Laing 230V E-14 alternative

jbourne210

Member
Nov 27, 2020
15
Houston
Good morning y'all!

I'm sure this has been covered, but my search strings seem to be inadequate at the moment. ;)

I have a MasterSpa, and about 6 months ago, my GFCI started tripping the GFCI. Narrowed it down to the circulation pump. Naturally, I was literally 1 WEEK out of my warranty. :/ Anyway, I pick one up, install it, and boom, back in business! Until 3 weeks ago. Same scenario. I figured that there was no way that it could be the pump, so I chased my tail for a while, but nope, it was the pump. So, off I went to a big online spa supplier (not sure if I can mention names), and ordered another. Installed, and good to go. For 11 days. Yep, it's toast after eleven days!! So, I call the folks who I bought it from, and I've got to send it back (at my cost), wait for them to evaluate it, and then maybe they'll send me another. In the meantime, I'm dead in the water (excuse the pun).
What I'd like to know, is if there is an alternative to the pump that has less of a quality control issue? Not super concerned with energy consumption, but I would like to NOT have to fiddle with it every 6 months (or two weeks?), just to keep my tub running.
Also, a few comments:
  • The GFCI trips immediately. By that I mean, it will not even allow me to reset it. If, however, I unplug the pump, she fires up just fine...
  • While I'm no chemist, I think my pool chems are good. I check them twice a week at home, and once a week at the local pool joint. Always good.
  • I found zero water in the electronics, nor anything to indicate that there is any physical damage on the pumps (I still have the old one).
  • Could it be something in my board going goofy?
  • Also, could my GFCI have become a little 'too' sensitive? It's only 3-ish years old?
Thanks in advance y'al, and sorry for the long first post!

Hope you all had a great day yesterday!
 

Jimrahbe

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Jul 7, 2014
20,253
Bedford, TX
210,

What have you done to eliminate the spa heater? They often intermittently go bad, before going bad for good..

I guess I am skeptical of a new pump having the same exact problem.

Could also be the GFCI breaker itself.

Thanks,

Jim R.
 

RDspaguy

In The Industry
Mar 21, 2020
1,095
Cabool, Mo
I agree with Jim. The heater has one leg hot as soon as you flip the breaker, and is usually the component that will trip the breaker immediately. Also, laing pumps almost never trip the breaker unless really wet. They fail pretty often, but do not trip the breaker. I would disconnect the heater and see what it does.
 

jbourne210

Member
Nov 27, 2020
15
Houston
Thanks for your responses guys.

I forgot to mention that during the 'chasing my tail' episode, I thought it was the heater as well. I figured, it couldn't possibly be the pump. as it was only 6 months old or so. I ohmed the heater out, and it checked good, but I threw money at it, and replaced the heater anyway. No joy. So, I started looking at the pump again, even though it was only half a year old. I hooked everything back up, and disconnected the pump. She fired right up. Figured I got a bum deal, and replaced the pump. And it worked great. For less than two weeks. The only way I can get her to fire up is if I disconnect the circ pump from the motherboard. Then all is good, insofar as the GFCI is concerned. I can't help but think I got another lemon pump, but I would seriously love for it NOT to be that, so I can stop chasing my tail, and actually get to enjoy the tub with my much better half! lol

Thanks again for y'alls help, I can definitely use it!
 

ajw22

Gold Supporter
TFP Guide
Jul 21, 2013
22,134
Northern NJ
Pool Size
35000
Surface
Plaster
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
Pentair Intellichlor IC-60
To be blunt I don’t think you understand how a GFCI works and what causes GFCI trips. Until you do it will be difficult to find the problem. You can read about it at Electrical GFCI - Further Reading

Ohming out a heater will not identify a GFCI problem. The motors are likely good but something in the connections or wiring is flaky. If you removed the motor, cleaned things up, and replaced the same motor it may have worked for a while.

Moisture is the enemy with the GFCI. Just a bit of moisture in the wrong place can trip the GFCI. You have to look broader at wiring and connections and moisture then at specific parts. Finding the cause of a GFCI fault can be looking for a needle in a haystack. Good luck.

Post pics of the guts of your spa and maybe folks will spot something. Also post pics of the pumps you removed.
 
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jbourne210

Member
Nov 27, 2020
15
Houston
Thanks again y'all.

To clarify, I didn't replace the motor with the same motor after cleaning it up, I replaced it with an entirely new motor. I also replaced the heater coil with a new coil prior to the circ pump replacement (once I changed the pump, it ran great for 11 days.) Additionally, there is no water leaking from any fittings, and it's dry as a bone underneath, with zero corrosion noted. The tub is actually only a few months shy of 3 years (as is the GFCI), and it's pretty immaculate in there. That being said, I did disconnect all connections and check for corrosion that would account for inconsistent connections or any leakage that would cause the GFCI to trip. Didn't find any corrosion, so I reconnected everything, and it still immediately trips. Unless I disconnect the circulation pump. If I leave it disconnected, I can run the other two large jet pumps and lights all day with no problem. My GFCI only trips when I have the Laing pump plugged in. I'm thinking that either I've got a GFCI that's tripping at less that 4 mA, or I've got a Laing motor that has some excessive leakage somewhere. Or it's something else entirely. LOL

I'll post pics as soon as I can.

