The Pentair Intelliconnect pool automation system was introduced in 2018. We are starting to see it in the wild here in Southwest Florida. This product is intended to fill a small niche market for pool only scenarios (no spa). It’s for pool owners need only control a couple of features and want online control via an app.
It covers only the very basics, like controlling a pump and a light, or a light and another electrical feature plus a Pentair variable speed pump. It can’t control advanced multi-color lights. The one major thing it adds is the Internet and app control that many people want. This will be the appeal.
There is one huge problem – the Intelliconnect is incapable of controlling a heater – any heater. That includes solar pool heating panels!
The Intelliconnect is not intended to control plumbing valves. It has no spa control and can’t turn water features on and off. That also means there is no provision for turning a motorized valve actuator for a solar valve. Moreover, it doesn’t even have a 2-wire control to turn on a heat pump or gas heater. It simply doesn’t do pool heating.
Limited Control for Pools
We find this to be a very limiting pool controller. Without heating, which most pools in Southwest Florida incorporate, we cannot recommend this product. We are imploring local pool builders to avoid using this controller. Many homeowners later upgrade pools to incorporate solar panels. Even if future traditional heaters are added, automated control is impossible. The limited appeal of limited app control of a pool is not attractive enough to install this controller.
Our recommendation would be to install a Pentair PL4 or PSL4. While more expensive, compared to the cost of a new pool, it is a small price to pay for much more capable control and future-proofing of the pool automation system.
The other factor with the Intelliconnect is serviceability. They are few and far between and unlikely to penetrate this market. Therefore, pool service companies will be unfamiliar with it. You want your pool service to fully understand your automation system. Otherwise, you are looking for trouble.
The Intelliconnect is a niche product to be avoided, especially if there is any chance that solar pool heating panels will be added to the home at any time in the future. The cost to replace the Intelliconnect with a properly featured controller outweighs the cost savings of installing this product initially. Do yourself a favor and avoid this controller. Contact us if you are building a pool and need a recommendation if you want to incorporate solar panels in the future.