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Thread: Pentair Intelliflow

  1. Back To Top    #1

    Pentair Intelliflow

    Have to vent just a little. I bought a Pentair Intelliflow four months ago. I should have known if I couldn't find anyone to help program it I would encounter the same response if I ever needed service. Well I need service. This morning it died. The screen is blank and will not turn on. I called Pentair and they wouldn't even talk to me until I had the installer/electrician verify it was receiving power. $90 later it was verified that 240 volts were making their way to the pump. I called the Pentair warranty rep in San Antonio and they didn't know the first thing about an Intelliflow...absolutely no clue. Said they could not make it out until late next week and if parts were needed it could really take a long time since they didn't stock parts for the Intelliflow. Pool should look real good after a couple weeks of 90 degree weather. This was a great pump when it worked. Just want to let you know that before you buy an Intelliflow make sure there is a Pentair Rep willing to help set it up and a service center that knows what an Intelliflow is.
    Charlie

  2. Back To Top    #2

    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Baton Rouge, LA
    Posts
    237
    Sorry to hear about your Intelliflo blues.

    I was considering getting the same pump, but have decided to go with the 4x160, although I'm not sure that I will get to bypass any of the issues that you're having either.

    In my line of work, we sell microprocessor based control valve positioners. They've been on the market since 1996, and we're still working the bugs out of them... and just when they get almost right... we "improve" them. Based on my experience with them, I'm opting for a less feature-laden piece of equipiment.

    Hopefully, they'll have yours up and running again quickly.

    I'm sure its crossed your mind to get a standard pump, or maybe a 4x160 to replace it immediately, until your main is fixed, and then have the other as a spare... just in case (i.e. when the next computer chip fails.) Then again I really have no idea how much either pump cost.

    good luck, you sure have a beautiful place.

    Steve
    18,000 gallon gunite free form, with spa, 4x160, EasyTouch, SWCG, Pentair cartr filter, Colorlogic lights.

  3. Back To Top    #3

    Intelliflow

    The Intelliflow is around $1,200 and the 4x160 is around $900. Pretty expensive backup pump but it beats a scummed out pool. First step is to try to bypass the computer and direct wire the pump until I can get service. My old two speed is looking pretty good right now. I'd put it back on but would have to replumb/rewire again. Just a little frustrating since I saw it coming and still went down the road.
    Charlie

  4. Back To Top    #4

    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    San Rafael, CA USA
    Posts
    12,085
    I just got my new IntelliFlo (full, not 4x160) and IntelliTouch installed this past week. My PB knew nothing about it and only installed it because I explicitly asked for it. The PB stopped doing business with Pentair a while ago due to a beef with the Pentair rep (he wasn't honest with him about problems in the past) and has problems with some of their products. Anyway, we sort of figured things out but the indoor wired control panel didn't work and it turned out to be the plastic covering wouldn't fit properly and always had at least one button pushed and that prevented proper operation. It's still broken in that way and I have a call in to Pentair on it. They said that their warranty service will call back within 2 business days and can then schedule an appointment. So they aren't swift, that's for sure. I'll keep y'all posted. I did ask my builder about how long it would take to get a replacement pump if I even needed one and he said Pentair has it locally stocked so it shouldn't take long, but I don't think he's figuring on the Pentair "prove it" delay.

    Despite the minor setback, I'm thrilled with the system so far. I got rid of my booster pump and Letro Legend (whose filter bags don't stay closed after 1 year, but that's a separate beef) and switched to The Pool Cleaner which is connected to a dedicated pressure return that I switch to automatically when I run it (I currently have it switched so some flow still goes to the regular returns, but may change that if I can get the flow rate set correctly for this feature -- that's another issue I need to sort out with Pentair as part of a list of questions I have on setup).

    When the pump is set on regular filtering and I have an extended time frame set up for it, it goes down to its minimum flow rate of 15 GPM and consumes 183 Watts (at 1305 RPM). When the solar is on, I have the flow rate set to 48 GPM (4 GPM per panel which is 80% efficiency for heat transfer) and consumes 1530 Watts (at 3005 RPM). For comparison, my old 1 HP (1.6 SF) pump consumed about 1720 Watts without the solar (probably only a little more with the solar, perhaps 1800 Watts) AND my booster pump for my pool sweep consumed 1470 Watts when it was running. My plan is to have all or nearly all the flow to my pool sweep dedicated line at a low GPM flow rate (whatever it needs for proper wheel rotation time) and run that at night (so no solar and no interference with swimming) at low power.

