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Thread: Polaris 280 (with boster pump) With VF/VS Pump

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    Polaris 280 (with boster pump) With VF/VS Pump

    I've done some searching but can't find info I want.

    Just wondering if anyone can offer info on their experience. (I'm aware that head will affect this but looking for ball park estimate to start out.) Anybody who has the VF or VS speed pump, what is the lowest flow/speed you have run while using booster pump for Polaris. I don't want to deprive the booster pump of the water it needs and also have some filtering going on rest of system. Booster pump is 3/4 HP. And this will certainly help me program the pump a lot faster. Pentair Intelliflo VF/Pentair Quad 80 DE Filter.

    Thanks, gg=alice
    1981, 25K, IG, Blue Plaster 1996, somewhat oval, widens a bit at shallow end, 1.5" pipes, 2" at Pad, 1 separate main drain, 1 skimmer, 4 returns + dedicated cleaner return, 10 ft deep end with very fast decline from shallow, Pentair Quad 80 DE, Pentair Intelliflo VF, 3/4 HP Booster Pump (equipment pad about 8 ft below top of pool), Challanger 3/4 Trash/Emergency Pump 120v, Polaris 280 (pressure), iRobot Verro cleaner (robotic), Aquabot Turbo (robotic), Jacuzzi Tracker 4X (vacuum) Pool Blaster (Buster), Two (2) PoolSkims, Solar Breeze (solar powered top skimmer) (beta to ver. 2, release date 2010), ColorSplash LED replacement bulb. Aries 550 gal separate spa, 2002 (our 3rd and BEST spa) , BBB-Bromine

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    Re: Polaris 280 (with boster pump) With VF/VS Pump

    I don't have the manual handy, but I seem to recall the Polaris needs 30-40 gpm. That sound about right?


    EDIT 1-28-2010 1:02 am PST

    My recollection may be correct but I can't find confirmation for this. Neither the Polaris 280 nor the PB-4 booster pump manuals indicate required GPM, though the PB-4 specifies that it must be operated with the main filter pump running or damage will occur. I found only one site reference that mentions GPM, in relation to the booster pump output...

    Pentair Booster Pump 34 HP Motor 115230V
    Combines ultimate performance with maximum efficiency for pressure side pool cleaner ease. The 34 hp universal booster pump is made from durable, corrosion proof materials, and provides 50 psi at 12 GPM..


    END-EDIT
    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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    Re: Polaris 280 (with boster pump) With VF/VS Pump

    I pulled manuals for the Polaris 280 and 380; neither mentions GPM, just that you should fiddle things until you get into the right range of wheel RPM. Poked around some in google as well, no joy. Maybe somebody knows but it didn't pop up right away.
    --paulr
    BBB "Intermediate Swimmer"
    IG plaster pool 18.5K gal, Hayward Pro-Grid DE filter, 3/4 HP Hydramax II; Polaris 380, 3/4 HP booster
    AG spa 325 gal, probably Sundance of some kind
    Water testing instructions on one page

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    Re: Polaris 280 (with boster pump) With VF/VS Pump

    This link describes how the Pentair booster pump (for the Letro Legend, for example) provides 50 PSI at 12 GPM, but the Polaris booster pump doesn't describe the GPM rate. Though I think the pressure is high, I don't think the flow rate is more than 20 GPM and might be only 15 GPM. Of course, to have filtering going on in the rest of the system, you'll probably be up to at least 30 GPM overall anyway, possibly 40 GPM.
    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
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    Re: Polaris 280 (with boster pump) With VF/VS Pump

    Hmmmm... I can only wholeheartedly agree with the last post!

    (see my edit above)
    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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    Re: Polaris 280 (with boster pump) With VF/VS Pump

    Most of this is pretty off topic but the solution I'm using right now for running Polaris, at much lower pressure than it normally runs, is related to running Polaris 280 with low speed main pump except the main consideration for Polaris with lower speeds VS or VF is getting enough water to the Polaris booster pump.

