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Thread: Green-to-clean: Need "tool" ideas...

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    Green-to-clean: Need "tool" ideas...

    So here's yesterday's project:
    10AM -


    And 7PM -


    Now, my wife (and the customer) thinks I am Superman, but to be honest, this was one of those "almost perfect" situations - the customer had covered the pool with a black tarp last weekend because he had a party and didn't want his friends to see how bad his pool was, so most of the algae had sunk to the bottom. Most of the black you see here is on the bottom, and the water is fairly clear. However, the black consisted of anaerobic muck and algae in about 4" of leaves, sticks and twigs. In the deep end, this "pile" was 8-12" deep (or deeper)...

    Here is my "Pump to drain" pump:


    So,

    The challenge on a job like this with this much muck and debris is to vacuum out as much as possible without stirring the muck/algae into the water column while trying to get all of debris out. Maintaining visibility during the clean-up is KEY! As I said in a different thread, it's the difference between 4-6 gallons of chlorine, and 40 gallons of chlorine. You can tell by the "after" picture that I was pretty successful (used six gallons and was holding 20ppm four hours after adding it).

    I can't use the "power-tool" (Leaf-hopper/leaf-master) or net, as the finer debris will blow right through the bag/net and after 5-10 minutes of use, visibility would go to zero and we wouldn't be able to see where we were going.

    This in-and-of-itself would turn something like this into a 4-5 day superchlorination job because the algae's been kicked into the water column, and once the visibility is zero, you're using braille to "feel" for the crud on the bottom - invariably missing a good portion of it, and watch it all float to the top during the SC (while it's eating gallon upon gallon of chlorine).

    So, vacuuming to waste is the challenge - Where the frustration lies is the *%%*$## vacuuming itself. The friggen hole at the bottom of the vac is too small and twigs continually clog the 1 1/2" hole on the bottom of the vacuum. I can hear the pump change sound when it clogs, and then have to SLOWLY lift the vac-head and pull it out of the pool to clear it, and then wait for the pump to re-prime. No matter how hard I try, this invariably happens every few minutes.

    What I really need, is something like a leaf-hopper-sized vac head that won't get clogged anywhere near as often. I'm starting to ramble here, but just looking for ideas - vacuuming for six hours, when 70% of that time is unclogging the vac hose and waiting for the pump to re-prime... there has to be a better way.

    - Jeff

    Note: I can handle emptying the pump basket when it gets full (I actually have a large Hayward leaf canister, but didn't have it on this job).

    [Edited to note: My wife says that I AM superman... and NOT just because I do an awesome job on cleaning pools ]
    ~45Kg Pool with attached Spa, NSP-72 DE, Minmax 400 Heater, Tahoe Blue Pebbletech, Jandy SWG via Aqualink RS-8, The Pool Cleaner (black)
    Pumps: X3 Hybrid Pump (switches to SPA), 2HP Spa (additional, when SPA is on), and a 1HP For Waterfall
    8, 4x12 Solar Panels on the roof of the pool-house (~12' up)
    CAPTAIN JAMES T. KIRK: "I'M SORRY. I CAN'T HEAR YOU OVER THE SOUND OF HOW AWESOME I AM" (Thanks to TFP!)

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    crookm11's Avatar
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    Re: Green-to-clean: Need "tool" ideas...

    You did an exellent job at cleaning that pool.
    Keep us posted on the final out come of this pool.

    Mark Crook
    13,500 Gallon 24' x 52" Intex Ultra Frame
    Intex Sand Filter and Pump, Intex SWG (All hard PVC plumbed)
    TFTestKit-100---Pool School---The Pool Calculator
    Location: Copperas Cove, Texas --- My Pool Build---Useful Links for Intex Pool Owners

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    Mod Squad JohnT's Avatar
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    Re: Green-to-clean: Need "tool" ideas...

    Warning! Crazy Farmer idea ahead!:

    What about a PVC pipe with a check valve Teed into the pump inlet that you stick over the side of the pool with a 3-way valve at the hose junction? If you clog, you switch the valve to suck from the PVC. The lack of suction on the vac would let you drop whatever was hanging on the vac head, then switch back.
    TFP Moderator
    20K Gallon 20X36 Vinyl Inground
    Hayward S244T Sand Filter with 1HP Whisperflo Pump. Liquidator C-201 and Solar Heat

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    Re: Green-to-clean: Need "tool" ideas...

