220 vs 110 - pool wiring


  #1  
Old 01-18-04, 06:25 AM
Fadec40
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220 vs 110 - pool wiring

Hi all.
I have an inground pool which has had been installed long before I bought the house. The pool pump and light were wired using 2 - 110 legs as opposed to 220 service. 2 - 20 amp breakers supply it. There is no problem running the 1hp pump and light.

I have two questions: Would it be worth it to change to 220? I assume the 220 would run the pump more efficiently.

Secondly, I most likely would not be doing the changeover myself, but the question is would entirely new wiring need to be run? or can the wiring that is already trenched and buried be used?

The run from the main panel (200a) is about 100 feet. Also the garage which is much closer to the pump shed has a 50 amp subpanel and could that be used.
I'm just trying to determine if it's worth having this changed over.
Thank you!
 
  #2  
Old 01-18-04, 06:40 AM
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If it ain't broke, don't fix it.

Unless the pump is costing a fortune to operate, I would leave it alone. Goosing the circuit up to 220v would require that you install a 220v pump, as well. It may take quite a while for the savings due to improved effeciency to offset the cost of the upgrade.
 
  #3  
Old 01-18-04, 06:59 AM
Fadec40
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Thanks, Dave. That's what I was trying to determine. Besides these pool pumps allow you to run either 110 or 220 by moving jumpers on teh pump.
 
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Old 01-18-04, 07:09 AM
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You can convert the motor to 220 if one of the circuits is dedicated to the pump.
How is the pump connected? Where is the motor located?

The only reason I would consider this is because the load on the wire and motor will be lighter. You will NOT save money. A watt is a watt. The motor will draw the same amount of power but will run cooler and the wiring will be less stressed for the distance run. Running from the garage is not worth the effort IMO since the line is already there.

The things to consider are motor hook up, breakers. If the motor is right next to the pool you will need an expensive two pole GFI breaker and twist lock plug and receptacle.
 
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Old 01-18-04, 07:36 AM
Fadec40
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The way it is hooked up is as follows:
There is an outlet in the pool shed where the pump is plugged into. Right next to it is the switch for the pool light. It seems that one of the wires from one 20 amp leg crosses over to the switch.

I don't know why they don't appear dedicated.

Why I was thinking about doing also was because every few days I run a 3/4 hp booster pump which runs the Polaris cleaner. It needs to run while the main 1hp pump is running. I Have to get the heavy duty extension cord and plug the 3/4 into the garage.

I'm looking to simplify so i can run both pumps from the same location.
But could I use the existing wiring to make it 220?

Thanks

Also, the pump is about 10 feet from the pool in a shed/pool house.
I'm no expert, but I am very familiar with basic wiring. The 220 is where I need a little help. That's providing I do it myself
 
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Old 01-18-04, 08:30 AM
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I saw your post over on handyman but I will try to keep my responses here. Be careful of Bonded over there. He gives good advice if you can wade through all the redundant information he puts in all his posts.

You need to open up any boxes and tell us what wires are in the them and what wires are coming from the panel.
Pool codes are very stringent and can be confusing. If the pump receptacle is 10' or more from the pool water edge you are better off since the codes change dramatically between 5-10 feet.

If you have two dedicated 110 lines going out to the shed you can do what you intend. That means 2- blacks, 2- whites and a #12 insulated ground. You can isolate the 110 loads on one circuit and convert the other 110 circuit to 220. Then you can install two 220 receptacles for the two pumps. A 3/4hp and 1hp motor on the same circuit is just under the continuous load for a 20 amp, 240volt circuit.

Another option is check how the lines are coming out to the pool shed. If it is conduit all the way you can always pull new wires in to do what ever you want. The only this is you have to figure derating for extra conductors. But for this few conductors it will probably not be an issue.
 
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Old 01-18-04, 08:56 AM
Fadec40
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Thanks, Speedy.
I posted on both forums to see if I get consistent advice. Since you also posted on both, I feel more confident and I'll stick with this one. I'll get back to you here with the exact way the wires are hooked up.
I aslo have the pool light which has a service box under the diving board. So now I have added wires to the receptacle and light switch.
This is not necessary that I look to change the circuitry, but it's a bit of a hassle when I have to get out the heavy duty extension cord where as Icould run everything from the one location.

But just to recap, are you saying I can use the existing wires, change to breakers to double pole and rewire?

Thanks again!

I'll be back with the wiring hookup!
 
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Old 01-18-04, 08:59 AM
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Basically yes. If you have two separate 110 circuits, not sharing a neutral.
 
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Old 01-18-04, 09:00 AM
Fadec40
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Then why does the breaker trip when both pumps are running?

That seems to be my dilemma!
 
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Old 01-18-04, 09:40 AM
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What I mean is if you have the wiring to support it you can change one 110 cirucit to 220.
You will not be able to run 1 3/4HP wotrh of motors off 110.
Is it tripping with running both off 110 or 220?
 
  #11  
Old 01-18-04, 01:21 PM
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I'm a bit lost here. You said you have 2 circuits to run the pump. Does it take both circuits to run the pool pump? Then it must already be 240 volt. Why can't you just use one circuit on each pump if it is wired for 120volt?
Also if you have 2 separate circuits running this out building I think that is a code violation.
 
