Upgrading pump - looking for advise, suggestions

hagani

Active member
Jul 17, 2018
36
Robbinsville, NJ
I am looking to upgrade my PENTAIR Superflo High Performance 1.5HP pump because that electric bill in the summer drives me crazy. I have this pump for less than 1.5 season (installed August 2018) and in NJ I open pool at the end of May and closing late September. My summer electric bill runs about $500/month for the whole house (to compare my winter bill an average $250/month). I would like to go with Pentair 342001 Superflo. Seems to be a cheapest way to do the trick.

Question #1 - Those how upgraded from single speed to VS - did you really feel those savings on electrical bill?

Question #2 - I have a small pool and would it make sense to go with bigger than current 1.5HP output considering that I have relatively small pool and equipment pad is about 50ft away from the pool and I have 2" plumbing? Or it would be just a waste of money?

Thank you for your input in advance.
 

mknauss

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
Bronze Supporter
May 3, 2014
29,261
Laughlin, NV
A VS pump will definitely reduce your electric bill. Will this be a DIY install? The Superflo VS I believe will be an easy swap. But with DIY, Pentair will only give you a 60 day warranty. Up to you if a pro install is worth the cost for more warranty.

How much it reduces your bill has many factors. You have a SWCG so you need to run the pump long enough to create your chlorine.
 

PoolNewb2020

Well-known member
May 7, 2020
158
Lathrop, CA
I'm not sure if pentair provides the info, but you would have find out what head your system has, since it is 50ft away. VS pumps lose a lot of head as the RPM is slowed down. So the question would be how much could you slow that pump down before it could not provide enough head?

But in the meantime, you could restrict the flow on the pressure side, if you can, and your single speed pump will use less power. This method doesn't provide the same amount of savings as VS, but it's better than nothing.
 

hagani

Active member
Jul 17, 2018
36
Robbinsville, NJ
I'm not sure if pentair provides the info, but you would have find out what head your system has, since it is 50ft away. VS pumps lose a lot of head as the RPM is slowed down. So the question would be how much could you slow that pump down before it could not provide enough head?
Would it make sense then to go with 3HP instead of 1.5HP? Or it won't matter in this case?
 

hagani

Active member
Jul 17, 2018
36
Robbinsville, NJ
A VS pump will definitely reduce your electric bill. Will this be a DIY install? The Superflo VS I believe will be an easy swap. But with DIY, Pentair will only give you a 60 day warranty. Up to you if a pro install is worth the cost for more warranty.

How much it reduces your bill has many factors. You have a SWCG so you need to run the pump long enough to create your chlorine.
I have no problem doing it myself. Not sure what if I want to call someone to do it - it would be an insult to my intelligence.

Yes considering SWG - right now once I get the pool balanced I run my single speed pump 2 hours in the morning and 2 hours in the evening with IC40 at 20%

Now with the VS not sure what the schedule would be, I guess just have to try and see
 

Jimrahbe

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Jul 7, 2014
17,833
Bedford, TX
hag,

I run my 3 HP IntelliFlo 24/7, mostly at 1200 RPM, for less than $20 bucks a month... larger pumps move more water at lower RPMs..

If cost is not an issue, I would go with the 011028 IntelliFlo...

Thanks,

Jim R.
 

Jimrahbe

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Jul 7, 2014
17,833
Bedford, TX
hag,

If your pump only runs 4 hours a day, I can't see where all your electrical costs are going.. :scratch:

I would not think that four hours a day would use $250 bucks a month worth of electricity.

Thanks,

Jim R.
 

Ksjrb03

Member
Jan 20, 2015
16
Tx
I run the same pump in 2hp model for 4 hours a day. Electric bill is never more than $225 month with 2 a/c’s running all day. Running the pump isn’t free, but it’s definitely not the bulk of your higher bill. I’m gonna switch to the 2 speed superflo pump instead of variable speed, more for lower noise than electric bill though.
 

