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Thread: I need your help with electrical questions, new service to the pool

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    Question I need your help with electrical questions, new service to the pool

    Hello,

    I'm new to the forum and to Pools, thanks to this forum (trolling for a while) and other resources I have been able to maintain my pools chemicals, cleaning, have upgraded my filter from sand to cartridge, upgraded my pump to variable speed and now I need to install a heat pump. For this I need to pull new electrical and this is were I need your help, I got 3 quotes that ranged from 1,900 to 2,400 I'm on a very low fixed income and the only choice I have is doing the work myself like with the other upgrades. I need to pull new service (125amp) from the main breaker 60 ' to the pool, install a new sub panel install 60 amp breaker for heat pump, 20 amp breaker for the pool pump, 15 amp breaker for pool light, 15 amp breaker for outlet (might combine with pool light) and a 20 amp breaker for possible hot tub in the future. Does that look right to you? If so, what parts do you recommend? I'm going to use GFCI breakers on the pool light and outlet, should I use one on the pool pump? The heat pump manual makes a point not to use it on the 60 amp breaker. Also, my heat pump is a used Hayward HeatPro HP21104T, if anyone has tips on installing the electrical that would be great, I just finished the plumbing.

    Thank you for reading and I appreciate your input

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    Nectarologist's Avatar
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    Re: I need your help with electrical questions, new service to the pool

    Hi. I would refer to the NEC and do it according to that. Here, unless it's an electrician, will give you what people think is correct. That won't help you if they are wrong. Stick to the NEC. That being said I don't have any gfi breakers on the sub-panel (just a gfi outlet).
    Inground, vinyl liner, 16 x 32 (approx. 21k gallons), roman end w/ bench, 2 Jandy LED lights
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    Mod Squad pooldv's Avatar
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    Re: I need your help with electrical questions, new service to the pool

    Welcome to TFP!

    Nice work maintaining and upgrading your pool!
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    Re: I need your help with electrical questions, new service to the pool

    Thank you very much for the reply, I'm looking for opinions on parts needed, what size cable, etc I would need and any other information anyone would have from doing something similar, I will then refer to the NEC to make sure is all within code.

    Quote Originally Posted by Nectarologist View Post
    Hi. I would refer to the NEC and do it according to that. Here, unless it's an electrician, will give you what people think is correct. That won't help you if they are wrong. Stick to the NEC. That being said I don't have any gfi breakers on the sub-panel (just a gfi outlet).

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    Re: I need your help with electrical questions, new service to the pool

    20 amps does not sound right for a spa.

    A standard breaker to a gfi outlet and then run to the pool lights is pretty typical. GFI outlets are much less expensive than GFI breakers.

    No need for a GFI breaker to the heat pump.

    1/0 copper is needed for the run but 125A is likely much higher than what's needed. The sum of the breakers amperage in a panel is meaningless. It has more to do with what circuits are expected to run simultaneously and their draw.

    Electricity is not something to mess with if you are unsure of what you are doing. Unlike most things in life, if done incorrectly it may not show until later on leaving to a false sense of security. The previous quotes mentioned seem reasonable for a quality licensed electrician.
    -Brian-
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    Re: I need your help with electrical questions, new service to the pool

    I'm thinking of going with 4/0-4/0-4/0-2/0 aluminum service entrance wire from main panel to sub panel buried in 1" or greater PVC. I'm still on the fence on GFI on the breaker or outlet as I have both in my garage extra parts bin. I understand what you mean about proper sizing of the panel but I expect to run the heat pump, pool pump, light, power draw from the outlet and the hot tub at the same time so I will need anything from 110 to 120 amp service so that is why the 125 amp service to the pool.

    My plan is to pull the wire, connect the sub panel and all the electrical for the pump ect. and have an electrician do the final connection to the main breaker panel after inspecting my job. I would like to know what cable people have used, what panel they ended up using, what breakers you used, level of difficulty, I don't have an option, I have to install it myself or not at all.

    Quote Originally Posted by bdavis466 View Post
    20 amps does not sound right for a spa.

    A standard breaker to a gfi outlet and then run to the pool lights is pretty typical. GFI outlets are much less expensive than GFI breakers.

    No need for a GFI breaker to the heat pump.

    1/0 copper is needed for the run but 125A is likely much higher than what's needed. The sum of the breakers amperage in a panel is meaningless. It has more to do with what circuits are expected to run simultaneously and their draw.

    Electricity is not something to mess with if you are unsure of what you are doing. Unlike most things in life, if done incorrectly it may not show until later on leaving to a false sense of security. The previous quotes mentioned seem reasonable for a quality licensed electrician.

