Featured Another The Woodlands, TX Build - Finishing up - landscaping and electrical

spd500

Well-known member
Jul 20, 2020
564
Houston, TX
We are doing a 3 way valve with an actuator, but all Hayward equipment. If you dont have a check valve the bowls should drain back down to by themselves through the pump. Is there something that I am not seeing with this? I am new to pool ownership, so it is completely possible, I will tag @Jimrahbe he has had some really good advice on my setup.
 

Jimrahbe

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Jul 7, 2014
20,881
Bedford, TX
spd,

If you have a water feature pump and no check valve to a higher water feature, like a water bowl, then the water feature should drain back through the pump and into the pool when the pump is off..

But.. if you are turning the water feature on and off with an automated valve, then when you shut off the valve it would trap the water in the water feature.

This is one of those things that the OP should cover with his pool builder before the plumbing is in, so that the plumbing can be configured to do what the OP wants.

Thanks,

Jim R.
 

spd500

Well-known member
Jul 20, 2020
564
Houston, TX
I was thinking of turning the water features on and off with the pump, but what you describe does make sense. Thanks for the explanation.

I am now curious about just how much control I will have of my own system with the OmniPL. Being in software design I guess I tend to think that anything should be possible, as long as you can come up with the logic.
 

Jimrahbe

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Jul 7, 2014
20,881
Bedford, TX
Logic and Pool Automation are like oil and water... they don't seem to ever mix well. :mrgreen:

If I had a water feature pump, I would control the water feature by turning the pump on and off..

If I had a single pump, or multiple water features, that I wanted to run independently, I would use automated valves to turn the water features on and off.

Again.. The operation you want must be designed into the system.. You can't build it all and then try to make the automation work the way you want..

Thanks,

Jim R.
 

Sollace

Gold Supporter
Aug 16, 2020
526
Bryan TX
SPD500 -- Thanks for sharing your coping, tile, and other information.
Well. . . It's an hour from Bryan to Hockley. . . Then it's dealing with traffic. I wish it was a quick simple trip.

Our PB is going with MasterTile, Aquabella, or NPT. After staring at the catalogs for hours on end, I know the patterns are all about the same, really, there's not a lot of difference. The difficulty is getting a hold of the tile because production / distribution is off. Out of stock. Availability. Store visits by appointment only. It's not the best time to build a pool!
 

Robtown

Bronze Supporter
Jul 16, 2020
111
The Woodlands, TX
SPD500 -- Thanks for sharing your coping, tile, and other information.
Well. . . It's an hour from Bryan to Hockley. . . Then it's dealing with traffic. I wish it was a quick simple trip.

Our PB is going with MasterTile, Aquabella, or NPT. After staring at the catalogs for hours on end, I know the patterns are all about the same, really, there's not a lot of difference. The difficulty is getting a hold of the tile because production / distribution is off. Out of stock. Availability. Store visits by appointment only. It's not the best time to build a pool!

Yes, we had to change our split-face travertine from 2"x4" to the "3-size", but they gave us the more expensive one for the same price. Plus we like the 3-size better. One of the few upsides during this process!

Good luck with your selections!
 

Robtown

Bronze Supporter
Jul 16, 2020
111
The Woodlands, TX
Thanks @Jimrahbe and @spd500, I have a meeting with the PB and plumber to discuss the water feature plumbing but given prior discussions and having to push for the correct size plumbing lines due to flow rates, I don't have the most confidence in them and appreciate the support here.

I've complicated matters with our PB by requesting items based largely on information I've gained here that they haven't done in the past. I wish I found this site sooner so I was better prepared during that process as I likely would have gone with a different PB. But at least I'm more knowledgable and getting things done correctly now and the savings going with this pool builder has allowed me to add all of these items. @MyAZPool, write ups on the IntelliCenter were instrumental in my design for the automation, load center electric, etc... I'm adding him to this thread to see if he could provide some insight and feedback on the attached equipment list and layout if he has time.

Regarding the water feature plumbing, my goal is to be able to have both on, or just the water bowls, or just the wall scuppers, plus allow the bowls to drain.

My current design seems overly complicated to achieve these results having a single speed pump and 3 automated valves. I also think it would be very difficult to dial in the appropriate flow with only 2 valve positions as an option with automation.

I guess my first question is how to allow the bowls to drain? Do I need a bypass on the pressure side to allow a path back to the pool? Or can it backflow through the pump and the suction side back to the pool through the in-wall drains and if so, will I lose prime on my pump?

