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Thread: Right pump for my pool? What about my current filter size?

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    Right pump for my pool? What about my current filter size?

    I think in an effort to save me a few bucks my pool contractor chose the wrong pool pump for me. He recommended a new 1.5hp single speed pump which he sold me for $450 installed. I'm thinking I should have spent twice that amount or more on a variable speed pump and I'm interested in your opinions. I'm willing to take a hit on the "new" pool pump and replace it if that's the right answer.

    My remodeled pool is only 9000 gallons (give or take) after the remodel. In case you're interested, we filled in the deep end to make it a party pool and created a swim-out in the shallow end and added a bench seat which significantly reduced the volume of the pool.

    Based on 9000 gallons, it would seem that a very small pump would be ideal, but we also put in some water features which require significant water flow when we want to use them, so I think I need a bigger pump - the combination of low water volume and lots of water features leads me to believe that for the best efficiency and electrical savings I should have a variable speed pump... No features turned on/not home - low speed. All features turned on/using pool - higher speed.

    We have the following:

    Intake is one main drain and one skimmer - two 1.5" pipes
    Two returns on a single 1.5" pipe
    Three therapy jets at the seat on a single 2" pipe
    Two deck jets on a single 1.5" pipe
    Two bubblers on a single 1.5" pipe
    One suction side pool cleaner connection on a 1.5" pipe

    I don't have enough flow to run all of the features simultaneously with my current configuration, but when the pool is just circulating water and the features are not being used it seems that I have significant overkill with a 1.5 hp single speed motor going.

    I'd like the ability to run the pool pump 24/7 and not cost me a fortune (so I can enjoy the bubblers and/or deck jets anytime I'm home, plus I have heard that water quality is better with 24/7 circulation (thoughts?)).

    Ideally, I'd like my minimum operating speed to be running the two returns and the two bubblers (even if the bubblers are only barely breaking the top of the water). At the opposite end of the spectrum, I'd like to be able to be sitting on the bench enjoying the therapy jets while the bubblers are on full blast and the deck jets are operating as well (lots of flow required).

    I mentioned the pipe sizes because I'm not sure if I have enough intake for the output I would need regardless of pump and filter size. At this point we're not re-plumbing the pool itself.

    Also, is my pool filter right-sized? It's an older Hayward Sand Filter - 2.64 cu ft - 60gpm on 1.5" pipe. Freshly backwashed it's currently running around 21psi. It seems to me that I have a bottleneck here with only 1.5" pipe. (Let's not digress into a flame war about sand filters please. I really like sand filters personally and it's what I intend to keep using even if I have to replace it).

    So... what pump would you have for this pool? Pentair IntelliFlo? Hayward EcoStar? Something else?

    I've actually asked multiple questions here. Which pump? Is my sand filter big enough? Do I have big enough pipe to run all my water features simultaneously regardless of what pump I have? Is water quality really better if I run 24/7? -- But the MAIN question is the pump.

    Thanks!!!

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    4knights's Avatar
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    Re: Right pump for my pool? What about my current filter si

    New to the pool thing as well but am installing mine this week. My pool is 14300 gallons and I'm using a full rated 1hp pump. I could use a 3/4hp but went a little bigger for future deck jet/waterfall and slide. (spa is separate box type hot tub next to the house) too far to run in the snow if the hot tub was near the pool. Make sure your filter is sized for the pool and the pump. Most folks told me for my size pool and pump I needed 3.1 CuFt sand filter so I got the Triton II. Nothing is installed yet but will be by next Monday if my back and will stays strong!
    Ron- Kansas. IG fiberglass, Riviera 30 Freeform 13600 gallons,
    EasyTouch 4 w/IC20 SWCG, Pentair Whisperflo 1hp, 2 speed 220 pump, Hayward ProGrid 4820 DE filter using Eco Klean instead of DE, 2 Savi Melody 12v 5 color LEDs, Raypack 266k btu millivolt heater, Arctic Armour Mesh custom safety cover (Total self Install) TF-100 test kit w/Magic stir.