    I figured on saving about $900 per year on my current $1400 per year electric bill increment due to the pool pumps, but we'll see what it ends up being. The solar unfortunately requires the higher flow rate, but it doesn't always run all day and it's still at a lower electrical usage than it used to be so we'll see. I suspect that in the hottest months when the solar is only on for about 4 hours that there will be the greatest savings, but other months will have less impact. Just getting rid of the booster pump and running the pool sweep at a low flow during regular filtration should save over $150 per year. Even if the solar were on the entire 8 hours per day during the summer, I would save another $150 per year from the greater efficiency at 48 GPM (I thought this would be even higher, but incorrectly estimated my system curve and old pump's GPM with the solar on). If the solar is on only 4 hours per day ( instead of 8 ) during 3 months of the year, then I save another incremental (to the previous "solar on" savings) $150 per year. If I cut back to half a turnover during the winter that I currently do with my old pump (which it appears I have to manually "fake" in the controller by telling it I have half the real pool volume) then I save another $100. That adds up to about $550 per year savings. So we'll see what the actual savings turns out to be. It looks like it will be less than I originally thought, but still worth it (to me). We also wanted the convenience of the indoor control panel (we had to go out to the pool shed to turn on the gas during spring/fall on days we needed that since we didn't want it on all the time and we had to go to the skimmer to find out the pool temperature).

    Richard
    16,000 gallon outdoor in-ground 16'x32' plaster pool; Pentair Intelliflo VF pump; Pentair IntelliTouch i9+3s control system; Jandy CL-340 square foot cartridge filter
    12 Fafco solar panels; Purex Triton PowerMax 250 natural gas heater (200,000 BTU/hr output); automatic electric pool safety cover; 4-wheel pressure-side "The Pool Cleaner"

  5. Back To Top    #5

    Pentair intelliflow

    It's a great pump when it works. The pump quit last Wed. Called Pentair Thursday. They said I would hear from them in 48 to 72 hours. Still no response. My water is going down hill fast. On the bright side my Intelliflow is using no power. HA!
    On a side note have you checked if you remove power from the unit at the circuit breaker does the Pump automatically switch back on when power is returned or do you have to hit the power on button on the pump again? Give it a try and please let me know. Mine had to be turned back on manually. Not good when the booster pump starts back up but the main pump does not.
    Charlie

  6. Back To Top    #6

    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    San Rafael, CA USA
    Posts
    12,085
    I tried the circuit breaker test but remember that I've got IntelliTouch in addition to IntelliFlo so am not sure it would behave the same with just the pump or with the pump and IntelliComm, for example. Anyway, it appears that the system (that is the pump) stays off when the power returns -- the system does not "see" that the time is within a program and that it should start to run it. I suspect that what would happen is that the NEXT time a program is set to "start", that it would. So the pump would likely go on later that day or the next day depending on when the power outage occurred.

    One thing that didn't work upon power on was that when I manually turned on the pump from the indoor control, the pump went on but so did the gas even though the "Heat" setting was set to "Solar Only". When I went into the heat setting and explicitly changed it to "Off" and set it, the gas went off, and when I set it back to Solar Only, then the gas stayed off. So having the power go out does seem to disrupt some of the internal settings.

    [EDIT] One more strange item -- after I manually turned on the IntelliFlo and the cleaner valve from the indoor control panel, I expected both of these functions to be shut off at their OFF times, but neither one did. So maybe those functions aren't "saved" or something in a power outage. I'll have to ask Pentair about that if/when they call me to schedule service. Maybe it's necessary to do some sort of re-sync after a power outage (though that's really unfortunate as how would one know?). I had "Manual Op Priority" set to NO. Maybe the automatic OFF only works if the circuit goes through an automatic on first and has nothing to do with the power outage except that it "forgot" about the automatic on that had occurred before the outage. [END-EDIT]

    Another item I need to find out about is what happens when there are multiple things turned on that have "custom flows". What is the priority in this case? I know that the custom flow will override the standard calculated "filter" flow, but if more than one feature option turns on (say, solar and cleaner) then which one takes precedence? I'll do some tests to find that out as I'm trying to sort out when to run the cleaner (pool sweep). I think I'm going to have the valve switch to only (or almost all) the return to the cleaner and run it at night when I know the solar won't turn on. That way, we won't be in the pool when it runs and it can use its own dedicated flow from the pump which should be more efficient. The pool sweep (The Pool Cleaner) works now, but isn't cleaning the shallow end well -- but I'm not through tweaking it.
    16,000 gallon outdoor in-ground 16'x32' plaster pool; Pentair Intelliflo VF pump; Pentair IntelliTouch i9+3s control system; Jandy CL-340 square foot cartridge filter
    12 Fafco solar panels; Purex Triton PowerMax 250 natural gas heater (200,000 BTU/hr output); automatic electric pool safety cover; 4-wheel pressure-side "The Pool Cleaner"

