Solar Layout

May 27, 2016
Boca Raton, FL

First, I want to thank everyone here for the amazing knowledge you've all shared. After countless hours reading, I converted my pool to salt and most importantly, keep it perfectly balanced and crystal clear so thank you!

That being said, I ended up getting 8 Fafco 4x10 panels on CL, that appear to be in great shape. We just bought a hot tub so I wasn't planning on getting panels but for $250, I couldn't say no. I've read a bunch of things here but I want to double check my setup before doing it. All pipe is 1.5 inch with a 1.5 HP pump and our roof is flat in the center. I've consulted a few people and plan to do a metal pipe "frame" around the panels, secured to pavers, 2 sides of the frame tapcon'ed into the side of the house, and then either some sort of nylon "rope" or SS rubber wrapped cabling, secured to the sides of the house. I don't want these things to fly off in south florida but I really don't want to penetrate a flat roof. Our neighbors have nothing securing their panels but that sounds bad. My big thing, is how to secure the panels to the pipe/cabling; ideas?

I love computers but suck drawing pics, does this setup look ok? It looks like the solar valve has a check valve built in but should I use that? Should I add another check? Sounds like I should add a vacuum breaker too, right before the panels on the roof, correct? I know draining is going to be an issue and while it doesn't freeze here (South Florida), still worried; should I be?

The squiggly lines in the bottom right, just mean that the area isn't going to work, due to vents. It think I can only get 7 panels up so while not 350 sq ft, it's close. I have the couplers so I think I just need the vacuum valve, solar valve, 2 end caps, and lots of PVC.

Solar Layout.jpg
May 27, 2016
Boca Raton, FL
Thank you for the help and one more question; I bought a SolarTouch because I read good things about it and it seemed to work with our single speed pump (with the option to go VS in the future) but now I'm unsure. Pentair said it will not work with a single speed unless I hook it to the filter pump timer and have it come on and off with the filter pump. I read another thread on here where they were talking about this and it seems if I hook it to external filter pump timer, the valve will not close (no spring) on power down but if I put it on a separate 120, it will open and close with no flow. The other thread seemed to think that the valve would not actuate without flow but Pentair said this is incorrect; any insight?

Single Speed Pump for filter
External Time clock


Mod Squad
TFP Expert
Platinum Supporter
LifeTime Supporter
Aug 10, 2012
The valve will open and close with or without flow. There is no way for the Solartouch to know if the pump is on or not. My Solartouch is wired to the breaker and is always on. There is no harm I can think of in the solar valve opening if the pump isn't on. I've been set up like this for at least 4 years and there is no issue I am aware of.