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Thread: Pentair Minimax 400 CH issue

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    Pentair Minimax 400 CH issue

    Hi all I just bought a house with an inground pool and this heater setup. The heater worked fine last month and I recently noticed that the water was not consistently coming out hot and the pool was not reaching the set temperature. Further investigation revealed that my heater would run normally with all front panel LED's lit properly (service light was not lit) for about 5-10 minutes, then the heater would turn off, leaving the "Heat" LED unlit, and the "Service" LED lit. After about 5 minutes the heater would turn back on and run normally again and continue this cycle. I opened up the front access panel and looked at the burners. The pilot looks good and all of the burners are burning blue without any apparent issues. Also, the top vent is unobstructed. Any ideas as to what the heck is going on with this?
    IG freeform gunite w/attached spa. Purex Triton FNS Plus 60 filter with matching multiport backwash valve. Century 1.5HP motor. Purex Minimax Plus 400 gas heater.

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    Re: Pentair Minimax 400 CH issue

    Welcome to TFP!!

    Sounds like the 'hi limit' switch is tripping. (For more info on bypassing it to test, you have to prove that you'll not abuse the info in a dangerous way )

    Seriously, we can help you figure this out BUT - we need to know that you'll be responsible and follow our advice to the letter!

    The safety switches are there for a reason and you SHOULD NOT!!! run the heater without them functioning for any extended period of time
    Luv& Luk
    -Ted

    Having done construction and service for 4 pool companies in 4 states starting in 1988, what I know about pools could fill a couple of books - what I don't know could fill a couple of libraries :-D

    POOL SCHOOL, TF Testkits, Jason's Pool Calculator, CYA vs. cl chart, (Just a few DARNED handy links!)

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    Re: Pentair Minimax 400 CH issue

    If indeed it is the hi limit opening, the fact that it starts again proves that the hi limit is probably ok. Chances are the hi limit opening is a symptom and not the cause of the heaters problem. I would start with the by-pass that mixes the water in the heater. If it doesn't open correctly, the water temp rises to much on the second pass thru the collector, and the hi limit opens.
    Factory Warranty Station for:
    Jandy/Zodiac, Pentair, Sta-Rite, Raypak, Polaris,
    and Paramount pool cleaning systems.

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    Re: Pentair Minimax 400 CH issue

    Ted - Thanks for the welcome and reply! The last thing I want to do is misuse information and cause harm to myself, my family, and lastly damage my equipment...after all, I just spent a ton of money on this house/pool/spa, hehehe. From my limited knowledge of how this whole system works, I came to the conclusion that it was one of the safety switches or the thermal cutoff fuse...but realized it couldn't be the fuse because the heater would not fire up at all if it was blown, correct? If indeed it happens to be one of the switches are faulty, I will buy a replacement no problem (its gotta be cheaper than hiring a pool company to do it). In any event, I pulled apart the front access panel and opened the front control panel and did not see where the thermal fuse/safety switches are. So in following your advice to the letter, what do I do now?
    Pool clown - where is the bypass located and how do I test it?
    IG freeform gunite w/attached spa. Purex Triton FNS Plus 60 filter with matching multiport backwash valve. Century 1.5HP motor. Purex Minimax Plus 400 gas heater.

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    Re: Pentair Minimax 400 CH issue

    I will defer to the clown on this one :P I know he's right I don't know your unit very well, (ask me about a Max-E-Therm and I'll be right there ) Pool Clown, has shown his knowledge and expertise here and I'd follow his advice

    (however, on the Max-E-Therms, it only takes a couple minutes for the 'thermal regulator' to show that it's shot )
    Luv& Luk
    -Ted

    Having done construction and service for 4 pool companies in 4 states starting in 1988, what I know about pools could fill a couple of books - what I don't know could fill a couple of libraries :-D

    POOL SCHOOL, TF Testkits, Jason's Pool Calculator, CYA vs. cl chart, (Just a few DARNED handy links!)

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    Re: Pentair Minimax 400 CH issue

    Bump - any ideas where the bypass is and how to test? I'd rather have an idea before I start taking apart the unit, thanks!
    IG freeform gunite w/attached spa. Purex Triton FNS Plus 60 filter with matching multiport backwash valve. Century 1.5HP motor. Purex Minimax Plus 400 gas heater.

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    Re: Pentair Minimax 400 CH issue

    http://www.poolcenter.com/parts_heaters ... ch_pg1.htm

    should be #19 in the partrs diagram
    [center:3gj9kdnn]Matt Heck
    "HECK OF A POOL SERVICE LLC"
    Serving Ocean co. NJ
    COMPANY INFO BELOW
    http://maps.google.com/maps/place?hl=en ... 2995187987[/center:3gj9kdnn]

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    Re: Pentair Minimax 400 CH issue

    Quote Originally Posted by Heckpools
    http://www.poolcenter.com/parts_heaters_pentair_minimax_ch_pg1.htm

    should be #19 in the partrs diagram
    Correct, Take the cap off (#26) to access #19 and inspect for corrosion on the temp bulb. Put in a bucket of hot water, and see if the spool slides. Look closely, as it doesn't move very far.