    I found a post on TFP a while back where someone had plumbed his booster pump to run Polaris pressure by itself without the main pump running. I'm going to try to find the post. I picked up a Pentair Challenger 3/4 hp, dual voltage today (as my 1.5 Challenger, that I'm replacing, isn't dual, 120/230) , that I'll be using for trash pump, emergencies, and running Tracker 4x suction, with fine bag liner for sand, in the inline, leaf canister, and even Polaris 280 at times when I can't run main system, like right now. I'll also use the leaf canister, with fine lining, for intake on 3/4 hp pump to feed Polaris, in circumstances like now. Which leads me to. As I always keep two small submersible pumps on hand for emergencies, and one died in 2008, I picked up a 4/10 hp last night at HD. It was a floor model, and no more in stock (actually their computer showed 3 but we couldn't locate it), so got $37 knocked off the price. I was able to trim the Polaris fitting screen rubber down a bit, add an O-ring (from Scuba gear repair O-rings, how lucky that it was the exact size), up under the screw on cap for output (kind of like the spout tube and screw on ring on a gas can) and placed pump in pretty clean place. Hooked Polaris up to it, put on a Polaris disposable bag, and got started doing some fine cleaning of silt and sand. Polaris moves very slowly but it is picking up. Closed off the tail sweep to help some. I just got the disposable Polaris bags, in yesterday, and they are the first thing that I've used on Polaris that will capture the silt. The Polaris 280 bags come with a reusable plastic collar. Before I rigged up the Polaris, I was using a NastyBag (for robotic cleaners, that does capture my silt) circulating the water with the old, smaller submersible, with the return water being filtered by a NastyBag secured to the end of the hose. I'm desperate..... Aquawerx person (bags for Polaris) has a used Aquabot Turbo on its way to me.... I tore down my Verro 300 and if we trade I don't have to put Verro back together before sending it to him. Verro is driven by jets and not motor driven like A'bot Turbo, so it has a hard time making up my steep slope when the bag starts to get lined with silt.

    Anyway since I got the P-280 disposable bags in, and had a good look at them I realized I can make some very similar using white frost cloths for plants and a good glue and not have to break out the sewing machine.

    gg=alice
    1981, 25K, IG, Blue Plaster 1996, somewhat oval, widens a bit at shallow end, 1.5" pipes, 2" at Pad, 1 separate main drain, 1 skimmer, 4 returns + dedicated cleaner return, 10 ft deep end with very fast decline from shallow, Pentair Quad 80 DE, Pentair Intelliflo VF, 3/4 HP Booster Pump (equipment pad about 8 ft below top of pool), Challanger 3/4 Trash/Emergency Pump 120v, Polaris 280 (pressure), iRobot Verro cleaner (robotic), Aquabot Turbo (robotic), Jacuzzi Tracker 4X (vacuum) Pool Blaster (Buster), Two (2) PoolSkims, Solar Breeze (solar powered top skimmer) (beta to ver. 2, release date 2010), ColorSplash LED replacement bulb. Aries 550 gal separate spa, 2002 (our 3rd and BEST spa) , BBB-Bromine

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    Re: Polaris 280 (with boster pump) With VF/VS Pump

    GEEKGRANNY,

    I was just cusrious as to why disposible bags?

    You can buy a 280 sand/silt bag and just change it out for an all purpose bag as needed.

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    Re: Polaris 280 (with boster pump) With VF/VS Pump

    Quote Originally Posted by fighting_irish
    GEEKGRANNY,

    I was just cusrious as to why disposible bags?

    You can buy a 280 sand/silt bag and just change it out for an all purpose bag as needed.
    The fine sand/silt bag for the Polaris lets virtually all of the silt go through. It picks up the sand though, but the main thing is the silt that the puppies drag into the pool all day and the silt that blows in with our 20 mph gentle breezes. No kidding. It doesn't get "windy" out here till the winds are approaching 35-40 mph and above. We have several storms a year where measured winds are above 70 mph; frequently higher. These are the straightline winds that are so famous for bringing down big jets at some airports. DFW is plagued by them especially when they are accompanied by micro-burst storms.

