Verifiable Benefits of a Heater Bypass Install

frankos

Member
Jun 21, 2016
8
Oklahoma City
I found when considering a bypass, that there are primarily 2 types of responses I would get when inquiring about the pros and cons.
1. I don't see why you would want to install a heater bypass, but I cant see how it could hurt anything. (My builder was in this group as well)
2. It's a good thing to have during startup, slamming or any high chemical concentrations or if you have heater equipment failure and need to take it offline for repairs.

The split was about 50/50. The reasons I was considering installing the bypass was for the startup chemicals and potential future shock treatments. But mainly to take it offline 8 or 9 months a year to potentially help it last longer. Since there weren't any real CONS even from group A, I went ahead and installed one. To my suprise, there is a HUGE benefit that, IMO is a strong case that EVERYONE with a heater should have a bypass option installed.

It's all about power/energy savings. In my case, the operating power required, at 30gpm, is cut in half when I'm using the bypass!!! Pushing water through the heater at 30GPM takes 338 Watts, whereas bypassing the Heater it takes only 157 Watts for the same 30GPM. The energy savings of course would vary based on Flow rate, other plumbing considerations, heck even the cleanliness of the filters might effect it. However at the moment in time that I noticed this, it was a 50% difference. I felt it was an important enough positive for the bypass that I had to share.

I'd be curious if anyone else has looked into this on their pool? I'd love to hear what your findings are with and without the bypass.

Regular plumbing water going THROUGH the heater.
20210518_203049.jpg

Using the Bypass, no water passing through the heater.
20210518_203125.jpg
 

PoolBrews

Well-known member
Oct 16, 2019
385
The Villages, Florida
Pool Size
6750
Surface
Plaster
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
Hayward Aqua Rite Pro (T-15)
Interesting - I haven't used my bypass once since the pool was installed.

My heater generally runs a short period each morning about 8-9 months out of the year. To use the bypass would require me to manually change it on a daily basis... so it's probably not going to happen. Maybe if I had installed an automated valve?
 

wgipe

Gold Supporter
Jul 4, 2020
312
Fletcher, OH
Pool Size
20000
Surface
Vinyl
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
Pentair Intellichlor IC-40
I have found the same thing. I use just over 100 watts on bypass and about 375 when pushing through the heater. I run at 1,200 rpm constantly to satisfy flow for my SWG. When pushing through the heater, I have to run at 1,600 minimum.

I installed an automated valve, and when heat is called for, the IntelliCenter flips the valve and ramps up the pump. When the heater is done, it reverses course. Works like a champ. I do wish there was a way to delay the valve on the off cycle, but that doesn’t exist today from my understanding.
 

TexEdmond

Gold Supporter
Jun 16, 2021
519
Edmond, OK
Pool Size
25500
Surface
Plaster
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
Pentair Intellichlor IC-60
I installed an automated valve, and when heat is called for, the IntelliCenter flips the valve and ramps up the pump. When the heater is done, it reverses course. Works like a champ. I do wish there was a way to delay the valve on the off cycle, but that doesn’t exist today from my understanding.
I've come to believe that same solution is correct for me. I'm relatively new with the programming of my control panel, could you tell me more about where you wired the new valve actuator to? Did you have to use a dedicated aux output, or can more than one valve be run in parallel on one circuit?
 

wgipe

Gold Supporter
Jul 4, 2020
312
Fletcher, OH
Pool Size
20000
Surface
Vinyl
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
Pentair Intellichlor IC-40
I've come to believe that same solution is correct for me. I'm relatively new with the programming of my control panel, could you tell me more about where you wired the new valve actuator to? Did you have to use a dedicated aux output, or can more than one valve be run in parallel on one circuit?
Sure - you have to use a dedicated aux circuit and wire it directly to that terminal on the board. Once you’ve got it wired up, you can associate that circuit along with a speed feature with the heater so it cycles when heat is called for. Pretty simple, but it took some fiddling to figure it out. I can look at it to find the screen and post back if you can’t find it.
 
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TexEdmond

Gold Supporter
Jun 16, 2021
519
Edmond, OK
Pool Size
25500
Surface
Plaster
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
Pentair Intellichlor IC-60
Whoa. That was very easy. Used Aux A, programmed it to turn with heater.

For reference, I also took photos of my control panel GPM and wattage for three valve positions: 100% thru heater, 100% thru bypass, and then just cracking the bypass open a few clicks.

100% heater: 7GPM
IMG_20210821_192057394.jpg

100% bypass: 24GPM
IMG_20210821_192016752.jpg

Just barely cracked open: 21GPM
IMG_20210821_192153437.jpg
IMG_20210821_192112999.jpg
 
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