Pulling Cable for Spa Light Replacement

Cultcab

Well-known member
Oct 23, 2016
46
Roseville, CA
I have an inground pool with an attached built-in spa. Last year, I had our pool light replaced with an LED (Pentair Intellibrite 5G) and this year I decided to replace the spa light as well with the same Pentair light. I was looking to save some cash, so I decided to do the work myself.

I haven't started to pull the old wire yet because I ran into something unexpected when I was disconnecting the wire at the panel. The conduit at the panel has the black/white/green wires from the spa light coming out of it (picture below), but there is also a blue wire that I assume was added when the pool light was replaced last year. The black wire goes to the spa light relay and the blue wire goes to the pool light relay. The white wire is attached to the GFI outlet. The two relays are jumpered to share the load connection.

I'm having a difficult time understanding how the tech would have wired the new pool light so that the only wire coming out of the conduit is the blue wire.

I am planning on pulling the spa cable through the conduit (with the new LED light cable attached on the other end), but I don't want to damage the pool wiring in the process. I don't see any other junction boxes downstream where the tech could have spliced the wires.

Does this sound like a reasonable way to manage the wiring?
 

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ajw22

Gold Supporter
TFP Guide
Jul 21, 2013
35,265
Northern NJ
Pool Size
35000
Surface
Plaster
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
Pentair Intellichlor IC-60
Do you have a pool light junction box in between the wiring from the light in the pool and your load center?

The conduit at the panel has the black/white/green wires from the spa light coming out of it (picture below), but there is also a blue wire that I assume was added when the pool light was replaced last year. The black wire goes to the spa light relay and the blue wire goes to the pool light relay. The white wire is attached to the GFI outlet. The two relays are jumpered to share the load connection.

Black wire - spa light 120V hot
Blue wire - Pool light 120V hot
White wire - neutral


I'm having a difficult time understanding how the tech would have wired the new pool light so that the only wire coming out of the conduit is the blue wire.

Someplace the pool light neutral is connected to the spa white wire that goes to the GFCI. I suspect you have a light junction box where the neutrals from the two lights are tied to one white wire running to the load center.


I don't see any other junction boxes downstream where the tech could have spliced the wires.

NEC code requires a junction box as an air gap from the pool light wire. Keep looking for it.
 

Cultcab

Well-known member
Oct 23, 2016
46
Roseville, CA
Thank you - I found the junction box. I must have looked at it a thousand times over the last 20+ years and since I've never had to access it, I forgot about it.

Is it best to keep the grounding cable connected when pulling the light cable? I've given it a few tugs and it's not budging at all yet. I've poured some wire lube into the conduit, but it's not moving and I'm thinking that it may be crowded by the grounding cable.
 

ajw22

Gold Supporter
TFP Guide
Jul 21, 2013
35,265
Northern NJ
Pool Size
35000
Surface
Plaster
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
Pentair Intellichlor IC-60
Are you asking about the green ground wire or the bare copper bonding wire?

The green ground wire should be connected to the light. The bare copper bonding wire can be connected to the light or the niche.
 

JamesW

TFP Expert
Mar 2, 2011
29,598
The light cord contains a green ground wire.

There's also an extra ground wire going from the inside of the niche to the junction box through the conduit.

The extra ground wire is called a "bonding jumper", but it's a ground wire. It's a #8, stranded wire with green insulation.

Inside the niche, it's connected to a ground lug and covered by a waterproof potting compound.

You can see the bonding jumper ground wire in the second picture. It looks yellow from fading.

I would not remove the bonding jumper ground wire if at all possible because you probably wouldn't be able to reattach it in the niche.

The bare copper solid bonding wire is connected outside the niche and is not accessible.
 

JamesW

TFP Expert
Mar 2, 2011
29,598
Try pulling from one direction and then the other to see if it will break loose.

You can pull the new cord through with the old cord or a string that will pull through when you remove the old cord.
 

Cultcab

Well-known member
Oct 23, 2016
46
Roseville, CA
Thank you for your help with this. I was able to get it pulled without too much effort and the light looks great.

Years ago when the pool was first installed, I had Jandy dimmer relay switches for the pool and spa lights. They weren't very reliable and I ended up having to replace them a couple of times before realizing that they were designed poorly.

The LED light in the spa is very bright and I would love to get that dimming function back.

Is there any newer version of a dimmer relay that I could utilize? I'm using the RS6 controller without Pentair's light control system.
 
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