Hi Pool Folks,
I too have been lurking here a while and wanted to thank you all for the information you provide.
My wife and I recently bought a house that came with a pool (pic attached). I've never had a pool before, so have been reading what I can and trying to learn to maintain it. So far, that has not been hard to do. I've pretty much just let it do what it was doing when we bought the place. That is, the timers are set to run the filter pump for ~6 hours per day and the sweep for ~3 hours per day.
From what I can tell, the skimmer is the only place that water is drawn from the pool. There is a drain looking thing in the deep end, but I do not feel any draw when I place my hand over it. At the slab where the pool pumps are located, there is only one line coming from the pool (1.5" copper, looks like). When I look down in the skimmer (Hayward brand, I think), I see the outlet pipe and a black square plug next to it. Could the plug be the line to the main drain?
There are two return lines to the pool at the pump slab. One seems to go to the port for the pool sweep, and the other to a couple of outlet ports on the left side of the pool (from the view point of the attached pic).
At the pump slab, there is a 3/4hp (Hydramax II, IIRC) filter pump, a 3/4hp booster pump that powers the sweep, a cartridge filter, and a "Pool Perfector" chlorine generator. The chlorine generator generates chlorine from salt, but this is not a salt water pool - salt is added as a consumable. And there are two intermatic timers that control the pumps.
Anyway, as you might notice in the picture, the house has a small array of solar panels. They actually do wonders toward reducing the electric bill but I would like to update the pool pumps and see if I can really make a difference. We are remodeling the house (it's down to the studs at the moment - no stucco, no drywall!), so the pool remodel is probably going to need to wait a year or two. At that time, I'll update the pool plumbing and the deck around it. Looks a little.... sterile the way it is.
In the meantime, however, I'm thinking I'd like to at least change out the pumps and turn it into a salt water pool. Research has led me to the Pentair Intelliflo VS and probably the Easy Touch controller with the Intellichlor chlorine generator.
I'm hoping that I can get rid of the booster pump, and just use the VS to handle both functions. Run the VS on low most of the time, and kick it to a higher speed when its time to power the sweep.
Is this a dumb idea? Will I have trouble with the 1.5" plumbing being undersized?
Thanks for any input you've got!