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Thread: Suggestion about upgrading pool

  1. Back To Top    #1

    Suggestion about upgrading pool

    My son and his family have recently bought an Atlanta house built in the 80s with an 20K IG pool. It is a pool/spa combination with spillover. The 1 1/2HP filter pump is not working; the sand filter is fairly new; the Polaris booster pump is old but works; the spa blower works; and, the heater is an old Raypak Gemini that I don't yet know whether or not it works.

    I have purchased on the Internet and just received, but not yet installed (plan to start on Monday):
    One Hayward 2 speed 1 1/2 HP super pump
    Prologic Controller P-PL-4 with SWG, RF base for wireless remote, handheld remote, and a kit to convert the 3rd valve relay to a fifth high voltage relay
    Two 3 way actuator/valve combos to control the positions of the pool/spa supply and returns

    The existing PVC piping is like spagetti. In my opinion has many more elbows and turns than are necessary. I plan on simplifying some of that to reduce head losses.

    I am not sure what to do about the heater. If it works, should I try to tie it in to the controller? If it doesn't, can anyone recommend a new one that is durable in a salt environment and that doesn't have a lot of built-in sophisticated controls since I would be using the PL-P-4 and not the heater to control the spa and pool temperatures.

    I am a retired engineer and have had my own pool for more than 30 years, but I am far from an expert in pools. I am competent to do the required plumbing and electrical work. Any suggestions about the heater or other aspects of this project would be greatly appreciated.

    The only other problem is a lot of scale buildup on the tiles at the waterline, especially below the spillover. Haven't tried to remove any of it yet, but I have read that it takes a lot of time and "elbow grease".

    Thanks in advance for your help

  2. Back To Top    #2

    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Denton, TX

    Re: Suggestion about upgrading pool

    Welcome to TFP!

    If you can work with PVC and are familiar with head loss issues and such, you are ahead of the curve for sure. As for the heater, I'm not sure how well a heater from the 1980's would work for you now. You might go ahead and price some new ones out. Have you considered a solar heating system?

    Cleaning waterline tile is a tough job. There are several different cleaners out there made for this purpose or you could use a stiff brush and a 10:1 concentration of water and 31.45% HCl to clean it.

  3. Back To Top    #3

    Re: Suggestion about upgrading pool

    I would love to do solar, but the house is surrounded by too many very tall trees and there is no practical place to put solar panels.
    The house and pool house have steep sloped roofs with beautiful large fiberglass/metal faux shake shingles and wouldn't look as nice with solar panels.

  4. Back To Top    #4

    Join Date
    May 2011
    Orange County, CA

    Re: Suggestion about upgrading pool

    How's the pool lighting? Is it GFCI protected? When we purchased our house a couple of years ago, our pool lighting circuit was not GFCI protected, and was 120V (with one light in the spa and one in the pool). So, I immediately changed the wiring to include a GFCI. Recently, this tripped because water leaked into one of the fixtures. Thinking about this a bit further made me realize the advantage of 12V lighting, so we now have two LED-based 12V fixtures. At a minimum, get that lighting circuit on GFCI ASAP.
    38K in ground pool with attached spa. Current equipment: Easytouch 8 (521150) with IC-60 SWCG with web control by Autelis, 1x Pentair IntelliFlo 011018 pump (for filter), 1x Pentair 2HP WhisperFlo pump (for waterfall), 2X Pentair IntelliBrite 5G 12V lights, Pentair MiniMax400 NG Heater, Pentair SMBW2060 DE filter. Zodiac Barracuda MX8 cleaner on dedicated cleaner line. Lighting/home automation controlled by Insteon/ISY-99i.

  5. Back To Top    #5

    Re: Suggestion about upgrading pool

    There is one light in the spa and two in the pool. I haven't checked out the lights yet, but I noticed two GFI breakers in the panel in the pool house. My guess is that one of them provides power to the lights. I'll be checking that out in the next couple of days. Thanks for pointing this out.

    My first priority is to get the filter pump running. The entire surface of the pool is covered in Bradbury Pear blossoms. Need to get that cleaned up and the water circulating as soon as possible before algae starts to develop. It is starting to warm up in Atlanta. The pool water today is pretty clear. My son's pool service has vacuumed it once a week using an external vacuum that they bring to the pool..

    I located the heater model #. It is a Raypak 403A-WHG that was only manufactured between 1984 and 1986. Looks like it has 399,000 input BTUs and 299,200m output BTUs. We need to update it, but I am curious if it still works. There are only two controls. One is a temperature knob and the other is a toggle switch. Not able to find a manual, so I assume the toggle switch is just an off/on switch. I'll have to try and light the pilot. When we replace it, I need to research what is the best value for the money - to get a CU, SS, or titanium tubesheet.

    One thing I had never seen done before is that the waste from the filter can be directed into to a floor drain or to a rolled up flat hose. Do you all think that this was just a way for the previous owner to be able to use the pool water for watering instead of dumping it down the drain or is there some other possible explanation?

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