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    Isaac-1's Avatar
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    Re: I need your help with electrical questions, new service to the pool

    I would suggest reviewing your plan with an electrician that does pool work in your area before you start, there are a LOT of pool specific requirements in the NEC and exact requirements will depend on which revision of the NEC has been adopted in your location (in some places I know it can be up to 10 years behind the current version of the code). These include things like locations of outlets that must be between X and Y distance from the pool, equipment disconnects that must be within site of the equipment being controlled, what counts as a disconnect (such as breakers count as disconnects, but only if there are fewer than 6 in the box), the of course you get into minimum conduit size, depth it must be buried to depending on type (you need way bigger than 1 inch conduit for a set of 4/0 conductors, I think the minimum conduit size for a set of 4/0 is going to be 2 inch, but check for yourself, look up conduit fill tables, remember conduit size is not about what you can cram in there, but about what is code legal)

    Ike
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    Re: I need your help with electrical questions, new service to the pool

    WOW I didn't think of that, I had an electrician look over my plan and work area but I didn't get someone that was pool specific, I will have to get someone over this week to make sure there are no issues with the plan. The conduit size was put as 1" or greater but most likely 2" or greater.

    Keep them coming, really appreciate the input

    Quote Originally Posted by Isaac-1 View Post
    I would suggest reviewing your plan with an electrician that does pool work in your area before you start, there are a LOT of pool specific requirements in the NEC and exact requirements will depend on which revision of the NEC has been adopted in your location (in some places I know it can be up to 10 years behind the current version of the code). These include things like locations of outlets that must be between X and Y distance from the pool, equipment disconnects that must be within site of the equipment being controlled, what counts as a disconnect (such as breakers count as disconnects, but only if there are fewer than 6 in the box), the of course you get into minimum conduit size, depth it must be buried to depending on type (you need way bigger than 1 inch conduit for a set of 4/0 conductors, I think the minimum conduit size for a set of 4/0 is going to be 2 inch, but check for yourself, look up conduit fill tables, remember conduit size is not about what you can cram in there, but about what is code legal)

    Ike

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    Re: I need your help with electrical questions, new service to the pool

    What size service do you have in the house that you plan to pull the power from? 125 amps does seem like a bit much. Does the heat pump require a 60 amp breaker?

    The service to the pool will need to be an outdoor rated panel unless it will be inside a building. The wire running to the new panel will need to be wet location rated. This is usually done with THWN wire. The ground wire from the main panel to the new feeder panel will have to be insulated. Will most likely need at least one ground rod at the new panel and, in most cases now, 2 are required unless a 25 OHM or less test can be proved on one.
    Unknown make 18' above ground (bought used in 1999) Sparco sand filter. Hayward 100,000 BTu heater. 2 speed pump

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    Re: I need your help with electrical questions, new service to the pool

    Just something that I ran into...

    Running wires inside conduit by code must be single wire, so that will require you to get 4 coldor coded wires for the install..

    Just to give you a reference I went with an electrician and he charged 1200, 800 of that was wire.

    He went with 6/4 direct burial wire that had to be run 160 feet, 25 of that in the ground.. This was only for 60 amps...

    The reason for the single wire in conduit is to keep the wires below a certain temp, when you direct bury the earth keeps them cool.

    From your quotes I would say 1400 or so of that is wire, so doing this yourself might save you 400 to 600 dollars unless something goes wrong, then it cost you way more..

    Electrical is the number 1 thing I will not ever do.
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    Re: I need your help with electrical questions, new service to the pool

    2" conduit is on the small side for that cable. 3" Is what would be preferred.

    I would avoid direct burial cable in all circumstances.
    -Brian-
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    Isaac-1's Avatar
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    Re: I need your help with electrical questions, new service to the pool

    One thing that makes it hard to answer a thread like this is knowing which version of the NEC is being used in a given location, as changes made to newer version of the code from the adopted version are not allowed and vice versa.

    Let me give a fictional example, not related to swimming pools:

    Let us say the 2010 NEC had a section that says all ground wires must be solid conductors, not stranded

    Then the 2015 NEC adds an exception saying ground wires connected to motors and generators over X size must use MTW stranded wire for vibration resistance.

    Now you are going to hook up a generator to your house, but don't know which version of the code your local authority has adopted, what is the right answer for the type of ground wire you need to use?
    Indoor 20x40 35,000 gallon vinyl pool with 1.5 HP 2 speed Jandy FloPro pump, Hayward EC75 Perflex DE filter, 11 4x12 Techno-Solis solar panels w/ Aquasolar controller, Aquabot Turbo T Robot Cleaner. Also LMI metering chlorine dispenser pump and HotSpring Jetsetter
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