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Thread: General SWG questions???

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    General SWG questions???

    Being a new pool owner this year, I have been going through the learning process and it has been fun. My pool is doing very well with me adding bleach everyday but I can't help but wonder about the SWG systems that alot of you guys on here use. I have read through a lot of the threads on this type of system but I still can't find the answers to some simple questions about SWG's.
    The Aqua Trol is the one I have been looking at for my 24' round AGP.
    Can you use a system like this with a 2 speed pump and still use the pump on the low setting?
    How much electricity do these things use? How many amps?
    AFTER the initial cost of the equipment, is the cost to operate likely to be more or less than liquid chlorine added manually or maybe close to the same?
    Is there a SWG that you guys like better than this Aqua Trol for an AGP?
    Thanks in advance, you guys are a great help!
    24' AGP vinyl, 3/4hp Pentair 2-speed, Pentair Quad DE 60
    Pool Rover Jr.
    TF-100

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    donaldm823's Avatar
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    Re: General SWG questions???

    Quote Originally Posted by budysr
    Being a new pool owner this year, I have been going through the learning process and it has been fun. My pool is doing very well with me adding bleach everyday but I can't help but wonder about the SWG systems that alot of you guys on here use. I have read through a lot of the threads on this type of system but I still can't find the answers to some simple questions about SWG's.
    The Aqua Trol is the one I have been looking at for my 24' round AGP.
    Can you use a system like this with a 2 speed pump and still use the pump on the low setting?
    How much electricity do these things use? How many amps?
    AFTER the initial cost of the equipment, is the cost to operate likely to be more or less than liquid chlorine added manually or maybe close to the same?
    Is there a SWG that you guys like better than this Aqua Trol for an AGP?
    Thanks in advance, you guys are a great help!
    Love my Autopilot Digital. On an average day it uses 6A @ 20 V, or 120watts (same as a light bulb), so too low to even measure on your bill. The Autopilot needs a minimum of 15-20gpm to reset the low flow detector-so you need your pump curves as for flow gpm when on low speed.

    You can check out the specs for the Autopilot at autopilot.com. One nice feature is that the package comes with a 2"D cell manifold, that easily glues into you filter discharge line
    Don SW Florida
    10,000 gal in ground concrete pool
    Pentair Cartridge filter, Pentair SWG, Pentair Intelliflow VS pump (11018)
    FAFCO solar panels w/Pentair SolarTouch controller
    using BBB for pool chemistry/Lamotte ColorQ tester for daily testing

  3. Back To Top    #3

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    The debate over bleach vs. SWG costs have been a hot topic here. From what can be gathered, based on your cell life and initial cost, electricity and salt, you can expect to pay somewhere around $20-25 per month to use an swg. For bleach,depending on the cost of bleach and size of you pool, you can expect somewhere between $11-$15 a month, now that doesn't take into account gas/trips to store etc. You are pretty much getting the SWG for convenience and softer feeling water due to the salt.

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    The numbers I have seen show a SWG being noticably less expensive than bleach if you ignore the inital costs and higher if you count the initial costs. That was assuming you were going to the store anyway, so bleach transport costs were not included.
    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

  5. Back To Top    #5

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    How about the Electricity factor? Do these things pull alot on the power? Can I use one with the low speed of a 2 speed pump?
    Basically, I recently switced from a single speed to a 2 speed pump, and really like the 2 speed feature with its much lower energy consumption. I don't wanna lose that feature.
    24' AGP vinyl, 3/4hp Pentair 2-speed, Pentair Quad DE 60
    Pool Rover Jr.
    TF-100

  6. Back To Top    #6
    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Electrical costs to run a SWG should not be significant compared to the pump. At peak power a SWG might top 300 watts, but average power will typically be far less than that.

    There is a minimum flow rate for the SWG cell for it to operate safely and efficently, typically between 10 and 20 GPM. Many systems will manage that even on low speed, but it depends on your partiular setup. Unfortunatly there is no easy way to measure GPM, without spending around $30 on a vacuum gauge and doing some math or $80 on a flow meter, so it will be difficult to be sure either way.
    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

  7. Back To Top    #7

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    I can tell you on the Pool Pilot system, we draw 220 volts at 1.5 amps = 330 watts/hr when the cell is evergized. When the cell is not energized, it's drawing very little power (less than 150 watts).
    Donals has already provided the minimum flow rates for the Pool Pilot manifold, so as long as your pump's low speed can provide the 15 - 20 gpm, you will be fine.

    You will have to check with the other manufacturers on their power consumption and minimum flow rates.
    Sean Assam - Sean@teamhorner.com
    National Accounts and Commercial Products Manager
    AquaCal Heat Pumps www.aquacal.com
    AutoPilot Salt Chlorine Generators www.autopilot.com

  8. Back To Top    #8

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    I see.........with that being the case(from Jason's post), do most folks that have SWG's run on high speed on the pumps or do alot of folks run a 2 speed on low with the SWG? Sorry if I am asking the same question again in a roundabout way
    24' AGP vinyl, 3/4hp Pentair 2-speed, Pentair Quad DE 60
    Pool Rover Jr.
    TF-100

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    Sean, what would you recommend for a 24' AGP in the autopilot line, or is there even a salt system that is practical for a pool this size?
    24' AGP vinyl, 3/4hp Pentair 2-speed, Pentair Quad DE 60
    Pool Rover Jr.
    TF-100

  10. Back To Top    #10

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    Hi Budysr,

    There is no difference in the operation of a scg labeled for above ground or in ground. The main differences would be a smaller cell, and features, and bells and whistles...and pricing.

    Regarding the single speed vs two speed. It's really up to you how you want to operate your pool. You're just going to need to do some research as to which manufacturer can handle the low speed of your pump, as indicated on the pump flow chart for that model pump.
    So if the scg system is capable of operation at the low speed of your pump, if you're planning on running the pump for extended periods of time, you should run a lower output level, so you're not overchlorinating the pool.

    If the system is not capable of operating at the low speed, you're going to have to run the pump on high speed long enough to produce enough chlorine to maintain your pool.

    The normal daily operating output will be determined by adjusting and testing the water about every 3rd day. Once you see the chlorine level maintained without needing to make any more adjustments, about the only other time you'll need to adjust the output is based upon water temperature changes, inclimate weather, or heavy bather loads.
    Most people here will suggest using bleach to manually treat for weather and bather loads (or to shock the water) so as to optimize the life of the cell by not using it for these purposes.

    (sorry, blatant sales pitch) - the Pool Pilot has an Automatic Temperature Compensation feature that will adjust the output levels automatically, based upon changes in water temperature, and will not shut down at cold temperatures. (end of sales pitch)

    Hope this helps,
    Sean
    Sean Assam - Sean@teamhorner.com
    National Accounts and Commercial Products Manager
    AquaCal Heat Pumps www.aquacal.com
    AutoPilot Salt Chlorine Generators www.autopilot.com

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