New Build in AZ - Automation Questions

Cobrarat

Member
Jun 2, 2021
20
Queen Creek Arizona
Well we are almost done with our new build and after much to do with a reputable builder we still have some issues. First I will try to describe my pool:
  1. Odd shaped 20K gallon pool with 12" raised spa
  2. Grotto waterfall with a slide
  3. In floor cleaning with auto deck chlorine
  4. UV Sanitizer
  5. 2 3hp VSF pumps, 1 for water feature, 1 for pool
  6. Pop-up splashdown in Spa
  7. ETI 400K Heater, Cartridge Filter, with a Cyclone after the pump
  8. Globright lights in waterfall and on baja step, plus led lights in pool and spa
  9. Easytouch8 controls with wifi interface.
  10. 2hp air pump for the spa jets
So here is the rub... I want to control my pool completely with my phone. Currently we have 4 actuators, 1) 2 actuators control the spa return/feed 2) i actuator controls the splash down in the spa, 3) 1 actuator controls the spa jets. So for the system that i currently have i cannot add any additional controls. What I want to do is:
1) Be able to turn the heater bypass to the heater when the spa turns on, I am doing that manually
2) Turn off the slide to the waterfall to take advantage of the VSF pump and run at a lower speed when not used, manually set.
3) Also When using the spillway I would like to activate my skimmer which is set to the pool bottom drain and is also manually set right now.
There are a lot of other things that need to be done like hooking up my Waterfall LED transformer to the easytouch system and so on. I have been reading around this site and there is a great body of knowledge so I thought I would post to get involved!
Any insight would be helpful...
Regards,
Brian
 

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HermanTX

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Nice pool.
It may be helpful to post a picture of your EasyTouch as well as the model number so the forum knows exactly what you have.
Also, @Jimrahbe has several ET units so maybe he can provide you some insight.
 

an1vrsy

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@Cobrarat also what would be helpful is photo(s) of your equipment pad. Seeing the layout helps.
 

Jimrahbe

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TFP Expert
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C,

Too bad you did not find TFP before you built your pool, as we could have pointed you toward different equipment decisions. :(

With all the things that you want to do, the simplest would be to upgrade your existing EasyTouch into the Pentair's IntelliCenter with a valve driver expansion card. There is actually an upgrade kit to do this. Yes, it will cost a little more, but based upon your input above you will never really be happy with your EasyTouch. Here are some reasons why..

1. The EasyTouch (ET) has a maximum of 12 schedules/programs... The IntelliCenter (IC) has a max of 100.
2. The ET is a "what you buy is what you get" system.. The IC is expandable with additional modules.
3. The ET has 4 valve drivers.. The IC come with 4 valve drivers, but more can be added.
4. The ET has no ability to turn on more than one circuit with the push of just one button. The IC has macros that allow you to combine several operations into just one button.
5. The ET uses an addon called ScreenLogic that allows you to use your phone. The IC comes with a built-in ScreenLogic-like system.
6. The ET has a small yellow and white LCD screen that only shows alphanumeric data. The IC has a larger color LCD Touch screen with icons.
7. I could go on, but my fingers hurt.. :mrgreen:


Another option would to make your own valve drivers.. The downside to the option is that the EasyTouch would not know they are there, so it might be possible to use other ET outputs to turn the valves, or you might have to push two buttons. You could do this from your phone, but it would not be seamless.

Here is an example of an upgrade kit.. You would also need a valve expansion module.. This is just an example.. do not buy anything until PolyTec confirms it is the one you need.



...with auto deck chlorine

I'm here to learn, just like you.. Please tell me what this is... :scratch:

Thanks,

Jim R.
 

Cobrarat

Member
Jun 2, 2021
20
Queen Creek Arizona
Yes, I wish I had found this site some time ago!!!!
So Jim, I am on the same thought process and received the Intellicenter upgrade board this morning, P/N: 522048, and a new 100w transformer to move the baja light off the same circuit as the Water falll light. However the actuator expansion board is nowhere to be found.... I also purchased 2 additional actuators and need one more. I think this will allow me to get close to where I want to go and with the help of this forum, I think that I can get there.... Pic of my system, with the easytouch8 not shown, no salt.
 

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Cobrarat

Member
Jun 2, 2021
20
Queen Creek Arizona
I'm here to learn, just like you.. Please tell me what this is...
Jim this is a tube in my deck that I drop tabs into and they get dispursed into the pool based on a predetermined flow rate. Also called Deck Chlor? I do not have a floating duck for my tabs....
 

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Jimrahbe

Mod Squad
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C,

So like a tab feeder, but in the deck instead of at the equipment pad..

Thanks for the feed back..

Jim R.
 

Cobrarat

Member
Jun 2, 2021
20
Queen Creek Arizona
So contacted the pool builder to add the intellicenter upgrade kit and valves, and because I purchased them they will not install them. They also said they have not received training on the intellicenter system so they do not support it. Well it looks like I am off the reservation on this one and will need to do the upgrade myself. I need to wait until I find the 522038Z actuator expansion board before I can proceed.
 

Jimrahbe

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
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Jul 7, 2014
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C,

That is because they already sold you everything they had in stock.. There is no more profit left in you... :mrgreen:

They make there money building pools, not helping pool owners maintain their own pool. They look at their customers the same way we look at Styrofoam cups.. To be used one time and then thrown away... :rolleyes:

Let's see if we can get you some TFP help... Calling @MyAZPool

Thanks,

Jim R.
 

MyAZPool

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Jul 3, 2018
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@Cobrarat
If I understand correctly, you are going to upgrade your ET to the IntelliCenter using the standard ET upgrade kit and you have the upgrade kit in hand?
And it appears that you will be doing the work yourself right? If so, piece of cake if you have average skill sets with electrical, standard tools etc.
It also appears that you need an IntelliCenter Valve Expansion Module. That might be a little more difficult. Those things are getting very hard to find right now but their super easy to install once you can get your hands on one.

