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Thread: Freeze protection for 240V no neutral wire

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    Freeze protection for 240V no neutral wire

    I have an old Intermatic electronic timer which I believe is equivalent to the current P1102ME timer. It has two wires for the 240V power, two wires for the pump, and a screw to attach the green ground wire. No neutral wire.

    I wanted to add freeze protection (it freezes a few hours a night for about 3-4 weeks of the year here) so I bought an Intermatic PF1103T, but found it requires a neutral wire. What is my best course of action? In six months or so I plan to install a two-speed pump (for energy savings) and a salt water chlorine generator, so maybe it doesn't make sense to be spending any money on this.

    Here's what I've thought of:

    1) Have an electrician run a neutral wire to the timer (should the nearby panel have a neutral available so it's a simple job to run the wire?)

    2) Sell the PF1103T on Ebay and buy a PF1102T (is this compatible with 240V w/no neutral wire?)

    3) Don't bother because the equipment has survived nearly 20 years w/o freeze protection (I just program the pump to run at the coldest part of the night) and I'm planning a bunch of upgrades this year which will probably include some automation.
    15k IG gunite w/attached spa, Pentair VS-3050 pump, PacFab Mytilus 150 cartridge filter, The PoolCleaner 2X suction cleaner, Liquidator still in box in garage

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    I suspect you are misunderstanding something. In a 120v installation you would have a single hot wire, a neutral wire, and a ground. In a 240v installation you would have two hot wires and a ground. Because the PF1103T works with both 120v and 240v it might have a terminal labeled neutral but that labeling should only apply to 120v applications. Only a circuit breaker panel would normally have two hot wires, a neutral, and a ground.
    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

  3. Back To Top    #3
    That's how my current timer is wired (240V uses two hot wires but not neutral). However, the P1103MT specifically states that the neutral wire must be used even for 240V applications. It says this right on the front page, and says to use the P1102T if you're using it in a 240V application and don't have the neutral wire available. Here is a table from their catalog.



    The P1102T doesn't have the asterisk next to it, so it only uses the two hot wires.

    I can scan the front page of the P1103MT manual if you'd like to see it.
    15k IG gunite w/attached spa, Pentair VS-3050 pump, PacFab Mytilus 150 cartridge filter, The PoolCleaner 2X suction cleaner, Liquidator still in box in garage

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    PondScum,

    If you are going to install a two-speed pump next year, you will also need some kind of timer that will switch between the two speeds. If you did not need freeze protection, I would recommend the mechanical timer Intermatic T10604R, which would cost somewhere between $150 and $200 on the Internet. I can not find any mechanical Intermatic timers which can handle both two speed motors and freeze protection, but it is possible that I am overlooking something.

    You would have to upgrade to a digital timer Intermatic PE15300F in order to get two-speed motor control and freeze protection. This unit comes with a freeze probe and should cost between $360 and $440 on the Internet.

    Edit: I didn't see your post before writing mine. It would be great if you could scan the wiring schematic - I can not seem to find this wiring schematic at the Intermatic website.

    Titanium
    24,000 gallon inground freeform pool/spa circa 1983 (113 ft perimeter, 625 sq ft) with 350 gallon attached spill-over spa
    2007 2 HP, three-phase Hayward TriStar pump which is powered by an Ikeric VS-200 variable speed drive system
    1983 Laars XE Pool/Spa Heater Type ES 400,000 BTU, 1998 Hayward Super Star-Clear C-4000 cartridge filter (400 sq ft, 4 separate cartridges)
    1998 Polaris 380 pressure-side cleaner w/ 3/4 HP booster pump
    One skimmer :( and one PoolSkim :), One Supervision Galaxy LED pool lamp, Second story solar panels
    Hayward/GoldLine AquaLogic PS4 (replaced 1983 vintage dual circuit Intermatic timer)

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Very curious. The digital section must be 120v only and they are using the neutral and one of the hot wires to power the timer. I wish they had manuals on their web site.

    To get back to your original three questions:

    1) Any panel with circuit breakers in it is nearly sure to have a neutral wire. Likewise, a junction box containing wires for both 120v and 240v circuits is nearly sure to have a neutral wire. If there is room in the conduit and good access then it is easy to run another wire. However, there can be situations where it is very difficult to add an additional wire, particularly buried conduit that is already full. If the wire run is a couple of feet this will probably be very simple. If it is from indoors to outdoors through underground conduit it might get very complicated.

