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Thread: protecting pump from leaves while away

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    protecting pump from leaves while away

    Going on vacation this Fall for 10 days. Not worried about chlorine since the SWCG produces enough with the pump running for 6 hours daily.

    We have (too many) trees near our pool, and the leaves were a significant issue last Fall. At the height of the problem, I had to clear out the skimmer baskets 1-2 times/day. We were away for a week last year, and the baskets were clogged to the point that the pump was sucking air.

    We have two drains at the bottom of the pool (one main drain and one for the water feature pump). I am considering turning off the skimmer drain lines and pumping exclusively from the main drain while we are away. Interested to hear from those with more experience if that is a good idea.

    1. I imagine that we will come back to a pool entirely covered with leaves. Will it be a problem to have that much organic material floating around the pool for that long? Should we consider aiming for a higher FC level?
    2. Is there a danger of having leaves sucked down and clogging the main drain (8 feet deep)?
    3. Would you recommend running both pumps (main drain and water feature) to keep water circulating?

    Thanks.
    31k gal, IG plaster, Hayward pumps and cartridge filter, AquaRite T-15 SWG, Hayward 400,000 BTU NG heater, TF-100

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    Mod Squad JohnT's Avatar
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    Re: protecting pump from leaves while away

    Do you have a safety cover? You can put it on and leave the pool running under it.
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    Mr Bruce's Avatar
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    Re: protecting pump from leaves while away

    Or even a solar cover would help a lot.

    Also you can put a milk crate over the main drain to keep leaves out. I've seen some people hang a milk crate over their skimmer for the same reason.
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    RyanMcC's Avatar
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    Re: protecting pump from leaves while away

    I don't know how much "more" experience I have, but I'd think about covering the pool and running the pump less.
    "...chemistry is not an exact science" -Mario Andrada, Rio 2016 Olympics spokesman
    21' x 52" Radiant Metric Round ~10K gal AGP with Hayward S180t pump/sand filter.
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    Re: protecting pump from leaves while away

    Quote Originally Posted by JohnT View Post
    Do you have a safety cover? You can put it on and leave the pool running under it.
    Quote Originally Posted by RyanMcC View Post
    I don't know how much "more" experience I have, but I'd think about covering the pool and running the pump less.
    We have a safety cover, but it is a non-trivial project to install and remove it (large surface area, irregular pool shape, raised spa/wall). Was hoping to avoid by shutting off the skimmers.

    Quote Originally Posted by Mr Bruce View Post
    Or even a solar cover would help a lot.

    Also you can put a milk crate over the main drain to keep leaves out. I've seen some people hang a milk crate over their skimmer for the same reason.
    Interesting idea. I imagine that a milk crate could also get clogged, but it would have a larger surface area than the drain cover.

    Thanks!
    31k gal, IG plaster, Hayward pumps and cartridge filter, AquaRite T-15 SWG, Hayward 400,000 BTU NG heater, TF-100

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    Re: protecting pump from leaves while away

    If you pin the weir door down with a shim or remove it if practical skimming should be greatly reduced, that with the crate idea should keep most if not all leaves out of it.
    12,300 Gallon, IG PebbleFina, 3 ft sheer, 2 Jandy nicheless LED lights, Jandy Pro 1.5HP VS pump (A.O. Smith Motor), PB4-60 Booster pump, Polaris 280, Jandy cv340 cartridge filter, Zodiac Z4 control panel W/iAquaLink, Stenner pumps for chlorine & MA connected to WiOn WiFi switches, TF-100. You can support TFP with AmazonSmile just click the link!

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    RyanMcC's Avatar
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    Re: protecting pump from leaves while away

    Plugging in a vacuum hose and either weighing down the other end or securing it (to a ladder, stair rail, etc) underwater should do fine to allow circulation without skimming.
    "...chemistry is not an exact science" -Mario Andrada, Rio 2016 Olympics spokesman
    21' x 52" Radiant Metric Round ~10K gal AGP with Hayward S180t pump/sand filter.
    Caldera (Watkins) Martinique 340 gallon installed in basement, Bromine and ozone.
    Taylor K-2006 test kit.

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