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    linen's Avatar
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    Re: Right pump for my pool? What about my current filter si

    Welcome to tfp, travelrider

    What is your pump maker/model number?

    Do you have any water features such as fountains, waterfalls, etc.?

    Most likely a 1.5 hp pump is over sized for you pool, filter, and plumbing.

    For your 9000 gallon pool, we would recommend a minimum of 1.7 sq. ft. sand filter, but bigger is usually better, so your 2.64 should be fine.
    TFP Expert who uses Pool School and my TF100 test kit along with PoolMath for my: Round 11K gallon AGP with deep end, 20" sand filter, Matrix 1hp 2spd, 6 2ftX20ft solar panels (and solar cover!), Intex SWCG (copper bars disconnected) and a Rubadub hot tub (chlorine). The SLAM process is not finished until: 1. CC < 0.5 ppm, 2. An OCLT < 1.0 ppm and, 3. The water is crystal clear.

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    Re: Right pump for my pool? What about my current filter si

    Hi, thanks for the reply. Yes, we have features that require some extra water flow which is why I was considering a multi-speed pump...

    Three therapy jets (Jacuzzi style jets)
    Two deck jets
    Two bubblers

    It seems to me that a low speed on the pump would be ideal for normal filtration but that I might need to run it at 1.5 to 2hp in order to enjoy all the features simultaneously. Thoughts on that would be greatly appreciated...

    Right now, I have a Sta-Rite 1.5hp single speed 230v pump, but I'm thinking about swapping it out.

    Thanks!

    Quote Originally Posted by linen
    Welcome to tfp, travelrider

    What is your pump maker/model number?

    Do you have any water features such as fountains, waterfalls, etc.?

    Most likely a 1.5 hp pump is over sized for you pool, filter, and plumbing.

    For your 9000 gallon pool, we would recommend a minimum of 1.7 sq. ft. sand filter, but bigger is usually better, so your 2.64 should be fine.

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    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: Right pump for my pool? What about my current filter si

    For your size pool, we would recommend at least a 1.9 sqft sand filter ... so you are golden there. You do have to make sure that your pump is large enough to adequately backwash it though.

    I think your cheapest option regarding the pump which would save you most of the electrical cost (how much do you pay per kW?), would be replacing the motor (keep the wet end) with a 2-speed motor likely around the 1.5HP size. That way you can leave it on low all the time and then manually flip it on to high when you want to turn on any features or backwashing, etc. Certainly a VS would be more flexible, but it will also cost you triple what a 2-speed motor alone will cost.

    You have not told us how the current pump is working for you. Does it have enough flow to run what you want how you want at the same time? If not, you obviously would like larger which will cost more to run and as you state might be somewhat limited by the plumbing. But, running everything at the same time just may not be possible with a single pump setup.

    BTW ... we do not get in flame wars here
    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!

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    Re: Right pump for my pool? What about my current filter si

    Thanks for all the help. With taxes, I'm paying around $0.15/kWh. Not the worst in the country but certainly not the cheapest. Do you think a variable speed like a VS or Ecostar will pay for itself in a reasonable period of time?

    And, since my Pool Contractor sold me the single speed without any conversation about other options, he agreed to take it back once my replacement shows up, so I can get a full refund on the other one even if I buy my replacement elsewhere... He didn't mark up the pump from his cost.

    Quote Originally Posted by jblizzle
    I think your cheapest option regarding the pump which would save you most of the electrical cost (how much do you pay per kW?), would be replacing the motor (keep the wet end) with a 2-speed motor likely around the 1.5HP size. That way you can leave it on low all the time and then manually flip it on to high when you want to turn on any features or backwashing, etc. Certainly a VS would be more flexible, but it will also cost you triple what a 2-speed motor alone will cost.

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    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: Right pump for my pool? What about my current filter si

    We usually say that your power needs to be over about $0.21/kW for the variable to make sense from that perspective. But they are more flexible if you have a lot of different water flow needs.

    A 2 speed will cost you about half what the variable will and get most of the power savings. But it may not be adjustable enough for all your different options. Still sure running everything at once will work with your plumbing.

    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!

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