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Thread: Which pentair intelliflo pum to get

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    Which pentair intelliflo pum to get

    Hi. I have heard good things on the pentair intelliflo pums. I am debating whether to get the model number 011017 or the model number 011012. I believe the difference is that the second one has more bells and whistles, but many of them are not really important and therefore are more likely to breakdown. My pool servicing company recommends the 011017, which is less expensive. Anyone here can give some direction. I would appreciate very much

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    Re: Which pentair intelliflo pum to get

    What size and type of pool do you have? What type and size of filter do you have? How many skimmers and returns; what size returns piping; what size filter connections; solar heating?

    Tell us something about your pool.
    Hotrod30

    20 X 40 foot vinyl Borates and Salt Pool
    Rolachem Chlorine Feeder
    Hayward 27 inch sand filter with 80 lbs of pea gravel
    Jacuzzi Splash Pak SP55 DE filter in parallel
    Pentair VF3050 pump

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: Which pentair intelliflo pum to get

    The 011012 is the VF model. It includes a flow meter. The flow meter is handy for figuring out the correct motor speed to use for maximum electrical savings. You can get the exact same results with the less expensive model, but it can take quite a bit of trial and error to figure out the ideal speed settings.
    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

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    Re: Which pentair intelliflo pum to get

    I have a 30,000 gallon pool. 50ft x 16 ft. 2.0hp pump. I use natural gas for heating. It has an electric cover. The pool is in the ground. I chlorinate with a salt cell IC-40 from pentair

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    Re: Which pentair intelliflo pum to get

    You may be able to get a rebate from your power company for purchasing either pump, but you may be required to purchase a control box as well to qualify with the VS model. I like my Hayward VS so far, but it has only been a couple weeks since I installed it so I can't speak to its longevity.
    18k Inground Plaster pool / TriStar Variable Speed Pump and Controller
    48sq ft Hayward DE filter/ Swim pure Plus 40k cell / Kreepy Krauly
    Solaxx Ph-Tek

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    Re: Which pentair intelliflo pum to get

    What do you mean by the control box ?. I have a "box" inside my home from Pentair that controls temperatures, the lights, the spa, the salt cell etc, and I know it is suppose to be able to talk to the intelliflo pump. Is this the box I need, or is there another piece of equipment. thx again

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    Woodberg's Avatar
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    Re: Which pentair intelliflo pum to get

    I have the Intelliflo VS model as my main pool pump and love it. The only difference between the VF and VS model Intelliflo's are in the variable controller that is mounted on the base pump. The physical pump itself is identical and despite what you may hear, the pumps have identical spec's because they are exactly the same. In fact, a VS can be converted to a VF and vice versa simply by changing the control unit on top of the pump.

    [attachment=2:2717xfu4]Main Pump.JPG[/attachment:2717xfu4]

    The difference is in the controller. The VS is a variable speed pump and the VF is a variable flow pump. This is really just two ways to get to the same thing but there are some basics benefits to each that must be matched to your pool.

    On the VS (variable speed) pump, you can change the speed of the pump but you cannot directly control the amount of flow (GPM) that you get. You have to guess at the flow. In fact, without the Easytouch or Intellitouch Controller, you really don't even know what the speed is, you can just change the speed up or down until you find a speed that works. Its really just by feel. If you have one of the contollers, you can actually set the speed you want in RPM's and it will control the pump for you. Also, by itself, you can have 4 preset speeds on the VS pump. With one of the Pentair controllers, you can preset 8 speeds, which should be plenty. Over time, as your filter gets dirty, you will slowly get less flow (GPM) with the same pump speed setting. Since the speed stays the same, your watt usage stays the same. Below is the control panel on the VS pump.

    [attachment=0:2717xfu4]VS Control Panel.JPG[/attachment:2717xfu4]

    On the VF (Variable Flow) pump, you can set what flow rate you want and the pump will automatically adjust the speed to match this flow. The advantage is that as you filter gets dirty, the pump will automatically start raising its speed to keep the flow constant. However, as the speed increases, so does the watts used, which equates to dollars. Below is the contol panel on the VF pump.