    Sorry it has taken so long to respond, hopefully you have corrected by now.
    Factory Warranty Station for:
    Jandy/Zodiac, Pentair, Sta-Rite, Raypak, Polaris,
    and Paramount pool cleaning systems.

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    Re: Pentair Minimax 400 CH issue

    Thanks! I had a pool company come to take a look at the unit, the guy took one look at it and said that the unit is too old to be serviced, parts are hard to find, and usually on this model when one thing goes, others shortly follow and that I should just buy a brand new heater =( *sigh...and I have a big family party coming up and it will surely stink if my pool is too frigid to swim in.
    IG freeform gunite w/attached spa. Purex Triton FNS Plus 60 filter with matching multiport backwash valve. Century 1.5HP motor. Purex Minimax Plus 400 gas heater.

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    Re: Pentair Minimax 400 CH issue

    Quote Originally Posted by volkg35
    Thanks! I had a pool company come to take a look at the unit, the guy took one look at it and said that the unit is too old to be serviced, parts are hard to find, and usually on this model when one thing goes, others shortly follow and that I should just buy a brand new heater =( *sigh...and I have a big family party coming up and it will surely stink if my pool is too frigid to swim in.
    HORSE APPLES!!!
    Although that heater has been around for a while, you can still get most parts for it. Just look at the link that was posted here for you by Heck to look at. All those parts, for the exception for the front door, you can still get. Unless your heater has quite a bit of rust, it sounds like the pool guy didn't want to, or didn't know how to diagnose the heater.
    Factory Warranty Station for:
    Jandy/Zodiac, Pentair, Sta-Rite, Raypak, Polaris,
    and Paramount pool cleaning systems.

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    Re: Pentair Minimax 400 CH issue

    Or, he got paid for this service call without fixing it and figured he'd get paid a lot more to install a new system.
    23,000 gallon in ground pool with rock waterfall and spillover spa, Aqualink control system, Polaris 380 cleaner, Purex Triton Clean&Clear Plus cartridge filter. Located in The Woodlands, Texas.

    Pool owner since Nov 2008, Trouble Free since April 2009. Happy to help when I can.

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    Re: Pentair Minimax 400 CH issue

    I agree with the clown (that's kind of cool to say!).

    I'll be happy to look for parts for you since I hate hearing this kind of stuff. Let me know if I can help.

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    Re: Pentair Minimax 400 CH issue

    Thanks all...I actually took a closer look at my heater... its a Triton Minimax plus 400 (made by Pentair about 9-10 years ago)...I realized the CH model is the millivolt model and mine is the IID model. I called Pentair for tech support and the tech also said that they no longer manufacture parts for my particular heater. I was confused because the schematics and owners manual pictures look exactly like the heater I have...unless I am wrong about this?
    The pool heater itself is in pretty good condition, no obvious rust or debris blocking anything. The pool company did say that the service man wasn't familiar with Pentair products (nice to find out after the service call was made)...
    On another note...so I go outside to see if maybe I can clean off the heat exchanger/burners/pilot light, lo-and-behold, my heater no longer ignites and all I hear is clicking (this is prior to attempting to clean)...gas valve is open (tried both positions) still nothing. Looks like the service guy did something to render the unit completely useless, now I have absolutely no heat at all whereas before I had intermittent heat. To top that off, there were cigarette butts in the heater area! What to do? Its T-minus 8 days before my housewarming party where my pool is the main attraction and my pool is going to be frigid! Anyone know of where to get pool heaters at a good price and have it shipped quickly?
    Looks like I have learned an expensive lesson in the first month of owning a pool =(
    IG freeform gunite w/attached spa. Purex Triton FNS Plus 60 filter with matching multiport backwash valve. Century 1.5HP motor. Purex Minimax Plus 400 gas heater.

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    Re: Pentair Minimax 400 CH issue

    **UPDATE** so I had another pool guy come out to check on the situation...looks like the old pilot light wire was mysteriously cut clean, and thats why the heater was no longer firing up. Pool guy replaced the pilot light, and actually took the time to properly diagnose the problem and found out that the Hi pressure limit switch went. He replaced that, now my heater works perfectly. Thank goodness I found this guy two days before my party, and everyone had a great time in my heated pool well into the night! On top of that, this guy gave me tons of advice and showed me how my system works...finally a pool guy who takes care of his customers and doesn't make me feel like I'm getting ripped off!
    IG freeform gunite w/attached spa. Purex Triton FNS Plus 60 filter with matching multiport backwash valve. Century 1.5HP motor. Purex Minimax Plus 400 gas heater.

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    Re: Pentair Minimax 400 CH issue

    Keep that guys number. Looks like you found a good egg.
    Factory Warranty Station for:
    Jandy/Zodiac, Pentair, Sta-Rite, Raypak, Polaris,
    and Paramount pool cleaning systems.

