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Thread: SWG: Pentair, Hayward or Circupool

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    Pool Tool's Avatar
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    SWG: Pentair, Hayward or Circupool

    The ole SWG debate continues. I am looking at installing a SWG for my 20,000 pool, now I just need to decide the brand. I know it really boils down to personal preference and features, but please confirm my assumptions and elaborate anything I omitted. Any anecdotes are appreciated. I have narrowed my options to a Pentair IC40, Hayward AQR15 or Circupool RJ or SJ model (I think?). To be honest I like the features and benefits of the Circupool RJ model, but I just don’t see its value since the RJ is ~$300 more than the SJ and more expensive than all other options. I don't know maybe i should consider the Si more...the Si+ seems to be discontinued.

    Pentair IC40:
    Production: 1.4# Chlorine /day
    Warranty: 3 yr full; Reduction for DIY install
    Cost: $800; Replacement Cell ~$500
    Pros: Many, many installed; Produce in high salt condition; Easily integrated into automation
    Cons: Replacement cells are higher in cost; 20% Adjustment w/out automation

    Hayward AQR15:
    Production: 1.4# Chlorine /day
    Warranty: 3 yr full; Reduction for DIY install No, per ping
    Cost: $890; Replacement Cell ~$450 ($300 for generic with 2 yr warranty)
    Pros: Most units installed in the US; Produce in high salt condition; Easily integrated into automation; 1% Adjustments w/out automation
    Cons: Higher end of price range.

    Circupool SJ40:
    Production: 1.7# Chlorine /day
    Warranty: 7 yr prorated; NO reduction for DIY install
    Cost: $640; Replacement Cell ~$450
    Pros: Supposed great value for price sensitive buyers; Clear Shell; Gaining market share; no acid bath cleaning required; 21% increase in chlorine production
    Cons: 25% Adjustment limitation; Automation??; limited unit data available

    Additional Considerations:
    - I don’t have automation now nor plans in the immediate future to… but someday?
    - I am still running a single speed pump, but will install a 2 speed when it needs replacement. I think the SWG would run on low speed, but that is a guess.
    - I will complete a DIY install
    - Am I overvaluing the clear cell - for some reason I think it is pretty neat to see it and show it
    - 1.4# = 8.1 ppm/day; 1.7# = ~10 ppm/day. Assuming 2-3 ppm/day required, I will target 5-8 hours per day of run time. The 21% increase is significant to run time here.

    Thanks
    16' x 32' (21100 gal), vinyl, 1.5 hp Hayward SuperPump,
    Tagelus TA60/60D Sand Filter, Raypak 399K Digital Heater, TF-100

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    Re: SWG: Pentair, Hayward or Circupool

    If you use automation for control you need to use the same brand of automation to make sure you have full control.

    Hayward does not reduce their warranty for self installs.

    Research Circupool and see how users were treated by the company when they needed warranty work. Your statements are marketing hype.

    The acid bath comment is not a valid statement with any brand of cell, it all depends on your water chemistry. A SWG that reverses polarity, almost all do that, does not guarantee the cell will not build up scale.

    A clear cell means nothing to me.

    The Hayward unit only requires 15 GPM of flow which is about the lowest amount for all SWG's. Some others require 30 GPM, but I'm not sure about Pentair or Circupool, it depends on the model that you get. My Hayward works fine on low-speed.
    16k gal plaster with raised spa, Jandy DEV60 filter, 2 HP 2-speed SHPF Jandy Stealth pump
    Hayward Aqua Rite T-15 SWCG, Jandy LXi 400k BTU NG heater, 350 sq.ft. of Sun Star solar panels, TF-100 Test Kit, Dolphin s300i Cleaner
    Test Kits . Pool Math . Chlorine/CYA Chart . The SLAM Process

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    Re: SWG: Pentair, Hayward or Circupool

    Good point - the Circupool SJ40 does state 30 gpm minimum to safely run the unit. The lack of acid bath comment was geared towards the cleaning method, which the SJ uses a "cleaning stick" to remove build up. I wasn't trying to say that it wouldn't build up - thanks for clarifying.
    16' x 32' (21100 gal), vinyl, 1.5 hp Hayward SuperPump,
    Tagelus TA60/60D Sand Filter, Raypak 399K Digital Heater, TF-100

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    Re: SWG: Pentair, Hayward or Circupool

