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Thread: Secondary pump problem

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    Secondary pump problem

    Hi,
    I'm having problems priming my pump for my water features. (probably because I'm have people over tomorrow night and wanted to show off the new fountain). It's a pentair 1/2 hp. the pool and spa have a separate variable pump. I cleaned out the filters today (for only the second time- pool is only 5 months old, and again there was no debris on this line. a ton on the pool side). I had problems priming it last time also, but it finally caught.
    I have read enough to know most priming issues come from a suction side air leak. I've tried to re close the filter lid a dozen times, even after filling with water, no luck.
    I have no idea where the intake comes from (it's from the pool,but that's as far as I know). The pump is right next to the pool pump, but the skimmer and floor drains return to the pool pump. I can call the builder, but it was like pulling teeth just to get them to finish the project, so I'd rather not. any thoughts?

    thanks
    16 K gal pool & spa, concrete (pebblefina), Jandy aquapure SWG, Jandy pda-PS3, PV3 infloor cleaning. built 2011, scottsdale,az

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    Mod Squad Bama Rambler's Avatar
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    Re: Secondary pump problem

    If you can find the intake in the pool you can take a vacuum hose and run it from a return to the intake and force water into the pump to prime it.
    Dave J. TFP Moderator
    24' x 52" Round AGP. 2hp/hp SPL Power-Flo 2-speed pump. 200sqft Waterway Cartridge Filter. 45MHP2(3GPD) Stenner Peristaltic Pump
    Pool School ----- Pool Math ----- TF-Test Kit

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    Re: Secondary pump problem

    that's what I was thinking, but I'm not sure where it comes from. The inlet pipe comes from the ground. There is a valve from the top pipe down which controls the amount of water to the fountain. (see picture). It seem like the plumbing would form a loop with it closed, but I assume with the water in the system, the pump would prime?

    the fountain empties into the pool, so I would imagine one of the drains/skimmers would need to be the water source. But this would apply for the main pool pump also, which works fine, although it does take a good 2 minutes to prime. could it just be a poor system. I is fairly far from the pool. Maybe the fountain pump is too weak to bring the water over, while the main one can accomplish this?

    another bit of information that may (or may not) be helpful. There is a area in the grass between the pool and the pump that collects water. I assumed it was the landscaping water system. when I dug it up I found, in addition to the mainline drip systems, several 1" or so PVC pipes. most were broken. When I turn on one of the drip lines water comed from a pipe. but it comes from the far side of the break, towards both the supply and destination. I made sure the timer did not turn this part on, but still have wet ground (which I need to investigate.) I didn't think it had anything to do with the fountain because the fountain was running perfectly before.

    I hope I didn't really confuse anybody.
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    16 K gal pool & spa, concrete (pebblefina), Jandy aquapure SWG, Jandy pda-PS3, PV3 infloor cleaning. built 2011, scottsdale,az

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    Mod Squad Bama Rambler's Avatar
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    Re: Secondary pump problem

    I assume the fountain pump is the one nearest the bottom of the photo?
    Are you closing the recirc valve when trying to prime?

    I figure that there's a intake in the closest wall. Probably looks like a return without an eyeball.

    You could run water backwards through it with a water hose and see where it comes out at. Pour a little food coloring in the pipe and then run the hose to make it easier to spot.

    As for the wet ground it could be a leak in the pool plumbing but you'd be losing water if it were.
    Dave J. TFP Moderator
    24' x 52" Round AGP. 2hp/hp SPL Power-Flo 2-speed pump. 200sqft Waterway Cartridge Filter. 45MHP2(3GPD) Stenner Peristaltic Pump
    Pool School ----- Pool Math ----- TF-Test Kit

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    Re: Secondary pump problem

    Quote Originally Posted by Bama Rambler
    I assume the fountain pump is the one nearest the bottom of the photo? Correct
    Are you closing the recirc valve when trying to prime? I've tried it both ways. Should I close it?

    I figure that there's a intake in the closest wall. Probably looks like a return without an eyeball.

    You could run water backwards through it with a water hose and see where it comes out at. Pour a little food coloring in the pipe and then run the hose to make it easier to spot. Great Idea. I hadn't thought of that.

    As for the wet ground it could be a leak in the pool plumbing but you'd be losing water if it were.
    no water loss, but I have an automatic leveler, so might not know.


    thanks for your help so far. I really appreciate it.
    16 K gal pool & spa, concrete (pebblefina), Jandy aquapure SWG, Jandy pda-PS3, PV3 infloor cleaning. built 2011, scottsdale,az

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    Re: Secondary pump problem

    Hey, I got it!!!

    It worked this time with the valve to the closed position. after it was running , I found out the "closed" position lets water go to the feature. In fully open, no water comes out. This is opposite from what I thought. so in open the valve must allow all the water to drop down the pipe. but then I would think part would prime the pump, and part would reverse flow back to pool?

    I think I'll wait awhile before cleaning that strainer again.
    16 K gal pool & spa, concrete (pebblefina), Jandy aquapure SWG, Jandy pda-PS3, PV3 infloor cleaning. built 2011, scottsdale,az

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    Mod Squad Bama Rambler's Avatar
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    Re: Secondary pump problem

    That valve recirc's water from the pump discharge to the suction when opened so it wouldn't prime as long as its open.
    Dave J. TFP Moderator
    24' x 52" Round AGP. 2hp/hp SPL Power-Flo 2-speed pump. 200sqft Waterway Cartridge Filter. 45MHP2(3GPD) Stenner Peristaltic Pump
    Pool School ----- Pool Math ----- TF-Test Kit

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