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Thread: More intellitouch decision help

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    More intellitouch decision help

    Our pool builder really messed up on his end and his profit margin is almost zero. He is taking much slower than the contract promised but I am insanely happy with the actual construction and look of the pool. He mis calculated the number of trucks that the shotcrete would take by one, the number of days and man power it would take to build our pool (weeks more). I believe he is being honest with us, but you never know. He is now attempting to charge us for things that we agreed on (small charges, but still charges)

    Issue- he contracted for the intellitouch 8 +1 (also known as the 9), but in his head was thinking easy touch ( I guess its a huge price difference as the intellitouch does not come with the salt system and costs more in general- plus he contracted for the wireless remote). He is willing to go with the contract but is asking for a little extra if we want the 8+1. He's telling me that the 6 + 1 or 7 is more than enough for our pool and we will still have room for expansion. I just want to verify this with someone who knows. I don't want to have the 9 just to have it. I want room for mild expansion but do not need over kill ( it is a smaller size yard) Here is what we have in means of pool stuff and other things like low voltage lighting etc.

    Pool spa combo- The VS will control the spa and the pool ( I know we should have gotten the booster pump also, but our buddies pool uses the same system and were happy with it)

    Filter

    Gas Heater

    Pump 2 for our sheer decents

    2 intelibright lights 1 pool 1 spa

    Solar

    suction side pool sweep with dedicated line

    single run of low voltage lighting

    single run of sprinklers ( can I even run this on the intellitouch?)

    With the above configuration is the intellitouch 7 good with a little room for growth or do I need the 9?

    Thanks for your help! I know Simi is out there : )
    18,900 Stonescapes Tahoe Blue xtra black, 8 jet Spa, Pentair inteliflo VS , Pentair FNS 60 DE, Inteliclor40, Pentair 400,000 Mastertemp heater, 3 spillovers powered by a Pentair 1 HP whisperflo pump, The pool Cleaner, 2 Intellibright color changing lights and 400 sq ft. of Heliocol roof mounted solar.

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: More intellitouch decision help

    Either one should work just fine. However, nearly everyone ends up wishing they had more relays in their controller eventually. I don't expect you will notice the difference in the first couple of years, but sometime down the line you will want to add yet another something and will be out of relays.

    In the situation you describe, it is probably more of a negotiation issue than a real need, ie put up with the simpler system if it keeps your relationship with the builder going well. Situations like this one can be delicate. By the contract you have the right to demand what is listed in the contract. But the more you push for that, the more you risk the builder stopping work, waiting for you to sue, and possibly going out of business with the pool unfinished. In that situation there is no "right" answer.

    You need to judge just how close to going out of business they are. If they stay in business you can force them to build to the contract, though it may take longer. But if they go out of business you won't have a finished pool. When builders are on the edge, they will often favor customers who "help them out", and get their pools finished, while abandoning the pools of people who hold a hard line until the builders finances improve (if they ever do).

    Yes, you can control a sprinkler.
    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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    polyvue's Avatar
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    Re: More intellitouch decision help

    I may have no right to be, but I'm suspicious. Jason suggests that your builder may be close to bankruptcy, but I didn't get that from your post. How do you know that the builder's profit margin is "almost zero?" Because they've told you this? Was this build awarded under competitive bid? Just wondering what the other guys would have charged. In other words, if there were 3 estimates for this work, was this one the lowest by at least 10% of the average bid? If not, this builder may just have handled his/her finances poorly or is trading on your sympathy for a few extra dollars.

    Now, some companies low-ball contract bids and you may be willing to compromise a bit if you think they're doing a good job, but in that case I would strongly suggest that you have a dollar figure in mind that you won't exceed, e.g., 5% over bid price. That said, I have personal experience with only one pool builder (who, when he bothered to show up, always complained that business was so bad he didn't know if he could continue in the trade... in spite of the fact that the local paper was reporting that his company had just been awarded several cost-plus contracts, including an aquatics center for a university and a commercial building for a power company.) This company is still in business, of course. And no smart business owner isn't going to try to pad their gross margin by asking for more money from clients, if they think they can get it.