    2) Getting a PF1102T instead is also a good choice. If you sell your PF1103T and are planning to do the install yourself this is probably the least expensive approach. If you are having an electrician do the install in any case then running the wire might be simpler (depending on your situation).

    3) Many of the automation systems include freeze protection.
    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

  6. Back To Top    #6

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    PondScum,

    A less expensive alternate for your two-speed motor and freeze protection might be the Intermatic PE153F, which can be found on the Internet for between $270 and $350. This is considerably less expensive than the Intermatic PE15300F ($360-$440) that I mentioned in my previous post.

    Titanium
    24,000 gallon inground freeform pool/spa circa 1983 (113 ft perimeter, 625 sq ft) with 350 gallon attached spill-over spa
    2007 2 HP, three-phase Hayward TriStar pump which is powered by an Ikeric VS-200 variable speed drive system
    1983 Laars XE Pool/Spa Heater Type ES 400,000 BTU, 1998 Hayward Super Star-Clear C-4000 cartridge filter (400 sq ft, 4 separate cartridges)
    1998 Polaris 380 pressure-side cleaner w/ 3/4 HP booster pump
    One skimmer :( and one PoolSkim :), One Supervision Galaxy LED pool lamp, Second story solar panels
    Hayward/GoldLine AquaLogic PS4 (replaced 1983 vintage dual circuit Intermatic timer)

  7. Back To Top    #7
    Thanks for all of the advice. I'm leaning towards selling the timer and not changing anything now, and taking care of it when I install some equipment upgrades six months from now.

    Here is a link to the scanned manual: PF1103MT.pdf
    15k IG gunite w/attached spa, Pentair VS-3050 pump, PacFab Mytilus 150 cartridge filter, The PoolCleaner 2X suction cleaner, Liquidator still in box in garage

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    PondScum,

    Thanks for taking the time to scan the Intermatic manual. Darn thing really does need a neutral! I know that you are going to wait awhile to upgrade the equipment, and as JasonLion mentioned above, adding a neutral could be childs play or could be exceedingly difficult all depending on your particular circumstances. We would probably need a photo of your electrical equipment at your equipment pad in order to gauge how easy or how hard of a job this would be.

    SeanB,

    Since Intermatic doesn't seem to have the PF1103MT manual at their website, is there anywhere to store this pdf at TFP for future reference?


    Titanium
    24,000 gallon inground freeform pool/spa circa 1983 (113 ft perimeter, 625 sq ft) with 350 gallon attached spill-over spa
    2007 2 HP, three-phase Hayward TriStar pump which is powered by an Ikeric VS-200 variable speed drive system
    1983 Laars XE Pool/Spa Heater Type ES 400,000 BTU, 1998 Hayward Super Star-Clear C-4000 cartridge filter (400 sq ft, 4 separate cartridges)
    1998 Polaris 380 pressure-side cleaner w/ 3/4 HP booster pump
    One skimmer :( and one PoolSkim :), One Supervision Galaxy LED pool lamp, Second story solar panels
    Hayward/GoldLine AquaLogic PS4 (replaced 1983 vintage dual circuit Intermatic timer)

  9. Back To Top    #9
    I received the PF1102T/MT manual from Intermatic. Their web site shows a picture of a mechanical timer on the page for the PF1102T, but in fact, it is an electronic timer. I would have bought this timer in the first place had their web site displayed the correct picture.

    PF1102T/MT Users Manual
    15k IG gunite w/attached spa, Pentair VS-3050 pump, PacFab Mytilus 150 cartridge filter, The PoolCleaner 2X suction cleaner, Liquidator still in box in garage

  10. Back To Top    #10
    JasonLion's Avatar
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    That is the one I am familiar with, the one that seems to be most popular. I hadn't run into the 1103 before except in the catalog. Curiously, they show the right picture for the PF1102MT, which is the same timer without the case. In some parts of their site they also list the PF1103T as 120v only, so sadly you need to be a little wary of anything you see at their site.
    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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