    I can give you my experience with a Hayward (Goldline) AQR15. It was installed when my pool was built over 10 years ago. I live in very sunny Tucson (300+ sunny days per year) and the 19k pool is open year-round, although water is too cold to run the SWG between Thanksgiving and end of March. My first cell lasted well over 7 years before needing replacement, at a cost of $400 for a genuine Hayward T-15 cell. That makes my chlorine cost less than $57 per year ($400/7=57) plus a small cost for the electricity to operate the SWG. Cell replaced and back in service for several more years. At about 6 years I did have the inflow resistor fail on the panel, which is a common problem, but $2.50 part and 15 min. to solder in fixed that. (Note: Newer models do not have the same propensity for this problem)

    I have a Pentair Intelliflo VS pump. The SWG generally runs about 8 hrs a day during swim season with it set in the 35-50% and a pump speed around 1200rpm (150watts). If the entire system blew up today, I would order a new one to replace it tomorrow. It has been reliable and troublefree. I love it as much as I live my VS pump.
    chiefwej
    Tucson, AZ
    16x36 rectangular (19k) Pebble Tec play pool/spa, Pentair Intelliflo VS 011018, Super II 2hp (spa), Aqua Rite T-15 SWG, Pro Grid 60 DE, Hayward H400 & Heliocol Solar heating, A&A infloor system, fill water w/high CH and TA, 50 ppm borates,TF-100 test kit

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    Re: SWG: Pentair, Hayward or Circupool

    Thanks for the account chiefwej. The Hayward seems solid, a bit more expensive than the Circupool but over the lifetime of the unit (control board primarily) it is minor.
    16' x 32' (21100 gal), vinyl, 1.5 hp Hayward SuperPump,
    Tagelus TA60/60D Sand Filter, Raypak 399K Digital Heater, TF-100

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    Re: SWG: Pentair, Hayward or Circupool

    I vote for the Hayward.

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    Re: SWG: Pentair, Hayward or Circupool

    As an owner of a Hayward Aqua Rite since 2004, I'd also recommend the Hayward.
    20k IG vinyl liner/Aqua Rite SWCG, T-15 cell/Hayward Pro Grid 6020 DE filter/Polaris 280 with booster pump/Hayward Superpump 1 hp/city water/pool installed March 2004

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    Re: SWG: Pentair, Hayward or Circupool

    Quote Originally Posted by Pool Tool View Post
    Good point - the Circupool SJ40 does state 30 gpm minimum to safely run the unit. The lack of acid bath comment was geared towards the cleaning method, which the SJ uses a "cleaning stick" to remove build up. I wasn't trying to say that it wouldn't build up - thanks for clarifying.
    Just installed the SJ40, so don't have a lot of running time as yet. I have a Pentair variable speed pump that I am still running at "winter" speed (1500 rpm...donno what that calculates as gpm), but all seems just fine. Just running the cell at 25% so far tho'. Summer running speed is 2350 rpm...so will be boosting rpm as soon as water temp rises a bit.

    The "cleaning stick" is literally half a paint stir stick...not too excited about that. Anticipate I will need clean the cell at some point as water here is fairly hard. The cell switches polarity every 6 hours, which is supposed to help keep the cell plates clean....we'll see.

    I have already dealt with the warranty department on a small leak prob. They were very responsive and solved my minor problem. The warranty is a pro-rated 7 years...so not too concerned about getting future problems resolved. So far, so good.
    12,000 gallon, in-ground, Lunar Quartz-Bermuda finish. Pentair Intelliflo Pump and Pentair cartridge filer. Polaris 280 pool sweep. Circupool SJ40 SWG.

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    Re: SWG: Pentair, Hayward or Circupool

    Vetman thanks for the perspective and the positive news on their service dept.

    Continuing my contemplation, I have narrowed to either the Hayward AQR15 or the Circupool Si-60. Originally I had left the Si out because of the warranty, but I prefer some of the options including fine % adjustments and salt readings. These units are also closer in cost. Now it comes down to an Si generating 3.1#/day with basically a one year warranty or the AQR15 generating 1.4#/day with a robust 3 year warranty. Assuming the Si will be running significantly less to meet my FC demands equalizes the warranty...to some degree. This is the downside of still having my cover on the pool - to much time to think

    Thanks again to everyone for the info.
    16' x 32' (21100 gal), vinyl, 1.5 hp Hayward SuperPump,
    Tagelus TA60/60D Sand Filter, Raypak 399K Digital Heater, TF-100

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    Re: SWG: Pentair, Hayward or Circupool

    After thinking about the pool moving forward I am leaning towards a Hayward PL-PLUS Aqua Plus system with T-15 cell. This will replace my aging pump timer, alleviate the need (tho optional) for a separate SWG timer to run independent of pump, control heater and someday allow me to remote monitor. All this for more than $100 more than the AQR15.