The bottom of the water bowls will be about 24" above water line and my equipment pad height is pretty much in line with the water line height of my pool. Of course the trenching and pipes will be well below the waterline, but the pump and plumbing out of the pump will be higher than the waterline. My guess is about 12" above waterline.

In my current design, my thought is when I turn off the water features macros, the pump will turn off, and all the valves would go to the "open" position. The bowls would then drain down the the height of the waterline as the pressure would equalize from the bowls to the valves at the equipment pad to the pool through the bypass/return on the pressure side since the check valve would restrict the flow from backing through the pump. If the water bowl valve is closed, the bowls would stay full. If there was no pool bypass on the pressure side, or that valve was closed but the water bowls and wall scupper valves were open, the bowls would drain to the height of the wall scuppers which is about 18" above waterline. This isn't great as the water would trickle out of the scuppers down the face of the raised wall.

If I removed the check valve from the pump, then as long as the water bowl valves weren't closed under pressure keeping them full, the bowls would drain down to waterline but would it drain too much to lose prime on the pump?
 

Attachments

  • Collison - Pool Equipment List - 19Oct2020.pdf
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  • Collison - Pool Pump-Automation Diagram v2.pdf
    168.5 KB · Views: 10

Robtown

Bronze Supporter
Jul 16, 2020
111
The Woodlands, TX
I just thought about something else...

With the 6 total water features, each needing about 15GPM or so for a total of 90 GPM, a single speed pump is going to need to be sized correctly to make sure we don't get too little or too much flow. I'm not sure how to calculate the head loss for all of this but the 2.5hp WhisperFlo is likely too much. Regardless though, the bigger issue would be when running only one of the water features.

If the pump puts out 90 GPM and both features are open, they get about 45 GPM each. To run one feature, I open the pool bypass to get 45 GPM to the feature and 45 GPM back to the pool. That would be too much pressure to send back to the pool on one return. I guess I could have the bypass plumbed to the whole pool return with a check valve so the pool pressure doesn't enter the water features.

I also see this would be very difficult to find the right valve openings to make this all work well. Since the bowls are taller and more spread out (i.e. more piping) than the wall scuppers, the amount to open the valves would have to vary.

All of this leads me to believe I'm going to require a VS pump. The question then is how to valve the features and if I need a bypass?


I see 3 solutions....

If I need a water feature bypass to the pool so the water bowls can drain without backflowing through the pump then I need
- VS Pump and 3 automated 2-way valves (Bypass, Water Bowls, Wall Scuppers)

If I remove the bypass and the check valve to the pump, then the bowls drain through the suction side back to the pool, I need
- VS Pump and 2 automated 2-way valves (Water Bowls, Wall Scuppers)

Or, I use a 3-way valve and choose to have only 2 options to run the water features (both on, wall scuppers only, water bowls only) since there could be only 2 automated stops on the Intellivalve at least for the time being until Pentair upgrades IntelliCenter (or another work around is discovered). Removing the extra valves and valve actuators would likely be about the same as the cost for upgrading to the VS Pump.
-VS Pump and 1 automated 3-way valve


Any one have any suggestions?
 
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spd500

Well-known member
Jul 20, 2020
564
Houston, TX
I am not sure. I was told that I could have one three way valve on my automation that would allow me to run one water feature, the other, or both. I plan to primarily turn mine on and off with the pump, but having them drain back is not an issue I face. I installed a variable speed pump to control the differentiated flow for more or less water features. My waterfalls will be balanced with a plumbing loop that has a valve for each so we can adjust the flow to match.
 

Jimrahbe

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Jul 7, 2014
20,881
Bedford, TX
I was told that I could have one three way valve on my automation that would allow me to run one water feature, the other, or both.

spd,

Sorry, that is total Bull Feathers...

With a manual Jandy valve you can do that..

With an automated Jandy valve you CANNOT do that. Despite the name 3-way valve, when automated, you only get 2 fixed positions.

Thanks,

Jim R.
 
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Turbo1Ton

Gold Supporter
Dec 26, 2019
500
NE Oklahoma
Pool Size
14500
Surface
Plaster
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
Pentair Intellichlor IC-40
Jim is dead on. At the moment, with a 3 way valve, you can only have one or both, not one or the other. At least on Pentair automation. I didn't go over my specific requests with my PB and they had my deck jets and bubblers set up this way. I had a 3 way valve to control the deck jets and bubblers. The actuators have a 'home' position and an 'on' position. My home position was deck jets off. This meant that the bubblers were open all the time. When I selected deck jets, the valve would move to the mid position and both features would be on. There was no way to set only deck jets on. So I replumbed my water features to have a 2 way valve for each feature, so that I could cycle them independently.

