Become a TFP Supporter Pool Math Forum Rules Pool School
Results 1 to 17 of 17

Thread: Auto-Fill: Must Have or Pain in the Rear?

  1. Back To Top    #1

    Auto-Fill: Must Have or Pain in the Rear?

    I am one day into my second pool build and we have spec'd in an autofill because we would burn up pumps when we leave on vacation with our old pool when the water level got too low. My PB says he hates them because they are unreliable. I was hoping a few experts might weigh in on the topic and help me make a call to install it or leave it out. It's "free" in the contract so it's not an issue of cost but of maintenance and reliability.

    Thanks!
    Jason
    New pool under construction...

  2. Back To Top    #2

    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Location
    Greentown, IN
    Posts
    914

    Re: Auto-Fill: Must Have or Pain in the Rear?

    I'm by no means an expert and don't have one myself. I would personally think that if it is a "free" option that I would be inclined to get it and try it, if you don't like it, you could always choose later to not use it... but would cost you later if you decide you want to try it and didn't do it with install.
    Indiana, ABG 24'x52" Galveston by Blue Cascade (Craigslist buy w/part of deck included), 13,500 gallons, Intex SWG, solar panels mix 2, TF-100 test kit.

    Test kits compared
    Purchase test kits

  3. Back To Top    #3
    Richard320's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    San Dimas, CA (LA County)
    Posts
    18,768

    Re: Auto-Fill: Must Have or Pain in the Rear?

    Just have them install a valve somewhere so you can shut it off easily. Then you can try it, or just use it as a normal filler by opening the valve.
    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!

  4. Back To Top    #4

    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Location
    Richmond, Texas
    Posts
    594

    Re: Auto-Fill: Must Have or Pain in the Rear?

    I like mine. I was down at my brother in laws taking to him and his neighbor and they were both complaining about having to fill up their pools. I just smiled and said that is one thing I don't have to worry about. I went out of town for 10 days and never had to worry about it. Also the way mine is even if it broke I could just turn the valve off at the house and turn it on when I needed it. It seems pretty much a straight forward design and works well so far. It is just a float with a valve next to the pool in what almost looks like a skimmer.
    Approx 11K Gal. 10'X30' Semi free-form IG - 6 ' raised spa w/6 jets - 10' circle sun shelf with 1 bubbler - Waterfall - 3 / 1.5 HP pumps - Polaris 280 Cleaner - 3 Pentair Color LED Intellibrite Lights - Pentair 400K Master Temp - 2 Valve Actuators - 5 Fiberstar Mini Laminars - 1 Fiberstars 2004 Illuminator - 2 Skimmers - 6 Returns - Caribbean Blue Pebble Tech - 600+ sq ft kool decK - Auto Fill - 2 Boston Acoustics VOYA RK5 Outdoor Rock Speakers - 2 TIC Corporation TFS5CN 6.5-Inch 150-Watt Terra-Forms Rock Speakers - Apple Airport Express - 1 Awesome View.

  5. Back To Top    #5

    Re: Auto-Fill: Must Have or Pain in the Rear?

    Good call on the optionality. I'll get the valve control installed and see how it goes. I assume fixing a busted flap is like fixing it in the toilet?
    New pool under construction...

  6. Back To Top    #6
    lka674's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Location
    Williamson County, Texas
    Posts
    106

    Re: Auto-Fill: Must Have or Pain in the Rear?

    Our's was a pain in the rear until we replaced it with a Korky brand and it works like a charm and has for over a year now. Wouldn't do without it!
    Pool grand opening Sept 2010. 100% sun exposure. Beach entry with fountain, IG gunite pool, approx 11,000g. Hayward HK sand filter. Intelliflow VS 350 pump w/ max flow rate 160 gpm. Dolphin (cordless) M5 Liberty pool cleaner. The pool has waterfall at one end with a tanning ledge and a spa at the other end that has a spillway into the pool and there is a water shear falling from the pool equip wall into the spa. DH did a beautiful job of designing it himself!

  7. Back To Top    #7

    Re: Auto-Fill: Must Have or Pain in the Rear?

