Pump program volatility and power consumption

Fuldo

Silver Supporter
Nov 23, 2017
166
Port Orange, FL
After seeing a post yesterday regarding upcoming federal regulations requiring variable speed pumps in July 2021, I started to do some research into the topic. As part of that I read the Intelliflo user manual to get a feel for how they can be used and programmed. I also reviewed pump curves for that pump, including some that actually showed electrical power required. This was in an effort to predict how I'd use such a pump, at what levels I might run it and what energy savings I might realize.

There were two things that I couldn't find that maybe someone here can help me with:

1) The Intelliflo manual mentions that once the time is set in the controller it will remain until changed or until the pump doesn't see power for about 96 hours or so. It sounds like the controller has a volatile memory but a back-up power source (capacitor mentioned) that holds the time setting and probably the user defined settings/programs as well. Is this true, does the controller lose all settings and not only the time setting with a prolonged power outage? Can I assume if settings are lost they go back to factory default settings?

2) I was able to find an Intelliflo pump chart that shows electrical power. This would allow someone to estimate electrical power use knowing where they'd likely run the VS pump based on the performance of their present system/pump. However, I couldn't find any pump curves showing electrical power for my Pentair SF-N1-1A (340038) pump or any single speed pump for that matter. At this point I can't estimate my present pump power consumption aside from calculating my present power consumption by measuring line current when operating. Has anyone ever seen a pump curve for this single speed pump that shows electrical power?
 

mknauss

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
Bronze Supporter
May 3, 2014
22,405
Laughlin, NV
VS pumps are to be hard wired to power. Thus, unless you have a long term power outage, the schedule memory is maintained. So your timer would not be controlling the VS pump. You will need the timer you have to control the SWCG.

Rule of thumb says a 1 hp motor (if SF is 1) uses ~1Kwh. Does that match your data?
VS pumps typically use far less. My Intelliflo VS uses right at 200W at 1500 rpm with ~8 psi of filter pressure. That rpm is needed to close the flow switch on my SWCG.

Pump curves are pretty difficult to use at our low flow rates as the head loss is so variable through our components (filter, heater if you have one, etc).
 

Fuldo

Silver Supporter
Nov 23, 2017
166
Port Orange, FL
Marty,
I was thinking about the possibility/probability of a long term power loss, either from an extended power outage (had one already) or perhaps a tripped breaker/GFCI. I'm often away from the house for days and although others are often there sometimes not. Others aren't very aware of pump operation and I could envision the pump not running for days and nobody noticing, especially off-season and with a VSP that would normally be running very slowly and quietly. Do you know if all settings are lost with a prolonged outage and if all factory settings are defaulted to in that case?

The charts I found puzzle me considering your performance numbers. According to one Intelliflo chart I found your 1500 rpm with 8 psi would equate to about 22 GPM, probably a reasonable flow for skimming with a single skimmer with a small pool. However, the other chart I found that included power curves shows the 200W and 8 psi outside of normal operating range and if I extrapolate the flow would only be less than 10 GPM. I'm thinking that the chart with power number is bogus regardless that the Pentair Intelliflo name is on it.

I don't have any real data on the electrical consumption of my pump, I never tried to measure it and I don't have the proper gear to do so either. I've seen the 1 HP = 1kW ballpark but I believe that's when the pump is working hard. My back pressure tends to be rather low, in the range of 12-16 so the pump isn't working near it's output capacity. I'd guess it's using about 400W but that's only a guess. I believe my pump is pushing about 75 gallons per minute based on it's pump curve and my back pressure. I was trying to get a handle on what speed and power level I'd need to run the Intelliflo to match or slightly exceed that for vacuuming and I was also trying to get some idea of how slow I could run it to get reasonable skimmer action and what power would be required. At this point I guess I can only speculate but it seems your 1500 RPM and 200 W would be a place to start on the slow speed end.
 

mknauss

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
Bronze Supporter
May 3, 2014
22,405
Laughlin, NV
I will let @JamesW or @mas985 comment on the power usage of your 1 hp pump. I believe the power consumption does not have a lot to do with your filter pressure, but I may be wrong.

If the power is removed from the Pentair Intelliflo pump for an extended time the memory will be erased and the factory defaults will result. I have never had a circuit breaker trip on my pump system and quite frankly can't see why that would happen unless you have some kind of electrical issue.
 

JamesW

TFP Expert
Mar 2, 2011
16,542
For a single speed pump, the power is about 1,000 watts per total hp.

The voltage x the amperage listed on the motor label should be the maximum power usage by the pump.

Higher pressure reduces power consumption a little bit because the flow rate is lower at higher pressure.
 

mas985

TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
May 3, 2007
12,785
Pleasanton, CA
Assuming you have the SuperFlo SF-N1-1A pump, that pump will produce about 70 GPM & use 1450 watts on 2" plumbing or 56 GPM & use 1378 Watts on 1 1/2" plumbing.
 

swimcmp

In The Industry
Nov 8, 2011
1,068
Moberly,MO
Here in Missouri we winterize for the cold season and turn off the breakers to the pumps so they don't try to startup and run freeze protection. I have not had to reprogram any pumps in the spring. They have an internal memory storage that is part of the mother board so the programming is not lost.
 

Fuldo

Silver Supporter
Nov 23, 2017
166
Port Orange, FL
Evidently you've found that the programs and settings are in a non-volatile memory and will be kept in the event of a long-term power interruption. What about the time setting, Pentair literature mentions that the clock setting will be lost with a long-term power interruption and needs to be reset. This sounds like after a long-term outage the pump will cycle as expected (with latest settings) but cycle at the wrong time of day because the clock is wrong, until the clock is reset. Is this correct?
 

djw

Gold Supporter
Apr 17, 2010
102
DFW, TX
I was relocating the control panel from my Hayward TriStar 2.7 VSP to the wall yesterday and noted that there was a little coin battery on the control panel board, in a socket (i.e. replaceable), barely visible, mostly hidden on the back side. Undocumented - at least in the user manual. I suspect this takes care of no-power and will eventually need to be replaced. Maybe most pumps have similar?