--Jeff
 
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MyAZPool

Gold Supporter
Jul 3, 2018
1,816
Arizona
Pool Size
20500
Surface
Plaster
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
Pentair Intellichlor IC-60
Robtown
Thanks... I took a look at your documents. Looks pretty good IMO. Just a couple of questions/comments.

1. With an IC-60, do you really need the Rainbow In-line 320 Auto-Chlor?

2. If it were me, instead of having two each, 2-way Jandy Valves for each skimmer line, I would have both skimmer lines coming into a 3-way valve instead.

3. You have 10 breaker spaces in the load center. You are showing a Siemens First Surge FS100 but don't show it taking up any breaker positions. That surge protector requires a double-pole breaker (2 positions). Looks like you have no room for it. Best you can do is install one on your house breaker panel I guess.

4. Why a creepy krauly instead of as Maytronics Robot? You can even connect some robots up to automation (relay controlled power receptacle). A Maytronics is much more efficient. I have a suction-side cleaner ONLY because it's a tank and won't die (and don't think I haven't tried to kill it). :p. As soon as it needs a rebuild, I'm calling Marina Pool and Spa. I already have the receptacle wired up to the power relay in the IntelliCenter OCP.

5. On a side note, I agree with @Jimrahbe and @Turbo1Ton with having two each 2-way valves for the water features instead of a single 3-way. Makes a lot more sense. You can automate each one with an actuator if you like. Off (home position), and On (preset 2nd position) for each valve, but a single 3-way will not give you the control that you desire I believe.
r.
 

Jimrahbe

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Jul 7, 2014
20,881
Bedford, TX
Robtown,

While it is a not much of a different one way, or the other, I find that skimmers controlled by 3-way valve do not give you the same adjustments that you can get from two 2-way valves..

With a 3-way valve you can't open one skimmer all the way and the other skimmer say 80%..

When you have two skimmers, the one nearest the equipment pad will have a lot of suction, while the far skimmer will have a lot less suction.

With two 2-way valves you can have your far skimmer set at 100% open and then throttle back the near skimmer to match the suction of the far skimmer.. I agree that you can get something similar with a 3-way valve but not exactly..

Another good thing about 2-way valves for almost everything, is that you can shut it off without affecting anything else. The advantage to using a bunch of 3-way valves is so that the plumber can cram a 100 lbs of stuff into a 10 lb space.. And overall cost of course.

Thanks,

Jim R.
 

Robtown

Bronze Supporter
Jul 16, 2020
111
The Woodlands, TX
Thanks for all of the feedback. I agree that using 2 valves to be able to control each water feature individually would be better than settling for one 3-way valve and then having limited ability to control the pool as we want. In the grand scheme, what's another couple hundred dollars, sigh... I think I just want this process done and will just keep throwing money at it.

Any one know if I can get rid of the bypass to the pool and just let the water bowls drain through the pump back through the wall drains? Or another way to get the bowls to drain?

It would be cool if there was a check valve like setup in a 3-way chamber where when water is flowing through the valve body from the inlet straight through to the outlet, the pressure pushes the flap open and blocks the 3rd side exit/drainage. Once the flow stops the back pressure from the outlet side causes the flap to close the inlet port opening the drainage port and out goes the water. I tried a google search but didn’t find anything.
 

Robtown

Bronze Supporter
Jul 16, 2020
111
The Woodlands, TX
Robtown
Thanks... I took a look at your documents. Looks pretty good IMO. Just a couple of questions/comments.

1. With an IC-60, do you really need the Rainbow In-line 320 Auto-Chlor?

2. If it were me, instead of having two each, 2-way Jandy Valves for each skimmer line, I would have both skimmer lines coming into a 3-way valve instead.

3. You have 10 breaker spaces in the load center. You are showing a Siemens First Surge FS100 but don't show it taking up any breaker positions. That surge protector requires a double-pole breaker (2 positions). Looks like you have no room for it. Best you can do is install one on your house breaker panel I guess.

4. Why a creepy krauly instead of as Maytronics Robot? You can even connect some robots up to automation (relay controlled power receptacle). A Maytronics is much more efficient. I have a suction-side cleaner ONLY because it's a tank and won't die (and don't think I haven't tried to kill it). :p. As soon as it needs a rebuild, I'm calling Marina Pool and Spa. I already have the receptacle wired up to the power relay in the IntelliCenter OCP.

