How To Program a Variable Speed Hayward TriStar Pump


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In this guide, we explain how to program the variable speed Hayward TriStar Pump. We cover how to set the time, schedule, and speed settings. 

Note: This guide is intended to give you a visual reference to supplement the Hayward VS TriStar owner's manual, not replace it. Make sure you read and understand your owner's manual.


Step by Step


Step 1

POWER ON - Turn on the power to the pump.

Step 2

SET CURRENT DAY AND TIME - Press the Menu button. You will see a screen that says "Configuration Menu Locked".

Step 3

UNLOCK CONFIGURATION MENU - Press and hold down the < and > buttons until the screen changes to "Configuration Menu Press > to Enter".

Step 4

LOCATE TIME SCREEN - Press > twice and you should see the main time screen.

Step 5

ENTER TIME SCREEN - Press the + button to enter the time change mode.

Step 6

CHANGE DAY - The day will be blinking. Press the  + or - to change the day. Once the correct day appears, press > to move over to the time.

Step 7

CHANGE TIME - Once the hour is blinking, press + or - to change it. Press > to move over to the minutes and then AM/PM. Once the minutes and AM/PM is set, press > to take you to the next category (RPMS).

Step 8

SPEED SELECTION - After completely setting the time and hitting >, you'll move on to the RPM or % Selection. You can press + or - to switch between RPM's or %. Once you have made the decision, you can press > to move to the next category.

Note: This setting decides whether you see the speed settings as RPM's (revolutions per minute) or a percentage. For example, the high setting reading for RPM's is 3450. The high setting reading for percentage would be 100%.

Step 9

MAX SPEED - The max allowed speed can be changed by pressing + or -. Once you have selected the max speed, press > to move on to minimum speed.

Note: You may want to test the speeds by running the pump before programming the max and minimum speeds. Salt systems and heaters have minimum and max flow rates. Adding a flow meter to the plumbing will help determine the gallons per minute at certain RPM's/percentages.

Step 10

MINIMUM SPEED - The minimum allowed speed can be changed by pressing + or -. Once you have selected the minimum speed, press > to move on to the next category.

Step 11

PRIME DURATION - Press the + or - buttons to change the prime duration. Press > once the prime duration has been selected.

Note: The prime duration determines how long the pump will run at the set max speed when it turns on. An average prime time would be 3 minutes.

Step 12

REMOTE CONTROL - Use the + or - to change between Stand Alone or Relay Control. If you have a control system and want it to be controlled by that system, select Relay Control. If you are operating the pump independently from a control system, select Stand Alone. Press > once you have determined the remote setting.

Step 13

LOW TEMP OPERATION - Press = or - to select Enabled or Disabled. Press > after you have made your selection.

Note: This is a freeze protection feature. If enabled, it will turn the pump on if the temperatures approach a freezing level. That way the water in the lines won't freeze and potentially crack the pipes or damage the pump.

Step 14

LOW TEMP SETTING - This is the temperature setting at which the pool pump would turn on to prevent freezing. Press + or - to change the temperature. Press > after you have selected the low temperature setting.

Step 15

RESET ALL PARAMETERS - Unless you want to reset the factory parameters, click > to move on to the next screen.

Step 16

SAVE TIME SETTINGS - You'll see a screen that says "Use Timers Menu to set timelocks", hit >. Then you'll see a screen that says "Settings Changed". Press + if you want to save or - if you want to erase everything you set.

If you hit +, you'll end up back at the home screen with the new time and date.

Step 17

SETTING THE TIMER(S) - From the home screen, press Menu until you see "Timers Menu". Then pres > to enter the "timers Menu".

Step 18

TIMER 1 - If you are viewing a screen that says Timer 1, press +.

Step 19

SELECT T1 NAME - Press + or - to select the T1 name. Once the name is selected, press >.

Step 20

SELECT TIMER ONE SPEED - Press + or - to change the RPM Speed. Press > to move on to the Timer 1 start/stop time.

Note: As mentioned in Step 9, you may want to test the speeds of the pump to see what speeds will be required for your pool system to function correctly.

Step 21

SELECT START/STOP TIME - Use the + or - buttons to select the start time. Press the > button to switch to the stop time. Use + or - to select the stop time. Press > to move to the day selection.

Step 22

SELECT DAYS FOR TIMER 1 - Press + or - to scroll through the options. You can have it run 7 days a week, individual days, as well as a couple of other options. Press > once you have selected the days to run.

