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Thread: Valve actuator plumbing for solar - something looks wrong

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    Valve actuator plumbing for solar - something looks wrong

    I just bought a house with a 13k pool and a rooftop solar system. I have been trying to dial in the solar and have been going through the plumbing configuration. Something seems off.

    I had an Intellifo VS installed to replace the single speed pump that was there. There is a Goldline solar controller which will be replaced by the SolarTouch in the next few weeks.

    In this pic, the solar controller is off. When the solar is on, the curved side of the handle is to the right.

    When the solar turns on, the actuator turns and diverts the water to the solar - I assume this turns 3 off and opens 1 and 2.

    But when the solar is off, 2 must be off and 1 and 3 open, right? If so, what is stopping the water from flowing to the solar panels?

    Is this the right set up?

    Pool.jpg

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    mas985's Avatar
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    Re: Valve actuator plumbing for solar - something looks wrong

    Normally the solar valve is between the filter and solar supply not the return so it is backwards but it still should work ok. Is there a check valve between the solar supply and the filter?

    The only problem with the setup is that the panels will still fill when the solar valve is off. In very hot climates this can be an issue because the water will get very hot and could possibly soften the PVC.
    Mark
    Hydraulics 101; Pump Ed 101; Pump/Pool Spreadsheets; Pump Run Time Study; DIY Acid Dosing; DIY Cover Roller
    18'x36' 20k plaster, MaxFlo SP2303VSP, Aqualogic PS8 SWCG, 420 sq-ft Cartridge, Solar, 6 jet spa, 1 HP jet pump, 400k BTU NG Heater

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    Re: Valve actuator plumbing for solar - something looks wrong

    There is a check valve.

    I am in San Diego so it does get out. Should I change it?

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    mas985's Avatar
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    Re: Valve actuator plumbing for solar - something looks wrong

    If it hasn't caused a problem to date, I would worry too much about it. But looking at the layout, it doesn't look like it would be too hard to change either and you could salvage the valve so it is up to you.
    Mark
    Hydraulics 101; Pump Ed 101; Pump/Pool Spreadsheets; Pump Run Time Study; DIY Acid Dosing; DIY Cover Roller
    18'x36' 20k plaster, MaxFlo SP2303VSP, Aqualogic PS8 SWCG, 420 sq-ft Cartridge, Solar, 6 jet spa, 1 HP jet pump, 400k BTU NG Heater

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    Re: Valve actuator plumbing for solar - something looks wrong

    Replumbed it. Water to solar comes straight from the actuator and water coming back goes to the pool. I put a check valve in the solar return so water doesn't go backwards. I also put an inline thermometer in the solar return so I can maximize heat gain. Much better!

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    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: Valve actuator plumbing for solar - something looks wrong

    What do you mean by "maximize heat gain"? Ideally the solar panels should only raise the temperature a couple degrees to be most efficient.
    Jason, TFP Moderator
    18k IG pebblesheen pool, Hayward ProLogic P4 w/ T-15 SWG, Pentair 1HP 2-speed Superflo, Hayward 6020 DE filter
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    Re: Valve actuator plumbing for solar - something looks wrong

    I mean dial in the pump rpms to get them as low as I can.

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