  7. Back To Top    #7

    Pentair Intelliflow

    May want to check. Mine did not come back on at the next scheduled run time. The pump stayed off until I pressed the "Start" button. It doesn't make sense if this is correct. I agree the pump should start back at the next run time. You may want to pop the circuit breaker and see. Please let me know.
    By the way the Pentair repair guy came by. This aws the first Intelliflow he had seen. He ran through the basic steps and narrowed it down to the circuit board. Unfortunately there are no parts in town. Hope Pentair will overnight. My pump has not run since last Wed. morning and the water is shot.
    Charlie

  8. Back To Top    #8

    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Ontario, Canada
    Posts
    294
    have you ever thought of buying one of those pond pumps, or maybe a couple, just to keep your water and chlorine circulating, it may be just enough to slow down the algae till the troops arrive.

  9. Back To Top    #9

    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    San Rafael, CA USA
    Posts
    12,085
    I did a breaker power off, waited, then back on BEFORE the on time for my pump and it successfully turned on by itself at the scheduled time. However, when I manually turned on a separate feature -- my pool sweep -- and did so before its ON time, it did NOT turn off at its OFF time like it was supposed to. So there's certainly flaky stuff about this system. I also temporarily got back to the weird situation on the Custom Flows screen for the pump where some of the buttons on the right didn't work -- but then mysteriously that situation rectified itself. Seems like some bugs in the programming somewhere!
    16,000 gallon outdoor in-ground 16'x32' plaster pool; Pentair Intelliflo VF pump; Pentair IntelliTouch i9+3s control system; Jandy CL-340 square foot cartridge filter
    12 Fafco solar panels; Purex Triton PowerMax 250 natural gas heater (200,000 BTU/hr output); automatic electric pool safety cover; 4-wheel pressure-side "The Pool Cleaner"

  10. Back To Top    #10

    Pentair Intelliflow

    Glad you checked. You may want to continue to perform "what if" type circumstances to see how the pump/software responds. Once you get it figured out the pump is really neat. I talked to the repair rep today and he found an Intelliflow. It should be here tonight and he will install it on Friday.
    Charlie

  11. Back To Top    #11

    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    San Rafael, CA USA
    Posts
    12,085
    OK, the service guy finally came out yesterday and it turns out that the electrician working with my PB installed the indoor wired remote control incorrectly -- putting the screws into the wrong holes so that the circuit board wouldn't sit flat so the plastic cover couldn't fit without causing all sorts of problems. So that was an easy fix.

    I also figured out why turning on the pool pump manually would turn on the gas. I had the Spa heater setting set to Yes which would turn on the gas heater whenever the Spa was turned on. The confusing part is that I don't have a spa so the configuration is for "Hi-Temp" and "Lo-Temp". Apparently, this spa heater feature then gets applied to "Hi-Temp" which is what I've assigned as may main pool control. At least that's figured out.

    So there are only two real "bugs" left and I'll send Pentair an E-mail about those and see what they say. I also have questions, but I'll see how responsive they are. All in all I'm quite happy with how things are working out. The annoying bug, with no apparent workaround, is that the Manual Op Priority seems internally stuck on even if I turn it off -- so that means that whenever I turn on the pump manually either before its timed turn on or if I turn it manually off then on during its timed turn on, then it stays on for 12 hours instead of turning off automatically at the turn off time. In other words, it behaves just as documented for the Manual Op Priority feature if that feature is set to Yes, but it behaves this way regardless of the setting. Interestingly, setting it to Yes and pressing Save "beeps" while setting it to "No" and pressing Save does not "beep" almost as if it is telling me, "you silly boy, I'm going to ignore your request for reasons you could not possibly understand!".

    Richard
    16,000 gallon outdoor in-ground 16'x32' plaster pool; Pentair Intelliflo VF pump; Pentair IntelliTouch i9+3s control system; Jandy CL-340 square foot cartridge filter
    12 Fafco solar panels; Purex Triton PowerMax 250 natural gas heater (200,000 BTU/hr output); automatic electric pool safety cover; 4-wheel pressure-side "The Pool Cleaner"

  12. Back To Top    #12

    Intelliflow

    Glad you're working through the issues. Mine is back up and running. I was down a total of 10 days. Pentair had a new pump installed. Everything is working fine. I'll keep you posted if any other problems arise.
    Charlie

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