More Intellicenter Issues - Maybe someone has same issues???

John_and_Val

Gold Supporter
Mar 30, 2018
304
Sunrise/FL
@MyAZPool and all other Pentair Intellicenter and Heater Users

So, you buy this over priced automation system........expecting it to "run the world"...... and in reality it has major issues and bugs. One bug in particular is this:
I have a heater bypass valve with an intellivalve hooked up to it (so water runs "around" the heaters (not through them) - the valve is set like this as the default. The heaters (I have both - Ultra Temp w/chiller and a Mastertemp) are communicating with the Intellicenter via the RS-485 cable (as it should be). I know some people have their heaters wired to a relay - but for now, I do not. On the panel of the intellicenter, upon waking it up - you see the screen with the Pool and Spa (I have a i10PS) settings. Theoretically, you are supposed to be able to set your parameters for the heaters there. For example, if you want your heater to turn on at 80 degrees, you set your set point and boom, your all set! NOT!!!!
No Where - anywhere - anyway - is there a command to open the heat bypass valve to allow water to flow through the heaters!
Am I missing something here - or is this functionality of the heater automation useless if you (A) have a heater bypass valve (B) keep it closed (meaning water usually runs "around" the heaters)
The way the system works, I am assuming you would have to keep the water flowing constantly through the heaters all the time, which we frown upon.....for a couple of reasons
a) bad for the heaters
b) I have to run the pump at a higher rpm in order to keep the SWG running.
c) higher pump speed equals higher pressure in system
d) all mean more use of electricity

I have a fix - but Pentair will never do it - All they need to do is add a socket on the board of the intellicenter for the bypass valve. Just like the "spa" and "return" are on it. Then the heater hits the set-point, the bypass opens, and heaters turn on..... Simple as pie

It will never happen.

So..........Has anyone else experienced this and if so - what is the fix - or in petair's world ..... the work around

Ron, I only utilize the "Return" socket on the mother board. Remember, I do not have a traditional spa, so I do not need the "Spa" socket as I do not have a need for it. Do you think if I put the Intellivalve (for the bypass) in the "spa" socket - we can get some functionality out of it? I am thinking at least when you hit "Spa" on the panel it will open the bypass (allowing water through heaters) fire up heater to setpoint temperature???? And (as it already does) - divert my water flow to the jets in the sitting area.......
Then maybe........is there a way in programming to utilize that same "Spa" socket identifier command to set up some type of schedule to heat / cool the pool accordingly????? At this point - I would be happy enough if I was able to tell the system to open the bypass, heat the pool to 85 or from 0400 - 1900...........something is better than nothing.

As of now - I have to disable ALL the schedules (I have like 8)........activate the bypass valve........activate the heater........remember to turn it off, blah blah blah
Oh, and sometimes if I am lucky - the system will divert back to a schedule, causing the heater bypass to close, causing no water to the heaters.......... Yeah that,s a great sound to hear (the pipes and heater rattling due to no H2O)!!!!!

And the chiller............well you know how that fails........
 

ajw22

Gold Supporter
TFP Guide
Jul 21, 2013
19,397
Northern NJ
You also want the bypass valve to stay open and allow water flow through your gas heater for 10-20 minutes after the gas heater shuts off for it to cool down. It is not good for the gas heater to shut water flow while it is hot. So the implementation logic to manage a heater bypass valve is a bit more complex.
 

John_and_Val

Gold Supporter
Mar 30, 2018
304
Sunrise/FL
I believe there is some way for a valve delay...........and a heater cool down program already built in to the program......but no way of making it work the way they have it set up
 
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Jimrahbe

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Jul 7, 2014
18,769
Bedford, TX
J&V,

If you are willing to push the Spa button to turn the by-pass valve, why not just add an icon that opens and closes the valve?

Maybe I just don't fully understand the issue, but it seems to me that you just push the "by-pass" icon and then set the set point and you are done. I agree that you would have to turn the valve off when done, but you could just add an egg-timer to turn it off.. It is not like leaving it on is going to cause any issues. Not sure how your system works now, but turning on the "by-pass" could also increase the pump speed to what you want.

My guess is that 99% of pool/spa owners dot not have an automated by-pass, so not sure why you believe that it should be a standard IntelliCenter function.. :scratch:

Thanks,

Jim R.
 

John_and_Val

Gold Supporter
Mar 30, 2018
304
Sunrise/FL
The way the Intellicenter is designed is for fully automated heater function. You tell it - keep my pool temperature at 87 degrees.
No matter how it has to do that (by heating or chilling), it should be fully automated.
And I don't think it it just the push of a button like you describe.........
Due to the fact that (I have experienced this multiple times) the system will revert back to a schedule - it closes the valve allowing water to the heaters.
So I have to diable all schedules, enable bypass, set heat/chill point temp, (not sure if I missed anything)
Then, when I am done heating/chilling - turn off heat/chill, close bypass, enable all schedules.
 

