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Thread: Pump loses prime after waste or backwash

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    Join Date
    Aug 2016
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    Toms River, New Jersey
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    Pump loses prime after waste or backwash

    Hi everyone,

    I am brand new to this forum, but I just wanted to take a moment to thank all of you for your advice. I was having quite a time maintaining FC chlorine in my inground pool and was worried about a possible leak as well. With your help I've conquered both and couldn't be more grateful, to all of you, for preserving my sanity. Im BBB all the way now. Chemistry is spot on.

    I am definitely a novice, I am now the sole caretaker of my pool, half way through my third season, and still learning so much. Im now comfortable with fundamentals, however,I still encounter "Houston we have a problem" moments. Could you give an answer if this situation is a normal occurrence or if I have a problem that needs a professional.

    I have a Hayward DE filter,36 sq ft fitted with a multiport valve and 1.5 HP single speed pump. Pump and multiport are both 1 year old. We have been getting hit with torrential rains here in Central NJ that has required me to drain the pool of a few inches of water. The following problem also occurs when I backwash as well.

    Whenever I set the valve to waste or backwash water immediately rushes away from the pump basket. I am able to complete the waste/backwash process successfully, however, I need to IMMEDIATELY RETURN the valve to filter, and power on the pump, otherwise, if I let the valve sit on "filter" for more than a few seconds, a big air bubble appears in the pump basket. Then when I power on, it takes a good half minute for water to return to the pump and out of the returns. The water then flows strong, without any air bubbles out of the returns. Last week, after backwashing, I returned the valve to filter, it sat for a couple of minutes, while I retrieved the DE out of the deck box. When I turned on the pump, no water, and it took two "power ons" to get the pump to prime. Needless to say, scared the bejesus out of me.

    What am I doing wrong? Which leads me to part 2 of my question. I have three diverter valves, I know what they are, however, I was wondering, on what occasion, if any, would these valves need to be turned off? I recall my husband telling me to make sure they are always in the 12 and 6 o'clock (on) position, but I also recall him turning them off on a few occasions, but cant remember for the life of me, why. Perhaps to backwash? Could that be the reason for my pump prime issue, Im eliminating the step of turning off diverter valves?

    Thoughts? THANK YOU THANK YOU

  2. Back To Top    #2
    Texas Splash's Avatar
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    Jun 2014
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    South-Central Texas, Marion/San Antonio
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    Re: Pump loses prime after waste or backwash

    Hello and welcome to TFP! When you say "diverter valve" could that actually be one of the 3-way (handle) valves that we use to close a line or adjust water flow from one area to another? Often times we close one or more of those valves when we are cleaning the filter to prevent water from back-flowing from the pool to the pad. Now if one of those valves was still closed when you turned the system back on, it could prevent water from flowing properly to the filter and beyond. Just a thought. Maybe others will have another suggestion or two. Nice to have you with us.
    Pat (a.k.a. Texas Splash) ~ My Pool: Viking Fiberglass; 17,888 Gal; Waterway Supreme 2-sp/2-hp pump; Hayward Ctg filter; TF-100 w/ Speed Stir
    Vital Links: POOL SCHOOL, RECOMMENDED LEVELS, RECOMMENDED CHEMICALS, Poolmath Calculator, SLAM, Chlorine/CYA CHART.
    If you enjoyed your TFP experience, please consider donating to Support TFP!

  3. Back To Top    #3

    Re: Pump loses prime after waste or backwash

    Quote Originally Posted by kacee View Post
    Hi everyone,

    I am brand new to this forum, but I just wanted to take a moment to thank all of you for your advice. I was having quite a time maintaining FC chlorine in my inground pool and was worried about a possible leak as well. With your help I've conquered both and couldn't be more grateful, to all of you, for preserving my sanity. Im BBB all the way now. Chemistry is spot on.

    I am definitely a novice, I am now the sole caretaker of my pool, half way through my third season, and still learning so much. Im now comfortable with fundamentals, however,I still encounter "Houston we have a problem" moments. Could you give an answer if this situation is a normal occurrence or if I have a problem that needs a professional.

    I have a Hayward DE filter,36 sq ft fitted with a multiport valve and 1.5 HP single speed pump. Pump and multiport are both 1 year old. We have been getting hit with torrential rains here in Central NJ that has required me to drain the pool of a few inches of water. The following problem also occurs when I backwash as well.

