As I posted under SWG, I have a pool built in 2006 and I need to replumb things a bit to replace the SWG. The plumbing seems strange to me, for example the pipes to the pump are screwed directly into the pump so there's no way to remove the pump without cutting pipes. As I posted in the SWG thread, the company that built the pool disappeared before finishing. Since I have to mess with the piping anyway, this might be a good time to replace the pump.
So my two main questions here are: (1) How much lifespan is likely left on the existing pump, and (2) could I really save money, long-term, by replacing the pump with something more efficient (and how "long-term" would that be)?
Specs: 13k gallon inground pool with 3M's quartz finish, existing pump is Pentair WhisperFlo High Performance WFE-4 (1HP), Jandy AquaLink RS automation, SWG, DE filter, gas heater, cleaner is the 2-wheel "poolvergnuegen".
The 2-inch pipe going into the pump comes from a manual valve which mixes two inputs: a 2-inch pipe from the skimmer (which in turn goes to 2 floor drains) and a 1.5-inch pipe that goes to the cleaner port. Normally what I do after backwashing the DE filter is set that manual valve all the way selecting the skimmer, and then slowly turn it towards selecting the cleaner until bubbles start to appear in the pump's basket. Then I back it off a little to eliminate the bubbles. That setting seems to work fine for the cleaner.
Typically we run the pump 5 hours a day. Pentair says the pump draws 7.4A at max load at 230V, which would be 1700 watts. Given that electricity here costs 25 cents per kWhr, that comes to $776/year in electricity. I have no clue whatsoever how many gallons per minute the pump is doing, so I have no idea how many changes/day running the pump 5 hours comes to.
The specs for the filter show no minimum GPM, the SWG 20 GPM min, the heater 40 GPM min. For maximums, the filter says 145 GPM, the SWG doesn't say, and the heater says 120 GPM. If for some reason I had to replace the SWG with the newest model (AquaPure Ei), it has a maximum of 92 GPM.
If I were somehow able to set a new pump for 40 GPM, that would meet the minimums for everything except perhaps the pool cleaner, and do almost 1 change per day at 5 hours per day. If that wouldn't be enough for the cleaner, conceivably I could program the AquaLink to run the pump at a different speed for the cleaner?
The Jandy variable-speed pumps are of course compatible with Jandy's AquaLink RS, and according to the AquaLink manual so are Pentair pumps (or maybe just IntelliFlo?).
Any recommendation for brands/models of pumps, whether to replace the pump or not, and tips on using variable pumps would be appreciated!