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Thread: New pump and heater questions

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    New pump and heater questions

    Hi,

    My current set up (15x30' 20K, IG, total control SWG, sand filter) has been working great for the past few years. We are getting ready to do a remodel as the finish of the deck is starting to go bad. My wife REALLY REALLY wants the pool heated (she likes the water at least high 80's and won't get in till it hits 85). I have been looking into it and it doesn't look like the heater is too hard to install. The original owner had a heater and removed it so I still have electricity to the pump area so all I have to do is connect the power and plumb it.

    After doing some research it looks like my pump is over powered (1.5hp). I know for a fact that it is a major power draw. I currently run the pump 12 hour or more in the summer to keep the chlorine levels appropriate. Would I be better off with

    1) Getting a single speed smaller pump and leaving it at that
    2) Getting a two speep or multispeed pump (I currently use the total control SWG to control the pump. Do I need a separate control panel for the pump now). Do you have any recommendations? The pentair pump I have now has been rock solid for 5 or so years.

    I get the impression that running the pool 24/7 may be better for the water and I'm sure it will make heating the pool easier. I'm going to be using a heat pump (with a solar cover). Does anyone have any recommendations for a heater brand, BTU ,model etc

    Sorry for the long post. Thanks

    Paul
    20K ,in-ground cement (pebble tek) with attached spa, Sand filter (model triton Tr-100, area-4.9 sqft, flow 100 gal/min), Pentair WhisperFlo Pump 1.5 HP Model WFE-26, Total control SWG, pool is old (around 30 years)

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    BoDarville's Avatar
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    Jun 2012
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    Re: New pump and heater questions

    kupermanp:

    Welcome to TFP

    Needing to run the current pump 12 hours/day to get adequate chlorination seems a bit high. It may be the way it is, but I would first make sure your SWG is calibrated and running properly. If any adjustments are needed, it may allow you to cut back on your run-time. Now on to your questions...

    Your pool sounds very similar to mine, aside from the SWG. Regarding the pump, I would go with a 2-speed 1.5 HP pump. Actually, you could just replace the single-speed motor on your current pump with a 2-speed motor of the same HP which will be much cheaper than replacing your pump with a lower HP model. If you have a pressure cleaner with no booster pump and/or you have a spillover spa, a lower HP single-speed pump may not supply enough flow to run the pressure cleaner and/or provide the waterfall effect from a spillover spa. The 2-speed gives you the flexibility to run at low speed for general filtration when you are not using the pool vac or don't need the ambiance of the waterfall from a spillover spa. Plus, even if you ran the 2-speed on low 24/7 to get adequate chlorination from your SWG , your energy savings for running the 2-speed pump would be about 50% compared to running your current pump for 12 hours/day.

    Now, onto the heater. It takes a given amount of BTU's to heat a body of water to a target temperature. You will simply heat the water faster with a larger BTU heater, everything else (like water flow rate) held constant. I'm not sure if the heat source of your planned heat pump is gas or electric powered. If it is electric, you will likely be limited to the amount of BTU's you can go with. If it will be natural gas powered, then you have more options. Finally, make sure that a safety is installed that will shut off the heater when the pump is turned off (or goes out due to a power outage). Otherwise, the heater will continue to run and heat the water trapped in the heater to the point that it can literally cause an explosion. I know someone who had that happen and it was a DIY job.
    Gold Supporter, TFP Lifetime Supporter, 26,680 gal Plaster IGP 3.5 - 10' depth / Attached Waterfall Spa, Manually Chlorinated, Triton Sand Filter, 1.5 HP * 1.1 SF = 1.65 SFHP 1-speed Pentair WhisperFlo WF-26 Pump, 400K BTU NG Teledyne Laars Series One Heater, Polaris 360, Test Kit Comparison, Chlorine/CYA Chart, SLAMing Your Pool, OCLT
    A good test kit is an investment, not an expense.