Do you want to wait until you have the valve expansion module first or do you want to proceed and just install the Valve Expansion Module after you finally can get one?
r.
 

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Jimrahbe

Mod Squad
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Bedford, TX
C,

I would go with what you have now, and install the valve expansion later..

That will give you more time to learn how to speak "Pentair"... :mrgreen:

Thanks,

Jim R.
 

Cobrarat

Member
Jun 2, 2021
20
Queen Creek Arizona
If I understand correctly, you are going to upgrade your ET to the IntelliCenter using the standard ET upgrade kit and you have the upgrade kit in hand?
MyAZPool, You are the pool guru!!! thanks for chiming in on this one. Yes, I have the upgrade kit on hand along with a 100w transformer and two actuators. I still need the actuator board and one more actuator to make my pool, what i consider efficient. the upgrade kit is the i10 PS kit. Looks pretty straight forward, I have the basic skills to do just about anything. The pool company could not get the ETI heater to work and I found the wiring issue off the heater schematic for them....

But, yes I would prefer to wait until I receive all the necessary components to make this work. I totally agree with Jim R and feel the same way! what a bunch of Bull Feathers! This system (Intellicenter) has been out for a while now I should have never received the Easytouch8 system knowing what my expectations were. I just got the runaround!
OK, done venting, back to task...

What are the benefits of doing the swap now? I would see no change on my end, still operating valves manually and lighting screwed up!
 
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Jimrahbe

Mod Squad
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C,

Most of the physical work is in the enclosure upgrade.. Installing the valve module should be pretty quick.

It would give you a chance to learn how to program the IntelliCenter with the functions you have today.. This means that once you do the valve upgrade, you will be over the learning curve.. Pentair has brought many "computer programmers" to their knees crying... :mrgreen: The main problem is that Pentair "programming" is not at all related to what real programmers do.. It is almost better to have no programing experience than too much experience, when setting up a Pentair automation system. Pentair's nomenclature and logic are often not what the normal person would use...

Thanks,

Jim R.
 

Cobrarat

Member
Jun 2, 2021
20
Queen Creek Arizona
OK, finally received all my parts in today and the builder is officially done with the pool!

So the question that I have is, from my current Intellitouch system can I save the configuration from my system and upload it to the Intellicenter system?

If I cant save the current configuration, what is the critical information that I might need from my system before I power it down for the swap?

Also the builder did not use relay #1 for the pool pump, should I move it during the swap to make it correct?
 

proavia

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Fill out your signature with your pool and pool equipment specs - including model numbers. Include what testkit you are using.

If using an Intelliflow pump, you don't wire it thru a relay. It gets hardwired directly to the circuit breaker and is controlled by the Intellicenter via the RS485 data cable.

While your Dekchlor may come in handy for using tabs while you are away on vacation, use of tabs is not a sustainable option - as they increase CYA also. If you don't have a SWG, use liquid chlorine.
ABCs of Pool Water Chemistry
PoolMath
FC/CYA Chart
Test Kits Compared
Recommended Levels
 
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Jimrahbe

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C,

If you have ScreenLogic, you can just take a screenshot of every setup pages on your PC..

You need to know what each Aux relay does

You need to know what each Function Circuit does.

You need to know what each valve does by circuit name

You need to understand the relationship between Circuit, Circuit Name, and Circuit Function.

Thanks,

Jim R.
 

Cobrarat

Member
Jun 2, 2021
20
Queen Creek Arizona
Gene, Done!
Jim,
Thanks for the input, I took pictures of the pages and made a word doc for reference later. I also watched a you-tube video on installing the upgrade intellicenter, looks like a direct swap for most settings. Looks like this Friday I will tackle this job so any input would be appreciated!
I am going to install the actuator board prior to the swap, make the current changes and get the system working again, then add the three valves and the LED Lighting power supply. I will keep every one informed.
Hopefully by Monday I will have a Easytouch8 system board for sale!
 
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proavia

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Now that's a signature!

Do yourself a BIG favor - order one of the recommended testkits right now. I like the TF-100 / TF-PRO as either has more of the reagents we use as residential pool owners. And toss those teststrips in the trash - yeah, they are that worthless.

With the intense (110+ for those not in AZ) for at least the next week, you really can't afford to let the pool water get away from you. The sooner you get one of the recommended testkits, the sooner you too can have a troublefree pool.
 

Cobrarat

Member
Jun 2, 2021
20
Queen Creek Arizona
Gene,
I was waiting on my friend that is a pool chemical sales rep who was going to get a test kit for me but not sure how long that is going to take??? I like the TF-100 as I already have a PH meter. Where is a good place to buy one of those kits?
Also is there a good in-line system that works with Pentair product line? sure would be nice to have hands free monitoring of my pool??
Thanks for the info!
Brian
 

proavia

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- order one today and you will have it early next week, maybe sooner.

If your pool chemical rep friend were to get you a testkit, the only acceptible one would be the
Taylor K-2006C -- and yes, the "C" is important.

There are no proven reliable inline hands free monitoring systems available for residential pools.

While you may think it may be a hassle to manually test, I spend a max of 5 minutes per day (6 days per week) testing, dosing and checking the skimmer basket for my pool. And 30-45 minutes per day (1 day per week) testing, dosing, brushing and checking the equipment for my pool. I dose chlorine manually using liquid chlorine.

One more thing, don't try to mix TFP methods and recommendations with those of your chemical rep friend or the pool store - that won't work. Pick one path forward. If that path is not initially TFP, we will still be here to help you recover when you decide to use TFP methods.
 
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