roller
    18'x36' 20k plaster, MaxFlo SP2303VSP, Aqualogic PS8 SWCG, 420 sq-ft Cartridge, Solar, 6 jet spa, 1 HP jet pump, 400k BTU NG Heater

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    Re: Plumbing Advice for pool and spa

    To allow balancing of flow rate the vale you have in front of Spa Skimmer & Spa Drain should be a 3 way not a 2 way.
    That way you can have:
    - All Spa Drain
    - All Spa Skimmer
    - Both Spa Skimmer & Spa Drain
    With a partial turn you can limit one or the other.
    The actuator valve lets you closed both, while opening it's other branch.
    40k gal freeform, IG pebblesheen, 9'x'6' raised spa, 2-1/2 hp Whisperflo, 520 sq/ft cartridge, Legend w/ booster, Intellibrite 5g in pool @ spa, Rainbow 320 Chlorinator(retired),
    Mastertemp 400k BTU, 3x3 hp Whisperflo Swimjets, 2x2 hp Whisperflow for 15ton moss rock waterfall, Intelitouch Controller, 850 sq/ft Travertine deck, Gas/Wood firepit,
    Autofill, TF-100 test kit w/ SpeedStir

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    Re: Plumbing Advice for pool and spa

    Do you mean like this.



    Attachment 42775
    Attached Images Attached Images

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    Re: Plumbing Advice for pool and spa

    Yep.
    One less place that could accidentally hurt your plumbing without losing flexibility.
    40k gal freeform, IG pebblesheen, 9'x'6' raised spa, 2-1/2 hp Whisperflo, 520 sq/ft cartridge, Legend w/ booster, Intellibrite 5g in pool @ spa, Rainbow 320 Chlorinator(retired),
    Mastertemp 400k BTU, 3x3 hp Whisperflo Swimjets, 2x2 hp Whisperflow for 15ton moss rock waterfall, Intelitouch Controller, 850 sq/ft Travertine deck, Gas/Wood firepit,
    Autofill, TF-100 test kit w/ SpeedStir

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    JoyfulNoise's Avatar
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    Plumbing Advice for pool and spa

    I'm not sure I fully understand why you have the bypass loop covering the filter, heater and SWG. Normally you want all of your pool water to get filtered and you oversize the filter if you think your pump is too strong. You really don't want to pull in "dirty" water and mix it with clean water. Also, most heaters have a built in bypass to control flow. In other words, the heater only heats a portion of the water flowing into it and bypasses the rest.

    So, as far as I can tell, if you feel your SWG needs a high flow bypass, then it should only be around the SWG.


    Matt
    16k IG PebbleTec pool, 650gal spa, spillway and waterfall, 3HP IntelliFlo VS / 1.5HP WhisperFlo, Pentair QuadDE-100 filter, IC40 SWCG, MasterTemp 400k BTU/hr NG heater, KreepyKrauly suction-side cleaner Dolphin S300i robot, EasyTouch controls, city water, K-1001, K-2006 and K-1766 test kits, Mannitol test for borates

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    Re: Plumbing Advice for pool and spa

    I think it is for Waterfall only mode, as he does is not setting up a separate water feature pump.
    The shortcoming of this is when in Spa mode you need the heater but can't avoid the SWG.
    40k gal freeform, IG pebblesheen, 9'x'6' raised spa, 2-1/2 hp Whisperflo, 520 sq/ft cartridge, Legend w/ booster, Intellibrite 5g in pool @ spa, Rainbow 320 Chlorinator(retired),
    Mastertemp 400k BTU, 3x3 hp Whisperflo Swimjets, 2x2 hp Whisperflow for 15ton moss rock waterfall, Intelitouch Controller, 850 sq/ft Travertine deck, Gas/Wood firepit,
    Autofill, TF-100 test kit w/ SpeedStir

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    Re: Plumbing Advice for pool and spa

    Quote Originally Posted by ozdiver View Post
    I think it is for Waterfall only mode, as he does is not setting up a separate water feature pump.
    The shortcoming of this is when in Spa mode you need the heater but can't avoid the SWG.
    Ah, forgot about the waterfall. Might simpler to just get a small waterfall pump, add a waterfall drain and forget about trying to balance out the flow.

    If you get the right automation system, then the SWG is commanded to go no higher than 5% output when in SPA mode. When you go back to POOL mode it resumes the normal set point. At least that's how Pentair does it.


    Matt
    16k IG PebbleTec pool, 650gal spa, spillway and waterfall, 3HP IntelliFlo VS / 1.5HP WhisperFlo, Pentair QuadDE-100 filter, IC40 SWCG, MasterTemp 400k BTU/hr NG heater, KreepyKrauly suction-side cleaner Dolphin S300i robot, EasyTouch controls, city water, K-1001, K-2006 and K-1766 test kits, Mannitol test for borates

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    Re: Plumbing Advice for pool and spa

    I'm just going off what I read here 1963 pool resurection - Page 29.
    I don't know if it's the right way or the wrong way to go about it. I have already bought the pump (Pentair VS 3HP) and filter (Pentair CCP-320) which is rated @ 120gpm and the spa jets I'm looking at are around 15gmp. This would allow me to install 10 jets in the spa without a bypass for the filter and heater, but would still need one for the SWG. If I were to bypass the filter and heater it would only be around 20% or less and only in spa mode.

