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Thread: Heater question

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    Heater question

    Hello everyone,

    I'm a new pool owner and have what is probably an easy question. I have a Pentair sand filter, Pentair filter pump, Pentair chlorine generator, Pentair MasterTemp natural gas heater, and Polaris booster pump. The pump and Polaris pump each have its own timer, and the chlorine generator and Polaris pump are both connected to the main filter pump so they will only turn on when the main pump is on. However, the heater is turned on independently from the main pump and has no timer. This setup seems like a recipe for disaster, since the main pump's timer will inevitably turn the pump off while the heater is on and heating. This will cut the heater's water flow and potentially cause a heater melt down. This actually happened once when I was in the pool. It took me only a few seconds to realize the pump was off. When I realized this I took off running out of the pool and around the house to the pool equipment. When I arrived, I saw the heater displaying 123 degrees, then 124, then 125 as I frantically fumbled to tear off the pump timer tab so I could manually switch the pump back on to cool the heater. I assume this means that I will never be able to use the heater to keep the pool at a constant temperature unless I'm willing the run the main pump 24 hours a day, since there's no way to guarantee the heater won't randomly turn on while the pump is off (or about to go off). Without buying what I'm told is a $3000 Pentair control panel, is there any way I will ever be able to use the heater without manually turning it off before the pump timer trips? I guess I need a way to connect a timer to the heater to make sure it doesn't operate outside the pump's hours, but it requires a special 24 V timer. I'm not sure if a regular household timer will work.

    Thank you,
    -Jason

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    borjis's Avatar
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    Re: Heater question

    What do you have the max temp set for? It should have turned itself off and I doubt the setting goes to 125.

    Also sounds like your flow switch is broken, when the pump stopped the flow, the heater should have shut down.

    Sounds like you might have some other issues to work out first.


    If you had the special 24 volt timer set to only activate the heater well within the pump running time, that SHOULD work, I would think.
    16x32 IG Vinyl, 13,000 Gals. Hayward S-244T sand filter, SP2810X15 pump
    (1.5 HP motor) Raypak PR266AEN (266k btu) gas heater. TF-100 Test Kit.
    Dolphin E10 Cleaning Robot.

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    Re: Heater question

    Quote Originally Posted by borjis View Post
    What do you have the max temp set for? It should have turned itself off and I doubt the setting goes to 125.

    Also sounds like your flow switch is broken, when the pump stopped the flow, the heater should have shut down.

    Sounds like you might have some other issues to work out first.


    If you had the special 24 volt timer set to only activate the heater well within the pump running time, that SHOULD work, I would think.
    The heater did shut itself down, but without the water moving I think the water trapped inside the heater kept rising to meet the temperature of the coils. I'm assuming that shutting down the pump and heater at the same time is bad for the heater but maybe this is OK. I'd feel better if I could have the heater shut off before the pump. Even then, normally it would turn off even before the timer expires if the pool is at the temperature set point. Maybe I'm being overprotective.

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    Re: Heater question

    What type of timer is controlling the pump. You should have a timer with a fireman switch that will turn heater off 15 minutes or so before the pump goes off. Model T104M201 if you are using intermatic timer

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    borjis's Avatar
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    Re: Heater question

    Yes it is bad for the heater to shut off with the pump at the same time. The pump should run a few minutes
    to cool the exchanger first.
    16x32 IG Vinyl, 13,000 Gals. Hayward S-244T sand filter, SP2810X15 pump
    (1.5 HP motor) Raypak PR266AEN (266k btu) gas heater. TF-100 Test Kit.
    Dolphin E10 Cleaning Robot.

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    Re: Heater question

    Quote Originally Posted by kadavis View Post
    What type of timer is controlling the pump. You should have a timer with a fireman switch that will turn heater off 15 minutes or so before the pump goes off. Model T104M201 if you are using intermatic timer
    Thank you! Now I understand. The pool company installed the Intermatic T104R, which lacks the heater control of the T104M, effectively rendering our heater useless.

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    Re: Heater question

    You can add the switch to your T104M, Fireman Switch
    . T104R just means the enclosure is raintight. The actual mechanism is the T104. Just google heater fireman's switch, you will find plenty of stores online that sell this

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    Re: Heater question

    That's excellent news! I was about to buy a whole new timer. Hopefully it's not too difficult to add the fireman's switch to our existing T104. Thank you!

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