    I can speak from my experience only. I am happy that I've got the autofill. I am typically away during the week and can't regularly watch the water level. During one week when the pool got filled, but autofill was not connected, I got the water level very low (evaporation - live in Houston) and pump was sucking air at the skimmers.
    Now with autofill working - I am no longer worried when I am away.
    Autofill (the one that I have) seems to be very simple construction - similar to what you can find in the toilets. Toilet filling mechanisms seem to work fine for years, so I hope the pool autofill will be reliable as well
    NW Houston: 25K gunite pool & spa and pebble finish. Travertine deck.
    Pentair pumps: VS (pool); 2HP & 1.5HP (water features); booster pump
    400K gas heater; 520 cartridge filter; IntelliTouch + 8 function wireless

  8. Back To Top    #8
    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Location
    Tucson, AZ
    Posts
    37,389

    Re: Auto-Fill: Must Have or Pain in the Rear?

    Last year I paid to add an autofill when getting the pool resurfaced. Had one at my previous pool and after forgetting to turn off the hose a few times at this house, it was certainly worth adding.

    Mine had as ball valve at the house, but also a valve on the back flow preventer near the pool.

    Posted from my Droid with Tapatalk ... sorry if my response is short
    Jason, TFP Moderator
    18k IG pebblesheen pool, Hayward ProLogic P4 w/ T-15 SWG, Pentair 1HP 2-speed Superflo, Hayward 6020 DE filter
    500 sqft Heliocol solar panels, ThePoolCleaner, TF-100 test kit w/ SpeedStir
    Pool School + Test Kit + PoolMath = A TROUBLE FREE POOL
    If you found TFP helpful and we saved you money ... Become a TFP Supporter!

  9. Back To Top    #9

    Re: Auto-Fill: Must Have or Pain in the Rear?

    I don't have a true auto-fill with a valve, but I have what I think is a nice option: My PB plumbed in a 1/2" pvc pipe, flush with the side of the pool, almost right underneath the diving board. It's just a foot or so away from the overflow outlet. When I had my landscaping done, I had the irrigation guy hook that 1/2" pvc to my sprinkler system, and set it as a separate station on my sprinkler controller.

    I'm in North Texas, which has been recently annexed into the bowels of H-E-|_-|_ by Lucipher himself , and am running good-ole-reliable Station 23 three times a week for 13 minutes at a stretch. I do find that once or twice a month I go and manually run that station, just to top the pool off. My wife swears I do that just to freeze her out of the pool (it's well water - chilly!)
    25k gallon inground plaster with hayward pumps, waterfall, beach entry with 2 bubblers, deep-water seating bowl, diving board and attached spa with heater and blower = Heaven on Earth!

  10. Back To Top    #10

    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Youngsville NC
    Posts
    395

    Re: Auto-Fill: Must Have or Pain in the Rear?

    Must have !

    Many years ago I bought one that hangs over the edge of the pool, and it is fed by a garden hose. The workings look like an adapted toilet filler, but it works. A couple years ago, I left water in it when it got below freezing, and the ice expanding broke the PVC pipe it was made of. I replaced the PVC with PEX, and it's been fine ever since.

    We have a pretty good amount of evaporation, and having the pool filler means I can leave for a weekend or a week and I can be sure that the pool water level is at least enough (it doesn't do anything about removing excess water from rain).
    16x32 IG 19,000 gallons, Pentair 1.5 hp Energy Efficient Superflo pump (348024),vinyl liner, Chlorine dispenser, Hayward S-244T sand filter

  11. Back To Top    #11
    Hark's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    Phoenix, AZ
    Posts
    24

    Re: Auto-Fill: Must Have or Pain in the Rear?