    [attachment=1:2717xfu4]VF Control Panel.JPG[/attachment:2717xfu4]

    IMO, two of the main factors to help you determine which of these pumps is right for you is 1 - whether you have a Pentair Easytouch or Intellitouch controller and 2 - whether you have an infloor cleaning system. Without one of the Pentair controllers, or maybe another 3rd party controller, you really have to rely on the pump controller to change settings. The VF has a screen which gives you information and it has many more control options. The VS has an up and down button for speed but you don't know what the speed is. If you have one of the Pentair controllers, most of that advantage is taken away since you can control either pump just fine from the Pentair Controller. I have the EasyTouch and it works great. Since I never go to the pump itself to make adjustments, I don't notice the difference between the VS and VF interfaces.

    The other issue is regarding an infloor cleaning system. Since the VF pump adjusts itself by monitoring flowrate, it doesn't work as well with the infloor system. Since the flow rate is changing a lot, the pump would be constantly changing speeds to try to keep the flow rate the same. The VS does a better job, because it just stays on the same speed regardless of an pressure or flowrate changes.

    The main reason I bught this pump was for efficiency and to save money on my monthly electrical bill. One of the things I really find interesting is using my EasyTouch to monitor the watts used. For normal pool circulation, I run the pump at 1,800 RPM's which equates to about 450watts of power. In 10 hours I only use 4.5KW of power which is about 60cents a day. The cleaning system setting is at 2,400 RPM, which uses about 900watts of power and the SPA setting is at 3,300 RPM, which uses about 2,000 watts. At this rate, I think the payback for the pump will be about 16 months.

    Let me know if you have any specific questions that I can help with.
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    20,000 gallon gunite pool, attached spa, Pebblesheen finish, Paramount PCC-2000 infloor cleaning system, Paramount ClearO3 ozone system, Intelliflo VS main pump, Whisperflo 1HP cleaner pump, StaRite cartridge filter, StaRite heater

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    Re: Which pentair intelliflo pum to get

    Great pictures and description!

    I have the Intelliflo VF and an IntelliTouch controller. It's nice to be able to set the flow rate (GPM) rather than the speed (RPM) as I wanted a specific designed rate for my solar panels. Without the VF, I don't believe the controller would be able to set the flow rate -- only the speed (this is my guess; I don't know for certain). However, I could have accomplished the same thing using the Intelliflow VS plus a flow meter, but would have to be outside at the pump house to see the flow rate instead of inside the house where there is a remote control panel.

    The Intelliflow VF will adjust the speed automatically to maintain the requested flow rate, but that would seem to be more useful if one has a filter whose pressure rises over time and even then I'm not sure it makes enough of a difference to be worth it. I'm very happy with the pump, but I believe I would have been just as happy with the VS plus a flow meter.

    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"

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    Woodberg's Avatar
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    Re: Which pentair intelliflo pum to get

    After reviewing the options, I basically came to the conclusion that the flowmeter was the main thing I was missing with the VF and I just decided to add a manual flowmeter instead.

    I don't know if you have an iPhone, but since you have a VF and the Intellitouch you could download a free app to control your pool. You also need the Screen logic PC interface. I just thought it looked cool. Its a little geeky, but that might fit well with your screen name. 8)

    [attachment=0:38s52avz]iPod Control.JPG[/attachment:38s52avz]
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    20,000 gallon gunite pool, attached spa, Pebblesheen finish, Paramount PCC-2000 infloor cleaning system, Paramount ClearO3 ozone system, Intelliflo VS main pump, Whisperflo 1HP cleaner pump, StaRite cartridge filter, StaRite heater

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    Re: Which pentair intelliflo pum to get

    I am seeing 5 different variable speed models... and I can't find any explanation on the PentAir site about what the difference is... the info above only applies to the VF and the base VS models... but it seems the SVRS models are different also.