    The Aquawerx bags for Polaris, filter as well or better than the Polaris sand/silt bags but still let the silt through. You have to experience it to really believe it. At least that's what it takes for most people to grasp what I deal with. Our silt is as fine and some finer than pool DE. As an experiment you can see if the fine, sand/silt bag will capture DE. It doesn't, just as it doesn't capture my silt.

    Very, tight knit support hose let the silt through. Heavy women's tights catch some of it but they clog up so fast, and have so little surface area, they are a real hassle to use except in the Pool Blaster (Buster). When I'm tidying up the shallow end, in the evenings, using Pool Blaster, with heavy tights liner, I have to change it out every 5 minutes because of clogging. So cleaning up the small shallow end, every evening, takes at least 5 bag changes, and there's almost as much settled out in the morning.

    gg=alice
    1981, 25K, IG, Blue Plaster 1996, somewhat oval, widens a bit at shallow end, 1.5" pipes, 2" at Pad, 1 separate main drain, 1 skimmer, 4 returns + dedicated cleaner return, 10 ft deep end with very fast decline from shallow, Pentair Quad 80 DE, Pentair Intelliflo VF, 3/4 HP Booster Pump (equipment pad about 8 ft below top of pool), Challanger 3/4 Trash/Emergency Pump 120v, Polaris 280 (pressure), iRobot Verro cleaner (robotic), Aquabot Turbo (robotic), Jacuzzi Tracker 4X (vacuum) Pool Blaster (Buster), Two (2) PoolSkims, Solar Breeze (solar powered top skimmer) (beta to ver. 2, release date 2010), ColorSplash LED replacement bulb. Aries 550 gal separate spa, 2002 (our 3rd and BEST spa) , BBB-Bromine

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    Re: Polaris 280 (with boster pump) With VF/VS Pump

    BTW... the white, plant frost cloth will let water through under pressure and capture the silt. Similar fabric is used for allergy covers for pillow cases and mattress'. It lets air through but captures down to probably less than a micron. I haven't, though, run the Polaris with normal pressure to see if the EZ bag contains the silt under higher pressure. Frost cloth is similar to the fabric used for the NastyBag, TM, Aquabot type cleaners, bags, that I use and love. I just ordered my first EZ Polaris bags, different type fabric, and I'm impressed. Trouble is the cheapest I've found them for cost more than $2 per bag. That mounts up when you have to change them out, at least, daily. That's why I want to make my own. The EZ Polaris bags don't have any way to open the end to turn them inside out to clean so they can't be reused. Another BTW..... even DE filter doesn't catch all of the silt. Cellulose a little better. I've been dealing with this for 23 years and still haven't come up with the perfect solution other than enclosing the Pool in a structure that lets no unfiltered air in AND keeping the dogs out of pool and concreting the yards, drives, and woods. All are impractical. This stuff seeps into a house. That's why I use an army, gang, pack of robot floor cleaners all the time and have recently kept a couple of Scooba floor washing 'bots running about 14 hours a day. I have extra batteries and for my six Scoobas. When the mud dries, in the house, it immediately dispersses into the air and on all surfaces when it is walked on. I have to vacuum the walls and ceilings every so often. We have air cleaners all over the house and in the Central AC/furnace. That's just to keep the house manageable. We have to vacuum surfaces before dusting. But it is worth it to live out here (one has to lower ones standards a bit).

