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Thread: Swimming in an Intex pool while electricity is hooked up

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    crookm11's Avatar
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    Swimming in an Intex pool while electricity is hooked up

    Hi everyone,

    I have read on the forum that you should not swim in an Intex pool with the electricity hooked up and running. Why is that? Any insite on this would be great.

    I want to make sure myself and the family is safe.

    Mark Crook
    13,500 Gallon 24' x 52" Intex Ultra Frame
    Intex Sand Filter and Pump, Intex SWG (All hard PVC plumbed)
    TFTestKit-100---Pool School---The Pool Calculator
    Location: Copperas Cove, Texas --- My Pool Build---Useful Links for Intex Pool Owners

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: Swimming in an Intex pool while electricity is hooked up

    It varies with the specific model. Some of the less expensive pumps don't have all the safety systems (either double insulation or bonding) that the more expensive pumps have and so are not considered safe for someone to be in the pool while the pump is on because of the small chance of electrocution.
    19K gal, vinyl, 1/2 HP WhisperFlo pump, 200 sqft cartridge filter, AutoPilot Digital SWG, Dolphin Dynamic cleaning robot
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    Mod Squad Bama Rambler's Avatar
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    Re: Swimming in an Intex pool while electricity is hooked up

    As Jason said, it's either that they're not designed with the systems in place or they just haven't gone through the process of having them certified. It makes no difference either way.

    If you look at the manual there's a statement to that effect. Here's the statement from the manuals.
    • Do not operate this product when the pool is occupied.[/*:m:100603m1]


    I've looked at three different manuals and they all say the same thing.
    Dave J. TFP Moderator
    24' x 52" Round AGP. 2hp/¼hp SPL Power-Flo 2-speed pump. 200sqft Waterway Cartridge Filter. 45MHP2(3GPD) Stenner Peristaltic Pump
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    crookm11's Avatar
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    Re: Swimming in an Intex pool while electricity is hooked up

    Thanks for the replies,

    If any pump equipment is certified to UL AGP standards would that make them safe to run while the pool is occupied?
    Could the warning be because of possible entrapment from the suction?

    No trying to create any problems just trying to find out how a "Pool" company could sell electrical items for water and not be safe.

    Mark Crook
    13,500 Gallon 24' x 52" Intex Ultra Frame
    Intex Sand Filter and Pump, Intex SWG (All hard PVC plumbed)
    TFTestKit-100---Pool School---The Pool Calculator
    Location: Copperas Cove, Texas --- My Pool Build---Useful Links for Intex Pool Owners

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    Mod Squad Bama Rambler's Avatar
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    Re: Swimming in an Intex pool while electricity is hooked up

    I just looked at the manual for just the salt water system with no pump and it has the same warning, so I don't think entrapment is it.
    Dave J. TFP Moderator
    24' x 52" Round AGP. 2hp/¼hp SPL Power-Flo 2-speed pump. 200sqft Waterway Cartridge Filter. 45MHP2(3GPD) Stenner Peristaltic Pump
    Pool School ----- Pool Math ----- TF-Test Kit

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: Swimming in an Intex pool while electricity is hooked up

    Intex pools are all skimmer only, and skimmers are not normally considered entrapment risks.
    19K gal, vinyl, 1/2 HP WhisperFlo pump, 200 sqft cartridge filter, AutoPilot Digital SWG, Dolphin Dynamic cleaning robot
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    cubbybeave08's Avatar
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    Re: Swimming in an Intex pool while electricity is hooked up

    I think as stated earlier it has to do with bonding and stray currents. In a regular pool you can run the pump and swim at the same time because when the pump motor is bonded to the pool it creates a (for lack of a better term) loop for the current. If there were to be a short or something where the ground outside the pool becomes electified, you can get shocked when that electricity passes into the water. Or if you step out of the pool it can happen. If the motor is bonded to the pool the current becomes equlized inside and out and minimizes the risk for shock.

    Most intex pumps are run by an extension cord plugged into an outside oulet or run off an extension cord...There may not be a GFSI anywhere on the line. Thus you open yourself up to danger of shock by operating this pump while in the pool. I would not chance it.
    Beave
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    crookm11's Avatar
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    Re: Swimming in an Intex pool while electricity is hooked up

    Quote Originally Posted by cubbybeave08
    I think as stated earlier it has to do with bonding and stray currents. In a regular pool you can run the pump and swim at the same time because when the pump motor is bonded to the pool it creates a (for lack of a better term) loop for the current. If there were to be a short or something where the ground outside the pool becomes electified, you can get shocked when that electricity passes into the water. Or if you step out of the pool it can happen. If the motor is bonded to the pool the current becomes equlized inside and out and minimizes the risk for shock.

