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Thread: Rust on Skimmer sides

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    Rust on Skimmer sides

    I had a new liner installed two years ago and just this year I I noticed some rust in the skimmer...didn't think too much about it till now that I am getting ready to close the pool. I pool the trim plate off and while none of the stainless steel screws seem to be rusted, if I run my finger along the inside of the door there is rust and black particles...I also noticed that you can see the liner from behind the skimmer plate.

    I'm worried that water is getting between the skimmer and the metal sides of the pool and rusting. Should they have trimmed the liner more before putting the skimmer in? I also noticed a small rust stain next to one of the pool lights as well....

    I was intending to close the pool tomorrow, but I really don't want to leave it all winter like this. I usually don't drain the water below the skimmers, I just use Gizmos.

    Any ideas here? I'm thinking I need to lower the water, remove the skimmer cover and see what going on, just not sure what to look for....not sure how it should be installed. Pictures attached....

    Thanks
    Attached Images Attached Images

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    Re: Rust on Skimmer sides

    Looks like rust, maybe remove the screws one by one to see if they are rusting, Maybe they aren't SS? Look at them one by one, not all at once.

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    Re: Rust on Skimmer sides

    This could be a case of galvanic corrosion. Unfortunately I just went through this with screws at light niche. I will place some more information which may be helpful when I return. Try removing one screw and see if rust is on the back and where else the rust occurred. Then put back and check other screws. It could be bad screws or possibly chemistry. Can you please add signature to see what type of pool and system you have. Thanks.

    It is possible that the gasket is missing as well. I would call the liner company back to remove everything and check liner , wall, etc.

    Definitely would recommend draining below skimmer to determine if steel walls are showing rust. If not , then we can go from there .
    14,700 gallons IG Pool Vinyl Liner - Octal Circulation System
    Hayward Pro-Series 350 LB. Sand Filter Model # S270T - 2" Plumping
    Hayward CL2002 Chlorinator - Hayward Super Pump 2 HP Model # k48m2n111
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    Gulfstream HE125RA - 117K BTU Heat Pump - Date of Build is 11-2013

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    Re: Rust on Skimmer sides

    Catanzaro,

    Should I lower the pool water below the skimmer before I remove a screw? the other skimmer has no issues and they were both replaced at the same time? Could the gasket be leaking??? I'll take care of signature...

    Thanks

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    Re: Rust on Skimmer sides

    Signature corrected
    38,000 gallon vinyl liner, True "L", Sand Filter, Hayward Heater, Diving Board

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    Re: Rust on Skimmer sides

    How are you chlorinating the pool? How are you testing the water? Which liner company or pool company did you use? Thanks .

    - - - Updated - - -

    Quote Originally Posted by JoeRJGR View Post
    Catanzaro,

    Should I lower the pool water below the skimmer before I remove a screw? the other skimmer has no issues and they were both replaced at the same time? Could the gasket be leaking??? I'll take care of signature...

    Thanks
    No, you do not have to. Just one out , inspect, take picture and put back. Then move on to next. Out to dinner , will answer more in detail in a few hours.

    Because I am seeing rust on your liner, this may be coming from your wall. Maybe there is not a gasket. I had one small rip in my liner in 2014 and a big stain appeared in the liner. Chlorinated water that comes into contact with galvanized steel will cause corrosion. Then you can possibly see rust on the liner. This happened to me. This one is tough because I also see rust on the white trim pieces, but not necessarily on the head of the screw, which also could be bad screws and/or galvanic corrosion. Let's hope this is nothing more than just bad SS screws. My situation was very strange. I had no gasket behind the light niche housing. There was no rust on my liner when the PB replaced the parts. So either I had really bad luck (twice), or galvanic corrosion. Below is the thread showing the sequence of events and what I did to protect my metal parts in the pool.

    Sequence of chemicals and possibly any effects on what happened to screws at light.


