In-Floor Swimming Pool Cleaning System
I have a CareTaker In-Floor Pool Cleaning system. It has 5 zones and I am having troubled with one of them.
When the pool was designed, the pool company drew up the plan and sent it to the CareTaker people, who then designed the cleaning system. The zone that covers the steps was set up for 5 cleaning heads.
Between that time and the time the pool was built, I told the pool company to make the pool 1 foot deeper at both ends. They redesigned the pool to have additional depth and an additional step, but did not send the plan to the CareTaker people to make appropriate adjustments. Instead, they just added 2 more cleaning heads to that zone. The net effect is I do not seem to have enough pressure on that zone for the heads to pop up fully.
I did not fully realize this issue until 10 years after the pool was built, but now that I have retired, I see it. And, the pool company has long ago gone out of business. In any case, I am sure any warranty has expired.
I have gotten several rebuild kits for the controller from the manufacturer, as well as new cleaning heads, but to no avail.
I have a 1.5 horse Hayward pump and a Hayward DE filter, appropriately matched as far as the Hayward people are concerned. The pressure at the filter is about 30psi. The pressure at the CareTaker controller is about 18psi for 4 zones and only 11psi at the troublesome zone. As I understand it, each zone should be running at a minimum of 15psi to work correctly.
I also have a solar heating system involved. All pipes are 2 inches, except those from the controller to the cleaning heads which are 1.5 or 1.75 inches.
The order of flow is pump to filter to chlorinator to solar heating system to CareTaker control.
No one in my immediate area services these cleaning systems, so I want to try to figure this out on my own before paying big bucks to have someone charge me travel time. In addition, no one I have talked to has any definitive suggestions, so any service call will be quite expensive because of extensive troubleshooting. One pool company even told me my knowledge of the system far exceeded their technician's knowledge!
I needs some plumbing answers to my questions:
1. What types of things will affect the amount of pressure at the cleaning heads? I have eliminated as many elbows as possible in the pipes that I can see. The pump and filter are brand new.
2. Would somehow closing down the openings in the popup heads increase the pressure on those heads? The openings are the smallest possible from the manufacturer, so maybe I could glue a reducer into the openings.
3. Is it possible to put some sort of "booster" between the solar heating system and the CareTaker control head to up the pressure?
Many thanks in advance for any help, especially if it happens to be someone with CareTaker knowledge!