    Does anyone have any suggestions or tips? Any cheap options for remotes, new or used? I plan to use my single speed Superpump until it craps, then replace with two speed. No spa or solar (yet) so I think the four relays are more than adequate. Thanks again to everyone for all the input.
    16' x 32' (21100 gal), vinyl, 1.5 hp Hayward SuperPump,
    Tagelus TA60/60D Sand Filter, Raypak 399K Digital Heater, TF-100

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    Re: SWG: Pentair, Hayward or Circupool

    Quote Originally Posted by ping View Post
    Hayward does not reduce their warranty for self installs.
    Just to clarify this point:

    I self-installed the Hayward AQR15 last year and have been very happy with it.

    Before I purchased it, I had an email exchange with Hayward technical support regarding installation requirements. Part of that exchange included the following on 3/20/15:

    If professionally installed it will
    have a 3 year parts/ 1 year labor. Self installations have 1 year part/labor.
    Last edited by chawkins99; 03-23-2016 at 12:23 PM. Reason: Entered wrong date
    Chris Hawkins

    18,000 gallon vinyl Inground. Hayward Goldline Aquarite 40k SWG, Pentair Intelliflo VS pump.
    Polaris 3900 cleaner, Pentair Tagelus sand filter. AquaPro 1300 heat pump. TF-100

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    Re: SWG: Pentair, Hayward or Circupool

    That could be a significant difference in choice although the Circupool sale is over...for now. I wonder if this is a 2016 change or if it depends on the support person that answers the phone. Either way, i hate to reduce the warranty period.
    16' x 32' (21100 gal), vinyl, 1.5 hp Hayward SuperPump,
    Tagelus TA60/60D Sand Filter, Raypak 399K Digital Heater, TF-100

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    mas985's Avatar
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    Re: SWG: Pentair, Hayward or Circupool

    I have seen too many complaints and problems on forums with Circupool so I would stay away from them. I have a Hayward (aka Goldline) unit and am fairly happy with it. I got 10 years out of my first cell.
    Mark
    Hydraulics 101; Pump Ed 101; Pump/Pool Spreadsheets; Pump Run Time Study; DIY Acid Dosing; DIY Cover Roller
    18'x36' 20k plaster, 1/2 HP 2sp pump, Aqualogic PS8 SWCG, 420 sq-ft Cartridge, Solar, 6 jet spa, 1 HP jet pump, 400k BTU NG Heater

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    Re: SWG: Pentair, Hayward or Circupool

    I'm 100% in agreement with mas985, stick with Hayward.

    This is the first time that I have heard of Hayward reducing the warranty for self installing a SWG. All of their current manuals state 3 years for residential SWG's and do not reduce it to 1 year for self installs. If you want to verify this before you buy it, give Hayward a call.
    16k gal plaster with raised spa, Jandy DEV60 filter, 2 HP 2-speed SHPF Jandy Stealth pump
    Hayward Aqua Rite T-15 SWCG, Jandy LXi 400k BTU NG heater, 350 sq.ft. of Sun Star solar panels, TF-100 Test Kit, Dolphin s300i Cleaner
    Test Kits . Pool Math . Chlorine/CYA Chart . The SLAM Process

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    Re: SWG: Pentair, Hayward or Circupool

    I just spoke with Hayward customer support and this is the current warranty stance:

    - Professionally Installed = 3 year warranty. Professional Installation = installed by "someone in the trade" and install can be proven with receipt from install.
    - Self Install = 1 year warranty. Caveat here: Hayward will honor the 3 year warranty if a service center visits the install site and deems the installation "correct."
    I did not ask if the manuals would be updated or a correction published. I imagine this is a way to protect them from egregious error by a DIY'er, but then I would think the unit would still fail within a year. Ugh, unfortunate but somewhat understandable.
    16' x 32' (21100 gal), vinyl, 1.5 hp Hayward SuperPump,
    Tagelus TA60/60D Sand Filter, Raypak 399K Digital Heater, TF-100

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    Re: SWG: Pentair, Hayward or Circupool

    Just spotted (and fixed) the date in the earlier post. I bought mine off Ebay March 2015 for $850 and the email from Hayward was from 3/20/2015.

