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Thread: Just bought a house w/pool and solar!

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    Just bought a house w/pool and solar!

    Hi everyone! my wife and I just purchased a home last week that has a ~22k gallon inground pool in the backyard. I was afraid the seller would neglect the pool once in escrow, but after testing the chemicals over the weekend, most everything was right where they should be. TA and CYA were a bit high though. i want to say 100 for both, but i can check that later on. I understand cold water can affect CYA, and we have cold water lol I can also post all the numbers this evening (forgot the sheet).

    My other reason for starting this thread... the solar is not working. The house has 9 large flat black solar panels on the roof, a goldline gl-235, and hayward psa24 actuator. Initially, the gl-235 was not even turning on. Checked the fuse and sure enough, it was blown. Replaced that, the gl-235 is working and we cross our fingers that's all it needed. Of course not! Yesterday got pretty close to 80 degrees with lots of sun, so we turned the temperature up on the gl-235 and ran the pump for about 5 hours. Unfortunately, water temperature didn't change at all and remained close to 50 degrees. I played around with some things, and it doesn't seem like the actuator is doing anything. I'm a complete noob to this stuff, but it seems like i should either be able to see or feel something move in the actuator when i change settings on the gl-235? Also, what is the 3-position switch on the actuator for? Switching between off, on1 and on2 didn't seem to do anything. I guess what i'm looking for right now is any help on where i should start in troubleshooting the solar heating? I'd really like to get this sorted out before the spring!!!

    Thanks in advance!!!
    ~25k gallon plaster in ground pool - solar panel heater - pentair pump and filter

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    Mod Squad JohnT's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    SW Indiana

    Re: Just bought a house w/pool and solar!

    Welcome to TFP!

    You should be able to see physical movement when the solar engages.

    You may be able to remove or override the actuators by hand.

    Pictures or brand names of your actuators and other valves would be helpful.

    Solar doesn't give fast temperature rises, and at temps like 80, you could lose all the heat you gain.

    Pool panels are designed to work best in warm air, since their is less loss from the panels themselves. The best way to verify whether water is flowing through your panels is to feel them while the sun is shining on them. They will be cool if they are heating the pool, and warm if they are not.
    TFP Moderator
    20K Gallon 20X36 Vinyl Inground
    Hayward S244T Sand Filter with 1HP Whisperflo Pump. Liquidator C-201 and Solar Heat

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    susa's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Deep South

    Re: Just bought a house w/pool and solar!

    here are specs and manual

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    Re: Just bought a house w/pool and solar!

    thanks for the help so far!

    Interesting, so the actuator is a hayward psa24. I'm definitely not seeing any physical movement no matter what i do with the controller or toggle switch. I will try to change it manually, but which way should the handle be facing if i want water to run through the panels? It seems i can't attach a photo yet, so i'll try to explain what i've got...

    We have the main pipe coming out of the filter. There is then a line which breaks off towards the panels. I'm assuming this is taking the water to the roof? Just about a foot further on the main line from the filter is another pipe coming in, which i'm assuming is the water returning from the roof? At this junction, sits a valve and actuator (the psa24). Right now, the actuator is mounted above the return line (perpendicular to the main line from the filter) and the lever on the actuator is positioned 180degrees from that (also perpendicular to the main line from filter). In addition, both lines taking water to and from the roof have valves on them, which appear to be open (handle is parallel to the pipe). I'm onfusing myself now, but hopefully that makes sense to you guys...

    Does it sound like things are normal? if so, maybe the panels just aren't getting enough heat yet? imo, it seems like the water should have heated up some yesterday if things are right... but again, i'm 100% new to all of this...

    And checking the panels for heat is a good idea. I will definitely do that when i have a chance.

    again thank you =)
    ~25k gallon plaster in ground pool - solar panel heater - pentair pump and filter

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    JesseJames's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2009

    Re: Just bought a house w/pool and solar!

    I have six 4X10 panels on the roof. It takes a few days to get the water temp into the 90s.
    13K Gal., Plaster, SWG, Intellichlor IC 20, Sta-Rite 1 HP Pump, Sta-Rite PLM 300 Filter, Pentair LED, Solar, Screened Enclosure, Great White, TF-100

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    Re: Just bought a house w/pool and solar!

    Ahhhh got it. So the whole handle is supposed to move, that is definitely not happening with mine.

    okay, so i can't display an image, but here is a link to a pic on my flickr...

    it's a mess right now but the front control box is doing nothing, as is the black pump behind the pentair. I guess they used to run the vacuum, but no longer. The gl-235 is hooked up to the labeled timer and to the actuator. The filter is just left of the picture. You can see the two pipes running along the brick wall which go to the house/roof. Should i be able to take the actuator off the valve and see what's going on there or will i have a fountain shooting in the air!?
    ~25k gallon plaster in ground pool - solar panel heater - pentair pump and filter

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    Re: Just bought a house w/pool and solar!

    okay, thanks to JesseJames' picture, i just realized something. The way the valve is positioned right now on my setup, "closed" is facing the (what i'm assuming is return pipe from the panels). To get that water flowing to the pool, shouldn't "closed" be facing the filter?
    ~25k gallon plaster in ground pool - solar panel heater - pentair pump and filter

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    mas985's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Pleasanton, CA

    Re: Just bought a house w/pool and solar!

    From the picture, the valve looks to be set so that solar is bypassed (i.e. handle is toward the left).

    Also, there is a small swith underneath the actuator which not only turns in on or off but also reverse the leads. So one thing you can do is toggle the switch back and forth to see if it is working at all. If it doesn't move, either the actuator is broken or the control board is not delivering power.
    Hydraulics 101; Pump Ed 101; Pump and 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, ThePoolCleaner

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    Re: Just bought a house w/pool and solar!

    great, that's what i was hoping to hear about the valve position! also, the valves on the two pipes running to and from the roof were closed.

    the switch is doing nothing, so i definitely need to find out whether it's broken or if it's indeed not getting power like you mentioned. i found the manual for goldline actuators, so i'm hoping the instructions are similar to the hayward i have. wow, i think i'm slowly getting this stuff down lol
    ~25k gallon plaster in ground pool - solar panel heater - pentair pump and filter

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