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Thread: Poor Performance of Hayward Aquabug

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    Poor Performance of Hayward Aquabug

    I am having trouble getting it to suck properly. It looks like it is sucking air, with insufficient water going through the hose.

    Its a hassle to get the air out of the hose in the first place. It floats too well. But even when I do, the volume of air in the pump strainer (don't know what to call it - its attached to the pump and has a clear plastic top) keeps getting larger.

    When first set up the bug moves all around the pool and you can see it pick up the dirt from the bottom. But gradually it loses suction.

    I have backwashed the hose to fill it with water, all connections are tight, I have jumped in the pool and held the hose down to fill it, etc, etc. It moves around fine but slowly stops sucking.

    The other day I took it out and put the regular bottom vacuum on and the dirt on the bottom was sucked up in 20 minutes.

    Could it be that my pump (1.5 HP) is too large for the volume of the hose? What am I doing wrong?
    24' round above ground pool, vinyl liner, 13,555 gallons, Hayward 1.5 HP sand filter. Using 8.25% grocery store bleach. Testing with TF-100 kit.

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    Isaac-1's Avatar
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    Re: Poor Performance of Hayward Aquabug

    It sounds like your sand filter may be getting filled up and clogged, what size is it and have you done a deep clean lately? Deep Cleaning a Sand Filter

    It also sounds like you may have a suction side air leak in your plumbing, or perhaps the strainer basket lid, check the rubber o-ring on the lid and lubricate with a good silicone lubricant.
    Indoor 20x40 35,000 gallon vinyl pool with 1.5 HP 2 speed Jandy FloPro pump, Hayward EC75 Perflex DE filter, 11 4x12 Techno-Solis solar panels w/ Aquasolar controller, Aquabot Turbo T Robot Cleaner. Also LMI metering chlorine dispenser pump and HotSpring Jetsetter
    I use and endorse TFtestKits TF-100 from http://tftestkits.net
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    Re: Poor Performance of Hayward Aquabug

    Quote Originally Posted by Isaac-1 View Post
    It sounds like your sand filter may be getting filled up and clogged, what size is it and have you done a deep clean lately? Deep Cleaning a Sand Filter

    It also sounds like you may have a suction side air leak in your plumbing, or perhaps the strainer basket lid, check the rubber o-ring on the lid and lubricate with a good silicone lubricant.
    Its the same size sand filter that is shown in the link you provided. It is clean after only being in use for a couple of weeks.

    The gasket is also new, and fully lubricated.

    If there is a leak in the plumbing it must be in the bug's hose, since everything works well under noprmal filtration.

    As i stated in my first post, the bug's hoses have been assembled and tightened per the directions.
    24' round above ground pool, vinyl liner, 13,555 gallons, Hayward 1.5 HP sand filter. Using 8.25% grocery store bleach. Testing with TF-100 kit.

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    Re: Poor Performance of Hayward Aquabug

    If the Aquabug and it's hoses are new, take it back and have it replaced.

    Or you could try moving the first 3-4 hose sections closest to the suction attachment point to near the Aquabug itself. This should keep those hose sections mostly under water to help stop the air leaks. And push the hose sections together as tight as you can - wiggle and twist them until both shoulders touch.
    Gene
    ​12,300 gal IG play pool - Pebbletec - built 10/1999 || Hayward S360SX 36" sand filter || Hayward Ecostar SP3400 VSP || A&A In-Floor cleaning system || Quik Water Leveler || Quik Dek-clor (limited use)
    TF-100 testkit / Speedstir - A good test kit is not an expense, it's an investment

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    Re: Poor Performance of Hayward Aquabug

    I have Diver Dan, and if you dip the hose pieces into the water before pushing them together they seal more tightly. If there is any "connection" space between them it will suck air. Also, I use a leaf canister that sucks air pretty badly if I don't keep the o-ring lubed, like seriously every 2nd-3rd use!!! If you have anything else in line with the hoses you can check that.
    22' x 52" Intex UltraFrame ABG, 10,500 gallons
    using TF-100 test kit
    Krystal Klear 633T Filter Type B pump - 2,500 GPH
    Intex wall-mount surface skimmer

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    Re: Poor Performance of Hayward Aquabug

    OK, I used only 3 sections of hose, making sure they were all under water. All the connections were under water as well. The pump strainer was full (no air) when I turned on the pump. It gradually lost volume and filled with air.

    Everything works perfect under normal operation. The issue is only when the bug is installed.

    Looks to me like the pump / filter system pumping volume capacity exceeds the capacity of the bug.
    24' round above ground pool, vinyl liner, 13,555 gallons, Hayward 1.5 HP sand filter. Using 8.25% grocery store bleach. Testing with TF-100 kit.

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    Re: Poor Performance of Hayward Aquabug

    Air is getting in somewhere. You may want to run water from a hose over the pump basket lid and other exposed suction joints to check for leakage.

    Have a look here to further troubleshoot suction side air leaks:
    Pool School - Suction Side Air Leaks

    - - - Updated - - -

    How does your water look? Filter may be clogging up do to a nascent algae outbreak, thereby reducing suction flow.
    Please provide a full set of current test results.
    Gene
    ​12,300 gal IG play pool - Pebbletec - built 10/1999 || Hayward S360SX 36" sand filter || Hayward Ecostar SP3400 VSP || A&A In-Floor cleaning system || Quik Water Leveler || Quik Dek-clor (limited use)
    TF-100 testkit / Speedstir - A good test kit is not an expense, it's an investment

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    Re: Poor Performance of Hayward Aquabug

    The filtration system works PERFECT. When I plug the bug in at the skimmer, then the problem starts. All the connection of the bug are under water so there can be no air infiltration. I'm sticking the rubber fitting into the skimmer line as hard as i can.

