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Thread: Jandy valves with actuators -- how accurate do they stop at "mid" positions?

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    Jandy valves with actuators -- how accurate do they stop at "mid" positions?

    I have a couple questions about using Jandy Neverlube valves with actuators.

    I've read that they can rotate the valve to "any position," but just to confirm, does this mean that they can stop in between the end stops? If so, how accurate are they when it comes to hitting the same mark over and over? I'm re-designing my deck plumbing in order to greatly reduce the number of elbows (therefore reducing flow resistance), but in order to do this I need to install valves in orientations other than the typical way (by "typical," I mean when the middle port is the common one.) In my plan, I have some valves oriented in ways such that the valve needs to rotate to a "mid" position. I'd like actuators (which I don't have yet) to be able to do this, but they'd need to hit the same mark with a decent degree of accuracy. Can they do this, even over a long period of time? Is the accuracy based on the valve, or does the automation controller have an effect on this?

    Assuming that they are accurate enough to do this, can they be programed to move to more than two positions, or do automation controllers only allow two positions for each valve? The automation controllers I was looking at would be one of the ones from Pentair (Intellitouch or Eashtouch.) If they can only hit two positions, can you still manually move them to a third position, and if you do this, does it alter the "automatic" positions that they are already programmed for?

    Thanks,

    Larry

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    Mod Squad Bama Rambler's Avatar
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    Re: Jandy valves with actuators -- how accurate do they stop at "mid" positions?

    The only thing that stops the actuator from turning are the limit switches. In order to get the actuator to stop in a mid position you have to adjust the cams to stop it there. So theoretically you can set it to operate between any two positions from zero to 90º or zero to 180º depending on the actuator. Once set, the stop position is fairly repeatable, within a degree or two.

    The controllers are only discrete controllers, meaning that they supply full power to the actuator in one direction or the other, so they cannot control more than open or close. They can't do multiple positions.
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    Re: Jandy valves with actuators -- how accurate do they stop at "mid" positions?

    Okay -- so just to make sure I understand this, one end of the swing set by positioning the actuator, and the other end of the swing is set by the limit stop on the valve itself, which allows you to make it swing (for example) from 0 to 50 degrees or 0 to 145 degrees. Do I understand this correctly? So it's okay that the valve "can't" swing as far as it "wants" to go -- i.e. it hits a stop and stops "trying" to swing any further?

    On a related note, is it okay to manually swing the valve past where it wants to stop? For example, Let's say I have it set to swing from 0 to 90 degrees, but the valve itself can still swing all the way to 180 degrees. Can I manually swing it to 180 degrees, and if I do so, is it easy to put it back to it's "automated" setting of 0 to 90 once again?

    Thanks again,

    Larry

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    Mod Squad Bama Rambler's Avatar
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    Re: Jandy valves with actuators -- how accurate do they stop at "mid" positions?

    I've never actually done that, but theoretically it's possible, and once the control system calls for it to go the other way, it will go all the way back to that stop. And then it will operate between the stops.

    The only problem I see, is that if the control system called for it to go further toward the direction that you manually moved it past the switch in, it would possibly try to go more that direction until it hit the stops and keep trying until either the motor kicked out or burned up. I can't remember now how those cams are designed.
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    Re: Jandy valves with actuators -- how accurate do they stop at "mid" positions?

    Just for clarity, the range of valve movement needs to be set using the adjustment cams inside the actuator, not the physical stops on the valve it's self. If you use a stop on the valve the actuator will continue trying to turn the handle after it hits the physical stop and eventually burn out it's motor.

    You can only turn the valve manually after you have disengaged the actuator. Attempting to turn a valve with the actuator still engaged will lead to you fighting with the actuator motor and/or stripping the actuator gearing, and may also lead to some of the same kind of problems that using physical stops on the valve lead to (since the valve will not normally turn 360 degrees and thus stall the actuator motor leading to eventual burnout.
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    Re: Jandy valves with actuators -- how accurate do they stop at "mid" positions?

    You can not put a physical stop on the valve if that is what you mean or there will continue to be power applied to the actuator. You have to use the electrical limit switches in the actuator on both ends.

    In order to manually turn the valve you have to disengage the actuator ... some brands are easy to do this and others are not. I would not recommend doing it though because mine has a tendency to not want to fully seat and re-engage the cams.

    FYI, if the electrical limit switch does not engage (mine was cracked and replaced under warranty) the valve will literally just keep spinning in one direction over and over again because there is not a switch telling it to stop.
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    Re: Jandy valves with actuators -- how accurate do they stop at "mid" positions?

    This youtube video does a fair job describing how these cams are set https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OJAQbKV-Ops
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    Re: Jandy valves with actuators -- how accurate do they stop at "mid" positions?

    Okay -- I think that clears it up for me. The video (which shows this better than the manual does) shows how you use the two blue rings to set the limit stops, and I'm assuming that you can set these to any two positions as long as the arc is less than or equal to 180 degrees. Is this correct?

    Given that the actuator's limit stop has to hit the microswitch in order for the motor to stop pushing, is it recommended to align it so that the microswitch is triggered just SHORT of the physical stop on the valve? It seems like if it was set RIGHT on the edge -- i.e. if the microswitch was activated RIGHT when the valve hit the stop -- there would be a possibility that after using it for a while, the microswitch might not be fully tripped before the valve hit the stop, which would mean that the motor would not be shut off at the end of the swing. It seems like a bit of headroom, where the valve never actually bottoms up against the physical stop, would prevent this. Do I understand this correctly?

    Thanks again,

    Larry

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    Re: Jandy valves with actuators -- how accurate do they stop at "mid" positions?

    The maximum arc is more like 300 degrees, but other than that you seem to have it figured out.
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