Thanks again
 

jbourne210

Member
Nov 27, 2020
15
Houston
RDspaguy - Put my 6 month old circ pump back in (I was about to pack up the new one), and disconnected the ozonator. The pump started and ran for about 8 hours before tripping the GFCI.
 

RDspaguy

In The Industry
Mar 21, 2020
1,095
Cabool, Mo
And it would not reset immediately, but would after a half-hour or so? Bad breaker, loose terminal screws, or undersized/ damaged wire.
Your ozone (which only runs if the circ pump is running, like the heater) is protected by a small check valve that is prone to failure. If any moisture gets past it, it will trip the breaker. I should have been more clear, but you disconnected it electrically, not just the ozone tubing?
Every time a breaker trips (or gets turned off) under load it damages the contacts in the breaker a tiny bit. This increases the heat inside of the breaker, and it is heat that ultimately trips a breaker (unless it is a ground fault), as high amps produce heat in the bi-metal strip.
Check the wire connections on the breaker, including the neutral (white) wire. You can often feel the heat by touching the side of the breaker right after it trips. It should not be any warmer than the box it is in. Obviously, turn off power to the disconnect box before sticking your hand in there to feel the breaker.
 

jbourne210

Member
Nov 27, 2020
15
Houston
Okay, I'm thinking you are definitely onto something. Before I started this process, I checked the breaker for moisture, corrosion, and loose connections. All seemed good, so I moved on. My wiring is 4 AWG, (direct bury type) that I installed in conduit, so it should be good. I'm out of town, but when I get back, I'll double check the check valve for the failure. Additionally, I'll check the temp on the breaker with my temp gun while it's running. Never thought about contact damage caused by multiple resets on the breaker though. I bought another breaker before I left, and if necessary, I'll pop that in there if my temps indicate higher than normal readings.

Thanks again for all your help!
 

jbourne210

Member
Nov 27, 2020
15
Houston
So, I just got back into town last night. Reset the breaker, and it's been on for about 35 minutes. Took my temp gun out and have been checking the breaker for any excessive heat. It's currently about 40°F out, and thus far, the breaker is up to about 60°F. Not that hot, I know, but could it be a sign that the breaker contact damage? I'm going to leave it running for as long as it stays on, and continually check temps. I'll keep you posted.

Also, and this may not be relevant, but I did find a relay that's much hotter than anything else on the board. It's about 90°F. Something to worry about, or more 'chasing my tail'?

Thanks again for your help!
 

jbourne210

Member
Nov 27, 2020
15
Houston
Just pulled another cover off the side of the, and it turns out I have a DEL OZONE MODEL SES-U. Just out of curiosity, I disconnected all power, reconnected the DEL OZONE, and looked to see if anything lit up in there. I have a green light showing on the device, but nothing else. I'm continuing to let it run, and see if my GFCI breaker continues to heat up...
 

RDspaguy

In The Industry
Mar 21, 2020
1,095
Cabool, Mo
20 degrees on the breaker is mildly concerning, but a hot relay is on it's way to burning the board. Which relay? You might bring it to a computer repair/electronics guy and get that relay replaced. They are cheap and won't take a pro long to change, but once it burns the board you're rolling the dice on a repair.
 

jbourne210

Member
Nov 27, 2020
15
Houston
RDspaguy - It's been running all day thus far. I've taken temp readings on the board and on the breaker. The breaker is about 29 degrees hotter than the surrounding area (60°F vs 89°F). I've attached a picture showing the relays that are in question, and their temps. They aren't super hot, but they are about 25°F hotter than the rest of the board. Having limited experience with hot tubs, I'm not sure how relevant the temperature delta is, but I thought I'd throw it out there.

The tub is still running with everything plugged in. smdh. This is what kills me. The inconsistency...

I'm still leaning toward replacing the GFCI.

Thoughts?
 

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jbourne210

Member
Nov 27, 2020
15
Houston
Roger that, thanks for the affirmation. I'll move ahead with the breaker swap out. Weirdly enough, it's still running. Oh well, I'll change it tomorrow. :)
 

jbourne210

Member
Nov 27, 2020
15
Houston
Changed out the breaker this morning, and all is as it should be....for now. LOL

During all of this, I realized that the tub had a SPA SOLAR DEL OZONE SES-U ozonator installed (see attached). The salesman never mentioned it, and it's not mentioned in the manual I received. I've never had the 'bubbles' that folks talk about, and I also noticed that the UVindicator isn't lit. I'm thinking I should dig into this while I'm in there?

Thanks again for all your help!
 

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