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Thread: Choosing the right pump

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    Choosing the right pump

    Hi All,

    I've just (2 months ago) bought a house which came with a pool, but without a pump. It's a basic 15K gallons pool, no heating, no spa, no waterfall, etc, with a cartridge filter.
    I'm now looking into buying a high efficiency pump and have narrowed down the list to 2 options:
    a. Intelliflo VF
    b. Intelliflo VS
    Since I'm new at this and never owned a pool, i'm not sure which one to go for: the VF seems to be the smarter one out of the two, but the technical guy from Pentair said that if I'm willing to calculate the speeds needed for my pool's different tasks and keep my cartridge clean at all times, then it doesn't make sense to pay the extra $400 for the VF, when the VS could do the same job for me and save just as much energy.
    I should also mention that I'm trying to get the most cost eficient one.
    Any advice is welcome

    Thanks,
    Dumitru
    23K Gunite / concrete - 1.5" plumbing, Pentair Intelliflo VS, Star Clear Plus 120 Sq Ft. Filter 1.5" Ports, Polaris 360

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    linen's Avatar
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    Re: Choosing the right pump

    Welcome to tfp, dvasadi

    Where do you live and what are your electricity costs?

    You likely can realize a similar savings of a VS pump with a much cheaper 2-speed pump.
    TFP Expert who uses Pool School and my TF100 test kit along with PoolMath for my: Round 11K gallon AGP with deep end, 20" sand filter, Matrix 1hp 2spd, 6 2ftX20ft solar panels (and solar cover!), Intex SWCG (copper bars disconnected) and a Rubadub hot tub (chlorine). The SLAM process is not finished until: 1. CC < 0.5 ppm, 2. An OCLT < 1.0 ppm and, 3. The water is crystal clear.

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    Re: Choosing the right pump

    Pleasant Hill, CA. From what I've heard the most expensive kW in US
    All calculations show that the VS would be able to run 12h/day with a cost of ~ $165-$175 per year, as opposed to the $650-$700 of the most efficient 2-speed pump.
    23K Gunite / concrete - 1.5" plumbing, Pentair Intelliflo VS, Star Clear Plus 120 Sq Ft. Filter 1.5" Ports, Polaris 360

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    linen's Avatar
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    Re: Choosing the right pump

    12h/day is likely a much longer run time then needed for your pool. I would review this pool school article: http://www.troublefreepool.com/pool-.../pump_run_time

    Quote Originally Posted by dvasadi
    All calculations show that the VS would be able to run 12h/day with a cost of ~ $165-$175 per year, as opposed to the $650-$700 of the most efficient 2-speed pump.
    What did you use for the calculations? This does not seem correct.
    TFP Expert who uses Pool School and my TF100 test kit along with PoolMath for my: Round 11K gallon AGP with deep end, 20" sand filter, Matrix 1hp 2spd, 6 2ftX20ft solar panels (and solar cover!), Intex SWCG (copper bars disconnected) and a Rubadub hot tub (chlorine). The SLAM process is not finished until: 1. CC < 0.5 ppm, 2. An OCLT < 1.0 ppm and, 3. The water is crystal clear.

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    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: Choosing the right pump

    Welcome to TFP!!!

    First, I agree with linen, it may be cheaper to get a small 2-speed pump instead of the larger VS pumps you listed. Another option that could work for you are the smaller Hayward VS pumps (Max-flo VS or SuperPump VS).

    If your heart is set on the large Intelliflos for some reason, I would not spend the extra money on the VF ... maintaining a flow rate is just not that important.

    But, really need to know your electrical costs and whether you have rebates available to you and for which pumps to know what is the most cost effective over the life of the pump.


    ADDED after your response:
    So you get a rebate? Which pumps? A VS may make sense, but the smaller Hayward's might make more sense regarding cost.
    Those electricity cost numbers are vastly skewed and inaccurate. There is no way running a 2-speed on low would cost that much to run.
    Also, there is no reason you should have to run any pump 12 hours ... read this: pool-school/pump_run_time
    Jason, TFP Moderator
    18k IG pebblesheen pool, Hayward ProLogic P4 w/ T-15 SWG, Pentair 1HP 2-speed Superflo, Hayward 6020 DE filter
    500 sqft Heliocol solar panels, ThePoolCleaner, TF-100 test kit w/ SpeedStir
    Pool School + Test Kit + PoolMath = A TROUBLE FREE POOL
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    Re: Choosing the right pump

    Based on my pool size, I'll probably need 7h to do a complete turn at minimum speed, including the time needed for the sweeper to do his work plus some time needed for the salt-water system to work at a flow rate higher than what I would use to filter the water.

