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Thread: Modifying an Intex pump/filter

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    Charlie_R's Avatar
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    Modifying an Intex pump/filter

    There may be some of us that see the potential available with a cheap pool. One of my projects this summer with mine is to modify the cartridge filter system to increase the available filter area by combining several similar sized pumps.

    Take a couple dead pump/filter sets apart, and hard plumb the canisters together in parallel to a working pump unit. Having had an Intex pump apart, the motor itself appears to be a somewhat robust open frame 1/2 hp unit, electrically isolated from the impeller section. Not a bad deal, at least for the 56633EG 2500gph unit. I don't know about the higher output sand filter sets, but I may get into that at a later date.

    Theory about the sometimes lack of longevity of these cart type Intex pumps: With such a relatively small filter surface area, the pump itself may be oversized (think AG pool builder routine -- bigger is better!) for the filter size. High flow rate and pressure through 15 sq ft of filter, means fines can and do get forced through the sometimes poor filter media. This can be helped to a point by buying better filters, I.E. Unicel or Filbur. In my case, the 633 set needs Unicel 5315, or Filbur 3752. As the relatively small filter gets full, the load on the motor increases, heating the motor to the point of "killing" it. With no gauge, you can't know just how dirty your filter is getting.

    The idea is to parallel several canisters off of one pump to do two things.

    First, decrease the flow rate through each filter. If my theory is even half correct, that should make a difference on what the pump sees as back pressure, reducing the load on it. From experience in other fields, a moderately loaded 1/2 hp motor will last quite a bit longer than a similar motor being run at max load all the time.

    Second, increase the filter square footage. The advantages here would be better filtration and the ability to capture more of the fines through reduced flow through each filter. This would also go a long way towards increasing the time between filter changes and/or replacement.

    Another couple of advantages with this would be to have the ability to install a gauge between the pump and filters, and a possible "vacuum to waste" valve. I don't think a "backwash" set-up would be a good idea with carts, since I know of no commercially made cart system that incorporates this.

    I put this out there for anyone skilled in pool pump technology to confirm, refute, or improve on my idea.
    15'x48" 4500 gallon Intex pool, buried 1.5 ft. Pac-Fab Dynamo 3/4 hp pump. Hayward S180T sand filter, bought used. Taylor K-2006 test kit. Rocket mass heater based wood fired pool heater.

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    Re: Modifying an Intex pump/filter

    I have a dead 1 month 1000gph pump and a new one. Could I connect the dead one at the outlet from the pool, then connect the out on the dead pump to the in on the new pump, then connect the out on the new pump to the outlet into the pool, and achieve the same thing as you are desribing here?

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    Charlie_R's Avatar
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    Re: Modifying an Intex pump/filter

    What you are describing is a "series" connection, where the flow will go from the pool into the old, then out to the intake of the new before going back to the pool.

    What I've described is "parallel" connection, where the flow is split between the two filters. With the 1000 gph pump sets this would be hard to achieve due to their construction.

    Here is a pic of what I have done so far (clickable pic).



    The lower pipe that the pump is connected to feeds both filters at the same time. The outlet of each of the filters goes to the upper pipe then back to the pool.

    The 1000 gph pump you see behind the set is used for my heater, without the filter cartridge in it.

    You can explore that album on Photobucket to see other views, and what else I've been doing to the pool.

    I hope this answers your question.
    15'x48" 4500 gallon Intex pool, buried 1.5 ft. Pac-Fab Dynamo 3/4 hp pump. Hayward S180T sand filter, bought used. Taylor K-2006 test kit. Rocket mass heater based wood fired pool heater.

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    Re: Modifying an Intex pump/filter

    Yeah, way above my head there.... New question. If I set up my two pumps, dead and new, either dead first, or new first, in the series, would that put too much strain on the new pump?

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    Charlie_R's Avatar
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    Re: Modifying an Intex pump/filter

    Yes, it would.

    Your flow rate would drop quite a bit, which will overheat your one good pump.
    15'x48" 4500 gallon Intex pool, buried 1.5 ft. Pac-Fab Dynamo 3/4 hp pump. Hayward S180T sand filter, bought used. Taylor K-2006 test kit. Rocket mass heater based wood fired pool heater.

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    Re: Modifying an Intex pump/filter

    That's what I thought.

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