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Thread: Automation system recommended for salt cell installation using intelliflo?

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    Automation system recommended for salt cell installation using intelliflo?

    I am not sure if this post belongs in automation or salt water forums but I put it in automation because this is mainly about the automation system and less on the salt water chlorinator.

    So my first post (http://www.troublefreepool.com/threa...olored-plaster) has made me decide that I am done with chlorine pucks for good and I am looking into the different kinds of chlorine generators out there. I have been meaning to convert to salt for some time now and this has pushed me to do it. I am leaning towards the Pentair IC40 unit but with power supply and the generator, its looking to be about $900. I noticed that for just a little more, I could get a easytouch automation system as well as an IC40 for about $200 more (Pentair 520593) with the added benefit that the generator and the pump could talk (amongst other benefits of adding automation).

    My pool was built in the 1970's from the best we can tell (pool guys estimate). Originally when I bought my house in 2011, the plaster, tile and coping were original and in really bad shape. I had no choice except to redo it all. The pump was a 1.5 HP Hayward pump hooked to a timer (no other electric items existed for the pool). The original wiring running to the pool pump area from the main house panel was 12ga (20A 220V circuit) and the wire run in underground conduit is about 100ft. When I overhauled the pool in 2012, I had a 500W Hayward light installed as well as added a Polaris 280 (so we had to install a booster pump too). The existing 12ga wire run was not enough to handle the new loads that were being added to the pool circuit. The pool guy who did my reno tried to pull 4 strings of 8 gauge THHN but it got stuck about halfway through. He told me he had to run new conduit underground at around $1000-$1500 just for the conduit and labor (which i didnt have that kind of money left after doing a full plaster, tile and coping job). There was some head scratching but after we did a load calculation, it showed that we were at 22 amps with all the new equipment, so we could run 10 gauge with the understanding that I was not allowed to add anything else to the pool circuit unless the wire was replaced with 8 gauge or bigger. After some hard tugging, they were able to get 10 gauge THHN through the conduit successfully. He told me that the existing conduit is only 3/4" and it was a tight squeeze because of the turns that the conduit had to make (he thought there were at least four 90 degree turns in a 90 foot run).

    I had an Intermatic T1004R dual timer system installed because I knew the Hayward pump was going to die soon and the new pump was going to be an intelliflo. The left timer is a digital timer in the which controls the polaris booster pump and pool light (circuit 3 is not used) and the right timer is a mechanical timer which powers the main pool pump. The Mechanical timer used to be the timer for the old pool pump but when it died in 2013, I replaced the pump with an intelliflo and have since used the schedule on the pump to take over the on/off times. Currently the main pump is powered by the mechanical timer in circuit closed position 24/7. Schedule is programmed on the pump itself.



    I have done a load calc and figured the following maximums:
    Main Pump (Intelliflo) - 10 amps (intelliflo using 4.2 amps at max but if it were to be replaced with a traditional pump again, it would need 10-12 amps)
    Booster Pump - 6.5 amps (10.5 amp initial load to start)
    500W Pool Light - 4.5 amps @ 120v

    So it looks like I have enough capacity to run the Easy touch system with the IC40 chlorinator. If I get the easytouch system, the pump and chlorinator would be able to communicate with each other but if I decided to install the IC40 without the easy touch (making it a dumb chlorinator), then how would I wire in the chlorinator to the existing timer system so that it only runs when the main pump runs?

    If I get the easytouch, i noticed in the documentation that they want you to run a 125amp service to it using #4 gauge wire. For me this is extreme overkill (my pool details below). I dont expect to upgrade any further out at the pool equipment location, so I think I am safe regarding my current electrical load. The only exception to that would be adding a heater later since a natural gas line already has been run to the pump area but installing a heater is highly unlikely. My neighborhood is not nice enough to have a future owner make additional or extravagant upgrades to the pool system (more than likely just repairs). In fact most of what I am doing is already over the top but I like tinkering with things .