Jimrahbe

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Jul 7, 2014
18,769
Bedford, TX
J&V,

I am sure it is just me, but I am confused...

Is it true, that when your system is scheduled to hold your pool temp, it works fine and keeps the temp where it needs to be.. ??

And the problem is when you want to use the heat/chill outside the scheduled period?

Or, does it never hold the temp??

Thanks,

Jim R.
 

John_and_Val

Gold Supporter
Mar 30, 2018
304
Sunrise/FL
Sorry for confusion,
1592139375765.png
This should all be pre programmed by the system after you tell it the temperatures you want to achieve. It will (in my case) switch from heat pump to gas heater when it feels the heat pump is not performing efficiantly(I havent seen this actually work yet). So if i was to use this pre programmed automation - i would have to keep my bypass open all the time - due to the fact that i have no idea when the heaters/chiller will kick on......
I ultimately want this function (automated heat/chill control) to work. the whole idea of intellicenter is to maximize the "unlimited" control you are supposed to have.

LOL....are we getting closer?
 

MyAZPool

Gold Supporter
Jul 3, 2018
1,524
Arizona
@MyAZPool and all other Pentair Intellicenter and Heater Users

So, you buy this over priced automation system........expecting it to "run the world"...... and in reality it has major issues and bugs. One bug in particular is this:
I have a heater bypass valve with an intellivalve hooked up to it (so water runs "around" the heaters (not through them) - the valve is set like this as the default. The heaters (I have both - Ultra Temp w/chiller and a Mastertemp) are communicating with the Intellicenter via the RS-485 cable (as it should be). I know some people have their heaters wired to a relay - but for now, I do not. On the panel of the intellicenter, upon waking it up - you see the screen with the Pool and Spa (I have a i10PS) settings. Theoretically, you are supposed to be able to set your parameters for the heaters there. For example, if you want your heater to turn on at 80 degrees, you set your set point and boom, your all set! NOT!!!!
No Where - anywhere - anyway - is there a command to open the heat bypass valve to allow water to flow through the heaters!
Am I missing something here - or is this functionality of the heater automation useless if you (A) have a heater bypass valve (B) keep it closed (meaning water usually runs "around" the heaters)
The way the system works, I am assuming you would have to keep the water flowing constantly through the heaters all the time, which we frown upon.....for a couple of reasons
a) bad for the heaters
b) I have to run the pump at a higher rpm in order to keep the SWG running.
c) higher pump speed equals higher pressure in system
d) all mean more use of electricity

I have a fix - but Pentair will never do it - All they need to do is add a socket on the board of the intellicenter for the bypass valve. Just like the "spa" and "return" are on it. Then the heater hits the set-point, the bypass opens, and heaters turn on..... Simple as pie

It will never happen.

So..........Has anyone else experienced this and if so - what is the fix - or in petair's world ..... the work around

Ron, I only utilize the "Return" socket on the mother board. Remember, I do not have a traditional spa, so I do not need the "Spa" socket as I do not have a need for it. Do you think if I put the Intellivalve (for the bypass) in the "spa" socket - we can get some functionality out of it? I am thinking at least when you hit "Spa" on the panel it will open the bypass (allowing water through heaters) fire up heater to setpoint temperature???? And (as it already does) - divert my water flow to the jets in the sitting area.......
Then maybe........is there a way in programming to utilize that same "Spa" socket identifier command to set up some type of schedule to heat / cool the pool accordingly????? At this point - I would be happy enough if I was able to tell the system to open the bypass, heat the pool to 85 or from 0400 - 1900...........something is better than nothing.

As of now - I have to disable ALL the schedules (I have like 8)........activate the bypass valve........activate the heater........remember to turn it off, blah blah blah
Oh, and sometimes if I am lucky - the system will divert back to a schedule, causing the heater bypass to close, causing no water to the heaters.......... Yeah that,s a great sound to hear (the pipes and heater rattling due to no H2O)!!!!!

And the chiller............well you know how that fails........
John,
Of course you have a "command to open the heat bypass valve to allow water to flow through the heaters". You can either actuate the bypass valve through user intervention at the panel, mobile apps or web client. Either with a "tap" of the FEATURE CIRCUIT, a tap of a CIRCUIT GROUP (if it contains that FEATURE CIRCUIT) or through a schedule if the schedule activates that particular valve actuator FEATURE CIRCUIT (either by itself or through a macro).

My guess is that you have not created a FEATURE CIRCUIT for the bypass valve and/or not associated that FEATURE CIRCUIT with the valve actuator in SETTINGS > SYSTEM CONFIGURATION > OTHER EQUIPMENT > VALVES.