    IntelliFlo VF
    IntelliFlo VS-3050
    IntelliFlo VS+SVRS
    IntelliPro VS-3050
    IntelliPro VS+SVRS

    Looks like the Pro models are a different manufacturer?

    It appears that the only one that has a flow meter is the VF model... and the only ones with a SVRS device are the VS models... right? What's the deal with the Flo vs Pro models?

    Are the SVRS models newer? Same pump as 3050 and VF models?

    Very confusing... and nothing on the PentAir site to compare them.
    32K gal, gunite, French Gray DB, IntelliFlo VF, IntelliFlo, WhisperFlo, Quad DE 100 filter, IntelliTouch, IC-60 SWG, IntelliChem, Dolphin M5

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    Woodberg's Avatar
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    Re: Which pentair intelliflo pum to get

    The InteilliPro models are Starite brand pumps. The IntelliFlo models are Pentair. From what I understand that is mostly just a branding deal so that you can stay with all Pentair equipment or StaRite. The IntelliPro models are black and the IntellFlo models are the cream color. I decided to stay with the IntelliFlo models because Pentair is the company who developed them and I figured there was probably a better chance that they would support them in the future. Think Chevy Tahoe versus GM Yukon. Basically the same vehicle with different brands.

    As for the differences between the IntelliFlo models. The VF is the variable flow model and the two VS models are identical to each other except that the SVRS version has the new "Safety Vacuum Release System" included. This is related to the Virginia Graeme Baker Safety act. It detects a blockage of the drain and shuts the pump off. Except for this feature the two VS pumps are identical. The SVRS is a little newer, but just to add the SVRS feature to the existing VS pump. I think I remember hearing that once the pump turns off, a service person has to come reset it. I figured since I already had 2 main drains that equalize the suction, that I didn't need an additional layer of safety. Seemed like one more thing to break.

    As for the VF, the main difference is that you control it by setting the flow rate, not the speed like the VS. This is a fundamental difference and you need to understand it to be able to make the right choice between the VF and VS. Also, without a control system like the Easytouch or Intellitouch you can control the pump better with the VF because it has an LCD screen on the pump.

    Since you have a control system, I would think the regular IntelliFlo VS model would be fine for you. If you want to know your flowrate, get a $40 dollar flowmeter and add it on later. If you have all black equipment or StaRite equipment and want to color coordinate, you might think about the IntelliPro models.
    20,000 gallon gunite pool, attached spa, Pebblesheen finish, Paramount PCC-2000 infloor cleaning system, Paramount ClearO3 ozone system, Intelliflo VS main pump, Whisperflo 1HP cleaner pump, StaRite cartridge filter, StaRite heater

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: Which pentair intelliflo pum to get

    The VS+SVRS model has a timer and a couple of other configuration options that the VS model doesn't have. There isn't usually much point in getting the VS+SVRS unless you have to have SVRS (which is rare).
    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

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    Re: Which pentair intelliflo pum to get

    Thanks for the explanation of the Pro vs Flo models...

    Between the VS-3050 and the VS-SVRS models, it appears that the pump controls are MUCH more detailed on the SVRS unit... full display screen... RPM, Watts, indicator lights, menus and settings. Everything the VF model has, it appears. So, I guess it comes down to the only difference being control via RPM or GPM, where the VF will maintain a constant GPM and vary the RPMs to do that. Does the VF also have the ability to set fixed RPM levels and ignore flow rate? If it did, that would be the best of both worlds. WOuld seem to me they would add a VF-SVRS model in the near future also.

    Since control is not an issue with the new SVRS displays... in what cases would I want to set GPM instead of RPM? Or should I say, in what cases would I see a GPM variation with a fixed RPM pump, aside from filter needing cleaning? And wouldn't I want to know about that and see the reduced flow rate, instead of ramping up pump speed, costing more money and masking the issue?
    32K gal, gunite, French Gray DB, IntelliFlo VF, IntelliFlo, WhisperFlo, Quad DE 100 filter, IntelliTouch, IC-60 SWG, IntelliChem, Dolphin M5

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    Re: Which pentair intelliflo pum to get

    Quote Originally Posted by jtech1
    Does the VF also have the ability to set fixed RPM levels and ignore flow rate? If it did, that would be the best of both worlds. WOuld seem to me they would add a VF-SVRS model in the near future also.