  3. Back To Top    #3

    Re: New pump and heater questions

    Thanks for the reply.

    I don't necessarily run it 12 hours for chlorination all the time, but 12 hour run time will cover me even on the really really hot days with high bather load (we have lots of kids swimming in the pool all the time).

    I do have a spillover spa but its more of a trickle than a waterfall effect. I use a robot to clean the pool

    A two speed motor sounds good to me. Do you have any recommendations regarding brand. I'd like to keep my current as a spare, just in case.

    The heater will be electric heat pump as I don't have natural gas in my area and propane is quite expensive. I'm not sure the BTU's I'll need but I'm looking to get the pool up about 10-15 degrees (which shouldn't be that hard), but I'd be willing to spend a bit more to extend the season a couple of months (I'm in SC our current season is mid april to early october).

    Good advice on the safety shut off. I'm surprised this isn't a standard feature, but I'll make sure mine has it. I've also heard that titanium ex-changers are worth it. Anything else?

    Thanks again
    20K ,in-ground cement (pebble tek) with attached spa, Sand filter (model triton Tr-100, area-4.9 sqft, flow 100 gal/min), Pentair WhisperFlo Pump 1.5 HP Model WFE-26, Total control SWG, pool is old (around 30 years)

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    BoDarville's Avatar
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    Jun 2012
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    DFW, Texas
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    Re: New pump and heater questions

    Here is a link on the motors I was looking at recently: http://www.electricmotorwarehouse.co...are_flange.htm. Since you would be keeping the same pump and just replacing the motor, the main thing to remember is to get a 2-speed motor that has the same Service Factor HP (SFHP) as your current single-speed motor. SFHP is calculated by multiplying the Service Factor by the labeled HP. Both figures should be on the motor label. For example, a 1 HP pump with a Service Factor of 1.5 would have a SFHP of 1.5. This would be identical to the output of a motor with a labeled HP of 1.5 and a Service Factor of 1.

    A heat pump will cost less to operate compared to an electric heater that uses a heating element as the source of heat. In addition, the solar cover will certainly help heat things during the day. However, it still may take longer than you might think to heat the water to your target temperature. Here is a relatively recent post discussing how much energy it takes to heat pool water: http://www.troublefreepool.com/how-m...th-t39086.html

    The heater safety device should be standard on all models. However, since the guy I know installed it himself and took the dangerous shortcut of not installing the safety figuring he would never need it, he paid a big price. If I would have known him at the time, I could have prevented him from learning that lesson the hard way.

    Yes, a titanium heat exchanger is considered to be the best in terms of durability. You would just need to determine if the additional cost is worth it.
    Gold Supporter, TFP Lifetime Supporter, 26,680 gal Plaster IGP 3.5 - 10' depth / Attached Waterfall Spa, Manually Chlorinated, Triton Sand Filter, 1.5 HP * 1.1 SF = 1.65 SFHP 1-speed Pentair WhisperFlo WF-26 Pump, 400K BTU NG Teledyne Laars Series One Heater, Polaris 360, Test Kit Comparison, Chlorine/CYA Chart, SLAMing Your Pool, OCLT
    A good test kit is an investment, not an expense.

  5. Back To Top    #5

    Re: New pump and heater questions

    thanks. The SFHP is just what I'm looking for. I'll check the motors out although I'm more likely to get a new pump and keep my old one as back up than replace the motor.

    That makes more sense about the shut off. All the spa heaters I used to install had this function built in and that was 15-20 years ago.

    I'm more likely to spend up-front to gain reliability (right now I'm primary tech support/handy-man for my and my wifes family so I prefer things to just work)

    P
    20K ,in-ground cement (pebble tek) with attached spa, Sand filter (model triton Tr-100, area-4.9 sqft, flow 100 gal/min), Pentair WhisperFlo Pump 1.5 HP Model WFE-26, Total control SWG, pool is old (around 30 years)

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