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Thread: Are 4 pumps required?

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    JayBauman's Avatar
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    Are 4 pumps required?

    I've been reading these forums for a few months and finally just joined. There's a lot of reasonable collective knowledge on this site.

    I recently signed a contract to have a pool put into my new home so the PB can get easy access to my back yard before the empty lots on either side get developed. The design calls for 4 separate pumps.

    1.5HP pool & spa filter loop
    1.5HP water feature loop
    1.5HP in-floor cleaning system
    1HP drive spa spillway (6' wide)

    In my ignorance, I would expect a fewer number of VS speed pumps would be a more efficient setup. Other than the up-front costs for 4 pumps, what are advantages/disadvantages of this setup?

    Thanks in advance for your input.
    23' x 37' IG 18.5k gallon SWG w/ raised spa, Build Thread -->Here
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    Kiss4aFrog's Avatar
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    Re: Are 4 pumps required?

    Disadvantage: The upfront costs.

    Advantage: You can use a smaller motor for each function and you have better control. Less plumbing valves to remember to switch to move water to this feature or that.

    Are they all VS ?? For the water feature and spillway if I'm thinking of them correctly you could have two speed pumps. That way you could have some water which might be quieter at night and a bit more soothing or high speed and more of a "show" with more water.
    Two speed pumps would shave a few hundred off the up front costs and still give you two options for flow.
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    JayBauman's Avatar
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    Re: Are 4 pumps required?

    All pumps are single-speed.

    The main pump, of course, is the main unit that will be used only as much as needed to keep chlorine levels up and water circulated. A second 1.5HP pump will only be running when in-floor cleaning system is running. The other 2 pumps are "vanity pumps" and will only be used to run various water features, most likely only when we're actually in the pool.

    The PB says that main pump and floor cleaner pump won't be effective at lower flow rates (i.e. they need to run at full speed when running), and the other 2 pumps are only needed for aesthetics. Given this situation, what benefit would I get from 2-speed (or VS) pumps?

    The whole system will be run off of a Goldline Pro Logic® PS-8 system, so I don't really care about how complicated the changeovers would be to run various circuits. That should be programmed by the PB, right?

    Thanks.
    23' x 37' IG 18.5k gallon SWG w/ raised spa, Build Thread -->Here
    Wet Edge® Pearl Matrix®, Hayward® SwimClear™ 525 ft², Hayward® Goldline Controls® PS-8
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    mas985's Avatar
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    Re: Are 4 pumps required?

    First, the dump the in-floor. They are energy hogs and there are many posts on this forum with people that have issues. You PB is right about having to run at full/high speed all the time. That is why they are energy hogs. There are cleaners on the market that are just as good and some don't even require the pump to run (e.g. robots).

    Second, if you are going with multiple pumps, then I would not share one between the pool and the spa jets. That one should definitely be kept separate. Share the pool pump with the water feature. That should be fine for a VS or two speed.
    Mark
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    Kiss4aFrog's Avatar
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    Re: Are 4 pumps required?

    There are builders here, I'm just a pool owner. So I'm a little hesitant to say but that PB doesn't sound like he's telling you the truth or he's confused or he has a lot of stock of single speed pumps to move. On a new install it makes sense to use dual or VS pumps everyplace you can.

    Sorry , , , I wasn't paying enough attention and thought you said in the original post they were all VS pumps which seemed like overkill.

    I like the idea of separate pumps as there would be less complexity to the plumbing. That's just personal. I'd have three two speed pumps and one single speed for the floor cleaning system. I'd also try to get identical pumps and motors so the parts are interchangeable (the spillway pump).

    1.5HP pool & spa filter loop - - two speed or VS. Lower speed for normal filtering, saves electric $$.
    1.5HP water feature loop - - two speed or VS. To be able to modify the effect and noise. Are you going to have this seperate from the pool and spa or sharing the water ??
    1.5HP in-floor cleaning system - - Single speed or running a VS on high speed.
    1HP drive spa spillway (6' wide) - - Two speed or VS.