    gg=alice
    1981, 25K, IG, Blue Plaster 1996, somewhat oval, widens a bit at shallow end, 1.5" pipes, 2" at Pad, 1 separate main drain, 1 skimmer, 4 returns + dedicated cleaner return, 10 ft deep end with very fast decline from shallow, Pentair Quad 80 DE, Pentair Intelliflo VF, 3/4 HP Booster Pump (equipment pad about 8 ft below top of pool), Challanger 3/4 Trash/Emergency Pump 120v, Polaris 280 (pressure), iRobot Verro cleaner (robotic), Aquabot Turbo (robotic), Jacuzzi Tracker 4X (vacuum) Pool Blaster (Buster), Two (2) PoolSkims, Solar Breeze (solar powered top skimmer) (beta to ver. 2, release date 2010), ColorSplash LED replacement bulb. Aries 550 gal separate spa, 2002 (our 3rd and BEST spa) , BBB-Bromine

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    Re: Polaris 280 (with boster pump) With VF/VS Pump

    The Polaris booster pump doesn't need a certain flow rate but rather a "flooded suction". Thats why, in certain situations, the pump will continue to run fine if the filter pump is accidentally turned off. The pump will draw from the pool through the returns. As long as there is no air in the line, it'll run all day like that.

    Note: If you get a debris filled finger screen, and you haven't cleaned the filter, it may be because the Polaris pump is out of sync with the pool T/C, turning off after the pool pump does, and debris is pulled in from the pool via the return(s).

    Like others here have said, play with your VF pump and find a flow that works best for your Polaris pump (all are different with respect to plumbing).
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    Re: Polaris 280 (with boster pump) With VF/VS Pump

    Quote Originally Posted by Pool Clown
    The Polaris booster pump doesn't need a certain flow rate but rather a "flooded suction". Thats why, in certain situations, the pump will continue to run fine if the filter pump is accidentally turned off. The pump will draw from the pool through the returns. As long as there is no air in the line, it'll run all day like that.

    You may be absolutely correct but I would be nervous countermanding such a direct and explicit prohibition as laid out in the Polaris booster pump installation manual (see quote below).

    Note: If you get a debris filled finger screen, and you haven't cleaned the filter, it may be because the Polaris pump is out of sync with the pool T/C, turning off after the pool pump does, and debris is pulled in from the pool via the return(s).

    This piqued my curiosity since I've not considered this possiblity but, of course, you're correct about this -- at least, it's possible ... the booster isn't plumbed in line, it's sort of side-streamed (as is my heater) so when the booster's suction port draws from the T it doesn't necessarily have to be the water that's snaking through the return after the main pump and filter. Perhaps I could ask you how would one approach the problem of determining from whence the water wriggles? Is this just a matter of calculating head feet, adding up fittings and friction from both sides and then graphing based on flow rate at the (booster) pump to derive estimated flows from either side of the T?

    • The Polaris Booster Pump supplies high pressure
      water to the Polaris pool cleaner. It is not self-
      priming and should not be running unless the
      filtration pump is also running. Running the
      booster pump without the filtration pump will
      damage the booster pump. Improper operation
      of the booster pump will void its warranty.
    • Source: Polaris-BoosterPump-Manual_PB4-60.pdf [no link]
    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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    Re: Polaris 280 (with boster pump) With VF/VS Pump

    I went to a seminar last week and the Pentair rep said that you should run the pump at a minimum of 2000 RPM to feed a booster pump.... but also as stated in this thread, YMMV.

    Just quoting the vendor.

    - Jeff
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    Re: Polaris 280 (with boster pump) With VF/VS Pump

    Quote Originally Posted by polyvue
    Quote Originally Posted by Pool Clown
    The Polaris booster pump doesn't need a certain flow rate but rather a "flooded suction". Thats why, in certain situations, the pump will continue to run fine if the filter pump is accidentally turned off. The pump will draw from the pool through the returns. As long as there is no air in the line, it'll run all day like that.

    You may be absolutely correct but I would be nervous countermanding such a direct and explicit prohibition as laid out in the Polaris booster pump installation manual (see quote below).

    You missed my point. I was NOT recommending that someone try this as to maybe cut down on the electricity bill, I was mentioning that this phenomenon exists and how to possibly tell when its happening.

