Intex 16" Sand Filter Pump (Model SF60110-2) - Bypassing the digital timer and integrating into the smart home.

megaz28

New member
Jul 12, 2020
4
Coweta, Ok
Problem:

I got the Intex 16" Sand Filter Pump (Model SF60110-2) to replace the small Intex Cartridge pump that came with our 18' above ground pool. The outgoing pump's schedule was controlled by a zWave outdoor smart plug and life was good.​
Well... the new sand filter pump is equipped with a digital timer and uses this circuitry to power on the pump by a momentary press of the power button on the control panel. Unfortunately for my desired setup, the sand pump requires the physical press of the control panel's power button any time there is an interruption in power. Meaning, the outdoor smart plug can turn the pump off but cannot turn it back on. Secondary issue is that power outages will require someone to go outside to press the button.​
So my mission to make this pump work with my smart home began. Surprisingly I was unable to find a lot of information regarding this particular problem (not powering on after power disconnect) on the internet. I quickly eliminated options to direct wire the pump motor to A/C. I did not want to bypass any motor self protections, ect. So I concentrated on ways to emulate the press of the power button.​

Components:
  • Qubino Z-Wave Plus Universal Relay with Dry Contact Switch ZMNHND3 ** manufacture list this as indoor only with a temp range 14 to 104F. Its install under the pump's cover and I've been keeping the pump in the shade. So far so good but its a risk.
    • Screen Shot 2020-07-25 at 9.51.26 AM.png
  • Enclosed AC/DC Power Relay with Protection & De-Bounce. Screw Terminals. 120V Trigger Input
    • Screen Shot 2020-07-25 at 10.01.16 AM.png
  • 22 - 16 Gauge Wire Disconnect Pairs

Operation Theory:

The Qubino connects to my existing smart home (I use SmartThings). A command is sent from the smart home to Qubino to momentarily close a circuit. This circuit is connected to the Intex's power button. So when Qubino shorts the circuit, the pump believes the power button has been pressed. -- Okay great. Now we can turn the pump on and off. But how do we know if the pump is already on? -- see next

Intex's pump motor is powered on. The motor's power line (Black) is now energized which is connect in parallel to AC/DC power relay. When the AC/DC power relay senses the 120v power, it closes its 'Common / normally open' circuit which is monitored by Qubino's I2. -- Now we can detect the pump's status.​

Use Case:
Why even bother? I mean the pump already has a timer.​
All I can say it that it's a smart home person thing. These smart home systems can monitor just about anything you can think of. Some are more versatile than others but all can provide a more complex schedule than a simple "run x hours per day". My pump starts 4 hours after sunrise. After 2 hours, powers back down. 3 hours later it runs another 2 hours. This repeats until evening where the pump runs solid from 6PM to 2 hours after sunset (This captures most of the evening June bugs in the skimmer). At night if the outside temperature drops below 36F degrees, the power will power on to protect the pipes from freezing.​


Now that the pump can be powered on remotely, I've implemented a best practice regarding my pump maintenance procedures. I unplug the pump's power anytime I'm needing to close the valves, deal with the skimmer ect. Basically anytime I want to pump to be off for longer than a few seconds. This is because my smart home does not yet have the "guy is working on the pump so don't turn it on" sensor. Should would hate to be working on the skimmer with the valves closed and suddenly the pump powers on!

I realize this post is lacking detailed instructions on how to implement the above. I will attach images of my setup that might better serve as a guide than simple text. Also most of the complexity was the configuration of the Qubino ZWave device into the ZWave hub which is out of scope for this forum.

I'm sure there are more economical ways to convert this pump to be smart home compatible. For instance there are many WiFi devices that will be cheaper than the Qubino.

Finally -- I'm posting this to describe how I solved a problem. It most likely is not the easiest, safest, or most economical solution. If you try it and break your pump, I'm not responsible.


