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Thread: Please help-need advice on a new pump (and filter) to buy

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    Please help-need advice on a new pump (and filter) to buy

    Hi! I am a new member here and also very new to owning a pool. We bought a house with a swamp for a pool this summer. We have had an interesting time getting it running again...to say the least. I believe the pump and filter are more than we need. I have also read that newer ones are MUCH more economical. The pump has gone out and we are looking to replace it. I patched the filter housing this summer (it had a couple of HUGE cracks) and am pleased that it is still holding together...for now. We are trying to figure out which pump to get. Also, which filter to get when we replace it.
    The pump is (was) a Pentair WhisperFlo 2 HP Service Factor 1.1. The filter is a Pentair Clean and Clear Plus 420 sq. ft. We also have a Pentair Compool CP 100 Control System, and a Purex Triton MiniMax PLUS 400 heater (which we have not even tried to fix yet.)
    We have pool that is about 10,000 gallons, a spa that has 5 jets, and a "waterfall" (water that drizzles off the rocks in the back of the pool.) All of our pipes are 2".
    From all the blogs and sites and such, I have tried my best to figure out what pump we need. Since there is only one 2" intake line for the spa, I think that makes the maximum flow 73 gpm, so I think we need a 1.5 HP, Full Rated, High Head Pump? Does this sound correct? However, we also are considering adding Solar Heating panels. I do not know if that means the pump should be a higher HP or not. We are thinking we want a 2 speed pump. Also, possibly a 4.9 sq. ft. sand filter...before too long anyway? I am wondering if we should get a Pentair pump (because maybe it is better or easier to install or works better with the other Pentair products ...maybe?) or does anyone recommend a different brand/type/size...etc. We would really like to make the pool/spa economically friendly...and of course having it actually in working order will be a plus. I know very little about all this, but am working hard to try to figure out the best way to do all of this. I eventually would like a pool that can be warmed with a hot spa that we can run for the next 8 years without financially killing ourselves each month..
    I would greatly appreciate any advice, suggestions, input, help...
    Thanks so much!

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    mas985's Avatar
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    Re: Please help-need advice on a new pump (and filter) to bu

    Welcome to the forum.

    Since you have a spa, you should replace the pump with one of similar size. Otherwise, the spa jets are going to be weaker. So you can go with an uprated 2 HP or a full rated 1.5 HP. Solar is not really an issue because most IG pumps can handle solar just fine. However, you might consider a two speed pump such as the Pentair Whisperflo WFDS-6 or WGFS-28 so you can run on low speed when not using the spa.
    Mark
    Hydraulics 101; Pump Ed 101; Pump/Pool Spreadsheets; Pump Run Time Study; DIY Acid Dosing; DIY Cover Roller
    18'x36' 20k plaster, MaxFlo SP2303VSP, Aqualogic PS8 SWCG, 420 sq-ft Cartridge, Solar, 6 jet spa, 1 HP jet pump, 400k BTU NG Heater

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    Re: Please help-need advice on a new pump (and filter) to bu

    Great! Thank you so much for the info, Mark. I thought that I needed a High Head though? Poolplaza.com shows the Pentair Whisperflo as a medium head. We were looking at the Pentair WhisperFloXF but they do not seem to come in any size smaller than full rated 2 hp. We have also looked at Jandy Stealth SHPF1.5-2. So, do you think the Pentair Whisperflo WFDS-6 is the best one to go with? Or is there another brand that is better?

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    mas985's Avatar
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    Re: Please help-need advice on a new pump (and filter) to bu

    The labeling is somewhat subjective. They label the pump as medium head but the pumps reach 90' of head which is pretty high. Compare those head curves to a high head pump and you will find there is not much difference. The XF comes in a 2 HP full rated pump which is larger than the pump you have now and would probably be a little too much for your setup.

    As for brand, I am a bit agnostic. I think they all make fairly good pumps and I don't believe one is that much better than another. The manufacture does not make the motor or seals and is only responsible for the wet end design so many pumps share the same suppliers for the motor and seals. But Pentair seems to have the best reputation in the industry.

    Lastly, if you want the most flexibility and to have an adjustable strength spa, then another option is a VS pump. It takes all the guesswork out of pump sizing.
    Mark
    Hydraulics 101; Pump Ed 101; Pump/Pool Spreadsheets; Pump Run Time Study; DIY Acid Dosing; DIY Cover Roller
    18'x36' 20k plaster, MaxFlo SP2303VSP, Aqualogic PS8 SWCG, 420 sq-ft Cartridge, Solar, 6 jet spa, 1 HP jet pump, 400k BTU NG Heater

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    Re: Please help-need advice on a new pump (and filter) to bu

    Thanks again, Mark. We were considering a VS pump, but I have read so many bad things about them that it has worried us. Many people say that if they break, you end up having to get a whole new pump...they they are more likely to break down, etc. Others say they are great and cheaper to run and such. Any opinion? Thanks again for the good info. I have read a lot, but it gets rather confusing. We just want to get a good system that will last. -Kim

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    mas985's Avatar
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    Re: Please help-need advice on a new pump (and filter) to bu

    Everything has pros and cons. Most VS pump failures seem to come from a lack of surge protection. The drive is susceptible to power line surges and/or lightning and yes, it is very expensive to replace. If you do get one, the do yourself a favor and protect the pump with a surge protector.

    As for cost savings, yes a VS will cost less to run than most pumps. However, it costs more to buy too. The lifetime cost of a two speed pump can often be less than a VS pump because of the difference in upfront costs. So generally, a VS pump makes sense if you have one or more of the following situations:

    Very high electricity costs (e.g. California rates)

    Large number of water features which all require different flow rates. Includes spas, waterfalls, and even solar can benefit.

    Very large pools (i.e. long run times)
    Mark
    Hydraulics 101; Pump Ed 101; Pump/Pool Spreadsheets; Pump Run Time Study; DIY Acid Dosing; DIY Cover Roller
    18'x36' 20k plaster, MaxFlo SP2303VSP, Aqualogic PS8 SWCG, 420 sq-ft Cartridge, Solar, 6 jet spa, 1 HP jet pump, 400k BTU NG Heater

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    Re: Please help-need advice on a new pump (and filter) to bu

    Cool. Thanks again for all the info and help. I really appreciate it.

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