    Note: If you get a debris filled finger screen, and you haven't cleaned the filter, it may be because the Polaris pump is out of sync with the pool T/C, turning off after the pool pump does, and debris is pulled in from the pool via the return(s).

    This piqued my curiosity since I've not considered this possiblity but, of course, you're correct about this -- at least, it's possible ... the booster isn't plumbed in line, it's sort of side-streamed (as is my heater) so when the booster's suction port draws from the T it doesn't necessarily have to be the water that's snaking through the return after the main pump and filter. Perhaps I could ask you how would one approach the problem of determining from whence the water wriggles? Is this just a matter of calculating head feet, adding up fittings and friction from both sides and then graphing based on flow rate at the (booster) pump to derive estimated flows from either side of the T?


    The path of least resistance dictates where the water comes from. You tell me, is it easier to draw water through a pipe that runs with resrictions ie filter, heater, etc.? Or through an unobstructed line running to the pool? Anyway, getting off topic.




    • The Polaris Booster Pump supplies high pressure
      water to the Polaris pool cleaner. It is not self-
      priming and should not be running unless the
      filtration pump is also running. Running the
      booster pump without the filtration pump will
      damage the booster pump. Improper operation
      of the booster pump will void its warranty.
    • Source: Polaris-BoosterPump-Manual_PB4-60.pdf [no link]


    Again, missing my point, I'M NOT SUGGESTING ANYONE TRY THIS. This is from personal experience in the field and not from pouring over manuals.

    I now remember why i stopped posting on this forum. Some of the professionals here seem to be more concerned with discounting other professionals, and showing how much they know, rather than helping pool owners. But i'm sure thats just a misunderstanding on my part.
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    Re: Polaris 280 (with boster pump) With VF/VS Pump

    Quote Originally Posted by Pool Clown
    I now remember why i stopped posting on this forum. Some of the professionals here seem to be more concerned with discounting other professionals, and showing how much they know, rather than helping pool owners. But i'm sure thats just a misunderstanding on my part
    Just posting here to say that it wasn't my intent to show off how much I know (I don't know that much, really) ... and I've enjoyed reading your posts very much and hope you'll continue. Pay no attention to this clown (me) -- it's just a guy with insatiable curiosity talking. Sorry to take this off topic.

    Greg
    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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    Re: Polaris 280 (with boster pump) With VF/VS Pump

    Just FYI all. My VF went off and stayed off when we had a power flicker. When the booster pump came on the Polaris was running around the pool as fast as ever and the booster pump actually seemed to run cooler. At a suggestion a member I went out and checked my returns and sure enough they were pulling water in. Skimmer was pulling some water too; just a little. My filter gauge did not have a perceptible reading. The space between 0 and 2 is micro so hard to get a good reading.

    When I have my filter very clean and run VF for 16 gph starting pressure on filter is 2 or 3. and stays that way for several days.

    Big filter + running pump low speed = low psi

    gg=alice
    1981, 25K, IG, Blue Plaster 1996, somewhat oval, widens a bit at shallow end, 1.5" pipes, 2" at Pad, 1 separate main drain, 1 skimmer, 4 returns + dedicated cleaner return, 10 ft deep end with very fast decline from shallow, Pentair Quad 80 DE, Pentair Intelliflo VF, 3/4 HP Booster Pump (equipment pad about 8 ft below top of pool), Challanger 3/4 Trash/Emergency Pump 120v, Polaris 280 (pressure), iRobot Verro cleaner (robotic), Aquabot Turbo (robotic), Jacuzzi Tracker 4X (vacuum) Pool Blaster (Buster), Two (2) PoolSkims, Solar Breeze (solar powered top skimmer) (beta to ver. 2, release date 2010), ColorSplash LED replacement bulb. Aries 550 gal separate spa, 2002 (our 3rd and BEST spa) , BBB-Bromine

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