    So, as a self-install, I'm right at the 1-year warranty but so far, no problems (touch wood).

    I also have a puck feeder left over from the PO (he also left a bucket of tabs). I use that to periodically increase my CYA when needed.
    Chris Hawkins

    18,000 gallon vinyl Inground. Hayward Goldline Aquarite 40k SWG, Pentair Intelliflo VS pump.
    Polaris 3900 cleaner, Pentair Tagelus sand filter. AquaPro 1300 heat pump. TF-100

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    Re: SWG: Pentair, Hayward or Circupool

    Quote Originally Posted by mas985 View Post
    I have seen too many complaints and problems on forums with Circupool so I would stay away from them. I have a Hayward (aka Goldline) unit and am fairly happy with it. I got 10 years out of my first cell.
    Mark, Where have you seen this? Just wondering, I am loving mine, granted I have only had it for 2 seasons but everyone seems to really like them..

    Just to let everyone know, 1 other person and me that I know of have had to use the warranty to replace the "brain" but it was taken care off fast within 2 days I had a new system humming away... The way I look at it is your paying for a brand name and losing 4 to 6 years of a prorated warranty... if you have the money and don't mind only having a 1 year warranty then by all means by the name brand or if your getting a new pool install and professionally installed then it might make sense.
    Pool: Intex 16x32 15000 gal, 2 speed 340042, Pentair CC320 Filter, CircuPool SJ45 Salt System, Intermatic PE653RC; Hot Tub: 650 Gal SWG Megachlor
    links: pool school * Recommended-Levels * SLAM * CYA chart * Test kits * How To Post Pictures * Poolmath * OCLT ** Support your website if we helped you :) **

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    mas985's Avatar
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    Re: SWG: Pentair, Hayward or Circupool

    Here are just a few:

    circupool issue OR problem site:www.troublefreepool.com - Google Search


    Also, I don't like the cells with the ports on the bottom because there have been many reports of no flow on lower pumps speeds. The cells can easily fill up with hydrogen gas which to me is not a good situation. One person had a cell blow up that may have been caused by gas build up. It was the same cell configuration but CompuPool:

    SWG cell explosion
    Mark
    Hydraulics 101; Pump Ed 101; Pump/Pool Spreadsheets; Pump Run Time Study; DIY Acid Dosing; DIY Cover Roller
    18'x36' 20k plaster, 1/2 HP 2sp pump, Aqualogic PS8 SWCG, 420 sq-ft Cartridge, Solar, 6 jet spa, 1 HP jet pump, 400k BTU NG Heater

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    Re: SWG: Pentair, Hayward or Circupool

    Well thanks to everyone for the comments, thoughts and suggestions. Funny as this progressed I went from no automation to ordering the Hayward Aqua Plus. I think this will provide me a chance to clean up my existing setup as well add GFCI protection to my old pool light. I also plan to add a wired control pad in the house to control everything without dragging all the kids out to the pad - they always look so defeated when they come with to turn the heater on but can't get in yet! Someday maybe I'll graduate to wireless control but maybe not.

    I'm sure I will be requesting help with install, buying breakers, etc. but again thanks to everyone for the help so far!
    16' x 32' (21100 gal), vinyl, 1.5 hp Hayward SuperPump,
    Tagelus TA60/60D Sand Filter, Raypak 399K Digital Heater, TF-100

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    Re: SWG: Pentair, Hayward or Circupool

    My Circupool RJ30 was discontinued for housing cracking. I have replaced three housing for leaks, with a little cost reimbursed by distributor. Not sure but Circupool SJ series looks like a Hayward which is a housing you cant see the cell through. I would not buy anything without a clear cell housing to know when its time to clean.
    14000 gallon quartz pool built in 2004 with 2016 Pentair Intelliflo 2 variable speed pump, Circupool salt cell, Pentair 320 cartridge filter, Hayward pool vac ultra, Helio-coil solar heat, 50 PPM Borax.
    Phoenix, AZ

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