    Since control is not an issue with the new SVRS displays... in what cases would I want to set GPM instead of RPM? Or should I say, in what cases would I see a GPM variation with a fixed RPM pump, aside from filter needing cleaning? And wouldn't I want to know about that and see the reduced flow rate, instead of ramping up pump speed, costing more money and masking the issue?
    Yes, on the VF pump you can set the speed (RPM) instead of the flow rate (GPM). However, on the IntelliTouch control, I only see settings for flow rate, not speed. It will report both, however. The VS-SVRS does not, however, show you the flow rate so if you don't have a flow meter you won't really know what it is.

    As for detecting a rise in pressure in a filter, the VF will do that since it will tell you the pressure % over the "clean" PSI you set (actually, that the pump resets when you go through a backwash cycle). It presumably figures out the pressure increase by detecting the increased RPM needed to achieve the same GPM (or it looks at the power used and knows its pump curves). Of course, it should be pretty easy to look at a pressure gauge on the filter periodically.
    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"

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    Woodberg's Avatar
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    Re: Which pentair intelliflo pum to get

    I didn't realize that the VS-SVRS had the better control screen. I've added a new picture of that interface to help make this thread whole. With that being the case, I would definitely think the choice would be between the VS-SVRS and the VF. I wouldn't even consider the VS-3050. If money isn't an issue, I would probably recommend going with the VF, althought I think you would be happy with the VS-SVRS as well.

    [attachment=0:18fwhtmo]VS-SVRS Control Panel.JPG[/attachment:18fwhtmo]

    The only reason I think it matters to know the GPM flowrate is when you are first setting up the pool and want to know how much water you need to pump to turn the pool over in a certain amount of times during the day. I've tried to set mine to turn the pool over 1.5 times during the day. Once you have that data, your pretty much going to just set the pump to that speed or flowrate and let it run everyday. With my VS pump, its running at 1,800 RPM for 12 hours per day. I just monitor my filter pressure. I'm assuming that when my filter gets dirty, I'm only turning the pool water over 1 time a day, which should still be fine. With the VF, that calculation is just a lot easier.

    It sounds like you've got a good handle on the issues. Either you use a VS and set the speed, whereas your GPM will slowly drop over a few months as your filter gets dirtier or you use the VF and get constant flow but rising electrical cost as your filter gets dirtier. I don't think that's really a big issue either way.

    One question I would have for your PB is whether the VS-SVRS has any special plumbing requirements or if it is just like the VF or VS. I'm assuming it doesn't need anything special but it would be worth asking.
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    20,000 gallon gunite pool, attached spa, Pebblesheen finish, Paramount PCC-2000 infloor cleaning system, Paramount ClearO3 ozone system, Intelliflo VS main pump, Whisperflo 1HP cleaner pump, StaRite cartridge filter, StaRite heater

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: Which pentair intelliflo pum to get

    The physical setup is identical on all of the models.

    The fancy programming options on the VS-SVRS are useless if you have a Pentair automation system, the automation system controls everything. And they are also essentially useless if you have an external timer. In those situations, both very common, the only thing you get for the extra money is the watts readout. Unless you really need the SVRS feature or plan to use the timer in the pump, the plain VS model is often a better choice. It is less expensive and is less likely to fail (simpler electronics).

