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Thread: Selecting Automation help/advice/experience requested, please

  1. Back To Top    #1

    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Location
    Austin, Texas
    Posts
    70

    Selecting Automation help/advice/experience requested, please

    I have an older pool that I maintain myself. I want to install automation but I don't know which system to buy.

    I want a system that can manage the scheduling of the pool equipment, allow for switching from pool to spa, control the heater when in spa mode, schedule and run Polaris and turn pool lights on/off.


    Here are the relevant bullet points:

    1. I will install this myself - I am not a novice as I have installed AutoPilot SWG, replaced motors, filters, valve actuators and more. So, it needs to be available for direct sale and not just through a pool installer.

    2. Upgradeable - a few years back, I owned a home with pool that hand Jandy AquaLink RS. I remember being frustrated when I wanted to add wireless remote control and they told me I had to by new model for that functionality. I would really like to know if any brands keep up to date via user installable updates.

    3. Hopefully it will interface with home automation systems like Insteon, Universal Devices, etc. I don't have that yet but I will.

    4. Non-proprietary to their own brand only. My pump motor that I will install next week is an Ecotech EZ VS, SWG is AutoPilot. I don't have the actuators yet. Can't I find something that will get along with everything?

    5. Have a wireless remote control and/or smartphone app

    6. Internet access to commands (wired to LAN or wireless makes no difference, I can run a wire)

    7. Expandable for future upgrades. I may want to add other features to the system later.


    Thank you in advance.
    30K IG, Plaster with spillover spa, 9 ft deep end with spring base diving board
    48sqft DE Filter, 3HP VS motor, Hayward SPII, Raypak RP2100 Propane heater
    AutoPilot Pool Pilot Digital with SC-60 and pump relay (220v)
    Polaris 280. Pentiar Booster Pump, TF-100 Test Kit, Speed Stir
    Austin, Texas (It's hot)

  2. Back To Top    #2
    JasonLion's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Silver Spring, MD
    Posts
    37,879

    Re: Selecting Automation help/advice/experience requested, please

    Nothing does all of those things. I'm not even sure anything does five out of seven. To get four out of seven you are already talking the top of the line models from each brand.

    1) If you have some AC wiring experience, installing yourself is fairly easy.
    2) They make you pay for this. Only the top of the line systems are expandable, and even there they have significant limits.
    3) No one officially supports this, though some minimal compatibility is possible.
    4) No one supports this. Jandy automation works with IntelliFlo pumps, but that is the only cross brand pump support anyone has.
    5) Everyone offers that even on basic models, though Internet tends to be a noticeable extra cost.
    6) The higher end units all have an Internet option, and a few of the mid-range units.
    7) Isn't this a repeat of 2?
    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

  3. Back To Top    #3

    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Location
    Austin, Texas
    Posts
    70

    Re: Selecting Automation help/advice/experience requested, please

    Thank you for your reply.

    For "Upgradeable" I was thinking of the model not becoming obsolete quickly.

    For "Expandable" I mean comes with a more relays than I currently need so can add on as needed.
    30K IG, Plaster with spillover spa, 9 ft deep end with spring base diving board
    48sqft DE Filter, 3HP VS motor, Hayward SPII, Raypak RP2100 Propane heater
    AutoPilot Pool Pilot Digital with SC-60 and pump relay (220v)
    Polaris 280. Pentiar Booster Pump, TF-100 Test Kit, Speed Stir
    Austin, Texas (It's hot)

  4. Back To Top    #4
    JasonLion's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Silver Spring, MD
    Posts
    37,879

    Re: Selecting Automation help/advice/experience requested, please

    Alright, that means my previous answer to #2 is actually the answer to #7.

    2) That is not at all common. Some brands allow service techs to upgrade the software, but by and large they won't do that unless it solves a problem you are actually having.
    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

  5. Back To Top    #5

    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Location
    Austin, Texas
    Posts
    70

    Re: Selecting Automation help/advice/experience requested, please

    Okay. Got it.
    30K IG, Plaster with spillover spa, 9 ft deep end with spring base diving board
    48sqft DE Filter, 3HP VS motor, Hayward SPII, Raypak RP2100 Propane heater
    AutoPilot Pool Pilot Digital with SC-60 and pump relay (220v)
    Polaris 280. Pentiar Booster Pump, TF-100 Test Kit, Speed Stir
    Austin, Texas (It's hot)

  6. Back To Top    #6

    Join Date
    Jun 2014
    Location
    Michigan
    Posts
    62

    Re: Selecting Automation help/advice/experience requested, please

    AB Slick 500/5000 controller dreams.
    20K gal, Fiberglass, 1.5 hp Century Pump, Sta-Rit System 3 Model PLM-100, 100 SQ Foot. Inline Frogger Chlorinater Mineral pack removed, adjusted the Chlorine pac to put in my own when on vacation. Liquid Pool Sanitizer,, BBB style.

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