    Do you know if the screws were replaced during the liner replacement? I would definitely get a hold of the company and start asking some questions.
    Last edited by Catanzaro; 09-25-2015 at 08:28 PM. Reason: Back from Dinner
    14,700 gallons IG Pool Vinyl Liner - Octal Circulation System
    Hayward Pro-Series 350 LB. Sand Filter Model # S270T - 2" Plumping
    Hayward CL2002 Chlorinator - Hayward Super Pump 2 HP Model # k48m2n111
    Hayward AQR9 SWG 25K Salt Cell & TF-100 Test Kit + Speed Stir
    Gulfstream HE125RA - 117K BTU Heat Pump - Date of Build is 11-2013

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    Re: Rust on Skimmer sides

    yes, screws were replaced....as I mentioned the other skimmer is fine...I'll look at the info you provided...thanks so much
    38,000 gallon vinyl liner, True "L", Sand Filter, Hayward Heater, Diving Board

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    Re: Rust on Skimmer sides

    Quote Originally Posted by JoeRJGR View Post
    yes, screws were replaced....as I mentioned the other skimmer is fine...I'll look at the info you provided...thanks so much
    It is suggested you call the company who installed your liner. In the meantime, drain the water at least 4" below the skimmer. Remove all the screws and face plate. You can easily clean up the screws, and/or purchase new ones. The liner stains can be removed with a "magic eraser" sponge and vitamin c tablets. Put enough pressure to hold the vitamin c and the stains will come out pretty easy. Before you do that, peel back the liner to determine if there is rust back there. You will only have to peel back the liner about 1" all the way around. It will seal back without air and you can use a rolling pin from the kitchen, if not dollar stores should have them. Check to determine if there is a gasket as well.

    The unfortunate problem is that most companies here in NJ will automatically blame the homeowner. Depending on your finding, it may be best to put everything back if the company will show up. If not, you could clean everything yourself and put everything back. All depends on what you find during your investigation. Hard to tell. If there is rust on the galvanized steel walls, then we can go from there. I do not know what you will need to clean up on the walls, if necessary. I heard most companies will place foam behind the liner when replaced. My liner is new and hopefully will not have to deal with this until 10-15 years from now. Keep us posted.
    14,700 gallons IG Pool Vinyl Liner - Octal Circulation System
    Hayward Pro-Series 350 LB. Sand Filter Model # S270T - 2" Plumping
    Hayward CL2002 Chlorinator - Hayward Super Pump 2 HP Model # k48m2n111
    Hayward AQR9 SWG 25K Salt Cell & TF-100 Test Kit + Speed Stir
    Gulfstream HE125RA - 117K BTU Heat Pump - Date of Build is 11-2013

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    Re: Rust on Skimmer sides

    Thanks for the info Cat. I did notice a very small rust spot on one of the light ring screws as well. As far as the skimmer is concerned, I cant figure out how the rust is getting inside the skimmer box. It almost seems like the rust is coming from the metal edge where the box, metal, liner meet...

    Its odd that there is such limited information in regard to this issue. I called my brother-in-law who is in Indiana and he has had rust dripping down from one of his skimmers for years...he just cleans it up the best he can. I walked across the street to a neighbor with a pool....he has the same rust in the skimmer box....not on the liner...he just had the liner replaced and I asked if the liner company said anything about the rust....nope....

    I do remember that the old liner had rust spots coming from one of the lights (pool came with house)...don't remember any issues with the skimmer.

    I want to figure out what this issue is before I close the pool but I fear I wont be able to get this resolved in a couple days.....really don't feel like opening it in the spring and dealing with it....I also don't like lowering the water before closing...I think it puts too much strain on the cover....

    Maybe what I'll do is lower the water for the winter and then harass the pool company in the early spring to come out...Since its been two years I'm sure they'll want to charge me.... whatever the issue is, it shouldn't happen after two years....

    So frustrated...wanted to close this up and be done with it for the winter...


