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Thread: Pool waterfall plumbing

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    Pool waterfall plumbing

    I am about to start my diy pool. I was planning on building a waterfall in the deep end and wondered how to plumb the inlet. I ahve seen some that have 2 main drains and 2 waterfall inlets as well as others that have one inlet in the wall. Any recommendations? Could I tie into the skimmer suction lines?
    Andrew
    20x40 mountain lake style free form . 24000 gal

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    mas985's Avatar
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    Re: Pool waterfall plumbing

    High flow waterfalls are generally plumbed separately from the rest of the plumbing so a waterfall pump (low head & high flow) can be used. But make sure you also use large pipes to keep the head loss low and flow rate high.

    I would not not tie into the skimmer lines as that would draw in debris into the lines. Instead, wall ports should be used to minimize the about of debris circulated through the waterfall lines.
    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: Pool waterfall plumbing

    What type of wall ports do I need and how many? Are these just drains installed in the wall? this will be a core filled block wall with vinyl liner. What size pipe generally?
    Andrew
    20x40 mountain lake style free form . 24000 gal

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    mas985's Avatar
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    Re: Pool waterfall plumbing

    Have you settled on a waterfall design? Width, height, flow rate, action, etc.
    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: Pool waterfall plumbing

    I have looked at several models but basically just want one about 2-3 ft wide. I saw one that said it was 1gpm per inch wide. It only had 1.5'' plumbing. I attached a pic of something similar to what I am looking for.
    Attached Images Attached Images
    Andrew
    20x40 mountain lake style free form . 24000 gal

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    mas985's Avatar
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    Re: Pool waterfall plumbing

    A 3 ft wide waterfall would require only 36 GPM so yes 1.5" would probably probably work ok. But, since the flow rate is so low, you could run that off the main pump if you wanted too but if you do that, then I would up size to 2" pipe to go to and from the equipment pad.
    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: Pool waterfall plumbing

    Ideally I would love to run it from the main pump to save money. I have not looked into deck jets but I thought about adding a couple of them too if I can get it all on the main pump I would be happy. I was planning on using 2'' plumbing throughout. Pool will be a free form about 20000 gallons 18x36. Was planning on 2 main drains and 2 skimmers and 4 returns. I have not gotten to exact the layout of all of that yet. This question may be premature but from what I read this seemed like a typical set up. Any idea as to pump or filter size? I Was planning on using a cartridge filter.
    Andrew
    20x40 mountain lake style free form . 24000 gal

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    mas985's Avatar
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    Re: Pool waterfall plumbing

    Every feature adds flow rate which takes energy to run. If you plan on having the waterfall and deck jets on and you want good skimming action all at the same time, it could mean a big pump ($$$$). When dealing with multiple water features, your best bet might be a VS pump. It takes the guess work 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: Pool waterfall plumbing

    I really appreciate the help and deck jets are just something I saw and considered. I see that these vs speed pumps are pricy. I guess you can't go wrong with a vs pump. Do they also come in different sizes?
    Andrew
    20x40 mountain lake style free form . 24000 gal

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    Re: Pool waterfall plumbing

    I think you would be ok with one pump, as long as you put in plenty of valves to direct water flow how you need it. I set my values up so i could pull from MD or Skimmer or both. For returns, i can push back out to steps, walls, deck jets, water fall. I can turn on off any. I do not have the waterfall completed yet, but I stubbed up a 2 inch line for it. When i run the deck jets, I turn off the steps and turn down the wall returns, I get plenty of flow from the deck jets. When i have the waterfall on, I suspect I will turn off deck jets and wall returns and divert most to waterfall.

    bottom line, lots of valves for flexibility is key in my opinion.
    DIY 18x36 IG Vinyl Rectangle with 2 foot radius; Steel Walls. 8' steps w/t 2 step jets; 2 MD, 1 Skimmer, 2 returns; Hayward Pro Series 24 Inch 300# Sand Pool ; Hayward color logic 4.0 LED light; 2" PVC pipe 4 Jandy Valves, Hayward PL-P-4, SWCG

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    mas985's Avatar
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    Re: Pool waterfall plumbing

    VS pumps come in different sizes but some of the smaller ones might not be big enough for all the water features. The Hayward SuperPump VS might be a good choice and it is at a better price point than some of the others.

    http://www.amazon.com/Hayward-SP2600VSP ... B00C6BD8YQ
    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: Pool waterfall plumbing

    I was planning on doing the same for my valves. How may returns do you have ? Any recommendations on returns or skimmers quantity and locations? Any pump recommendations.
    Andrew
    20x40 mountain lake style free form . 24000 gal

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    Re: Pool waterfall plumbing

    Thanks again for the response and link. I had looked at that pump but thought since it had 1.5'' plumbing I should go with an upgraded pump that has 2'' plumbing. Is this important?
    Andrew
    20x40 mountain lake style free form . 24000 gal

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    mas985's Avatar
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    Re: Pool waterfall plumbing

    Not really. You can use an adapter to transition from 1.5" to 2". But for just a little more money, you can go this route:

    http://www.amazon.com/Pentair-Intellifl ... +VS+011018
    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: Pool waterfall plumbing

    Sounds good to me. We begin sod and tree removal this weekend and excavation shortly after. I will probably post some diagrams of the pool to make sure my plumbing looks correct to everyone soon. Again I really appreciate it. Do you have any experience with that particular pentair pump?
    Andrew
    20x40 mountain lake style free form . 24000 gal

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    Re: Pool waterfall plumbing

    I have an 18x36, 2 returns and 1 skimmer. Wish I went with 2 skimmers though
    DIY 18x36 IG Vinyl Rectangle with 2 foot radius; Steel Walls. 8' steps w/t 2 step jets; 2 MD, 1 Skimmer, 2 returns; Hayward Pro Series 24 Inch 300# Sand Pool ; Hayward color logic 4.0 LED light; 2" PVC pipe 4 Jandy Valves, Hayward PL-P-4, SWCG

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    Interpools's Avatar
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    Re: Pool waterfall plumbing

    By following the instruction from natural wonders waterfalls i need a separate pump and filter, separate suction with anti vortex cover. What kind of filter and where can i find the suction with anti-vortex cover(could not find anything on the net). I already have a whisperflo 2 HP pump for triple 36"natural wonders waterfalls. The pool i'm building is an inground linerpool 852 ft2 (20 x 40 ft). please advice and thanks !

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    Re: Pool waterfall plumbing

    Not sure if it is the same for liner pools, but in my gunite build they put the waterfall suction lines right next to the main drain suction lines. Both of the lines fit under each anti-vortex cover. Might be different for a liner, since the pipe might need to seal around each individual suction pipe.

    Pool done!! (backyard = work in progress) 32' x 19' inground freeform with 7' spa, baja step w/ (2) bubblers, stonescapes mini pebble finish, rock waterfall feature, 12" raised bond beam, Intelliflo VS, Whisperflo feature pump, (3) 5G Color LED's, FNS + DE 60, 400K Master Temp, Easytouch 8 w/ remote, Intellichlor IC40, Vision Classic Ceramic Kamado smoker, Margaritaville DM1000!!! Party Coming Soon!!
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