Step 23

ADDING ADDITIONAL TIMERS (OPTIONAL) - If you want to have the pump turn on/off multiple times a day, you can set more schedules. Press > to start setting Timer 2. Press + to start setting Timer 2. 

Note: Repeat Steps 19-22 to schedule multiple timer schedules.

Step 24

COMPLETE TIMER SCHEDULES - Hit the Menu button once you have set your timer schedules.

Step 25

SAVE TIMER SCHEDULE(S) - You'll see a screen that says "Settings Changed". Press + if you want to save or - if you want to erase everything you set.

If you hit +, you'll end up back at the home screen

Step 26

CHANGING FACTORY DEFAULT SPEED BUTTONS (OPTIONAL) - The speed buttons on the left-hand side of the control are preset at the factory; Speed 1 is 1000 RPM, Speed 2 is 1750 RPM, Speed 3 is 2500 RPM, and Speed 4 is 3250. If you want to change these, proceed to Step 27.

Step 27

ACCESS SPEEDS MENU - Press the Menu button to view the Configuration Menu (if locked hold down < and >). Press > to enter the Configuration menu. Press the Menu button again until you see "Speeds Menu". Press > to enter the "Speeds Menu".

Step 28

SETTING SPEED 1 - You should be on a screen that says "Speed 1 Name Speed 1". Press > to start setting Speed 1.

Step 29

SETTING SPEED 1 DURATION - Press the + or - buttons to set the running time for Speed 1. Once the time is selected press >.

Note: This will determine how long the pump will run at the set speed whenever you press the Speed 1 button.

Step 30

SETTING RPM FOR SPEED 1 - Use the + or - buttons to change the desired speed for Speed 1. Press > to move on to the next speed button.

Step 31

SET SPEEDS 2-4 - Repeat Steps 28-30 to set the remaining speed buttons.

Step 32

SAVE SPEED BUTTON SETTINGS - Press the Menu button after you have set the 4 Speed buttons. Then press + if you want to save the changes.

That concludes the basic programming of a variable speed Hayward TriStar Pump. If you have further questions, leave a comment down below or check out the manual for the VS TriStar Pump.


(1 to 9 of 9)

 Posted: 3/12/2022 

If freeze protection is enabled, manual states it will run for 8 hr. My motor does run for 8 hrs, but if the temperature continues to be below the setting, why will it not continuously run? Please advise. Thanks

InyoPools Product Specialist  Posted: 3/14/2022 

After your pump runs its 8-hour freeze protection cycle, it should take another air temp reading, then re-activate if the lower temps persist. Is yours not doing that? Are you sure the air temps are below the threshold your motor is set to?

 Posted: 2/6/2022 

I had a Hayward Ecostar pump for years. When that pump needed to be replaced, I replaced the Ecostar with a Hayward TriStar Pump. I didn't need to change the PVC or anything. Just a simple exchange. However, I see one issue with the TriStar pump. The Ecostar was factory set up to run 30 minutes for each of the 4 preset Speeds on the left. If you pushed say Preset #4 twice, it would run at that set speed for 1 hour. Three presses = 1 hour 30 minutes and so on. The new TriStar pump doesn't have any set times on the preset speeds. So if I press set Speed #4, the pump runs at that speed until the pump turns off at the end of the day. Is there any way to change that issue? Can you set the pump up to run the factory preset speeds for a certain number of minutes? Thank you for your assistance and opinions.

InyoPools Product Specialist  Posted: 2/14/2022 

I reviewed the manual; there does not appear to be any way to affect the preset time in the fashion you describe. Unfortunately, Hayward removed it entirely from the firmware.

 Posted: 12/11/2021 

Hi. I found your video very helpful. Our speed 2 starts immediately after speed 1 ends, just like you demo in your video. My question is: Is there any harm in having like a 5 hour gap between speeds in the winter when the water is very cold?

InyoPools Product Specialist  Posted: 12/13/2021 

There wouldn't be a pool chemistry reason preventing that gap, but if the water is cold enough to freeze, it could cause pipe bursts. Algae does not grow in water colder than 60 degrees, and chlorine demand drops significantly at those temps. But if your system doesn't have freeze protection that runs the pump when air temps get to freezing, you could have a mess on your hands. Luckily, the Tristar has a Freeze protect feature.

Anonymous  Posted: 12/13/2021 

Thanks so much, Matt. Yes, we enabled the freeze protection so we should be good to go.

InyoPools Product Specialist  Posted: 12/13/2021 

Glad to help! Have a good one.

Anonymous  Posted: 12/13/2021 

You too