    Thanks for the help.
    38,000 gallon vinyl liner, True "L", Sand Filter, Hayward Heater, Diving Board

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    Re: Rust on Skimmer sides

    So I pulled out the bottom screws and yes they are rusty...but I just don't see how a small amount of rust on the screws can cause the amount of rust shown on the cover....also if I run my finger between the vinyl and the skimmer, small junks of rust come from behind the vinyl.....it seems to me the whole bottom is rusting out from behind the plate....going to lower the water and either take a peak now or harass the pool builder over the winter...
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    38,000 gallon vinyl liner, True "L", Sand Filter, Hayward Heater, Diving Board

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    Re: Rust on Skimmer sides

    Oh and as far as the screws are concerned....Even the ones above the water line are rusty....huh?
    38,000 gallon vinyl liner, True "L", Sand Filter, Hayward Heater, Diving Board

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    Re: Rust on Skimmer sides

    Can you take a picture of the liner, with the cover off. Here is the layout:

    1) The screws are made of inferior quality SS and they are rusting (which is possible)
    2) You could have a case of Galvanic Corrosion (This could occur at the screws and the steel walls)

    When was the pool built? Do you know if the pool was bonded correctly? Also, I recommend once you clear everything up, that you add a Sacrificial Zinc Anode as I have.

    3) The rust could be coming from the steel wall only and dripping on liner and screws.

    Lastly, water can become very corrosive as a direct relation to low PH. How are you taking care of the pool? How do you test and have you ever had any problems with PH?

    Can you peel the liner back (after you removed everything) where the rust appears to determine if the walls are forming rust? It is best you drain the water below the skimmer before you do this.

    Also, I see you have a heater. I know that a lot of times metals are introduced into the water from the heater, mainly due to chemistry issues. I do not know how this could affect what is occurring on your level. This is something that Chem-Geek and some of the more experienced seasoned members could answer for you. They would need to know a history of the pool, etc. in order to help.
    14,700 gallons IG Pool Vinyl Liner - Octal Circulation System
    Hayward Pro-Series 350 LB. Sand Filter Model # S270T - 2" Plumping
    Hayward CL2002 Chlorinator - Hayward Super Pump 2 HP Model # k48m2n111
    Hayward AQR9 SWG 25K Salt Cell & TF-100 Test Kit + Speed Stir
    Gulfstream HE125RA - 117K BTU Heat Pump - Date of Build is 11-2013

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    Re: Rust on Skimmer sides

    Cat,

    I agree and I think it could be a combination of the things you mention. As I figured this would not be a fast and quick project, and because even if I did think I solved the problem I could not be sure while it was closed, I decided to lower the water below the skimmers and close it up. I will call the guy who put the liner in and see if he'll come out and take a look in the spring.

    If that doesn't work out, which I'm sure it wont, I'll remove the skimmer cover and look behind and see what is going on. Since I know that the old light fixtures were also rusting, I may have a Galvanic issue. The ladder rusts a little bit at the very far bottom as well.

    I test the water myself and the PH has always been fine. The pool was built in the 70's or 80's, not really sure....came with the house. Bo idea how I can find out if it is bonded correctly.

    Thanks for your insight...

    - - - Updated - - -

    Oh and I do have a heater, but I don't pay attention to the calcium hardness, as I have a by-pass and only run water through it when I use it and drain it when I don't...(maybe twice a year). do you think calcium hardness could effect this?
    38,000 gallon vinyl liner, True "L", Sand Filter, Hayward Heater, Diving Board

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    Re: Rust on Skimmer sides

    I believe PH affects the heater, not necessarily calcium. If the pool was built that long ago, chances are that it may have not been bonded properly. You may want to install a Sacrificial Zinc Anode at the pump as my post shows. Marine Hardware Supply in Perth Amboy sells many of them. The pump does not have to be running for corrosion to occur. In order to protect yourself, I would recommend you add one of those immediately so no further corrosion occurs.

    I am assuming the PB would have said something if the steel walls were rusting. Were you there when they installed the liner? Did you see anything? I make it a point to be home anytime someone shows up at the house, and I am a little "picture happy". During construction of the pool in 2013, I took over 1,000 pictures. This really helps when you have to go back and try to figure out what the issue is. I really would not wait until the spring to call the liner company, but sooner than later.
    14,700 gallons IG Pool Vinyl Liner - Octal Circulation System
    Hayward Pro-Series 350 LB. Sand Filter Model # S270T - 2" Plumping
    Hayward CL2002 Chlorinator - Hayward Super Pump 2 HP Model # k48m2n111
    Hayward AQR9 SWG 25K Salt Cell & TF-100 Test Kit + Speed Stir
    Gulfstream HE125RA - 117K BTU Heat Pump - Date of Build is 11-2013

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    Re: Rust on Skimmer sides

    There really wasn't a ton of rust on the metal walls when the liner was replaced...I had them put the foam backing between the wall and the vinyl. I'll look into the sacrificial anode......not sure where it goes, but I'll look at your pictures again. Like I said, I do remember there being rust from the lights so I had all that hardware replaced when the liner was done. I already call the liner guy, and will keep calling...