    Having the flow rate readout on the VF model makes setting up the pump for optimal energy efficiency far simpler. Of course you could do the same thing with an external flow meter for less money, but no one ever seems to actually do that. In practice, that means that the VF is very likely to save more electricity, even though the VS could save just as much if it is setup correctly.
    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

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    Woodberg's Avatar
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    Re: Which pentair intelliflo pum to get

    One other advantage I've found to having the screen at the pump is when you are running in service mode on the EasyTouch. When you enter that mode, the EasyTouch no longer controls the pump and you have to use the buttons on the pump to make any adjustments. Since the VS has no screen, that is virtually worthless, because you don't know what speed the pump is running at. What I'd like to do is quickly change settings in service mode and then once I find the optimal settings, program them into the EasyTouch.

    Regardless of how you optimize the pump for you pool, your probably only going to do it one time unless you have some kind of equipment change. I played with the settings for about 6 weeks and have now just left them the same. I'd be willing to bet virtually everyone else does the same thing.
    20,000 gallon gunite pool, attached spa, Pebblesheen finish, Paramount PCC-2000 infloor cleaning system, Paramount ClearO3 ozone system, Intelliflo VS main pump, Whisperflo 1HP cleaner pump, StaRite cartridge filter, StaRite heater

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    Re: Which pentair intelliflo pum to get

    chem geek & others,

    It was said above, that the VF can be set to maintain a constant gpm OR a constant RPM... but that RPM setting was not available via Intellitouch? I just want to make sure I am clear on this... if set to constant RPM, I assume you still get a GPM reading? If you can't set constant RPM via Intellitouch, but are using the INtellitouch system, then you effectively do NOT have constant RPM capabilities? Or did you mean the RPM for each of the 8 levels can be set at the pump, then selected at the Intellitouch controls? Can each of the 8 levels be set to either constant RPM or constant GPM?
    32K gal, gunite, French Gray DB, IntelliFlo VF, IntelliFlo, WhisperFlo, Quad DE 100 filter, IntelliTouch, IC-60 SWG, IntelliChem, Dolphin M5

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    Re: Which pentair intelliflo pum to get

    It seems strange, but at the pump itself you can set the GPM and see the RPM and power, but if you set the RPM you can only see the power and not see the GPM (that is, there is no actual GPM display on the pump that works in RPM mode). However, on the IntelliTouch control panel (the remote I have in the house), one CAN see both RPM AND GPM but can only set the GPM from the panel, not the RPM. A confusing mess. So yes, as far a I can tell, you do not have constant RPM capability from IntelliTouch -- you can only do that from the pump itself (i.e. in manual mode at the pump or running the programs yourself on the pump but NOT via IntelliTouch). The IntelliTouch does not really use the programs on the pump -- you are not limited to 8 programs and instead can set custom flows for a large number of "features". The IntelliTouch essentially "tells" the pump what to do each time, perhaps setting and executing a single program, but it doesn't "pre-program" 8 settings and select between them as far as I can tell (I only seem to recall 4 programs, not 8, on the pump, but I could be mistaken).

    The EasyTouch may work quite differently and just use programs set at the pump so ironically may be able to do a constant RPM program which is something that IntelliTouch does not seem to be able to do. Fortunately, I've had no need for constant RPM except for experimenting and I do that while in Service Mode so manually making adjustments at the pump itself.

    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"

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    Woodberg's Avatar
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    Re: Which pentair intelliflo pum to get

    The EasyTouch does the same thing. It communicates directly with the pump and controls all the speeds and settings. It doesn't use any of the 4 speed settings set at the pump. The only use for the buttons at the pump is when running in service (manual) mode. Since I very rarely do that, the lack of screen on the VS pump really hasn't bee that big of an issue.

    The other thing to remember about the functionality of the IntelliTouch and EasyTouch is that it is controlled by the firmware release. Pentair can make changes at any time to give additional capabilities. I have sent a couple of feature requests to Pentair. Maybe they will make it in to future releases of the software. The last update on the EasyTouch firmware was in February. Hopefully a new version will be out soon with some additional features.
    20,000 gallon gunite pool, attached spa, Pebblesheen finish, Paramount PCC-2000 infloor cleaning system, Paramount ClearO3 ozone system, Intelliflo VS main pump, Whisperflo 1HP cleaner pump, StaRite cartridge filter, StaRite heater

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