    I have one on my pool and it is the same exact device that is used to fill a toilet tank. Works great as I can lose 1/2 to 3/4 of an inch of water a day in Phoenix. Only suggestion I would make is to connect the water line to your auto fill so it still runs if you turn your main water line to your house off. When I go on vacation, I like to shut the water off in the house but still need the pool autofill to work. (Have know people that have not done this and came back to a broken water pipe and a flooded house.)
    10,000gallon, IG Pebble Tec, Pentair Intelliflo VS+SVRS 3hp Variable Speed Pump
    Hayward Cart Filter C4025, Hayward Pool Vac Ultra, 1 vac line, 1 skimmer, 2 Main Drain, 3 returns, 2" plumbing
    TF100 Test Kit.

  12. Back To Top    #12

    Re: Auto-Fill: Must Have or Pain in the Rear?

    Get the levelor system, it's electronic, no sticky floats to worry about. But must be plumbed properly, using a static pipe is the best. Look them up on the web I think jandy reps them now.
    22,000 Gallon inground gunite
    Pentair Intelliflo pump
    Pentair tr-100 sand filter
    Pentair Minimax NT 400,000 BTU heater
    AquaRite chlorine generator
    AquaPC-On Point chemical controller

  13. Back To Top    #13

    Re: Auto-Fill: Must Have or Pain in the Rear?

    Thanks for all the responses. I am going with the autofill and checking with my PB on the brand/type.
    New pool under construction...

  14. Back To Top    #14

    Re: Auto-Fill: Must Have or Pain in the Rear?

    A quick update - we had the autofill installed but had to keep on the PB because the plumbers tried to tie into our soft water and not the main line before the softener. We're about a week or two out from being done so once we have some use of the atu-fill under our belts I'll post my thoughts on it.
    New pool under construction...

  15. Back To Top    #15

    TFP Guide

    chiefwej's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Location
    Tucson
    Posts
    2,853

    Re: Auto-Fill: Must Have or Pain in the Rear?

    I have an auto fill and I wish it was on my water softener. The calcium levels are very high here and the evaporation rate is insane. In the 6+ years I've had the pool, I have had to replace the float on the auto fill once. It's an option I wouldn't be without.
    chiefwej
    Tucson, AZ
    16x36 rectangular (19k) Pebble Tec play pool/spa, Pentair Intelliflo VS 011018, Super II 2hp (spa), Aqua Rite T-15 SWG, Pro Grid 60 DE, Hayward H400 & Heliocol Solar heating, A&A infloor system, fill water w/high CH and TA, 50 ppm borates,TF-100 test kit

  16. Back To Top    #16
    UnderWaterVanya's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    Mint Hill, NC
    Posts
    2,589

    Re: Auto-Fill: Must Have or Pain in the Rear?

    Quote Originally Posted by Texas Spartan
    A quick update - we had the autofill installed but had to keep on the PB because the plumbers tried to tie into our soft water and not the main line before the softener. We're about a week or two out from being done so once we have some use of the atu-fill under our belts I'll post my thoughts on it.
    What does your fill water chemistry look like (unsoftened vs. softened)? If you have high CH and/or high TA fill water I think you may regret not connecting to the softener.
    Inlaws Pool Boy since June 14th 2012, Pool built ~ 2003, In-Ground, 16'x32'
    13500 gal, Vinyl Liner, Fiberglass Slide, TF-100 Test Kit, Hayward 210T
    sand filter, A.O. Smith 1.5HP main pump motor (C48L2N134C1),
    Hayward SuperPump (model ?), Polaris 380 & PB4 Booster Pump

  17. Back To Top    #17

    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    Houston, Texas
    Posts
    413

    Re: Auto-Fill: Must Have or Pain in the Rear?

    Having the option would be great. Depending on the characteristics of your fill water, you may want to hold off on refilling prior to expected rains. I've had great luck this year with rain filling up my pool. My fill water is high in CH (150) and TA (220!!) so I love it when rain tops up my pool.
    9,200 gal. Gunite Luna Quartz French Grey pool with spill over spa, two fountains on tanning ledge (rarely used)
    Pentair Whisperflo 2HP, Pentair CCP Cartridge 420 Sq. Ft., Polaris 280 with booster pump
    Pentair EasyTouch 4, RayPak LoNox 266k Natural Gas heater, Aqua Rite SWCG T Cell 9, Borates, TF-100 test kit

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •