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Thread: Too much electricity to pool equipment

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    Too much electricity to pool equipment

    Our pump motor (Pentair Intellichor) went out. When it was replaced, the pump would not turn on due to a safety feature that will not allow the pump to run if there is too much electricity to the equipment. We have had Oncor out 2 different times to check the electricity voltage going to the pool equipment. Both times, the voltage is deemed to be within the allowed and safe range operated by Oncor. This has been going on for almost a month. Pool hasn't run since the end of October. Pool is just over a year old and still under warranty. Pool installer says it is an Oncor issue and Oncor says it is a pool installation issue.

    Has anyone else had a similar experience? How was it resolved?

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    Melt In The Sun's Avatar
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    Re: Too much electricity to pool equipment

    Welcome to TFP!
    Do you have a multimeter, so you can test the voltage yourself? It seems it should be a fairly simple issue to pin down. If the voltage is right, the pump (Intelliflo? not intellichlor) should still be under warranty and I don't see why the pool installer would resist replacing it.
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    Re: Too much electricity to pool equipment

    Thanks for your reply. Yes it is Intelliflo. While I don't have a multimeter, the voltage has been tested by pool installer and Oncor no less than 4 times. Voltage running from 240 to 256. Installer says that is too high for pool equipment, but Oncor says it is not. I'm now waiting to see what next the pool installer suggests we do.

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    Mod Squad JohnT's Avatar
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    Re: Too much electricity to pool equipment

    240 is dead on for standard US/Canadian two phase power, and the voltage tolerance for most suppliers is 5%, which means 228 to 252 is normal power. Most equipment is designed for 10% tolerance, but the intelliflo wants 230 with a 10% tolerance or 207 to 253.

    I think your power is fine and your installer doesn't know what they are doing.
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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: Too much electricity to pool equipment

    256 is technically out of range high, though by so little that it shouldn't matter. I can easily see that becoming a sticking point. It is plausible for the pump to get an over voltage alarm when voltage goes above 252/253/254 (depending on which standard you want to apply), and it is also plausible for the power company to say that they are "close enough" and refuse to adjust it.

    In my book they are both wrong, the IntelliFlo should tolerate that kind of tiny excursions outside the spec and the power company should step down the voltage just a little, since they are erring on the high side now and then and never on the low side. But I am hardly surprised if they both refuse to fix it.
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    Mod Squad Bama Rambler's Avatar
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    Re: Too much electricity to pool equipment

    I would plead with the power company to step the voltage down a bit. If they use 234 volts as they're standard voltage they're technically within 10% of that even at 256 volts, but they should be willing to adjust it a step since it's so close to the top end. A step is noramlly 5% and that should make your Intelliflo happy.
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    Mod Squad JohnT's Avatar
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    Re: Too much electricity to pool equipment

    Quote Originally Posted by Bama Rambler
    I would plead with the power company to step the voltage down a bit. If they use 234 volts as they're standard voltage they're technically within 10% of that even at 256 volts, but they should be willing to adjust it a step since it's so close to the top end. A step is noramlly 5% and that should make your Intelliflo happy.
    Generally all they have to do is move a tap on your transformer to do that drop, so it's not a major operation.

    The voltage variation you reported might indicate an issue with power delivery in your area. Maybe a heavy intermittent power user nearby or you are out on the end of a line.
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    Mike_W's Avatar
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    Re: Too much electricity to pool equipment

    Quote Originally Posted by dks
    Thanks for your reply. Yes it is Intelliflo. While I don't have a multimeter, the voltage has been tested by pool installer and Oncor no less than 4 times. Voltage running from 240 to 256. Installer says that is too high for pool equipment, but Oncor says it is not. I'm now waiting to see what next the pool installer suggests we do.
    According to the manual that came with my Intelliflo, the acceptable voltage range is, as JohnT said, 230 VAC +/- 10% or 207 VAC to 253 VAC. The manual also says that "The drive will restart 20 seconds after the over voltage condition clears." It appears that at least some of the time your voltage was well inside the 207-253 VAC range, and if your pump is like mine, it should have operated.

    Additionally, the common Fluke 77 multimeter has only 2% VAC measurement accuracy and many no-name meters are far worse - so a measured 256 VAC might be 5-6 volts off true in either direction. I would trust the power company's (Oncor?) measurements over the installer's, just because they are likely to have more accurate equipment.

    It is not clear if you have contacted Pentair directly on the matter - if not, I would certainly recommend that you do. As Jason says, the Intelliflo should not be so sensitive. You could also get them to clarify if the pump should have ran at the measured 240 VAC value you saw.

    Mike
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    Re: Too much electricity to pool equipment

    It might be worthwhile looking into a power conditioner, perhaps with a data logging capability.

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    UnderWaterVanya's Avatar
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    Re: Too much electricity to pool equipment

    Quote Originally Posted by JamesW
    It might be worthwhile looking into a power conditioner, perhaps with a data logging capability.
    Good idea!

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    Mike_W's Avatar
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    Re: Too much electricity to pool equipment

    A 240 VAC power conditioner, in a outdoor enclosure, will not be cheap nor easy to find. The issue is with either the pool builder or the power company. The OP should not need to spend yet more money to (maybe) solve this problem.
    Mike
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