  #12  
Old 01-19-04, 07:46 AM
Fadec40
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ok, heres the layout:

Starting with the breaker panel, there is a duplex breaker 20 amps. there is one black wire and one brown wire to the breaker.
there is a green and white to the bar.

out in the pool shed there is a GFCI 20 amp receptacle and a pool light switch. the wiring is as follows:

From the pool light there is a black a white and a ground wire.(connection made in a service box under the diving board for replacement of light assempbly)

the black goes on the upper hot screw on the light switch and the white goes to neutral side on the receptacle.

On the light switch lower hot side there is also the black wire that comes from the circuit breaker. the white from the circuit breaker panel goes to the neutral on the receptacle (same side as the light neutral white wire)

Now there is a lone white wire to the hot side of the receptacle ( i assume it is in reality the brown wire from the breaker made longer using a white piece of wire)



Now everything works fine, always has.
 
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Old 01-19-04, 07:49 AM
Fadec40
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heres a little schematic
 
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Old 01-19-04, 08:06 AM
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Your description is very confusing.

It sounds like you have a multiwire circuit feeding the pool area. This means two hot wires and one neutral (plus a ground).

If this is correct, then the pump on a separate circuit from the light. The pump is able to draw 20 amps, as is the light.

I echo the other comment, "If it ain't broke, don't fix it." Why do you think that changing the pump would be more efficient or save you anything anyway?
 
  #15  
Old 01-19-04, 08:59 AM
Fadec40
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You;re right Thats the way it seems to me. I dont want to change over because of any potential savings. My original concern was that the pool filter runs with a 1 hp pump. But about once a week i need to also run a 3/4 hp pump which drives the pool cleaner. both pumps need to be running together but after a few minutes, the breaker trips. Ive been running the 3/4 hp from the garage using a heavy duty ext cord. The 3/4 hp pump is new, but the 1hp pump is over 20 years old. I am buying a new filter with new 1hp pump, do you think the age of the older pump is causing the breaker to trip when run together with the 3/4?

and everything works fine as stated, i just would like to run both from the same location and not play around using the extension cord,, thats all. Theres no reason other than convenience.
 
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Old 01-19-04, 03:38 PM
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As it sits it doesn't look like you can do as you propose. I agree that it sounds like you have a multi-wire circuit running out to the shed.

Is this conduit? Can you pull more wires in?
 
  #17  
Old 01-20-04, 11:09 AM
Edwardo
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This doesn't really help solve your problem, but here is some information about how our pool is wired that might help you.

We moved into our house about 2+ years ago. It is our first time with a pool. We have had some work done to our pool wiring, you will see why soon.

We have a subpanel near our pool. It is fed from a 30amp double pole breaker in the main panel. The subpanel has two 20amp double pole gfi breakers and one 15amp single pole gfi breaker.

When we moved in, the main pump, the polaris booster pump, and the pool light were each wired to a separate breaker ( each pump to one of the double pole breakers, light to single pole breaker ). To operate the pumps or the light, you had to use the breaker as a switch.

Due to deteriorating conduit between the subpanel and the pumps and also due to not liking the use of the breakers as switches, we called an electrician to fix things up.

He added switches for each piece of equipment. The pool light now has wire from the breaker to a switch then from the switch to the light itself. Since the booster pump should never be used without the main pump running, he wired the switch for the booster pump on the load side of the switch for the main pump. In other words, unless the main pump is switched on, the switch for the booster pump has no power coming into it. From what our electrician said, one 20 amp double pole breaker provides sufficient power to power both pumps ( I think main pump is 1hp and booster is 3/4 hp ). Slaving the booster switch off of the main pump switch should prevent you from accidentally burning your polaris pump up by running it without having the main pump running. That leaves one 20 amp double pole breaker unused in the subpanel. He also replaced the deteriorating conduit with "liquidtite flex???" - the flexible PVC pipe-like stuff that contains no metal ( the pumps are less than 10 feet from the subpanel but more than 10 feet from the pool ).

In the end, I feel that we have a much better setup and I feel much better knowing that we don't have to open the subpanel every time we want to operate a piece of pool equipment. This job took the electrician about 2-3 hours ( maybe less ) as part of a larger amount of work he was doing at our house on that day. This job was not broken down on the bill, but I would guess that he could have done the job for $250-350 or so ( 2-3 hours labor, 2 double pole 20 amp switches, 1 single pole 15 amp switch, 3 cast aluminum boxes, 3 covers with flip tops, 15 feet of liquidtite ( one piece from each box to each piece of equipment ). I feel the cost was well worth it.

It probably makes sense for you to gain an understanding of what you want, what is legal/code/safe, and what is possible in your situation. It sounds like, from a user's perspective, you are most interested in making it easier to run your polaris pump. If you have 20 amps of 220 power available at the pool shed, you might be able to wire ( or have wired by an electrician ) both pumps to run at 220. If you can do that, you might consider having your receptacles switched and slaving your polaris receptacle off of your main pump to prevent it from being run if the main pump is being run. Since you only have a 110 circuit for the pump, it might be the case that the wire is sufficient to connect to a double pole breaker, thus providing you with 220. Someone here might be able to answer that. Ordinarily, 12 guage wire is sufficient to carry 20 amps. In your case, I don't know if the 100 foot run from the main panel is long enough to give you any trouble if you tried to convert to a 220 circuit ( and tried to run both pumps ).

Once you have an idea of what you would like, get an electrician out to have a look and see what he can do for you. Get a recommendation from someone you trust. I got our electrician based on good recommendations in a local newsgroup.
 
 

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