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Thread: Most "Effective" Flow Rate

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    Join Date
    Jan 2014
    SE Louisiana

    Most "Effective" Flow Rate

    I know there's not a chart or formula for figuring out something like this ... but I thought I'd ask for some general opinions.

    I plan on going with the following equipment with these flow specs for a 24,000 gal inground pool.

    Pentair Quad DE80: Max gpm - 160
    Pentair IC40: Max gpm - 80 / Min gpm - 25
    Pentair 400 BTU Heater: Max gpm - 120 / Min gpm - 40

    I'm looking for any thoughts on what the most effective gpm would be for these components. Does the vendor put out any info like this?

    I know I'll be ok if I stay within a range, but I'm wondering if any of these items perform better on either the lower or higher end of the gpm range. For example, the ic40 can go 80 gpm, but does it actually work most effectively near 25. Same ? for the heater. It can go 120, but is it much more effective at 40 (or vice versa). For the filter, I know it would filter more water if cranked up all the way, but is it possible that the water would not make full use of the entire cartridge area at a really low rate like 30 gpm?


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    JasonLion's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Silver Spring, MD

    Re: Most "Effective" Flow Rate

    You want the lowest flow rate that works reliably with everything. When using the heater that is going to be around 45 GPM. Without the heater 30 GPM is good.

    Filters always work better at lower flow rates, as low as possible.
    SWG doesn't care as long as it is in range.
    Heater is just slightly more efficient at higher flow rates (within their range), but the difference is minimal.
    Pumps are drastically more energy efficient at lower flow rates.
    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
    mas985's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Pleasanton, CA

    Re: Most "Effective" Flow Rate

    Generally, lower flow rate is better for filters and energy savings so that is usually the best objective. Higher flow rates can damage the filter media and force dirt through the filter. Heaters and SWGs have minimum flow rates that you need to stay above in order for them to stay operating. The heater efficiency may change a little bit with flow rate but it shouldn't matter much. Again, most people will target lower flow rates for energy use reasons.
    Hydraulics 101; Pump Ed 101; Pump and Pool Spreadsheets; Pump Run Time Study; DIY Acid Dosing; DIY Cover Roller
    18'x36' 20k plaster, 1/2 HP 2sp pump, Aqualogic PS8 SWCG, 420 sq-ft Cartridge, Solar, 6 jet spa, 1 HP jet pump, 400k BTU NG Heater, ThePoolCleaner

  4. Back To Top    #4

    Join Date
    Jan 2014
    Corona, CA

    Re: Most "Effective" Flow Rate

    The best advise guys gave me was a little trial and error to see what works for your system. I don't know the exact flows of my system and use RPM as my reference. This is what is working for me during the winter to keep the pool sparkling clean.

    2 hours a day @ 2600 rpm 1000watts this runs my pool cleaner very effectively (SWAG 80gpm)
    3 hours a day @ 1750 rpm 300 watts this does a good job circulating water and has enough flow to allow the heater to run (SWAG 40gpm)

    If i want to run the pump for a party or just hear the water fall I run it at 1250 rpm 150 watts (SWAG 20gpm)

    My old pump was a Pentair Whisperflo and it was using 2200 watts.

    Just tinker a little bit and you should find what works best for you.

    21'x35' + Spa Plaster in-ground built 2001 Jandy RS4, MiniMax 400, Puerex 4000 DE, Hayward Ecostar VSP, The Poolcleaner

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