    The info on energy cost was gathered from different websites, after some weeks of research. Here's one example:
    http://www.poolexpress.com/pool-pump-reviews

    Thanks,
    D.
    23K Gunite / concrete - 1.5" plumbing, Pentair Intelliflo VS, Star Clear Plus 120 Sq Ft. Filter 1.5" Ports, Polaris 360

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    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: Choosing the right pump

    Read the article we posted ... there is no minimum turn over required.
    Most SWG work fine on low speed of a 2-speed pump.

    Most online calculators do not compare apples to apples ... ie they do not compare moving the same amount of water.
    Jason, TFP Moderator
    18k IG pebblesheen pool, Hayward ProLogic P4 w/ T-15 SWG, Pentair 1HP 2-speed Superflo, Hayward 6020 DE filter
    500 sqft Heliocol solar panels, ThePoolCleaner, TF-100 test kit w/ SpeedStir
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    Re: Choosing the right pump

    Thanks, Jason.
    California only offers a rebate for Variable Speed pumps, and no longer for 2-speed ones. Below is a link of the pumps they do offers rebates for:
    http://www.pge.com/includes/jsp/csvdb/rebatehandler.jsp

    I was thinking that the Intelliflo VS, which is about $860 + tax, would allow me to run the pump at very low, but still efficient speeds, with a minimum power consumption, still allowing me to run the sweeper and the SWG on separate programs....
    23K Gunite / concrete - 1.5" plumbing, Pentair Intelliflo VS, Star Clear Plus 120 Sq Ft. Filter 1.5" Ports, Polaris 360

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    Re: Choosing the right pump

    As jbliz mentioned above, these might be better choices if you do decide to go with a vs pump:
    Hayward Max-Flo VS SP2300VSP
    Hayward Super Pump VS SP2600VSP
    TFP Expert who uses Pool School and my TF100 test kit along with PoolMath for my: Round 11K gallon AGP with deep end, 20" sand filter, Matrix 1hp 2spd, 6 2ftX20ft solar panels (and solar cover!), Intex SWCG (copper bars disconnected) and a Rubadub hot tub (chlorine). The SLAM process is not finished until: 1. CC < 0.5 ppm, 2. An OCLT < 1.0 ppm and, 3. The water is crystal clear.

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    Re: Choosing the right pump

    There are also other versions of VS pumps that off better value such as the Hayward SP2300VSP and SP2600VSP. IMNSHO, being able to set flow rate instead of RPM really has no additional value. It is just as easy/hard to set RPM values as it is GPM values because in reality, you don't know what is needed to clean your pool until you do some trial and error. Plus nearly all VS pumps and an energy efficiency sweet spot around 1000 RPM. However, that will be a much different GPM value for each plumbing systems.


    All calculations show that the VS would be able to run 12h/day with a cost of ~ $165-$175 per year, as opposed to the $650-$700 of the most efficient 2-speed pump.
    Where did you get that information? Pentair?

    Here is a more realistic cost comparison. Note the two speed monthly costs of around $19/mo compared to the Intelliflo at a montly cost of around $11/mo. But it depends on what tier you are in.

    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: Choosing the right pump

    Hi Mark,

    I usually end up in Tier3, paying between $0.13 to $0.31 per kWh.
    23K Gunite / concrete - 1.5" plumbing, Pentair Intelliflo VS, Star Clear Plus 120 Sq Ft. Filter 1.5" Ports, Polaris 360

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    mas985's Avatar
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    Re: Choosing the right pump

    The pump tools spreadsheet is available in my signature if you want to do any customization of the spreadsheet.
    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: Choosing the right pump

    Quote Originally Posted by mas985
    Where did you get that information? Pentair?

    Here is a more realistic cost comparison. Note the two speed monthly costs of around $19/mo compared to the Intelliflo at a montly cost of around $11/mo. But it depends on what tier you are in.
    Actually, the Pentair comparison shows even higher savings , as expected. My understanding was that the Intelliflo VS would be able to run efficiently at about 750rpm on low speed, which would bring it in the same energy usage as the smaller Hayward pumps, while providing a higher GPM.
    Similarly, the "high" rpm would be only at about 2250-2000 rpm, sufficient for the GPM needed to run the Polaris.

    But basically, reading all the replies I've got, everyone is telling me that the VF would not provide me any additional savings or benefits compared to the VS.
    23K Gunite / concrete - 1.5" plumbing, Pentair Intelliflo VS, Star Clear Plus 120 Sq Ft. Filter 1.5" Ports, Polaris 360

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    linen's Avatar
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    Re: Choosing the right pump

    Quote Originally Posted by dvasadi
    But basically, reading all the replies I've got, everyone is telling me that the VF would not provide me any additional savings or benefits compared to the VS.
    Yes, though we still would suggest a different pump then the intelleflo, since it is overkill for your pool.

