Pool Renovation Dallas, TX

Pools1801

Member
Sep 23, 2019
8
Dallas
My wife and I are getting ready for a pool renovation and I am stuck on a few items.

We are already planning on adding an IntelliCenter Automation system to the Pool/SPA to control everything.

Currently the pool doesn't have a SPA attached to it and we would like to add one. I am thinking we should add a second pump just to run the SPA jets as my wife wants to have the ability to warm the SPA without running the jets. The current plan is to have 10 jets total with 2 sets of jets with 3 Jets each arranged in a triangle for 2 seating locations and then 2x single jets. My thought is to re-purpose our current Pool Pump (IntelliFlo VS) as a filter/heater pump that filters both the pool and the SPA and can also be put into a SPA-Heat mode. Then add a second new pump (IntelliFloXF) that just runs the jets. My question is, is it ok to run the Jet pump without a filter in the loop or do we need to have a filter to keep the jets from plugging?

My second issue right now is lighting for the pool. Currently we have 1x 500w incandescent light that is pointed directly at the house. We would like to get rid of that light and move to something else. I have been researching lighting and it seems like for the most part I need to stick with the same brand of lights as the control system. With Pentair lights there are the GloBright and the MicroBright options. The Globrights are brighter but the MicroBrights fit into 1.5in plumbing. I don't like the idea of a proprietary nitch that the Globrights have to use and thus why I have been contemplating the MicroBrights. I found today that CMP makes a "BRILLIANT WONDERS 1.5˝ LED" light but I can't find any information about how bright it is and how well the "P" version works with Pentair/Intellicenter. Does anyone have experience (good or bad) with the CMP lights? And is there any information available about how bright they are?
 

GDN

Bronze Supporter
Oct 17, 2016
450
Dallas, TX
If you are considering adding a spa and you mention moving a light does this mean you are completely renovating - new plaster and decking, the works? Others can weigh in here, but if you are adding automation, it will handle all things pool and spa - the spa will likely spill over in to the pool and you'll still only need one pump. As far as the lights - with the troubles I've seen with the Pentair LED Intellibrites, I'm wondering about staying old school - do they still make and sell the Amerlite niche so you can use a regular screw in bulb? They make that style in LED which lasts a lot longer then the new thin LED and you can get them from 3rd parties, they are also compatible with the Pentair color changing and automation. I don't know that others will agree and recommend staying old school style, but I would. I'm very happy with aftermarket bulbs that fit that niche. I do agree with moving it so it doesn't shine toward the house.
 

Pools1801

Member
Sep 23, 2019
8
Dallas
Yeah, I didn't type it all up yet but new deck, new plaster, new coping, new tileline, new main-drain, etc... We are getting the works done.

My concern with 1 pump is with 10 jets at 11-15GPM thats going to need 110GPM to keep it running properly. And if I have to push that through a filter+heater and then the Jets I don't think the IntelliFlo can do that by itself. I have been looking but can't find the Head that Jets added to a plumbing system. but I am assuming that it is relatively high. I am planning on having all the plumbing done in 3in to help keep the Head down as much as possible. Plus the fact that the wife wants to be able to have the SPA warm (and stay warm) without jets running.

I think its the Amerlite niche that we have today. I have read a lot of the horror stories about the early Pentair LEDs dying and it does make me hesitant to switch to the LEDs but my thought was to go with with the 12v LEDs that way at least the heat from the transformer isn't right behind the LED drivers helping to kill them.

