I'm new to this forum and am hoping your wisdom will assist me in my journey to rehab my pool!
Quick background: Live in South Florida and purchased a 1950's house nearly three years ago. The house has a 15x25 14K gallon IG concrete block pool with delaminating plaster finish which has been empty since purchase.The pool is not screened in and there are few trees nearby just a few palms. The existing 1.5HP single speed pump and sand filter are from 1998. The pump works (use it to drain the pool during rainy season) and the sand filter is in bad shape. I would like to replace the equipment for something new. As you can see from the photos, the pool is in desperate need of refinishing as well!
My goal is to have a very low maintenance system. My second goal is a low electrical bill. I'm willing to spend a bit more upfront if necessary for this convenience.
The pool is currently plumbed with 1 1/2" galvanized pipe. This includes the two returns, the skimmer and the main drain. Later this year or early next year I plan to re-pipe the entire pool using 2" PVC pipe. Is 2" PVC overkill for this pool size? Many have suggested adding a third return but not sure it's necessary.
The pool is 14,000+ gallons (15 x 25, avg depth of 5') and I've calculated about 30-40' average head (1 main drain and 1 skimmer) to where the new pump pad will be located. I want to invest in getting a new variable speed pump (lower energy consumption), filter and a salt generator (less time spent going to store to buy chlorine containers).
Pump: I was thinking of getting the Hayward SP2300VSP Max-Flo VS pump which should be sufficient for my needs. This pump is rated 1.5HP so it would be useful even if I decide to add 1-4 deck jest but I'm still not convinced on those yet. I would also add an Intermatic PS3000 surge protector as I hear lighting strikes can be a killer for VS units, especially in my area. I called Hayward and they said that was a myth but better safe than sorry.
Filter: I know a lot of people don't like cartridge filters but I'm looking into it as I hear it's low maintenance if you oversize the filter. I was thinking of a 200sqft single cartridge or 320sqft quad cartridge. Is it possible to oversize a filter too much (could it actually filter less if it's too big)? I was looking at the Pentair Clean and Clear filters as the manual itself recommends adding DE to enhance filtration. Seems like the best of both worlds! With the VS pump I plan to run the pump and filter at low speeds for 8-16 hours a day, probably 365 days a year. Ideally I would like to clean the filter every few months... I've heard going as long as 6-12 months is possible. That sounds great because cleaning filters weekly seems like a terrible chore!
Salt Water Chlorine Generator: I would also like to incorporate a salt system mainly for the low maintenance upkeep (no weekly chlorine runs) but also because I've noticed salt pools "feel" better. I could be imagining this but it seems that way to me. Also, some of my family and friends suffer from allergies and I hear the salt system is better for them (not sure why or how though). I also want to oversize this (probably salt water generator rated for a 40K gallon pool).
Whitegoods: Thinking of going all Hayward. Skimmer is plumbed independently from main drain. Any model recommendations on skimmer, main drain(s) and returns? Pool will have 1 skimmer, 1 or 2 main drains and 2 or 3 returns.
Deck Jets: Any recommendations?
Some questions and concerns (some of which are hidden above):
1. Is 2" PVC plumbing for the entire pool system overkill? Seems like the right thing to do but want to make sure.
2. Is a Hayward SP2300VSP Max-Flo VS recommended? Any other pump recommendations?
3. Are cartridge filters the lowest maintenance option? Any other filter recommendations?
4. Is it possible to oversize a filter too much?
5. Any experience with a salt chlorine generator? Thinking of AutoPilot or Hayward Goldline.
6. Are they worth the expense and trouble of installing? Any deck jet recommendations?
That's a lot of info for a first post! Phew...