Run a spa without a controller?

May 10, 2012
10
Atlanta, GA
#1
My foreclosure house came with a pool and spa. Got the pool turned around from a murky brown to crystal clear the first year. 6 years later, I am thinking about the spa and have been doing some research. I'll post up some specs shortly, but for now, does anyone run them without a controller?

Spa is indoors and appears to be from the early 80s. There is no controller and doesnt appear that there ever was one. No mechanical timer either. Heater has a dial temperature knob (hotter to colder). Pneumatic switch to turn on the jets at the tub. I will post up some pictures soon.
 

Rollercoastr

Gold Supporter
May 18, 2016
806
West Bloomfield, MI
#2
My Dad had a Jacuzzi in the 80's that worked just like that. The pump house was about 50' from the tub. Pneumatic lines ran from the tub to switches in the pump house that operated the air and water pumps. The heater was gas-fired with a dial like you describe. The switches weren't great. The lines would kink or the buttons would get stuck. It was crude compared to the systems today, it was really nice to have the machinery far away.
 
OP
OP
F
May 10, 2012
10
Atlanta, GA
#3
Thanks roller coaster! Am I correct that the pump and heater are always on if you don't have a controller? I like the simplicity of this setup after reading about the cost and average lifespan of a controller.

My tub is indoors in a sunroom added to the back of the house. The pump and controls are on the other side of a wall, under the stair well in the house. This is nice if you are in the tub. Not sure I will like the pump running all the time as this stairwell is in the den where only tv is located.

Tub: Jacuzzi brand, Verona model
Pump: ITT Marlow
Motor: Century Centurion, 2 speed, 2 horse
Filter: Jacuzzi CFT50 cartridge
Heater: Comfortzone Aqua-Therm Control 130197-01-01

The heater isn't working and this is the main reason I haven't used the tub. The tub is finally moving towards the top of the priority list though and I plan to dig into it soon.
 

Rollercoastr

Gold Supporter
May 18, 2016
806
West Bloomfield, MI
#4
Dad's had a breaker panel in the pumphouse that powered the pumps and the heater. At least in the winter though, the circ pump ran on slow speed full-time. IIRC, the switch in the spa only toggled between slow and fast. I would assume the heater had a pressure switch to protect itself from no waterflow.