Pool Pump - ZWave.001.jpegIMG_0295.jpegIMG_0297.jpegIMG_0302.jpeg
 
  • Like
Reactions: Nbeinert

Blacklisted

Well-known member
Sep 10, 2013
244
El Cajon CA
I have the SWG with the same problem. How did you figure out what contacts were from the momentary switch? Did you pull the board and physically see the solder joints from the top of the board or did you use a meter to figure it out? Do you know if you just short the on switch would you be able to use your wifi timer? I think I will attempt to play around with mine to find out if that would work.
Great job on figuring out how to get by the momentary on switch.
I am using smart life app and it looks like all the inching relays use a 7-32v power source or a usb cable.
At least there is hope of remotely powering on these things.
 

megaz28

New member
Jul 12, 2020
4
Coweta, Ok
I have the SWG with the same problem. How did you figure out what contacts were from the momentary switch? Did you pull the board and physically see the solder joints from the top of the board or did you use a meter to figure it out? Do you know if you just short the on switch would you be able to use your wifi timer? I think I will attempt to play around with mine to find out if that would work.
Great job on figuring out how to get by the momentary on switch.
I am using smart life app and it looks like all the inching relays use a 7-32v power source or a usb cable.
At least there is hope of remotely powering on these things.
Yes. I removed the board to get an idea where the the power switch was located. Then confirmed the soldier joints using a multi-meter. I also used the multi-meter to confirm that the button was a simple direct short when pressed. Then built up a bit a courage to do the soldering. I was lucky that the solder joints were fairly open targets. If they were smaller and more compact, this solder job would probably be outside my skill set. Hopefully your SWG will be the same.

"Do you know if you just short the on switch would you be able to use your wifi timer?" -- My goal was to make this whole setup as transparent and as nonintrusive to the pump as possible. So the pump doesn't know the difference between an actual press of the power button vs. the relay momentarily shorting the power button circuit. In regards to the SWG we would have to determine if the power switch is indeed a momentary press? If so, then the wifi timer would also need to support a momentary operation.

Hopefully that helps.
 

Blacklisted

Well-known member
Sep 10, 2013
244
El Cajon CA
Yes. I removed the board to get an idea where the the power switch was located. Then confirmed the soldier joints using a multi-meter. I also used the multi-meter to confirm that the button was a simple direct short when pressed. Then built up a bit a courage to do the soldering. I was lucky that the solder joints were fairly open targets. If they were smaller and more compact, this solder job would probably be outside my skill set. Hopefully your SWG will be the same.

"Do you know if you just short the on switch would you be able to use your wifi timer?" -- My goal was to make this whole setup as transparent and as nonintrusive to the pump as possible. So the pump doesn't know the difference between an actual press of the power button vs. the relay momentarily shorting the power button circuit. In regards to the SWG we would have to determine if the power switch is indeed a momentary press? If so, then the wifi timer would also need to support a momentary operation.

Hopefully that helps.

I had some time this weekend and did some testing for my SWG. I was able to figure out that it is indeed a momentary switch for the power button. I did a test to see if just shorting the switch if it would indeed come on and off with my wifi outlet switch and it does. The only drawback that I can see is that with the power switch shorted you no longer have control of any of the buttons on the control panel and the boost button now will turn on/off the SWG. This is not a big deal to me and it seems that all the alarms, faults still function (low, high salt etc.) I originally shorted the switch and my timer was set to 5hrs so in order to change the setting to 12hrs I had to remove the short and set the timer on the SWG and then short it again. I just used a short piece of wire to short the switch and now when I power on the SWG from my smart plug it comes on and starts running. I don't know if there will be any downfalls of this but as of now it is working as it should minus no control of the panel buttons. I am willing to take the chance on this because it is old and I just replaced the titanium cell and it was getting a high salt fault so I had to bypass the control panel anyway for the cell to work. Here are a couple pics of what I did.
IMG_20200731_172315493.jpg

IMG_20200731_172242902.jpg

IMG_20200731_173928812.jpg