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    Re: Pentair Minimax 400 CH issue

    What area are you in. I am in Orlando and need help with mine. Could you possibly give me the number of the guy who fixed your heater? I could use someone I could trust! Bill
    Inground Gunite Pool - Aquarite SWG, Hayward C1200 Cartridge Filter, Hayward Super II Pump, Hayward Colorlogic LED Light System , Central Florida!

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    Re: Pentair Minimax 400 CH issue

    Quote Originally Posted by volkg35
    **UPDATE** so I had another pool guy come out to check on the situation...looks like the old pilot light wire was mysteriously cut clean, and thats why the heater was no longer firing up. Pool guy replaced the pilot light, and actually took the time to properly diagnose the problem and found out that the Hi pressure limit switch went. He replaced that, now my heater works perfectly. Thank goodness I found this guy two days before my party, and everyone had a great time in my heated pool well into the night! On top of that, this guy gave me tons of advice and showed me how my system works...finally a pool guy who takes care of his customers and doesn't make me feel like I'm getting ripped off!
    Google the business and see if it doesn't come up on Yelp and a bunch of other review sites. Then post just what you posted here. A guy like that deserves every boost you can give him. Maybe he'll get so busy he has to hire and train some help, which will ensure there's someone decent when this guy retires.
    16K freeform gunite with spa; Pentair 4000 DE filter; Century Whisperflow 1 HP; Pentair Minimax heater.
    Troublefree does not mean Maintenancefree. It's like brushing your teeth: You can spend a couple minutes a day and pennies a week or go to the dentist once a year and spend several thousand dollars.
    A pool is like a pet - you have to feed it every day, even the days you don't want to play with it!

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    Re: Pentair Minimax 400 IID issue

    Soooooo here I go again...this season, my heater worked perfectly fine after the pool was opened. The second time I tried to heat up the pool, I noticed the heater was not firing up, *sigh. Only this time, on the control panel, the power light is the only light that is on. None of the other lights (aux, pressure, temp, heat) are lit, and they usually light up green. The red service light is not even lit. I tried turning the heater on via the remote control panel inside my house, and the service panel outside as well, no luck. As for my super knowledgeable and friendly pool guy, I did refer a lot of people his way, and now he's missing in action ( I suspect the pool company he worked for overworked him and he quit without notice, every time I spoke to him he had a million jobs going on at the same time). Maybe all those referrals was a bad thing. Anyone have any ideas of what might be the issue? My feeling is that the control module might be shot, but I'm not an expert on these things and don't want to start shelling out money on pieces that are not related to the problem. Any help would be greatly appreciated!
    IG freeform gunite w/attached spa. Purex Triton FNS Plus 60 filter with matching multiport backwash valve. Century 1.5HP motor. Purex Minimax Plus 400 gas heater.

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    Re: Pentair Minimax 400 CH issue

    Hey again

    Let's take it back to basics, have you killed the power to the unit for ~ 30 seconds (that will reset the processor)?

    What you can do is trace all the wires and make sure they're all connected and in good shape.

    If you do that and all is good, you need to find the guy who helped you last year. (folks that are planning on leaving the pool co. they work for will usually leave their # with customers )

    I'll help you as much as I can but it seems like the dude you had last year is gonna be better than me
    Luv& Luk
    -Ted

    Having done construction and service for 4 pool companies in 4 states starting in 1988, what I know about pools could fill a couple of books - what I don't know could fill a couple of libraries :-D

    POOL SCHOOL, TF Testkits, Jason's Pool Calculator, CYA vs. cl chart, (Just a few DARNED handy links!)

  20. Back To Top    #20

    Re: Pentair Minimax 400 CH issue

    Quote Originally Posted by waste
    Hey again

    Let's take it back to basics, have you killed the power to the unit for ~ 30 seconds (that will reset the processor)?

    What you can do is trace all the wires and make sure they're all connected and in good shape.

    If you do that and all is good, you need to find the guy who helped you last year. (folks that are planning on leaving the pool co. they work for will usually leave their # with customers )

    I'll help you as much as I can but it seems like the dude you had last year is gonna be better than me
    Thanks for the reply!
    I cut power from the circuit breaker for the entire pool system for about 1 minute, then powered the system back up with no luck. All of the wiring looks to be in great shape. I actually have my pool guy's cell phone number but it goes straight to voicemail. I spoke with the company he works for and they seem to be a bit frustrated when I ask for him and they say they haven't been able to contact him or his family for almost a month now (I'm hoping nothing tragic happened to him). Anyways, my next step is to get a hold of a voltmeter and see if the safety switches are getting any juice. A look at the wiring schematics looks like if the thermostat relay or thermostat itself is shot then the other components won't get juice since they all seem to be set up in a series (i could be wrong on the schematics though). I'm assuming since all of the lights went out at once and the tstat is the next in line of the series after the power light, it might be the culprit. Any other thoughts?
    IG freeform gunite w/attached spa. Purex Triton FNS Plus 60 filter with matching multiport backwash valve. Century 1.5HP motor. Purex Minimax Plus 400 gas heater.

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