    Whenever I set the valve to waste or backwash water immediately rushes away from the pump basket. I am able to complete the waste/backwash process successfully, however, I need to IMMEDIATELY RETURN the valve to filter, and power on the pump, otherwise, if I let the valve sit on "filter" for more than a few seconds, a big air bubble appears in the pump basket. Then when I power on, it takes a good half minute for water to return to the pump and out of the returns. The water then flows strong, without any air bubbles out of the returns. Last week, after backwashing, I returned the valve to filter, it sat for a couple of minutes, while I retrieved the DE out of the deck box. When I turned on the pump, no water, and it took two "power ons" to get the pump to prime. Needless to say, scared the bejesus out of me.

    What am I doing wrong? Which leads me to part 2 of my question. I have three diverter valves, I know what they are, however, I was wondering, on what occasion, if any, would these valves need to be turned off? I recall my husband telling me to make sure they are always in the 12 and 6 o'clock (on) position, but I also recall him turning them off on a few occasions, but cant remember for the life of me, why. Perhaps to backwash? Could that be the reason for my pump prime issue, Im eliminating the step of turning off diverter valves?

    Thoughts? THANK YOU THANK YOU
    I'd start with replacing the strainer cover gasket.
    Geebot
    Chicago, IL
    30K gal, InGround Plaster Finish, 3.5'-9.5', Maytronics S300 Cleaner

  4. Back To Top    #4

    Join Date
    Aug 2016
    Location
    Toms River, New Jersey
    Posts
    2

    Re: Pump loses prime after waste or backwash

    Quote Originally Posted by Texas Splash View Post
    Hello and welcome to TFP! When you say "diverter valve" could that actually be one of the 3-way (handle) valves that we use to close a line or adjust water flow from one area to another? Often times we close one or more of those valves when we are cleaning the filter to prevent water from back-flowing from the pool to the pad. Now if one of those valves was still closed when you turned the system back on, it could prevent water from flowing properly to the filter and beyond. Just a thought. Maybe others will have another suggestion or two. Nice to have you with us.
    Yes, I believe it is one of the handles. When you say clean the filter, do you mean backwash or dismantling the filter to clean the grids? But all three valves are always in the on position. Thank you so much for the welcome and answering my question!

    - - - Updated - - -

    Quote Originally Posted by Geebot View Post
    I'd start with replacing the strainer cover gasket.
    I will give it try. I didn't think it was a normal occurrence. I cant figure out where air is getting in at while backwashing/wasting. During normal day to day pump/filter operation I encounter no problems. Water remains in the pump basket overnight and flows out of the returns immediately after start up in the morning with no air bubbles anywhere. My psi is a steady 20 (I had my grids cleaned professionally at the beginning of the season.)

    Thank you so much
    21,000 gallon in ground pool vinyl liner, 10 years old. Hayward DE filter 36 sq ft 1.5 pump and multiport valve. Chlorinator attached to the plumbing. Currently using BBB method.

  5. Back To Top    #5
    Texas Splash's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2014
    Location
    South-Central Texas, Marion/San Antonio
    Posts
    12,962

    Re: Pump loses prime after waste or backwash

    If you look at the "My Pool" pics in my sig, you'll see at my equipment pad a couple black 3-way valves - one before and one after the filter. Whenever I need to do work on my filter (open it up) or take the pump strainer basket clear lid off, I need to close those valves so no water can flow through those pipes. Otherwise it all comes gushing-out. Now with your DE filter system, using a multiport valve, you shouldn't have that same problem simply backwashing. I suspect you simply turn-off the pump first, change the multiport valve setting (filter, backwash, etc) then turn the pump back on and continue right? So if you don't "open" the system (like when cleaning the grids), there would be no need to close or change the valves. But I wanted to throw that out there just in case one or more of your valves did get moved for some reason and not returned to their original position.

    Also, just incase you haven't seen it, here's a good page you can compare your own notes to when performing DE filter tasks: DE Filter Cleaning Tutorial. Maybe something will look familiar.
    Pat (a.k.a. Texas Splash) ~ My Pool: Viking Fiberglass; 17,888 Gal; Waterway Supreme 2-sp/2-hp pump; Hayward Ctg filter; TF-100 w/ Speed Stir
    Vital Links: POOL SCHOOL, RECOMMENDED LEVELS, RECOMMENDED CHEMICALS, Poolmath Calculator, SLAM, Chlorine/CYA CHART.
    If you enjoyed your TFP experience, please consider donating to Support TFP!

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