Save on Pool Energy Costs with Acu Drive Variable Frequency Drive

January 9, 2020 - Recreonics

Your swimming pool pump is one of the most vital pieces of equipment at your aquatic facility. Operating like a cardiovascular system, pumps and filters circulate the water in your swimming pool to maintain safe and clean water environment throughout the day. But these pieces of equipment use more electricity than anything else in your facility, often making them inefficient and wasteful. In the era of “green” energy, resource consuming equipment can be a real problem for both your facility and your wallet. As many aquatic facilities are moving toward more eco-friendly practices, manufacturers are making energy-efficient variable frequency drives to allow you to lower your operating costs and reduce electricity consumption.

Operating in the “Green” – Swimming Pool Energy Efficiency

Reduce pool electrical energy consumption by connecting a variable frequency drive (VFD) to you pump. Acting like a pace-maker to the heart of your equipment room, the VFD controls the pump’s motor by varying the frequency and voltage of its power supply, resulting in an adjustment in speed. This means that you can control how fast or slow your pool pump runs based on the needs of your aquatic facility.

    Using a VFD, like Pentair’s Acu Drive™, can lead to numerous benefits such as:Operational performance curve for Pentair's Acu Drive variable frequency drive.

  • Savings on energy costs
  • Improved efficiency
  • Lower noise levels
  • Reduction of mechanical stress on equipment
  • Customizability of equipment operation

The Acu Drive™ from Pentair is a prime example of a VFD that optimizes your swimming pool’s equipment room for ultimate savings. Its built-in intelligence increases performance in all pump applications and allows your pool pump to operate on the most efficient point on the operating curve — giving you an overall efficiency rate of 98%.

Let’s say you have a 10 horse power pump, but, to be the most efficient, you need an 8 1/2 horse power pump, which isn’t manufactured. The Acu Drive™ allows you to dial back operating power without any extra valves or equipment, saving space and money in your pool equipment room. It also allows you to control the ramp-up and ramp-down sequences when turning the pump on and off, preventing water hammer and vibration, ultimately leading to reduced wear and tear on equipment.

And, you can set the Acu Drive™ to operate your pool pump at different speeds during different times of the day. This way the pump can operate at a speed that will maintain the proper flow rate during peak swimming pool usage during the day, and lower the speed of the pump at night when no one is using the pool for a savings of up to 60% on electricity usage. In addition, superior programming flexibility allows for time-based programming by adjusting speed as the filter load changes throughout the backwash cycle.

It’s highly recommended that you also add a flow sensor kit, or flow meter, to your pool pump and VFD. During use, your swimming pool pump can become dirty and gummed up with particles and other impurities that escape the filter. A flow sensor kit will help you stay on top of regularly backwashing your pump to keep all your equipment running smoothly.

Pentair Acu Drive™ variable frequency drive includes features to protect against operational irregularities.

    Swimming pool pump operational irregularities can include:

  • System Overload
  • Motor Failure
  • Overheating
  • Voltage or Electrical Disturbances
  • Power Surges
  • Loss of Phase
  • Short Circuit
  • Ground Fault

Choosing an installation location for your Acu Drive™ in the pool equipment room

Where you put your variable frequency drive will determine whether it requires an enclosure that meets the electrical standards necessary for the protection of the drive’s cabinets and internal components. The best place to install your Acu Drive™ is in an indoor location away from the risk of water and weather damage. But, if it has to be installed outdoors, you must make sure your Acu Drive™ is protected from rain, wind and other environmental factors. Furthermore, like most other equipment, your Acu Drive™ needs air and space around it to function optimally, so proper ventilation in your pool pump room is essential.

Similar to other control devices, your Acu Drive™ should be placed in a location easily accessible for facility managers for regular programming and maintenance. If you can”t reach your Acu Drive™, you can’t use it.

Lower operating costs start with the installation of an Acu Drive™ variable frequency drive on your swimming pool pump. Save yourself and your aquatic facility energy, money and time by programing your pool pump to operate on the most efficient spot on the operating curve. You may see up to an additional 5% savings due the drive’s ability to balance power phase and harmonic suppression, or noise reduction. And above all, you can enter the era of green energy gracefully with an eco-friendly variable frequency drive in your pool pump room.

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