    If I was in your shoes, I would probably look at the pentair superflo 1 hp full-rated 2-speed which can be had for ~ $400 like can be found here: http://www.amazon.com/Pentair-340042.../dp/B002FQIYBY and if I really wanted a vs, then the maxflo mentioned above.
    TFP Expert who uses Pool School and my TF100 test kit along with PoolMath for my: Round 11K gallon AGP with deep end, 20" sand filter, Matrix 1hp 2spd, 6 2ftX20ft solar panels (and solar cover!), Intex SWCG (copper bars disconnected) and a Rubadub hot tub (chlorine). The SLAM process is not finished until: 1. CC < 0.5 ppm, 2. An OCLT < 1.0 ppm and, 3. The water is crystal clear.

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    Re: Choosing the right pump

    Yes, though we still would suggest a different pump then the intelleflo, since it is overkill for your pool.

    If I was in your shoes, I would probably look at the pentair superflo 1 hp full-rated 2-speed which can be had for ~ $400 like can be found here: http://www.amazon.com/Pentair-340042.../dp/B002FQIYBY and if I really wanted a vs, then the maxflo mentioned above.
    Thanks.
    Did I mention that the pool timers are quite old and i don't think they work anymore, the booster pump which was left behind is not working and that I would like to avoid investing money in all those auxiliary systems? I thought that by getting the Intelliflo VS (or VF) I would no longer need timers, booster pump and a controller... Were my assumptions wrong?
    23K Gunite / concrete - 1.5" plumbing, Pentair Intelliflo VS, Star Clear Plus 120 Sq Ft. Filter 1.5" Ports, Polaris 360

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    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: Choosing the right pump

    I think you may find that since you get a $100 rebate on the Hayward Max-flo VS ... it may cost very little more than the 2-speed that linen mentions. And since with the VS you can run at a lower speed than the 2-speed, you would use a little less electricity which should offset the higher cost.

    Using amazon (which may not be the cheapest):
    The 1HP Superflo = $425
    The Max-flo VS = $650 - $100 = $550
    The Intelliflo = $850 - $100 = $750

    You do not have the features on your pool to require the Intelliflo over the Max-flo ... So really the Intelliflo would just be throwing $200 away that you would never recoup in savings.

    And the VS pumps both have timers in them.

    What is the booster pump for? The only way you would not need the booster pump would be if you got a different pressure cleaner that did not need one. The Intelliflo would not replace the booster.
    Jason, TFP Moderator
    18k IG pebblesheen pool, Hayward ProLogic P4 w/ T-15 SWG, Pentair 1HP 2-speed Superflo, Hayward 6020 DE filter
    500 sqft Heliocol solar panels, ThePoolCleaner, TF-100 test kit w/ SpeedStir
    Pool School + Test Kit + PoolMath = A TROUBLE FREE POOL
    If you found TFP helpful and we saved you money ... Become a TFP Supporter!

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    Re: Choosing the right pump

    Hi Jason,
    I think the booster pump was for the Polaris. Not sure why one is needed though...

    I was thinking that i might install a solar heater next spring. Would the Max-flo be able to handle it? I have a single story rancher, so the height wouldn't be that much to take on additionally for priming, but not sure about the head loss.
    The other thing which kind of drove me to the Intelliflo was reliability and longevity. I've seen far more postings with Hayward pumps having issues than I've seen with Pentair, but then again, most opinions I've read have been a bit subjective, posted by people angry that it did break and sometimes disappointed in the lack of responsiveness from the manufacturer.
    23K Gunite / concrete - 1.5" plumbing, Pentair Intelliflo VS, Star Clear Plus 120 Sq Ft. Filter 1.5" Ports, Polaris 360

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    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: Choosing the right pump

    Some pressure cleaners need and booster (high pressure low flow rate) and some do not (lower pressure higher flow rate) ... depends on the model.

    The Hayward VS pumps should be able to handle the added head loss of adding solar. I might suggest the SuperPump VS as it can run at slightly higher head losses than the Max-flo, but either should handle it.

    BUT ......

    Those 2 Hayward VS pumps are limited in that an external controller can not switch speeds. Some solar controllers have the ability to automatically switch the pump speed to high when solar is needed and then back to low when it is not. This would work with ANY 2-speed pump, but the SuperPump and Max-flo VS pump electronics/built-in timer do NOT allow the solar controller to over-ride the programing.

    With the Intelliflo, some controllers would be able to interface with the pump electronics and changes speeds as desired.
    Or just get a 2-speed pump and you will save $100 right off the bat, and get most of the electrical savings by running in low, and you could get a solar controller to automatically switch speeds in the future.

    This solar deal has now muddied the waters
    Jason, TFP Moderator
    18k IG pebblesheen pool, Hayward ProLogic P4 w/ T-15 SWG, Pentair 1HP 2-speed Superflo, Hayward 6020 DE filter
    500 sqft Heliocol solar panels, ThePoolCleaner, TF-100 test kit w/ SpeedStir
    Pool School + Test Kit + PoolMath = A TROUBLE FREE POOL
    If you found TFP helpful and we saved you money ... Become a TFP Supporter!

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