    BUT ... since you are already planning on using the automation it's just a matter of knowing you have enough capacity in the Pro-Logic system to switch the valves and control the motors.
    You should be able to use fewer pumps and have more valves. https://www.hayward-pool.com/pdf/man...iortoOct08.pdf

    It's not a matter of ignorance on your part as much as it might be the PB has a different vision or just doesn't want to change the way he's always done it. It's your pool and your money and you should get it done the way you want it. Maybe you would want to consult with a different PB in your area about the installation voicing your concerns. Like getting a second opinion from a doctor. On a new install it should be the PB driving you to upgrade the pumps rather than you having to go on line to do a sanity check. I really can't imagine a new install with only single speed pumps
    '70s IG Vinyl 32K gal, Lazy L, Hayward SuperPump 1.5hp 120V, S240 Sand Filter W/DE
    Solar Blanket, Well Water, Borax Added, TF-100 tester. ?° too cold
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    Mod Squad pooldv's Avatar
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    Re: Are 4 pumps required?

    Our 3hp VS pentair has no problem running filter, swcg, solar panels, pool returns and waterfall in any combination, or all. 3450 is max rpm and we rarely run it above 1950 rpm even with all of above running. Usually run it at 24x7 at 1100 rpm (@150w) to filter, skim and chlorinate. No spa and no in-floor, so don't know about running those.
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    Isaac-1's Avatar
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    Re: Are 4 pumps required?

    All I can really say is I would hate to see the electric bill with 4 single speed pumps running. Personally I think this would be the perfect application for 1 or 2 variable speed pumps. I would also ditch the in floor system, while some people are happy with them, it seems most are not. And if anything major ever goes wrong with them they can be a nightmare. If something major goes wrong with a robot you can unplug it and throw it away and drop in a replacement in 5 minutes.
    Indoor 20x40 35,000 gallon vinyl pool with 1.5 HP 2 speed Jandy FloPro pump, Hayward EC75 Perflex DE filter, 11 4x12 Techno-Solis solar panels w/ Aquasolar controller, Aquabot Turbo T Robot Cleaner. Also LMI metering chlorine dispenser pump and HotSpring Jetsetter
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    JayBauman's Avatar
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    Re: Are 4 pumps required?

    Thanks for the feedback.

    I do still have one unanswered question: If I assume (big assumption, I know!) that each pump is sized to run at full capacity for each intended function (e.g. the filter pump needs to run at 1.5HP to get sufficient water turnover and chlorination), then what is the intrinsic benefit of VS / 2S pumps in my situation? I realize that VS pumps are inherently more efficient due to the permanent magnet design. If this is the only benefit, then due to my low electricity rates, the payback time to justify the price delta for VS pumps becomes fairly long.

    Thanks for your patience; I'm just trying to make sure I have the correct information when my PB comes back with detailed plans for my design.
    23' x 37' IG 18.5k gallon SWG w/ raised spa, Build Thread -->Here
    Wet Edge® Pearl Matrix®, Hayward® SwimClear™ 525 ft², Hayward® Goldline Controls® PS-8
    4x Hayward® TriStar™ pumps, Paramount PCC2000® ICS, TF-100 w/Speedstir

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    Kiss4aFrog's Avatar
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    Re: Are 4 pumps required?

    The reason people upgrade to a two speed or VS pump is because you don't need all that capacity all the time and you can get the job done and save $$ on electricity at the same time. For daily maintenance, filtering and mixing chemicals low speed works fine. To run vacuums or waterfalls or in floor cleaners you do need the pressure and the flow and would want to run the pump at or near full speed or have a single speed if this is all the pump is used for. I'd still prefer to have a two speed for things like water features as I'm out in the country and in the evening it's nice to cut back on the flow and noise of the water as it's more noticeable as there isn't much noise to compete with out here.
    '70s IG Vinyl 32K gal, Lazy L, Hayward SuperPump 1.5hp 120V, S240 Sand Filter W/DE
    Solar Blanket, Well Water, Borax Added, TF-100 tester. ?° too cold
    1979, 275gal Conway Emerald Spa P-100-2, ES-2 Spa Pack, bromine floater, indoor
    TF-100, Best test kit - TFTestkits.net
    Please help keep the lights on, become a TFP Supporter!