1. Create a FEATURE CIRCUIT for the bypass valve. Name it whatever but for the example here, lets call it "Bypass".
2. Navigate to SETTINGS > SYSTEM CONFIGURATION > OTHER EQUIPMENT > VALVES. Click on the valve letter that is the applicable bypass valve actuator so that it expands.
3. Click on the CIRCUIT pulldown and scroll down until you find the circuit named "Bypass". This is where you associate the valve actuator with the FEATURE CIRCUIT.

Now, anytime that you want to open that bypass valve, just activate that FEATURE CIRCUIT (bypass) and the valve will actuate to the setting that you have programmed/set at the IntelliValve.. Anytime that you want to close that valve, just turn off the FEATURE CIRCUIT either again, through user intervention or when the schedule that contains that FEATURE CIRCUIT has expired.

Now you can create a CIRCUIT GROUP (macro) and include that FEATURE CIRCUIT named "bypass" in the macro.
The macro could contain the bypass FEATURE CIRCUIT, other valve actuator FEATURE CIRCUITS (if applicable), Heater activation, AND ANYTHING ELSE (up to 40 commands within the CIRCUIT GROUP).

That's it. "easy peazy". Sorry, I would have included screenshots as examples, but the web client is down at the moment. Just contact me if you have any questions. We'll get you squared away. Macros (CIRCUIT GROUPS) are a "beautiful thing". You can get very creative with them to allow you to accomplish many tasks with one command.
r.
 

MyAZPool

Gold Supporter
Jul 3, 2018
1,524
Arizona
Sorry for confusion,
View attachment 146774
This should all be pre programmed by the system after you tell it the temperatures you want to achieve. It will (in my case) switch from heat pump to gas heater when it feels the heat pump is not performing efficiantly(I havent seen this actually work yet). So if i was to use this pre programmed automation - i would have to keep my bypass open all the time - due to the fact that i have no idea when the heaters/chiller will kick on......
I ultimately want this function (automated heat/chill control) to work. the whole idea of intellicenter is to maximize the "unlimited" control you are supposed to have.

LOL....are we getting closer?
I'm getting the impression that you want a valve actuator to "action" based on a temperature reading. This topic has come up for the third time now in a week.

There is NO WAY to associate a FEATURE CIRCUIT (valve actuator in this case) with a temperature reading by using the stand-alone IntelliCenter.
Presently, it could be done but only by using other "home brew" components that essentially interpret a temperature reading and actuate a relay (not an IntelliCenter Power Relay) that would send the necessary voltage to that actuator that would then cause the valve actuator to actuate.

The other way I'm thinking would be to tie that "3rd-party" relay to the gas heater two-screw terminals (J2) on the mothercard. Once the temperature reaches the temperature set point, the signal (voltage) sent to the J2 terminal could be hijacked, the 3rd party relay would actuate and send the necessary voltage to the valve actuator that it would need to actuate.

Valve actuators "could" be commanded to actuate based on a temperature reading by the IntelliCenter IF, it was "coded" into the firmware (and it should be). Now, that would actually be an "Intelli"gent feature.

The only way for this to occur or get implemented is to start contacting Pentair (and I mean well above the Technical Support folks).
r.
 
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Jimrahbe

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Jul 7, 2014
18,769
Bedford, TX
Ron,

Would that open the valve all the time, or just when the heater/chiller was actually heater/chilling... ??

We went through this with another member and he found that when the heater was not calling for heat, the valve would close, not allowing the heater to cool down..

Not sure that is a problem with the IntelliCenter, but something to think about.

Thanks,

Jim R.
 
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MyAZPool

Gold Supporter
Jul 3, 2018
1,524
Arizona
Ron,
Would that open the valve all the time, or just when the heater/chiller was actually heater/chilling... ??
We went through this with another member and he found that when the heater was not calling for heat, the valve would close, not allowing the heater to cool down..
Not sure that is a problem with the IntelliCenter, but something to think about.
Thanks,
Jim R.
Jim,
When the FEATURE CIRCUIT that is associated with the valve actuator is activated, it will stay open until that FEATURE CIRCUIT is turned off.

See my post (#9) above. Activating a valve actuator based on a temperature reading can be done I think. But it would entail getting creative or getting Pentair to code this feature it into the firmware. The logic is there. If the IntelliCenter can send a signal (voltage) based on a temperature reading to a fireman's switch through the J2 connectors on the mothercard, than there should be no reason it can't be done to send the necessary 24V to the valve actuator through the valve 3-pin socket connectors, to cause the valve to action.
Thanks...
r.
EDIT: This project/experimentation is on my list now. But not until temps (no pun intended), drop below triple digits here. :p
 
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