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Pentair Intelliflo and large pool

Posted by atompkins (My Page) on
Wed, Apr 20, 11 at 12:52

I am having some problems with my pool setup.
When I bought the house, the equipment was a Jandy CL 460 filter, and a very old PAC FAB 2HP challenger pump.
There was a 3-way valve to switch between filter and cleaner, and a Polaris 360 was being used.
Problems: the pump was expensive to run, very noisy, and the cleaner had many issues.
I decided to buy the Intelliflo VF, remove the cleaner, switch to a robotic, electric cleaner.
Now thats been done, and here are the new problems.

I let the intelliflo run 24 hours a day, and it seems like that flow rate is not enough for my skimmers to work effectively. The water is clean and clear, but the surface is dirty. This pool is quite large, 75 ft long, 2 skimmers, 5 returns, and I would estimate 65,000-70,000 gallons.

I set feature 3 to run for an hour a day at 95 GPM hoping that might help out with the skimming, but it does not seem to be working (been that way for 5 days now).

My regular flow rate is 45 GPM. At 45 GPM I have about 1 or 2 PSI reading on the gauge on my filter, only at 90 or so do I get the same reading that the old pump produced.
The intelliflo says my filter is dirty. I cleaned the filter (cartridge) and it still says its dirty.
Is this filter oversized for the flow rate of the intelliflo? Since its apparently time to replace the cartridge elements anyway, would I be better off getting a new filter system, and getting a slightly smaller one?
Or is 1-2 PSI enough for it to be working ok?
The water does seem to be clean.

Thanks for any advice!

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: Pentair Intelliflo and large pool

What size are your pipes?


RE: Pentair Intelliflo and large pool

There are 2 2" pipes coming out of the concrete pad going into a 3 way valve (2"), then a straight run of 2" goes into the inlet side of the pump, the output side is 2" going into the filter which is 2" also, the outlet of the filter is 2" going into the concrete pad. At the pool, the pipes are definitely smaller than 2".
I don't know for sure, but it seems like the 3 way valve switches between the skimmers?

RE: Pentair Intelliflo and large pool

Well, here in NJ, pollen season has started up so I am wondering if you are also in the midst of it.

Are your drains tied to the skimmers?

How old is the cartridge? Have you degreased it? Sometimes they get clogged with skin oils and lotions.

Are you reasonably sure the gauge is functioning correctly?

Are the flappers in the skimmer mouth floating and moving as they should?


RE: Pentair Intelliflo and large pool

The pollen is not toooo bad here.
I wish I knew more about how the plumbing on this pool was actually laid out. At the bottom of my skimmers there are 2 "holes", someone told me this means they are tied to the drain. I only see one main drain. The cartridges are now 5 years old, I do not know the history of if/when they were cleaned. I cleaned them with water and a light detergent, they still looked dirty when I was done. Have not degreased the elements. I am not 100% sure the gauge is functioning correctly, but it did seem to work ok with the old pump, I consistently got a reading of around 12-13 PSI. And I can get it there now by increasing the flow.
My skimmers have no flappers? When I pull the cover, I can see water swirling around, this is why I assumed they were working. Thats also how I came up with the 3-way valve switching between skimmers, when I move the valve, the water movement in the skimmers changes, one gets stronger, the other weaker.

RE: Pentair Intelliflo and large pool

Do you have what looks like a floating tube that fits inside your baskets or is there a flapper in the skimmer mouth? Both of these acts as weirs, only allowing water at the surface to enter. This improves the pull of debris floating on the surface. Without one of these too much water is drawn from below the water's surface and skimming action is greatly reduced.

The cartridges are getting long in the tooth.


RE: Pentair Intelliflo and large pool

Ok, there is no tube, and there is no flapper.
I guess now I need to replace the missing flappers.

I want to either replace the cartridges, or replace the entire filter. The old pump ran at a greater rate but for less time, (but at higher energy cost!). Am I right that now with the Intelliflo running 24 hours at a lower rate I could size the filter smaller? I like the idea of Pentairs Quad DE, gives me DE filter quality but in a cartridge format. Today the pump says the filter is blocked :(

RE: Pentair Intelliflo and large pool

While I love the Quad 80, replacing the 4 cartridges is way more economical.

Generally speaking, larger filters never hurt.

Replacing the flapper is a very good idea, It will cause the skimmers to pull far more from the surface as opposed to just below the surface.

Cartridges and DE filter elements need to be hosed off periodically. They also need to be soaked occasionally in TSP or powdered dishwasher detergent or sprayed with degreaser to remove oils and lotions that have been absorbed.I use a large, clean trash can for this purpose.


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