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Thread: Pump Issues

  1. Back To Top    #1

    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Location
    Frisco, TX
    Posts
    40

    Pump Issues

    As you can see in my signature my pool was completed in June of 2013 and I currently have a 3HP Pentair Intelliflo VS with SVRS pump. I know SVRS is unneccessary with two drains and a properly plumbed pool but it is required by code here in Frisco, TX.

    I have been dealing with a string of pump failures. We are on our 5th pump since the pool was filled. First one failed in Dec 2013 and the others have failed at roughly 4 month intervals. The most recent pump failed this Saturday. Basically the pump "drive" goes dead. The actual motor itself is fine. One the first failure my PB replaced the drive. Second failure my PB replaced the whole pump. Third failure PB called Pentair. They sent their local "authorized" tech. He replaced drive again. Fourth failure the Pentair rep was called again. Entire pump was replaced again, some wiring/programming between the control box and pump was redone. Voltages/amperage were tested at each failure by both PB and Pentair.

    Basically, they don't know whats causing the failures. Based on some internet reading (which I know is dangerous) there are reports that the Intelliflo drives may be susceptible to moisture issues. There have been repeated or short life failures reported and moisture found in the drive units or housing. I am leaning toward that being the culprit in my case. My pump is located in an area roughly 6 feet wide and 40 feet long that is bordered by a 8' tall fence and my house. It is perpetually shaded and gets no breeze or wind. I am thinking the pump gets wet via rainfall or condensation and never dries out thus eventually frying itself.

    I have communicated to my PB that I want something different done with this latest failure other than replace the drive. We will just be replacing a drive again in 4 months. I have suggested replacing the control board, redo the electrical subpanel, etc. They don't seem inclined to experiment in that way, yet they are at a loss as to what to test or try next. There has been some discussion about replacing the pump altogether with a different brand. Likely a Jandy since that is what my PB uses for all the other equipment except pumps. I think replacing with a different brand is the most likely outcome.

    I have two questions:

    1. Has anyone had similar experiences with the Intelliflo and know of a possible solution or issue that could investigated.

    2. If an offer to replace with a Jandy is made, what is a similar type or better performing pump in the Jandy line. I don't want to take a step back in pump performance/flexibility because of the replacement. Are Jandy pumps reliable and good?

    Thanks
    22K Gal, Chlorine, IG, Pebble Sheen Plaster, Jandy 60Sq Ft DE Filter, Intelliflo 3HP VS pump with SVRS, Rainbow 320 Chlorine Dispenser
    Other Equip - Jandy PDA PS6, Jandy LRZ400 Heater, Polaris 280 vacuum
    Features - Spa with fountain that empties into pool over waterfall spillway and separate table rock waterfall, Pool gets full sun until later afternoon and then partial sun
    Pool completed and filled 6/28/13

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

    Re: Pump Issues

    I have heard of all kinds of single failures and several double failures, and a few triples, but nothing like your sequence. One common culprit is nearby lightning strikes burning out the drive from current induced in the data cable. Sometimes rearranging how the cable runs can reduce the likelihood of that happening. There are several cases where people have reported that adding surge protection to the sub-panel helped, but I don't believe we have enough examples of that to be completely sure it wasn't just coincidental.

    If the problems are moisture related, protecting the drive from rain would presumably help.
    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
    Dec 2012
    Location
    Frisco, TX
    Posts
    40

    Re: Pump Issues

    Thanks for the reply. PB and I have both come to the conclusion it is moisture related. no lightening associated with several of the failures. There was some rain before this last failure but don't remember any lightening. Protecting the pump has been considered but at this point I'm not keen on that idea. Doing so would require somehow enclosing only the pump. There is just not enough room to enclose the whole equipment pad. Enclosing only the pump would just be creating another problem with poor ventilation and likely overheating the pump.

    At this point everyone (even Pentair) is recommending installing a different pump. The only hiccup is the original pump was VS and SFHP of 3.95. I've been searching for something similar in terms. I can't seem find anything with that power and VS. PB wanted to install a Jandy VS but it was SFHP of 2.6. Significant reduction in power. I asked them to keep looking. We have spa with 10 jets and I don't want to lose any power. Unless someone can point me toward a VS pump that has the power of the Intelliflo, it looks like my only option is to fall back to a 2 speed. Pentair WhisperfloXF has a pump rated at 3.45 SFHP. That seems to be the best one I can find right now. However that route would require a new Jandy board because all of switches are occupied. Really need other suggestions if anyone has any.
    22K Gal, Chlorine, IG, Pebble Sheen Plaster, Jandy 60Sq Ft DE Filter, Intelliflo 3HP VS pump with SVRS, Rainbow 320 Chlorine Dispenser
    Other Equip - Jandy PDA PS6, Jandy LRZ400 Heater, Polaris 280 vacuum
    Features - Spa with fountain that empties into pool over waterfall spillway and separate table rock waterfall, Pool gets full sun until later afternoon and then partial sun
    Pool completed and filled 6/28/13

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

    Re: Pump Issues

    You don't need a full enclosure, just a roof that prevents most of the rain from reaching the pump. That gives you a little more flexibility in tight spaces, though it still might not work.

    The Hayward EcoStar moves the same to slightly more water as the IntelliFlo. However their remote control protocol is incompatible with both Pentair and Jandy automation unless you are willing to settle for very simple on/off remote control.
    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
    Dec 2012
    Location
    Frisco, TX
    Posts
    40

    Re: Pump Issues

    Thanks again for the reply. Unfortunately a simple roof isn't going to keep it moisture free. There are also sprinkler heads nearby that I run to keep my foundation watered. Those would shoot under any roof. This is such a frustrating situation. Which Ecostar are you thinking of? I looked at those yesterday and the SFHP on those is quite a bit lower. Maybe I didn't look at the right one
    22K Gal, Chlorine, IG, Pebble Sheen Plaster, Jandy 60Sq Ft DE Filter, Intelliflo 3HP VS pump with SVRS, Rainbow 320 Chlorine Dispenser
    Other Equip - Jandy PDA PS6, Jandy LRZ400 Heater, Polaris 280 vacuum
    Features - Spa with fountain that empties into pool over waterfall spillway and separate table rock waterfall, Pool gets full sun until later afternoon and then partial sun
    Pool completed and filled 6/28/13

  6. Back To Top    #6
    mas985's Avatar
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    May 2007
    Location
    Pleasanton, CA
    Posts
    11,474

    Re: Pump Issues

    Quote Originally Posted by Bevostein View Post
    no lightening associated with several of the failures. There was some rain before this last failure but don't remember any lightening. Protecting the pump has been considered but at this point I'm not keen on that idea.
    Lightning doesn't need to be local to cause an issue. If it gets on the power grid, it can cause a surge a good distance from the source. I have heard from an inside source that there have been a significant number of failures of VS drives due to power surges so do you have a surge protector installed? For TX, this should be a must with any VS pump.
    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

  7. Back To Top    #7

    Join Date
    Apr 2017
    Location
    Saratoga Springs, NY
    Posts
    3

    Re: Pump Issues

    Same here. I'll be calling Pentair tomorrow for my third driver control. Mine is locted under a roof structure and gets no precipitation on it. Purely condensation entering driver for bad sealing methods.

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