5. On a side note, I agree with @Jimrahbe and @Turbo1Ton with having two each 2-way valves for the water features instead of a single 3-way. Makes a lot more sense. You can automate each one with an actuator if you like. Off (home position), and On (preset 2nd position) for each valve, but a single 3-way will not give you the control that you desire I believe.
r.

Thanks for reviewing everything @MyAZPool!

1. We asked about removing the AutoChlor 320 tablet feeder, but it really didn’t cost much so for the little savings we decided to keep it for start-up and in case something ever happened with the salt cell or for when the water is too cold for the SWCG. I travel for work (when/if that starts back up after COVID) and don’t want my wife dealing with chemicals and liquid chlorine additions regularly.

2. That could be an option to combine the skimmers to one 3-way instead of two 2-way although the location of the equipment pad and fence is fairly narrow and will be best to have pipes linearly along the edge. It will be interesting to see how the plumbers plan to layout all of the equipment and pipes.

3. My original plan had one fewer pumps so I had 2 more slots available in the panel, but now that I have a dedicated spa jet pump, I’m short on space. I could try to combine more of the 120V items together and use two 20A circuits instead of 3, but that’s a lot to power. I may need to research alternative options that mount on the incoming power supply. I have a whole home breaker on the main panel but my understanding is this would not protect the sub-panel since power is running out after the current has passed through that surge protector. My PB said he doesn’t put any surge protection in the sub panel. I think I’ve seen other protectors that mount to the bottom of the sub panel/load center.

4. I keep going back and forth on the robot cleaner vs pressure side. My wife doesn’t like the idea of having the robot and electrical cords running around the deck and in the pool with kids around and everything so would remove it regularly. We also don’t have a great place to store a robot. I’m still thinking about this item more as one of our main goals is to try to have a lower maintenance pool (hence the SWCG and IntelliPH) and I think the robot would do a better job of cleaning.

5. Agreed

Thanks for all the feedback and I know I’ll be digging into your IntelliCenter threads in more detail when I start to get involved with setting up our automation.
 

spd500

Well-known member
Jul 20, 2020
564
Houston, TX
spd,

Sorry, that is total Bull Feathers...

With a manual Jandy valve you can do that..

With an automated Jandy valve you CANNOT do that. Despite the name 3-way valve, when automated, you only get 2 fixed positions.

Thanks,

Jim R.
I am going off of what my builder has told me, so I can't say for sure. I do know that this is how he has it built and as soon as we start up the system this will be something I have him demonstrate. We added the automation for two things that my wife wanted, to control the lights, and to control the water features. I hope it does what it is suppose to do.
 

Robtown

Bronze Supporter
Jul 16, 2020
111
The Woodlands, TX
@spd500 I hope the water features function as you planned or at least they can be changed easily to add another valve and actuator in the Jandy system.

I spoke with my PB. And we’ve agreed to go with another IntelliFlo VS for the water features and 2 IntelliValves each controlling a 2-way valve for the water bowls and wall scuppers. We’ll remove the check valve to the pump and let the bowls drain by back flow. Worst case, if that doesn’t work, then I’ll use the bypass line and another intelliValve. We’ll run the bypass into the pool returns at the equipment pad for now to have that option in the future.
 

Robtown

Bronze Supporter
Jul 16, 2020
111
The Woodlands, TX
Tile and coping is 99% done. Clean-up crew is supposed to be here tomorrow, then I’ll take some more pictures.

We also had a large equipment delivery 1 pallet full of equipment and one very large chiller! I think I might need a larger equipment pad or separate pad further down the side of the house just for the Chiller.

Of course the IntelliFlo VS pumps are back ordered right now but hopefully we can get one to not have more delays. Of course after having delays on the JetArrays for the spa plumbing and having to chose a different splitface travertine, I asked my PB to make sure and get things in advance to avoid this problem, but he didn’t and waited until Monday to place his order, arghhhh!
 
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spd500

Well-known member
Jul 20, 2020
564
Houston, TX
@spd500 I hope the water features function as you planned or at least they can be changed easily to add another valve and actuator
PB told me yesterday that it will not do what we are expecting and suggested adding a manual valve to each water feature. I reminded him that the only reason we added the automation was for this function without manual valves, and for the lights, so we will see. I am sure we will be adding another actuator.
 

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