    In Summary - Main questions:
    - would the easy touch system with IC40 chlorinator be worth it at ~$1100? This is compared to adding a IC40 with power supply for $850 to my existing setup.
    - Would it be ok to install the easytouch with #8 or #10 gauge wire as the line going to the main house panel (it is currently 10ga with 2 hot wires, a neutral and a ground)? The documentation wants me to run #4 gauge wire (which is overkill)
    - The IC40 documentation clearly states that the chlorinator should be wired in with the pump, so accidental activation does not happen when the pump is off. The only way I see to do that is using an automation system like the easytouch system, but if automation isnt required, how can I wire the IC40 to work only when the pump is on (currently main pump is powered 24/7 by mechanical timer in circuit closed position 24/7. Schedule is programmed on the pump itself) using my existing setup?

    Thanks,
    -C

    Background on my setup:
    16,500 gallon kidney shaped pool built in early 1970's located in Dallas, TX
    Lakeside colored Sparkle Quartz Plaster - installed 2012
    Pentair Intelliflo VF 11018 - 3HP set at 2400RPM maximum speed - installed 2013
    Polaris 280 pressure side cleaner with PB4-60 booster pump - installed 2012
    500W Hayward Light (120V) - installed 2012
    Intermatic dual timer system T1004R enclosure - Intermatic digital timer P1353ME on left, mechanical timer on right - installed 2012
    10 gauge THHN wiring from main house panel to dual timer system (90 foot run through 3/4 metal conduit underground) with 4 wires (two 120v lines, neutral, and ground)

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: Automation system recommended for salt cell installation using intelliflo?

    If you aren't getting the EasyTouch, I would not get the IC40. Without the automation system the controls/display on the IC40 is very limited, not at all competitive with what you can get for the same price from other brands.

    It is tricky to use the internal timer on an IntelliFlo with a SWG, you really need a current controlled relay to sense if the pump is on or not and turn the SWG on only when the pump is actually running. This requires a little research, but is a good alternative to getting an automation system.

    I can't imagine you needing 10 amps for a conventional pump. The IntelliFlo requires 16 amps. It doesn't typically use 16 amps, but the circuit must be rated for 16 amps.

    There isn't a great deal for an EasyTouch system to do on your pool. It could control the light, but otherwise provides little value.
    19K gal, vinyl, 1/2 HP WhisperFlo pump, 200 sqft cartridge filter, AutoPilot Digital SWG, Dolphin Dynamic cleaning robot
    Creator of PoolMath and Pool Calculator. Other handy links: Support this site, TF Test Kits, Pool School

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    Re: Automation system recommended for salt cell installation using intelliflo?

    So if the easy touch is out, should I still get a salt cell? If so, I want to wire in a relay to prevent the salt cell power supply from powering on without the intelliflo pump running. Does anyone have suggestions or recommendations on what type of current controlled relay is best for an outdoor timer enclosure? How hard is it to find one? I have never searched for a device like this, so I want to make sure I'm looking for the right thing. I have no doubt I can install it but I want to make sure I get the right device.

    Do the salt cells require a minimum pump speed or flow rate to operate? Also can it be mounted in vertical and horizontal direction?

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    JasonLion's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Silver Spring, MD
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    Re: Automation system recommended for salt cell installation using intelliflo?

    I like SWGs, so yes I think that is a good way to go. There are several posts around from people who got a current controlled relay. Do a little searching and you can turn up a fair bit of information. Yes, the salt cell does require a minimum flow rate, that rate is generally fairly low, though it does vary by brand. Most brands of SWG can be mounted both horizontally and vertically.
    19K gal, vinyl, 1/2 HP WhisperFlo pump, 200 sqft cartridge filter, AutoPilot Digital SWG, Dolphin Dynamic cleaning robot
    Creator of PoolMath and Pool Calculator. Other handy links: Support this site, TF Test Kits, Pool School

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