    Thanks again for your help.
    38,000 gallon vinyl liner, True "L", Sand Filter, Hayward Heater, Diving Board

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    Re: Rust on Skimmer sides

    Cat,

    I'm confused as to where the bonding wire is? Is it the same as the ground wire that is connected between he heater, the pump, etc? I always just thought that was a ground
    38,000 gallon vinyl liner, True "L", Sand Filter, Hayward Heater, Diving Board

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    Re: Rust on Skimmer sides

    Also, do you remember which unit you purchased? Thanks
    38,000 gallon vinyl liner, True "L", Sand Filter, Hayward Heater, Diving Board

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    Re: Rust on Skimmer sides

    Quote Originally Posted by JoeRJGR View Post
    There really wasn't a ton of rust on the metal walls when the liner was replaced...I had them put the foam backing between the wall and the vinyl. I'll look into the sacrificial anode......not sure where it goes, but I'll look at your pictures again. Like I said, I do remember there being rust from the lights so I had all that hardware replaced when the liner was done. I already call the liner guy, and will keep calling...

    Thanks again for your help.
    Cat,

    I'm confused as to where the bonding wire is? Is it the same as the ground wire that is connected between he heater, the pump, etc? I always just thought that was a ground

    Also, do you remember which unit you purchased? Thanks
    If you have foam, then I believe it is either bad screws or galvanic corrosion. The copper wire at your pump (follow it) back into the ground. That is were you can hook up another copper wire with adapters. I purchased the zinc anode at Marine Supply in Amboy. Purchased an extra washer and nut, drilled hole through the L bracket and attached everything together. Essentially, you are attaching 2 wires together. The end of your copper # 8 wire is attached to the zinc anode and your are burying it in the ground 3" deep is fine (in a moist area).

    The zinc anode and extra nut is at the Marine shop. The copper # 8 wire and other accessories are from Lowes. I can take pictures of everything tomorrow morning and send in the thread. I kept the wrappers for this reason. Hope this helps.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Sequence of chemicals and possibly any effects on what happened to screws at light.

    Post # 11 shows pictures of everything that I used. If you bring this picture to the Marine shop, you will match the zinc anode perfectly. Mention to them that someone came in with the screws/swimming pool issue and they will probably remember me.
    14,700 gallons IG Pool Vinyl Liner - Octal Circulation System
    Hayward Pro-Series 350 LB. Sand Filter Model # S270T - 2" Plumping
    Hayward CL2002 Chlorinator - Hayward Super Pump 2 HP Model # k48m2n111
    Hayward AQR9 SWG 25K Salt Cell & TF-100 Test Kit + Speed Stir
    Gulfstream HE125RA - 117K BTU Heat Pump - Date of Build is 11-2013

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    Re: Rust on Skimmer sides

    But where is the metal that is rusting? The wall itself? I'll add the anode just in case...

    Thanks for your help.
    38,000 gallon vinyl liner, True "L", Sand Filter, Hayward Heater, Diving Board

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    Re: Rust on Skimmer sides

    Here is the information on the Sacrificial Zinc Anode:

    IMG_1015.jpg

    IMG_1016.jpg

    IMG_1018.jpg
    14,700 gallons IG Pool Vinyl Liner - Octal Circulation System
    Hayward Pro-Series 350 LB. Sand Filter Model # S270T - 2" Plumping
    Hayward CL2002 Chlorinator - Hayward Super Pump 2 HP Model # k48m2n111
    Hayward AQR9 SWG 25K Salt Cell & TF-100 Test Kit + Speed Stir
    Gulfstream HE125RA - 117K BTU Heat Pump - Date of Build is 11-2013

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