    I'm just trying to get everything right before I start my build next spring.

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    mas985's Avatar
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    Re: Plumbing Advice for pool and spa

    Hopefully you are planning on low flow jets (10 gpm/jet). You won't be able to support 10 standard 15 GPM jets with an Intelliflo.
    Mark
    Hydraulics 101; Pump Ed 101; Pump/Pool Spreadsheets; Pump Run Time Study; DIY Acid Dosing; DIY Cover Roller
    18'x36' 20k plaster, MaxFlo SP2303VSP, Aqualogic PS8 SWCG, 420 sq-ft Cartridge, Solar, 6 jet spa, 1 HP jet pump, 400k BTU NG Heater

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    Re: Plumbing Advice for pool and spa

    Sorry I messed up the jet I plan on using are rated for 10gpm (Waterway plastic), but I'm not dead set on these or the amount of jets.

    What do you think is the max gpm output of my pump is with 3" lines.

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    JoyfulNoise's Avatar
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    Plumbing Advice for pool and spa

    1. I still don't see the need for a bypass. I have the same exact pump, a Pentair QuadDE100 filter, MasterTemp and IC-40 and I have never had to worry about by-pass flow. Granted I have a separate waterfall pump. I don't understand why you would run the bypass in SPA mode.

    2. Why do you have a single spa return on the same side of the diverter valve as the pool return? This is not a spill-over spa, correct?

    If you think you're going to be able to run the pool and detached spa (no jets, just a return) at the same time on the same pumping station, I think you're going to run into big trouble. You will have to suck water from the spa and pool and balance the return flow so that the rate of draw equals the rate of return for two separate water volumes using a single pump. That's going to be impossible to do and you'll either wind up draining the spa into the pool or vice versa which will cause a flood.

    In order to avoid that scenario, all of the spa related pipes (draw and return) need to be on the same side of a diverter valve. I don't think it's good practice to mix pipes like you are showing.

    Then again, I could be totally wrong.


    Matt
    16k IG PebbleTec pool, 650gal spa, spillway and waterfall, 3HP IntelliFlo VS / 1.5HP WhisperFlo, Pentair QuadDE-100 filter, IC40 SWCG, MasterTemp 400k BTU/hr NG heater, KreepyKrauly suction-side cleaner Dolphin S300i robot, EasyTouch controls, city water, K-1001, K-2006 and K-1766 test kits, Mannitol test for borates

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    Re: Plumbing Advice for pool and spa

    Quote Originally Posted by JoyfulNoise View Post
    1. I still don't see the need for a bypass. I have the same exact pump, a Pentair QuadDE100 filter, MasterTemp and IC-40 and I have never had to worry about by-pass flow. Granted I have a separate waterfall pump. I don't understand why you would run the bypass in SPA mode.

    2. Why do you have a single spa return on the same side of the diverter valve as the pool return? This is not a spill-over spa, correct?

    If you think you're going to be able to run the pool and detached spa (no jets, just a return) at the same time on the same pumping station, I think you're going to run into big trouble. You will have to suck water from the spa and pool and balance the return flow so that the rate of draw equals the rate of return for two separate water volumes using a single pump. That's going to be impossible to do and you'll either wind up draining the spa into the pool or vice versa which will cause a flood.

    In order to avoid that scenario, all of the spa related pipes (draw and return) need to be on the same side of a diverter valve. I don't think it's good practice to mix pipes like you are showing.

    Then again, I could be totally wrong.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    Ok I see what you are saying about the bypass. I can get rid of it and just bypass the SWG.

    As for the spa suction and spa return I was hoping to just play with the valves to get the right flow, so that when in pool mode I would get some flow into the spa, but you bring up a good point that it's probably impossible to get it right. I guess I can get my automation to alternate between pool and spa mode to circulate the spa. I wouldn't have to run the spa very long or at a high RPM to get a change over.

    Does this sound like a better idea.

  20. Back To Top    #20
    ozdiver's Avatar
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    Re: Plumbing Advice for pool and spa

    I forgot the NO SPILLOVER bit.
    Yes that makes it very difficult.
    Alternating between all Spa and all Pool means you have to manage their entire chemistry separately, the chlorine side is the least of your worries.
    The benefits of sharing the water are:
    - you only have to test one volume of water.
    - the Spa benefits from the large volume of water which buffers changes in chemistry.

    There are advantages to an isolated Spa, but it is run on it's own plumbing and pump.
    Isolated Spas often dont' use Chlorine as their sanitizer.
    40k gal freeform, IG pebblesheen, 9'x'6' raised spa, 2-1/2 hp Whisperflo, 520 sq/ft cartridge, Legend w/ booster, Intellibrite 5g in pool @ spa, Rainbow 320 Chlorinator(retired),
    Mastertemp 400k BTU, 3x3 hp Whisperflo Swimjets, 2x2 hp Whisperflow for 15ton moss rock waterfall, Intelitouch Controller, 850 sq/ft Travertine deck, Gas/Wood firepit,
    Autofill, TF-100 test kit w/ SpeedStir

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