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Thread: Separate pump for spa jets?

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    Separate pump for spa jets?

    I've owned a spa before that just ran the main pump through the jets. That's fine if you want the jets on, but sometimes you just want to soak without all the noise. How can I plumb everything so that I can heat up the tub separate from running the jets? Do I need another pump, or can I just add another diverter valve?

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    JoyfulNoise's Avatar
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    Re: Separate pump for spa jets?

    Is this for a pool with an attached spa or stand-alone hot tub?

    If it's a pool with an attached spa, and assuming there's no air blower (mine does not need one), then you can simply cap off the air intake pipe at the equipment pad so that the venturi lines can't supply air. The water will be sucked through the spa drains and returned back through the jets with little or no aeration.
    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, EasyTouch controls, city water, K-1001, K-2006 and K-1766 test kits, Mannitol test for borates

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    Re: Separate pump for spa jets?

    It's an attached spa. I'm planning on a 1.5HP pump with 8 spa jets.

    What I want is to be able to heat up the spa without running water through the jets at all. In my last attached spa, the surface of the water was VERY frothy even without the blower on. The blower only made it more frothy as it added air.

    I would like the surface of the spa to be calm but still have hot water pumping.

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    JoyfulNoise's Avatar
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    Re: Separate pump for spa jets?

    Do you have a separate, dedicated return line for the spillover?
    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, EasyTouch controls, city water, K-1001, K-2006 and K-1766 test kits, Mannitol test for borates

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    Re: Separate pump for spa jets?

    Sorry, I'm new to this, so I'm not always sure of the terminology. I'm planning on putting a return line in the floor of the spa - is that what you mean?

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    JoyfulNoise's Avatar
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    Re: Separate pump for spa jets?

    My spillover spa has a separate dedicated return line in the lower wall so that, in POOL mode I can split some water off from the pool returns to go to the spa and run the spillway. In theory I could suck water from the spa drains and return it full through that line and completely bypass the spa jets. However, that would require manually adjusting valves and lowering the pump speed to ensure that I'm not causing a huge pressure spike.
    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, EasyTouch controls, city water, K-1001, K-2006 and K-1766 test kits, Mannitol test for borates

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    Re: Separate pump for spa jets?

    Yep, mine will be the same. So I guess what I'm asking is if I can have a low-pressure line going to the spa that will fill it with hot water without running the jets. And then when I want pressure on the jets, I hit a button on the remote and it flips them on.

    I would just like the hot tub to continue to heat and circulate without the jets being on.

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    JoyfulNoise's Avatar
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    Re: Separate pump for spa jets?

    Quote Originally Posted by Drew80 View Post
    Yep, mine will be the same. So I guess what I'm asking is if I can have a low-pressure line going to the spa that will fill it with hot water without running the jets. And then when I want pressure on the jets, I hit a button on the remote and it flips them on.

    I would just like the hot tub to continue to heat and circulate without the jets being on.
    Normally speaking, any dedicated return line to the spa for the purposes of a spillover effect will be located on the POOL side of the return plumbing. So, in order to take water from the spa, heat it and return it to spa for simple recirculation would require some tricky plumbing and at least two valve actuators.

    A better approach might be to have two dedicated returns to the spa (not jets) where one comes from the POOL side of the plumbing, and the other comes from the SPA side of the return plumbing. Then you can simply put a 3-way splitter valve between the jets and the single return allowing you to choose between returning heated spa water through the jets (causing lots of aeration) or to the wall return (recirculation heating). The other wall return would come from the POOL side of the return plumbing so that a spillover waterfall is created when running in POOL mode.

    A picture of your equipment pad might help the conversation a bit.
    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, EasyTouch controls, city water, K-1001, K-2006 and K-1766 test kits, Mannitol test for borates

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    Re: Separate pump for spa jets?

    Is this a new build or existing? If existing then it's a simple fix. Replace your main pump with a VS and set a speed high enough to trigger the heater but low enough to achieve your soaking goals. Done, your welcome.

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    Re: Separate pump for spa jets?

    Some prefer two pumps, one to filter and heat the other for just the spa jets.

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    Re: Separate pump for spa jets?

    Quote Originally Posted by JoyfulNoise View Post
    Normally speaking, any dedicated return line to the spa for the purposes of a spillover effect will be located on the POOL side of the return plumbing. So, in order to take water from the spa, heat it and return it to spa for simple recirculation would require some tricky plumbing and at least two valve actuators.

    A better approach might be to have two dedicated returns to the spa (not jets) where one comes from the POOL side of the plumbing, and the other comes from the SPA side of the return plumbing. Then you can simply put a 3-way splitter valve between the jets and the single return allowing you to choose between returning heated spa water through the jets (causing lots of aeration) or to the wall return (recirculation heating). The other wall return would come from the POOL side of the return plumbing so that a spillover waterfall is created when running in POOL mode.

    A picture of your equipment pad might help the conversation a bit.
    I've owned exactly one pool, and that pool had suction lines from the pool and spa that went through a 3-way valve, through the pump/filter, and then to another 3-way valve that controlled whether it returned to the pool or to the spa jets. And I had a single-speed pump, so the concept of variable speed is still foreign to me.

    I was thinking that I would have another 3-way valve that controlled whether the water going to the spa went through the jets or through a return. But I think JoelFitz's solution is considerably simpler/cheaper.

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