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Thread: New Pool in Winter Garden, FL question about pool pump

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    New Pool in Winter Garden, FL question about pool pump

    Hi everyone,

    Just registered and am looking forward to using TFP as a resource in the future! My wife and I just signed a contract on a new pool build last weekend with Artesian Pools, one of the Orlando area's largest and most well-known builders. This will be our first pool, so I did do a fair amount of research, although not exhaustive by any means. However, I am hoping for some reassurance and advice over our equipment selections.

    Shallow Depth: 3'
    Deep Depth: 5'
    Volume: 13623 gallons
    Size: 482 sqft
    Deck: Flagstone White Cement
    Surface: Diamond Brite
    Auto Controls: Easy Touch 4
    Pump: Pentair Intelliflo i1.**
    Bubblers: 2 on Sunshelf, 1 in
    Jets: 4 in Spa
    Solar: 8X 4'x12' Heliocol
    Lights: IntelliBrite
    Chlorinator: Intellichlor
    Filter Type: Cartridge 200SF
    Cleaner: Zodiac Auto Pool Vac
    Spa Heater: 250 BTU

    **The contract we signed is for a Pentair VS3050. Shortly after we signed, the builder told us he uncovered some mistakes in their calculations that were eating into their profit substantially. Two days later, the builder called saying that VS3050 pump is "too big for the pool" and advised we switch to the Intelliflo i1. I asked how the price compares, and the builder said only a few hundred bucks and didn't offer to refund the difference. I didn't fight it because I was busy at work and planned on looking into it further. Truthfully, I am wondering if perhaps this is a desperate attempt to try to recover some lost profit.

    I must be honest and admit that I have read that it is not always good to oversize your pool pump (analogy of a Corvette may have more power, but if you don't need all that power, a Honda Civic is more economical). However, I am concerned that the smaller Intelliflo i1 pump doesn't have enough power to accomodate the pool, solar array, bubblers, spa jets, etc. reliably.**

    Any advice regarding the pool pump and any of the other equipment would be much appreciated! I should note that we do get a 3 year warranty, P&L, through the builder. I've attached a picture of the design. Only change from the picture is that we added a second bubbler to the sunshelf.Steven_and_Julie_Yenisch 6_005.jpg

    Thanks very much!

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    Re: New Pool in Winter Garden, FL

    No comments?

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    Mod Squad zea3's Avatar
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    Re: New Pool in Winter Garden, FL

    Hi welcome to TFP! The pool looks like a nice design, but I have concerns about that pump. Will that be the only pump, or will there be a seperate pump for the spa and bubblers? Also can you provide more detail about the size of the plumbing? For example 2" diameter pipes vs 11/2" pipes?
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    Re: New Pool in Winter Garden, FL

    Quote Originally Posted by zea3 View Post
    Hi welcome to TFP! The pool looks like a nice design, but I have concerns about that pump. Will that be the only pump, or will there be a seperate pump for the spa and bubblers? Also can you provide more detail about the size of the plumbing? For example 2" diameter pipes vs 11/2" pipes?
    Thanks! That will be the only pump. I just heard from the builder that the piping will be 2.5" diameter.

    Edit: There will also be 4 jets in the spa. I read last night that typically spa jets require 20 GPM for moderate to good "force", so 80 GPM total there. I calculated the GPM I need to circulate the pool 3X a day and it is only 28 GPM. It seems like it is the spa and accessories that are going to drive my pump size. Or am I lost here?

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    Mod Squad zea3's Avatar
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    Re: New Pool in Winter Garden, FL question about pool pump

    This is why I have concerns about the Intelliflo I1 pump. From Pentair's description it sounds like the opposite of what your need. I am going to ask some more knowledgeable folks to weigh in on this discussion.
    TFP Moderator
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    Vogue 21' round AG, Pentair 1 hp 2 speed pump, 36 sq ft DE filter, Hayward S180T 150# sand filter, Houston, Texas
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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: New Pool in Winter Garden, FL question about pool pump

    Yes, the spa design has a major impact on the pump choice. The spa determines the minimum amount of power you need from the pump, as the pool is better off with much lower power levels.

    There is one major problem with this story, the Pentair i1 costs the same as the VS3050. They are essentially identical pumps, except that the i1 is limited to 1 HP max, while the VS3050 can go up to 3 HP max. At corresponding speeds they are essentially the same efficiency for the same price. The i1 was designed for situations where local regulations prohibit pumps over 1 HP. It makes no real sense to use one in any other situation, as the VS3050 can be operated over the same range for the same price, with higher power available if you end up needing it. There are other variable speed pumps that are limited to 1 HP or 1.5 HP which are less expensive, and I could see an argument for using one of those, but the i1 doesn't have their pricing advantage.

    The chances are fairly good that a 1 HP pump would be sufficient for that pool, though that depends on the specific jets being used. Typical jets require 15 GPM, but there are jets that require higher flow rates. Four jets at 15 GPM is 60 GPM, which a 1 HP pump should be able to produce if the rest of the plumbing is done reasonably. Higher flow rate jets might be a problem with only 1 HP available. It is conceivable that a 1 HP pump might achieve 80 GPM, but that would depend on many details of the plumbing that we don't know at this point, and is much less likely to be reliable (without more information).

    I would recommend insisting on either getting the VS3050, or getting a price break. If it is in your contract they have little choice but to agree to that. Since it is variable speed it can always be turned down to lower speeds and so get the same performance and efficiency advantages that a smaller pump would have. The only significant disadvantage to a VS3050 is the up-front cost, which the builder has already agreed to pay.

    By the by, I would suggest a larger filter (if not too expensive). 200 sqft is nominally fine, but a larger filter will allow you to go longer between filter cleanings, which is always nice.
    19K gal, vinyl, 1/2 HP WhisperFlo pump, 200 sqft cartridge filter, AutoPilot Digital SWG, Dolphin Dynamic cleaning robot
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