    Most intex pumps are run by an extension cord plugged into an outside oulet or run off an extension cord...There may not be a GFSI anywhere on the line. Thus you open yourself up to danger of shock by operating this pump while in the pool. I would not chance it.
    Thanks for the reply,

    I understand bonding and grounding and sinse these units don't have a bonding lug they are only UL certified for use with "Storable" pools and GFCI recepticals are required. So from what I'm reading is that as long as the Intex equipment has GFCI protection inline on the cord (which the sand filter/pump combo does) and or plugged in to a GFCI receptical then they would be fine?
    So could Intex be warning people not to use there equipment because people might use a NON GFCI receptical and not know any better? I certanly would not want that liability on my company.
    Mark Crook
    13,500 Gallon 24' x 52" Intex Ultra Frame
    Intex Sand Filter and Pump, Intex SWG (All hard PVC plumbed)
    TFTestKit-100---Pool School---The Pool Calculator
    Location: Copperas Cove, Texas --- My Pool Build---Useful Links for Intex Pool Owners

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: Swimming in an Intex pool while electricity is hooked up

    Code requires a permanent pool pump to either be double insulated or bonded. I wonder if they are double insulated or not.
    19K gal, vinyl, 1/2 HP WhisperFlo pump, 200 sqft cartridge filter, AutoPilot Digital SWG, Dolphin Dynamic cleaning robot
    Creator of PoolMath and Pool Calculator. Other handy links: Support this site, TF Test Kits, Pool School

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    crookm11's Avatar
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    Re: Swimming in an Intex pool while electricity is hooked up

    Without cutting my cord to see I'm not sure but the UL listing that is on the pump and the SWG says it meets the criteria by being double insulated and having a 25' cord that is grounded at the plug. The pump also has a GFCI circut on the cord at the plug.
    Mark Crook
    13,500 Gallon 24' x 52" Intex Ultra Frame
    Intex Sand Filter and Pump, Intex SWG (All hard PVC plumbed)
    TFTestKit-100---Pool School---The Pool Calculator
    Location: Copperas Cove, Texas --- My Pool Build---Useful Links for Intex Pool Owners

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: Swimming in an Intex pool while electricity is hooked up

    If it is double insulated and has a GFCI built in, it satisfies code requirements. So the comment in the manual might just be to provide some additional legal protection. Or it might simply still be there from when they were not UL listed.
    19K gal, vinyl, 1/2 HP WhisperFlo pump, 200 sqft cartridge filter, AutoPilot Digital SWG, Dolphin Dynamic cleaning robot
    Creator of PoolMath and Pool Calculator. Other handy links: Support this site, TF Test Kits, Pool School

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    cubbybeave08's Avatar
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    Re: Swimming in an Intex pool while electricity is hooked up

    Quote Originally Posted by crookm11
    Quote Originally Posted by cubbybeave08
    I think as stated earlier it has to do with bonding and stray currents. In a regular pool you can run the pump and swim at the same time because when the pump motor is bonded to the pool it creates a (for lack of a better term) loop for the current. If there were to be a short or something where the ground outside the pool becomes electified, you can get shocked when that electricity passes into the water. Or if you step out of the pool it can happen. If the motor is bonded to the pool the current becomes equlized inside and out and minimizes the risk for shock.

    Most intex pumps are run by an extension cord plugged into an outside oulet or run off an extension cord...There may not be a GFSI anywhere on the line. Thus you open yourself up to danger of shock by operating this pump while in the pool. I would not chance it.
    Thanks for the reply,

    I understand bonding and grounding and sinse these units don't have a bonding lug they are only UL certified for use with "Storable" pools and GFCI recepticals are required. So from what I'm reading is that as long as the Intex equipment has GFCI protection inline on the cord (which the sand filter/pump combo does) and or plugged in to a GFCI receptical then they would be fine?
    So could Intex be warning people not to use there equipment because people might use a NON GFCI receptical and not know any better? I certanly would not want that liability on my company.

    I would guess that is exactly why...I know I didn't...I just ran an extension cord out to the pool and plugged it in. When I learned about bonding and GFCIs when I put my big boy pool in...I was like...holy ****...that intex wasn't really safe...I know that INTEX equipment doesn't have any real safety measures in them...At least not the one I had which was 5 years old when I bought my AGP 4 years ago.
    Beave
    Aqua Leader 24ft Round AG Wil-Bar Influence w/54 inch walls 13,500 gallons
    Swimline J-Blue Opal Liner, 1 4X20 Fafco Solar Bear Solar Heater
    Hayward 2 HP Swim Pro Voyager Pump Micro 150 with 4 way timer
    Swim Pro Voyager Filtration System with Hayward ABS Pearl wide mouth skimmer

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    cubbybeave08's Avatar
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    Re: Swimming in an Intex pool while electricity is hooked up

    Quote Originally Posted by JasonLion
    If it is double insulated and has a GFCI built in, it satisfies code requirements. So the comment in the manual might just be to provide some additional legal protection. Or it might simply still be there from when they were not UL listed.

    Certainly seems safer than the one I had years ago!!!
    Beave
    Aqua Leader 24ft Round AG Wil-Bar Influence w/54 inch walls 13,500 gallons
    Swimline J-Blue Opal Liner, 1 4X20 Fafco Solar Bear Solar Heater
    Hayward 2 HP Swim Pro Voyager Pump Micro 150 with 4 way timer
    Swim Pro Voyager Filtration System with Hayward ABS Pearl wide mouth skimmer

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    JulieLeo's Avatar
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    Re: Swimming in an Intex pool while electricity is hooked up

    Ok...I'm about to install the pump/swg that I got from Walmart last year. Now the pool is a good 50' away from the house...last year we ran the skimmer pump on a GFCI extension cord, but we unplugged it before we got into the pool. I don't think we can run the new pump/filter on that extension cord this year. I'm I correct? With Leo unemployed at the moment we don't have the cash to install a dedicated outlet at the pool to connect the pump and the light to. I'm sure it will cost hundreds of dollars for that to happen. Guess we will be using the skimmer filter again this year until we can get the new outlet installed. Bummer!
    12'x36" / 2100 gal/ AG / Krystal Clear Model 603 filter cartridge pump ( cleans surprisingly well for a $35 pump!)

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