Current Plans (probably forgetting some of them):
  • Deck: Spray Deck (we hate how hot concrete gets)
  • Coping: Cast Stone (we like a smooth edge to lean up against and may end up putting in a SWG)
  • Plaster: Micro Pebble Light Blue Color
  • Tileline: No idea yet
  • Main-Drain: Channel Drain with Pebble top cover
  • SPA-Drain: Channel Drain with Pebble top cover or Ring Drain (I like the looks of a Ring Drain but if we are going to use Dual-Pumps for the SPA then I think we would have to have 2 drains in the SPA to be VGB Compliant)
  • SPA: 7-7.5 Foot Round or Oval, 12in raised edge above deck, sloping bench seat for multiple seating heights, spillover into pool
  • Skimmers: Replace existing 1.5in skimmer with new 2-2.5in, add second skimmer
  • Filtration: Add equipment side leaf canister (we have a magnolia tree that partially hangs over the pool and drops gigantic leaves as well as very fine needles that get sucked up by the main drain and plug the pump basket) plus with the channel drains hopefully they suck up some of the leaves that get water logged and fall to the pool floor (hopefully the second skimmer with help with that)
  • Deck Jets: adding 4x CMP Natural Wonders, our pool water gets over 92F in the summer right now with a fairly white plaster and so its not very refreshing to swim in. Currently I built a pair of PVC Pipes with lots of small holes drilled in them (as recommended here on TFP) and they worked great. Problem is the wife hates how they look... So we need a more permanent solution. I am a little concerned that 4x of them won't be enough to cool the pool down. I am trying to do some testing with just one of the PVC Pipe setups to see if that can cool the pool down enough but thus far its hasn't been super successful.
  • Heater: 400k BTU, a little unsure on brand as the PB keeps saying that Pentair isn't "rodent proof" but I can't find a lot of information to back that up. But if possible I would like to stick with the same OEM if possible.
Does anyone have any suggestions/recommendations for deck jet cooling?
 
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Pools1801

Member
Sep 23, 2019
8
Dallas
I looked at that chiller some, just concerned about the cost to run it/maintaining it. I know they aren't as expensive to run as the older style chillers, but my concern is it will take quite a bit of runtime to bring down our pool.
 
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jark87

Silver Supporter
Jun 5, 2011
210
Flower Mound, TX
I looked at that chiller some, just concerned about the cost to run it/maintaining it. I know they aren't as expensive to run as the older style chillers, but my concern is it will take quite a bit of runtime to bring down our pool.
I have a Glacier chiller and it was the best thing we’ve done for our pool. I also tried the PVC pipes. While water temp was a little lower, it still wasn’t refreshing. The wind would also blow the spray onto surrounding landscaping, killing the plants. And my wife also hated them. 😏

My pool temp has reach a high of 82 so far this summer. It is 77 as I write this. With our “cold front” this weekend (low humidity and highs in the low 90s) I doubt that water temp will get above 80. We actually swim all summer long now!

As far as “older style” goes, it doesn’t get much older style that the Glacier. It’s basically a swamp cooler, with rotating wands spraying water over grids and a large fan blowing down on the grids as the water drips down. The evaporation is what cools the water. The cooled water collects in a basin at the bottom and is pumped back into the pool once the float triggers the pump. It’s economical because the only thing running is the fan. Having said that, I have the pool pump and chiller kicking on at 3am, which is when air temps are coolest. There’s been discussion on this forum about daytime being best time to run any evaporative process due to lower humidity, but I’ve achieved best results by having it come on earlier and also run all day. Other than rinsing it down at the beginning and end of the season, there is no maintenance.

Since you’re in the Dallas area, you are welcome to check out our chiller if you’d like. We’re in Flower Mound.
 

Pools1801

Member
Sep 23, 2019
8
Dallas
My current testing with just 1x of the TFP PVC coolers has brought my pool down to 82 (a little chilly for us). So I think in the end the deck jets are going to work well. I did play with pushing more water through the PVC chiller instead of letting it through the returns (with the use of smaller eyeballs). And when the water arched farther (about 1-2ft more) it seemed to cool the pool down the extra 2-4 degrees.

On the recommendation of our PB we are going to dual-purpose the SPA jet pump to be for 6x jets and for the deck jets. Only down side is I can't run those SPA jets with the decks running.
 
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