Jimrahbe

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Jul 7, 2014
17,833
Bedford, TX
Is it quiet, your pump to run it 24/7 ?
Hag,

At 1200 RPM, you have to touch the pump to make sure it is still running... :mrgreen:

I can run that low of speed because I don't have a heater.. With a heater you'd have to run 1500 to 1800 RPM, but it would still very quiet.

Thanks,

Jim R.
 

PoolNewb2020

Well-known member
May 7, 2020
158
Lathrop, CA
Would it make sense then to go with 3HP instead of 1.5HP? Or it won't matter in this case?
Looking at the pump curves a bigger VS pump would make sense. Comparing IntelliFlow XF to 1.5 HP SuperFlo, Pentair doesn't have a curve below 1400 RPM for the SuperFlo, so it probably will not provide much head below that speed.
Too bad there is no power consumption on these graphs, that would be the best comparison for each RPM.

Each 100 feet of schedule 40, 2 inch PVC adds about 3.12 feed of head in friction.
Below is a table for fittings. It's an approximation, but should give a good idea of head loss. I would imagine that at 50 ft suction run, it would be safe to assume a minimum of 10 ft of head is needed from the pump. But I don't know pool construction. Perhaps someone knowledgeable in pool building will chime in.

PVC friction.jpg


IntelliFloXF.jpg


SuperFlo 1.5hp.jpg
 

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hagani

Active member
Jul 17, 2018
36
Robbinsville, NJ
hag,

I run my 3 HP IntelliFlo 24/7, mostly at 1200 RPM, for less than $20 bucks a month... larger pumps move more water at lower RPMs..

If cost is not an issue, I would go with the 011028 IntelliFlo...

Thanks,

Jim R.

Jim (and other guys) sorry to bother you again.. I am ready to pull the trigger on the pump and cost is not an issue - can we go back please to decision 1.5HP SuperFlo or 3.0HP IntelliFlo ?? I don't mind paying more for IntelliFlo - just want to make sure it will not be oversized for my pool size and some sort of overkill from power consumption stand point. What are the Pros and Cons?

Thank you all in advance.
 

jobondur

Well-known member
Dec 13, 2009
171
Virginia Beach, VA
Just to Recap - So, the problem is your electric bill is high in the summer months. You suspect it's your pump but you only run it 4 hrs a day.

If I were you I'd run the numbers on power consumption of that pump coupled with your energy rates because I'm betting that your pump is not causing a spike of 100% all by itself. To put that into perspective, you're thinking that the pump draws as much energy during the summer months as your ENTIRE house does in the winter months? I'd bet you'll find you're spending easily less than $100 a month on your pump energy costs - likely less than $50 a month. After all, you're only running it 4 hours a day. You may want to re-evaluate where your energy consumption is going - there are devices that can magically track that.

And unless you have a complex setup (i.e. water features and such) or your heater wouldn't allow it, just go with a 2-speed pump and run it on low. It's a lot less expensive, less circuitry to go bad, and will get you what you're looking for (without the bells and whistles though). You can get them for roughly 1/2 the price of a VS. I bought the Pentair SuperFlo 2-speed and the only knock I have against it is the lid closure system really stinks. It's a pain in the butt to open and close completely.

Remember - your stated objective was to save money. Don't spend money unnecessarily in one place to POSSIBLY save it in another.
 
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Jimrahbe

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Jul 7, 2014
17,833
Bedford, TX
hag,

I agree with Jo above... If your only objective is to save on the electrical bill, then I suspect installing a new pump, of any kind, is not going to do it for you, since you are only running your current pump for 4 hours a day.

That said, if you just want to buy a new pump then the 3 HP IntelliFlo is the Gold standard of pumps. There is no such thing as too big when talking about VS pumps.. They should really be called Variable Horsepower pump, because that is want they are.. You just use the amount of HP you need for the task at hand. The advantage in a big pump is that you can run it slower than a small pump, and still move the same amount of water..

Thanks,

Jim R.