    Quote Originally Posted by JohnT
    Warning! Crazy Farmer idea ahead!:

    What about a PVC pipe with a check valve Teed into the pump inlet that you stick over the side of the pool with a 3-way valve at the hose junction? If you clog, you switch the valve to suck from the PVC. The lack of suction on the vac would let you drop whatever was hanging on the vac head, then switch back.
    I can prevent prime-loss (significantly reduce re-prime time) if I stop vacuuming, walk to the pump to turn it off, go back to the hose and un-clog... it takes about the same amount of time. Six of one, half-dozen of the other...
    ~45Kg Pool with attached Spa, NSP-72 DE, Minmax 400 Heater, Tahoe Blue Pebbletech, Jandy SWG via Aqualink RS-8, The Pool Cleaner (black)
    Pumps: X3 Hybrid Pump (switches to SPA), 2HP Spa (additional, when SPA is on), and a 1HP For Waterfall
    8, 4x12 Solar Panels on the roof of the pool-house (~12' up)
    CAPTAIN JAMES T. KIRK: "I'M SORRY. I CAN'T HEAR YOU OVER THE SOUND OF HOW AWESOME I AM" (Thanks to TFP!)

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    Join Date
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    Re: Green-to-clean: Need "tool" ideas...

    Hmmm,

    So you pumped straight to waste from the pump and never even had to use the multivalve bypassing the filter all together. You just ran a hose from the output of the pump to waste?

    I've been waiting on a new spider gasket for my 7 way multiport to come in before I can vacuum.

    Interesting!!!
    27' Diameter Above Gound Pool, approximately 15,000 Gallons (erected 5/12/2010)
    26” Blue Ball Baquapure Sand Filter (new sand as of 5/12/2010)
    Dynamo 1 HP 2 Speed Model# 340204
    Simpl Chlor Cholrine Generator

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    Re: Green-to-clean: Need "tool" ideas...

    This is my portable pump I use, instead of using a customer's, for draining to waste.

    I can set it within a few feet of the pool, instead of running 20-50' away to the pad every time I need to empty the basket. I also don't have to "deal" with the nuances of the various plumbings of pools (multiple skimmers, skimmers tied indirectly to the main-drain, etc... always fighting for suction), and it's easy to tear apart and put back together if crud gets past the basket and into the impeller (six 9/16" bolts), which often happens on a clean-up.

    Lastly, I know I'm not putting undue stress on the customer's plumbing and equipment when I'm pumping this much crud out of the pool. If I clog my hose, it's an easy fix... If I clog a customer's under-ground lines, it could be a whole 'nother story...
    ~45Kg Pool with attached Spa, NSP-72 DE, Minmax 400 Heater, Tahoe Blue Pebbletech, Jandy SWG via Aqualink RS-8, The Pool Cleaner (black)
    Pumps: X3 Hybrid Pump (switches to SPA), 2HP Spa (additional, when SPA is on), and a 1HP For Waterfall
    8, 4x12 Solar Panels on the roof of the pool-house (~12' up)
    CAPTAIN JAMES T. KIRK: "I'M SORRY. I CAN'T HEAR YOU OVER THE SOUND OF HOW AWESOME I AM" (Thanks to TFP!)

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    Re: Green-to-clean: Need "tool" ideas...

    Quote Originally Posted by taekwondodo
    I can hear the pump change sound when it clogs, and then have to SLOWLY lift the vac-head and pull it out of the pool to clear it, and then wait for the pump to re-prime. No matter how hard I try, this invariably happens every few minutes.
    When this happens, I just lift the Vac head out of the water and quickly grab the debris before too much air gets sucked in. That way the pump only loses prime for a few seconds. Sometimes I can grab the debris without needing to lift the Vac head out of the water.

    One thing I would recommend adding to your pump is a valve on the discharge to control the suction. I usually need to close the discharge valve most of the way so that there is not too much suction.

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    Richard320's Avatar
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    Re: Green-to-clean: Need "tool" ideas...

    Hmmmmm....

    I think I'd build a giant vacuum head with a 4" or 6" outlet. One of those toilet bases (aka"closet flange") would make easy work of attaching it to the flat base. Then some rat screen in that to catch the big chunks. Then reduce it down to where a regular vacuum hose will fit on it. Sure, it can clog, but it will be alot longer between cleanings. Come to think of it, there might be something useful made for a shop vacuum. I might have to browse the Sears website....
    16K freeform gunite with spa; Pentair 4000 DE filter; Century Whisperflow 1 HP; Pentair Minimax heater.
    Troublefree does not mean Maintenancefree. It's like brushing your teeth: You can spend a couple minutes a day and pennies a week or go to the dentist once a year and spend several thousand dollars.
    A pool is like a pet - you have to feed it every day, even the days you don't want to play with it!

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    In the Industry

    duraleigh's Avatar
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    Re: Green-to-clean: Need "tool" ideas...

    taek,

    Have you looked at the various fittings available for a trash pump? Of course, I haven't, but I wonder if they don't make a type of head that would be more suitable.

    I'll scour around a little on the net today to see if anything is interesting. If not, I would be prone to "manufacture" something out of pvc as Richard suggests.

    I also like James W's idea of a valve on the pressure side.....maybe a gate valve for more control.
    Dave S.
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
    TFTestkits , PoolMath , Pool School

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