    The water is so pristine I have never had it this good. ALL of the trest results are dead center in the middle of what the TFP says they should be ande I'm using your test kit. The pool has onlt been opened for 3 weeks now and we had no algae.
    24' round above ground pool, vinyl liner, 13,555 gallons, Hayward 1.5 HP sand filter. Using 8.25% grocery store bleach. Testing with TF-100 kit.

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    Mod Squad zea3's Avatar
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    Re: Poor Performance of Hayward Aquabug

    When you attach the hose to the skimmer, you are in effect having the pump draw water through a straw. Since the pump is sucking on this straw, force is applied to a smaller surface area which would exploit weaknesses, such as pinhole air leaks at plumbing joints. If any of the hose sections float on the surface of the water while it is in use that is probably where the air leak is coming from. As an experiment, try taping the seams where the hose sections join together for the sections that float on the surface and see if that stops the air leak.
    TFP Moderator
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    Vogue 21' round AG, Pentair 1 hp 2 speed pump, 36 sq ft DE filter, Hayward S180T 150# sand filter, Houston, Texas
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    Re: Poor Performance of Hayward Aquabug

    Have you tried attaching your regular vacuum hose to the Aquabug to see if the issue continues? I'm not sure if the vacuum hose end will fit on the Aquabug, but it's worth a try to attempt to rule out the Aquabug hose (sections) or the Aquabug itself.
    Gene
    ​12,300 gal IG play pool - Pebbletec - built 10/1999 || Hayward S360SX 36" sand filter || Hayward Ecostar SP3400 VSP || A&A In-Floor cleaning system || Quik Water Leveler || Quik Dek-clor (limited use)
    TF-100 testkit / Speedstir - A good test kit is not an expense, it's an investment

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    Re: Poor Performance of Hayward Aquabug

    looking with interest on what you find as well picked up an aqua-bug here and I am having the same issues,albeit with a less HP pump (1.0) .

    Hope you find a solution and care share what you find.
    - Splash Omega 20 Above Ground 20 ft round 4ft deep 9000 gallon pool
    - Splashpak Cartridge Filter, EF75 1HP 75 GPM pump
    - TFT-100 XL Test Kit

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    Re: Poor Performance of Hayward Aquabug

    I have these plungers Amazon.com : Intex 10747 Large Pool Plunger Valve Assembly : Swimming Pool Pump Accessories : Patio, Lawn Garden

    and on the top, there is a little "emergency" round rubber piece that will open and suck in air if the vacuum action into the pump gets too strong. You can test it by covering it with a piece of tape when you turn have the vacuum attached. Keep it covered and watch the vacuum action. Then try uncovering it and listen closely and you can hear air being sucked in, at least I did, when I would put my finger on it and take it on and off. I chose to leave the tape on, but I AM NOT A PROFESSIONAL and have no idea if this adversely affect your pump. In our case we haven't had a problem.

    Before I discovered this I had to keep bleeding air out of my pump every 4-5 minutes for the vacuum to work properly. I found a photo online of the little grey "nipple" that has rubber on top. The rubber is slit so that if the suction gets to hard it opens and sucks air. It didn't suck air during normal pump operation, but it did with any vacuum attachmentsimages.jpg
    Last edited by tamaralemus; 06-20-2016 at 03:27 PM. Reason: adding photo
    22' x 52" Intex UltraFrame ABG, 10,500 gallons
    using TF-100 test kit
    Krystal Klear 633T Filter Type B pump - 2,500 GPH
    Intex wall-mount surface skimmer

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    Re: Poor Performance of Hayward Aquabug

    Ha! I just saw your thread. I am having the exact same problem with my generic Kreepy Krauly. I sent mine back to Amazon. I was wondering if the Bug/Whale/Dave style had the same problem and you answered my question. Looks like I am sticking with manual vacuuming until I want to pony up for something a little spendier.
    14k Gallon 24' x 54" Signature RTL , 1 hp 2 speed Pentair Optiflow, 350lb Pentair SD80 sand filter, 2" leaky plumbing, a Zodiac G3, and my TF-100!

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    Re: Poor Performance of Hayward Aquabug

    Hopefully, this can be a pretty easy fix.

    1. System works when there is no bug, right?

    2. System sucks air when you hook up the bug, right?

    3. ONLY the suction side (from the pump to the skimmer) can pull in air.

    4. There can be no air coming from underwater, so the air is coming from the suction side somewhere above water.

    5. There is no point in looking anywhere else other than along the suction side AND above water....you should be able to find that.

    Perhaps your pump filter gasket makes a good seal without bug but then allows air to get sucked in due to the increased "resistance" of the bug?
    Dave S.
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
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    Re: Poor Performance of Hayward Aquabug

    Suction cleaners increase head loss on the suction side of the pump which increase the pump suction (lower pressure) so it is not uncommon for a pump lid or other fittings to leak air with a cleaner but not leak air without it. Besides the pump lid, other leak locations are the valves and pump drain plugs.
    Mark
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