There has always been electronics and some sort of automation in swimming pools, in the early days there were analog timers built into the electrical switchboard of the house which would in turn tell the pump when to turn on and off. Since then there has been a steady stream of changes and improvements to the swimming pool industry to decrease maintenance and improve usability.
A “Radio Remote Control. 4 Function” will allow you to turn on up to four devices with a radio controlled remote, simply plug the device you wish to turn on by remote into one of the four 240V AC outlets on the bottom of the unit and press the corresponding button on the remote. It should be noted that most remote control units can only handle a max load of 10amps, which is suitable for lights, chlorinators and pool pumps. If you wish to turn on larger devices such as heaters with more draw it requires a higher tier of automation.
Swimming pool automation has a great entry level set of products, with more complex products for their respective situations.
With complex electronics becoming more affordable swimming pool automation can be as simple or as complex as needed. It all comes down to one touch of a remote or smartphone to enable or disable actuator valves, heating methods, pool cleaners, super chlorination, water features or to change speeds for Variable Speed Pumps.
Actuator valves are equipped with motors that turn the handle on the valve from one direction to the other when an electric current is sent to the valve. Using actuator valves in conjunction with variable speed pumps grant the ability to direct water flow and speed to allow water features and solar heating to function. When investing into pool automation and solar is already installed it is best to in most cases remove both the filtration and solar pump and use one single variable speed pump. Using only one pump will cut your power requirements quite considerably and reduce the overall sound and noise of the pool equipment.
The Zodiac TRI iAqualink has several options, generally it is best to opt for the model with two actuators even if only one is required, the second can be used for a spare able to control water flow to another device in the future or one unforeseen at the time. The control unit works similar to the Four Function controller with the added bonus of using any smartphone to turn multiple devices on and off with one touch.
Requirements of the Zodiac TRI iAqualink include the unit being within wireless range of your house in order to control the unit with your smartphone.
Like most other technologies swimming pool automation has a variety of models and versions, the Zodiac iAqualink is the bigger more complex version of the Zodiac TRI iAqualink. This model can power up to 8 devices and requires an electritian to install the unit and auxiliary 240v outlets, the rest of the set up can then be done by a trained pool technician. The main benefit to this unit is its complexity, the Zodiac iAqualink is best suited to pools with multiple pumps, salt water chlorinators, water features, lights and spa devices such as blowers and pumps.
Both the TRI iAqualink and iAqualink can monitor ambient, current water and set heat temperatures. Setting the heat temperatures depending on the setup can enable heating when the water temperature falls below the desired setting, and then disabling it once the desired temperature has been reached. This works well for solar heating as only one pump is required.
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