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    Isaac-1's Avatar
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    Re: Are 4 pumps required?

    The reality is that pumps do not get sized "just right" the better pool builders may get some application specific pumps fairly close, but this is not likely to happen with filtration pumps, water feature pumps, etc. In the case of filtration pumps at a minimum you would want a 2 speed pump, so you could run on low at 50% speed and 25% electricity most of the time, then have high speed available for manual vacuuming, backwashing (if you have a back washable type filter), the same sort of adjustment is true of water features, however this is a case where an adjustable valve or a variable speed pump can really shine, since they can let you adjust the water flow to fit your mood, do you want a trickle or a gusher, the same is true for a spa.

    Lets take water filtration as a case in point, the lowest flow that provides adequate circulation will be the most efficient, all other factors being the same, however all other factors are rarely the same. In a perfect world this would mean a pump that ran at just a trickle 24 hours per day (assuming non tiered electrical rates, but that is another can of worms), but we don't live in a perfect world, instead we have to deal with real world factors like minimum pump speed to allow for skimming action. The required amount of skimming action will also vary with the season, then there are other factors like how clean is the filter, what is the wind doing, etc. With a single speed pump you are always running full speed regardless of any of these factors and controlling overall filtration with a timer to limit hours per day of filtration, with a 2 speed pump you get a little better control now being able to choose between off, half or full speed, where half speed consumes 1/4 the power of full speed. If the pump is sized right this is usually good enough, but still does not really allow for fine tuning, with a variable speed pump can fine tune things just as much as your personality type desires and maximize electrical economy. The only question that remains is which is better a 2 speed or a variable speed once you factor in cost of electricity and the higher cost of the variable speed pump, with the single speed being right out of the running due to being an energy hog.
    Indoor 20x40 35,000 gallon vinyl pool with 1.5 HP 2 speed Jandy FloPro pump, Hayward EC75 Perflex DE filter, 11 4x12 Techno-Solis solar panels w/ Aquasolar controller, Aquabot Turbo T Robot Cleaner. Also LMI metering chlorine dispenser pump and HotSpring Jetsetter
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    Corleone's Avatar
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    Re: Are 4 pumps required?

    Never mind.

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    Re: Are 4 pumps required?

    I'll be blunt -- four single speed pumps is nuts. A vs for the pool and a 2 speed for the spa and you should be fantastic.

    With a vs you can filter at very low speeds using very little power. That's important in Texas because you run your filter year round. Most of your energy -- probably more than 90% will be filtering. A vs or 2 speed does that best. Do you get power from Katy Energy? They had a rebate program on vs pumps they may still have one. Ask your PB about that.

    I'd dump the infloor also --- get a robot those are the most energy efficient. Or a Polaris 360 they work great with a vs.
    22k gallon IG pebblefina, Jandy 1.5 HP VS, Jandy CV Cartridge filter, Fafco solar panels, Polaris 360 supply side cleaner, waterfall

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    skylar18's Avatar
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    Re: Are 4 pumps required?

    I agree. I have one Jandy E VS Pump running my filtration, spa with an overflow, and a water feature coming off of our fire pit. Pressure is great when the pool is in spa mode even though I have an air blower as well to get more of the "bubble" effect. With only one pump, I have not really noticed my electric bill going up that much with the pool. (Same with the gas for the heater...I am only averaging 10-20 dollars more a month for gas to heat the spa and we use it a lot. Of course my water is usually of 80 degrees from May until October so it doesn't have to do to much work to get it to spa temperatures!)

    My only drawback to having one pump is my water feature turns off when we are in spa mode as all the power of the pump is directed to the spa. To me, I could live with that to only have one pump.
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    Re: Are 4 pumps required?

    I would build it with two VS pumps myself.

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