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Thread: Pool & Spa without spillway - Any way to mix water?

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    Join Date
    Apr 2011
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    Springfield, MO
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    Pool & Spa without spillway - Any way to mix water?

    Current setup:
    • Gunite pool with sand filter, VS-3050 pump, & IC-20
      Separate gunite spa with separate sand filter, separate VS-3050, & chlorine feeder
      No spillway between pool & spa. Two independent plumbing systems.
      Autocover for pool
      MasterTemp heater for spa only. Pool is not heated.
      Easytouch


    Pool/spa is 2 years old. Live in southern Missouri. When we built, we wanted 1) autocover for spa & 2) ability to run/heat spa in winter.

    Problems we are having:
    • Dealing with 2 separate water chemistries is a pain.
      Although my knowledge is limited, Easytouch does not seem to be designed for our current scenario. Currently spa is hooked into Easytouch Filter relay. Pool is hooked into Aux1. Largest problem with this scenario is that IC-20 will only run when spa pump is running. Ideally, would like to run spa pump for a shorter duration than pool pump; however, this is currently not possible as IC-20 only produces chlorine when spa pump is running.
      Having 2 separate chlorination methods is not ideal


    Short term question:
    To fix issue with IC-20 only working when Spa pump is running, Pentair suggested that Pool & Spa relays be switched in Easytouch. However, I don't think I explained the entire scenario well enough with Pentair. If above switch is made so that pool is wired into filter relay and spa wired into Aux1, will spa heater only work when pool pump is running?

    Long term question:
    Any possible way to mix pool & spa circulation without a spillway? Can this possibly be done in pool control room with valves? Or is there always going to be a problem with spa either dropping water or overfilling?

    Thanks in advance for the help.

  2. Back To Top    #2
    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: Pool & Spa without spillway - Any way to mix water?

    I don't think you can get the EasyTouch to do what you want. It is assuming that the two are sharing plumbing. For two completely independent bodies of water you want two independent controllers.

    With your current setup, it should be possible to rewire the IC-20 so it draws power from the Aux1 relay, and thus runs only when the pool pump is running. That does mean removing the IC-20 from the control of the EasyTouch, which reduces the amount of control you have over it.

    It is possible to replumb things so that the two share water, but it is a fairly major job. The main trick is to create a virtual spillover, basically a small tank that is connected to the spa return and has a drain pipe going back to the pool. It will also need a check valve, so the spa pump can't draw air from the spillover tank.
    19K gal, vinyl, 1/2 HP WhisperFlo pump, 200 sqft cartridge filter, AutoPilot Digital SWG, Dolphin Dynamic cleaning robot
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  3. Back To Top    #3

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    Re: Pool & Spa without spillway - Any way to mix water?

    Quote Originally Posted by JasonLion
    I don't think you can get the EasyTouch to do what you want. It is assuming that the two are sharing plumbing. For two completely independent bodies of water you want two independent controllers..
    Makes sense - unfortunately.

    Quote Originally Posted by JasonLion
    With your current setup, it should be possible to rewire the IC-20 so it draws power from the Aux1 relay, and thus runs only when the pool pump is running. That does mean removing the IC-20 from the control of the EasyTouch, which reduces the amount of control you have over it..
    Would prefer not to lose EasyTouch control of IC-20.

    If I did put pool on main relay and spa on Aux1, what would happen to control of spa heater?

    Quote Originally Posted by JasonLion
    It is possible to replumb things so that the two share water, but it is a fairly major job. The main trick is to create a virtual spillover, basically a small tank that is connected to the spa return and has a drain pipe going back to the pool. It will also need a check valve, so the spa pump can't draw air from the spillover tank.
    You've confused me here. Would spa return have to be near water level (like a typical spillway)? Spa return currently is via single floor drain. There is no skimmer for the spa.

  4. Back To Top    #4
    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: Pool & Spa without spillway - Any way to mix water?

    You want to emulate a spill over, that means something that drains water when the water gets higher than standard spa height and sends the drained water to the pool. It is also important that this connection not create a syphon (so it won't continue draining).

    There are several ways to do this. The most obvious is to add a skimmer like drain to the spa at the right height. Unfortunately that is never an easy or pretty retrofit. The alternative is to create the same thing virtually somewhere else. The simplest way to do that is to tee off of your spa drain pipe (headed towards the pump), then a check valve so water only runs away from the spa in this new pipe, then run it vertically up to the height of the spa water, put on a T fitting with two vertical and one horizontal opening with the bottom of the horizontal opening right at the ideal spa water height. The horizontal opening then gets plumbed back to the pool (somehow). The vertical opening is left open to the air (to prevent syphoning), though it is best to put on a 180 bend so it points back down towards the ground.

    (This is simpler than the tank approach I mentioned before).
    19K gal, vinyl, 1/2 HP WhisperFlo pump, 200 sqft cartridge filter, AutoPilot Digital SWG, Dolphin Dynamic cleaning robot
    Creator of PoolMath and Pool Calculator. Other handy links: Support this site, TF Test Kits, Pool School

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    Re: Pool & Spa without spillway - Any way to mix water?

    Could you tie the horizontal opening into the pool return?

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