Does running pump wear cell even when not producing?

JSlabotsky

Member
Jul 28, 2014
20
Piedmont, OK
I'm on my 3rd season with a Jandy AquaPure 1400 in a 22K gallon vinyl pool. Water chemistry is in line with Pool School recommendations for SWG. Original cell lasted 2 seasons. Compupool replacement cell only lasted 1 season. I see a other Jandy owners get much longer life from their cells. I have a variable speed pump, and for various reasons have kept it running all the time with the SWG set to a fairly low percentage (often <30%.) Most of the time the pump runs at its lowest preset setting, with a few hours per day at a higher speed to push stuff toward the skimmers. Does water movement wear the cells even when they are not producing chlorine? Could this be accelerating wear? I have had plans for quite some time to add more automation to my setup so that the pump does turn completely off for most of the day. Wondering if this will get more life out of my next salt cell.
 

jblizzle

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
May 19, 2010
43,202
Tucson, AZ
A VS pump should have a timer to allow you to turn the pump on and off ... or is your idea of automation more related to ensuring the SWG is off when the pump would turn off?

The water flow should not have a significant impact to the longevity of the cell.
But, chemistry can be a big driver.

How have you been maintaining your chemistry?
Has the pH gotten to be way too low? Or too high?
What is your CH?
Do you find scaling in the cell?
Have you been cleaning the cell with acid?
 

JSlabotsky

Member
Jul 28, 2014
20
Piedmont, OK
Correct, I don't have a way at the moment to turn the SWG off at the same time as the pump. I want them on a common controller so I can be absolutely certain the SWG will never be on without the pump running. I'm building a custom solution that integrates with my home automation controller, just haven't gotten around to it yet.

These are my current numbers:
FC: 4.0 (bleach assisted at the moment)
CC: 0
pH 7.3
TA 50
CH 230
CYA 55 (adding more today)
Salt 3200

My numbers are pretty stable most of the time. CYA is low because we've had way higher amounts of rain than normal this spring. I had to add salt as well, but it never dropped low enough to anger the AP1400.

I've acid cleaned the cell a couple of times, but there is never any visible scale or any visible activity while in the acid (bubbles, gas, etc.) I cleaned it again and performed full diagnostics on the AP1400. The only thing out of range is voltage to the cell (around 10.7). The low voltage triggers a code 123 or, sometimes codes 125 and 194 together. Jandy's troubleshooting guide points at a failed cell. And before you ask, I checked the DC cable and terminations.

I mean, I do all the troubleshooting religiously. I just really wanted to know if, in specific, water passing through a cell when it is not producing still causes it to wear. I noticed at least one manufacturer recommended not running the pump more than 8-10 hours per day, regardless of the output setting of the chlorinator. That's what prompted the question.
 

mknauss

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
Bronze Supporter
May 3, 2014
21,226
Laughlin, NV
Never acid wash your cell unless it really needs it. Try washing it out with water first. Acid reduces its life by a not insignificant amount.

Many members run their pumps and SWCG 24/7. No premature failures have been seen on the forum attributed to that.
 
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JSlabotsky

Member
Jul 28, 2014
20
Piedmont, OK
Well, I finally got frustrated with the slow communication from saltpoolstore{dot}com and decided to replace the whole thing. For better or worse, I ordered a PureLine 40K system from Inyo Pools. Feedback here seems to be generally good and replacement cells should be plentiful and affordable. I don't know if all the Hayward knockoffs are just white labeled stuff all made by the same manufacturer, but people seem to indicate Inyo gives good support. I'm going to watch the chemistry even more closely and get my automation system in check. I'll also remove the cell during the cold months when no chlorine is needed. Maybe not entirely necessary, but it won't hurt.
 

laprjns

LifeTime Supporter
Aug 14, 2012
356
Ellington, CT
I want them on a common controller so I can be absolutely certain the SWG will never be on without the pump running
I use this current sensing device, CR4395-EH-120-110-X-CD-ELR-I. It senses current on one of the pump's 220v lines and switches 120V to my SWCG. Current trip point is adjustable. When the pump isn't turning there is no power to the SWCG.
 
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JSlabotsky

Member
Jul 28, 2014
20
Piedmont, OK
I use this current sensing device, CR4395-EH-120-110-X-CD-ELR-I. It senses current on one of the pump's 220v lines and switches 120V to my SWCG. Current trip point is adjustable. When the pump isn't turning there is no power to the SWCG.
Thanks for the tip! Pretty elegant solution.
 

chlorinatorpro

In The Industry
Feb 16, 2016
22
CA
I think most on this forum have figured out by now that saltpoolstore was scamming customers..heck just google their name. Not returning phone calls was the norm as they were selling mostly CompuPool products. I test all my competitor's generic T15 cells and YES, every one of those cells are made by the same 1 or 2 manufacturers in China with exception of mine. The Pureline cell from Inyo failed after only 8 months of use which I found very surprising. There is another generic cell that is selling like hotcakes right now that imo buyers are going to discover a year from now that the cell was rated for only 3000 hours but is being sold as if it were a normal Hayward T-15 cell. You can only caution people so much but sometimes no one is listening.

If you keep your old cells you can use them during the winter as a dummy bypass cell if you need to keep the water flowing.
 
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JSlabotsky

Member
Jul 28, 2014
20
Piedmont, OK
I think most on this forum have figured out by now that saltpoolstore was scamming customers..heck just google their name. Not returning phone calls was the norm as they were selling mostly CompuPool products. I test all my competitor's generic T15 cells and YES, every one of those cells are made by the same 1 or 2 manufacturers in China with exception of mine. The Pureline cell from Inyo failed after only 8 months of use which I found very surprising. There is another generic cell that is selling like hotcakes right now that imo buyers are going to discover a year from now that the cell was rated for only 3000 hours but is being sold as if it were a normal Hayward T-15 cell. You can only caution people so much but sometimes no one is listening.

If you keep your old cells you can use them during the winter as a dummy bypass cell if you need to keep the water flowing.
I did not get scammed. My cell was actually sold to me branded as CompuPool. I believe at the time they still had a presence and working phone number in the U.S. They have not avoided me, and I am not accusing them of ripping me off. They're just slow moving like many cut-rate organizations. Since I was never very committed to the Jandy SWG in the first place (it was a Craigslist find) I decided I'd rather move on to a Hayward or one of the clones, for a variety of reasons, rather than invest the time required to get a warranty replacement.