    Perhaps I'm being too cynical (I evaluated contracts for state government for a number of years) so you'll have to be the judge. But I'm always wary of business owners who complain too much about business to their customers... it may be timed toward buying their 3rd vacation home in Belize.
    14,555 gal in-ground 16'x29' white plaster Pool w/spa (2007); Goldline Aqua Logic AQL-PS-8 control w/Aqua Cell 15 Salt Water Chlorination (SWCG); Hayward TriStar 1HP (1.85 SF) main / 1.5HP (1.60 SF) spa pumps; Hayward Swimclear cart filter C4025, ColorLogic LED lights; Tankless SP-18-4 electric heater; Polaris 280 cleaner.
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    View of spiral galaxy in Ursa Major NGC6217 - Hubble Telescope 2009

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    Re: More intellitouch decision help

    Thanks for the responses-

    Zero chance of him going out of business. He is a small builder, but usually does very high end pools and has several pools going that are very profitable. The only reason he even considered our pool was that our neighbors are building a pool at the same time and his good friend refered us. His usual pools are in massive yards and between 2-3X time our cost.

    Note- he did bid our pools at the same time but on seperate contracts.

    With my given equiptment list how many relays would be used and are any sharing the same relay.

    Example- Would the VS pump relay operate the pool sweep timing, the normal pump timing AND the spa or does each action require a different relay?

    Also, do I need a transformer for the low volt lighting and if so that wouldnt need to operate off the intelli as I dont know of any w/o their own timer.

    Thanks again for your response!
    18,900 Stonescapes Tahoe Blue xtra black, 8 jet Spa, Pentair inteliflo VS , Pentair FNS 60 DE, Inteliclor40, Pentair 400,000 Mastertemp heater, 3 spillovers powered by a Pentair 1 HP whisperflo pump, The pool Cleaner, 2 Intellibright color changing lights and 400 sq ft. of Heliocol roof mounted solar.

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    Re: More intellitouch decision help

    JasonLion is correct; at some point you will wish you had more relays. May be more of a want than a need, but you will wish you had more!

    I would think that the PB would have written down in your contract which controller he was providing. That way there would be no guessing as to which one he was providing or thinking about. The i7+3 will most likely be plenty (and you may be able to add relays to it later. IIRC, there are areas for expansion as the panel faces are pretty much the same. I just can't remember if the personality kit will allow a 7 to be added to or not ), but you should get what you contracted for, if that is what you want.

    If I were you, I think I would spend a little time on the Pentair site (http://www.pentairpool.com) and get educated on the systems. The fact that the PB keeps calling out the wrong numbers tells me that he isn't real up to speed on them. Perhaps if you could be the educator so that he doesn't make the same mistake with someone else again you will both come out ahead!

    The time you spend learning about the different systems will serve you well going forward as well. Most pool owners just let the pool cleaning company program their systems and never spend the time to learn. In the end, they cut themselves short on learning what the system is capable of, and miss out on a lot of neat programming that these systems are able to perform! The IntelliTouch system is hands down the better offering, and would be my first choice. The EasyTouch gets sold a lot in competitive market conditions strictly because it is much cheaper and less adaptable. Both are great systems, depending on your expectations!

    Keep the lines of communication open with your PB, but refer back to the contract (which he wrote!) for specifics. You should get what is specified, and pay for any changes, which is only fair. He should provide for what is specified as well, which is also only fair!

    Good luck!

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: More intellitouch decision help

    You will want to use one relay each for the sheer decent pump, pool light, spa light, low voltage lighting, and sprinkler. You do not normally need relays for the gas heater or suction side cleaner. A Pentair variable speed pump does not require a relay when used with a Pentair controller, so it should be possible to use the filter pump relay for some other purpose.
    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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