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Thread: Pump basket will not fill

  1. #1
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    Pump basket will not fill

    Sorry if this has been asked and answered - I looked through a couple pages and could not find the same issue. Some are close, but not the same. My pump primes ok, then fills until the about the top of the basket, then it stays there. There are no bubbles from my return. I have suspected something in the main drain might be restricting flow, but it is the same problem if I switch suction to skimmers only (which seems to be getting weaker). The pocket of air stays no matter how long I run the pump or what rpm I run at. The water level stays the same if I turn the pump off, so I don't think I have a leak around the seals.

    As far as equipment goes, I have a 1.5hp Jandy pump, Jandy DEV60 filter. I use 6lbs after backwashing - is that right? The box I buy says I should be using 9lbs. I also have a completely useless A&A floor cleaning system and a nature2 pro g plus, which I plan to replace with a simple in line chlorinator (recommendations?) - try to refrain from calling me a complete idiot for those 2 things, I am bashing myself over the head about those every year.

  2. #2
    Mod Squad zea3's Avatar
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    Re: Pump basket will not fill

    A suction side air leak will not always cause the water level in the pump to drop when turned off. The air leak occurs only when the pump is pulling water through the line. The vacuum inside the pump basket remains and keeps the water in place. I would check drain plug and the o-rings on the pump basket lid and lube them with silicone pool lube and see if that helps. I have a similar situation that develops when the water in the skimmer is too low, or when the DE filter is dirty and needs to be broken down and cleaned.
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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: Pump basket will not fill

    Is that the drain plug on the pump? There are 2. One used to have a vacless svrs-10 breather, but it broke and I replaced it with a simple plug. If the filter needs cleaning, how intense should the cleaning be? Hose off or soak in MA (muriatic acid?)?

  4. #4
    Senior Member MikeInNH's Avatar
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    Re: Pump basket will not fill

    What do you mean by "simple in line chlorinator"? Liquid chlorine with no additives is the best way to go or you may end up with unmanageable CYA levels.
    Mike
    2007 1st full year with AG pool~15k gallons 18'x33' JW
    6/2010 added 2 button Intex SWG-painless except for when reset
    Switched to BBB from Baquacil (couldn't pay me to go back)

  5. #5
    Mod Squad zea3's Avatar
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    Re: Pump basket will not fill

    Yes, drain plug on the pump. When I break down my DE filter I hose the grids off well and flush all the old DE out of the filter body. I've never done the MA soak. FYI, never do a MA soak until after you have soaked the grids in TSP or Dishwasher detergent overnight. It will ruin the grids if you soak them in MA first.
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    Re: Pump basket will not fill

    By 'simple', I meant just a chlorinator with no mineral pack. In the past three years, I haven't had a problem with CYA. I try to keep it as low as possible and it always seems to be undetectable at the beginning of each season. What is the best way to introduce liquid chlorine, bleach? I guess you monitor with a test kit?

  7. #7
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    Re: Pump basket will not fill

    What are your thoughts on a partial blockage? Is it time to get a Drain King?

  8. #8
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    Re: Pump basket will not fill

    If you think that is the problem a drain king is a good way to blow out blockages.
    TFP Moderator
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  9. #9
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    Re: Pump basket will not fill

    If I think the blockage is in my main drain, I guess my only choice is to blow it back into the pool. Is there another way I cannot think of? I can blow the skimmers into one of the baskets easily enough.

  10. #10
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    Re: Pump basket will not fill

    What is your psi when the pump is running? A blockage on the suction side is not nearly as common as an air leak.
    Dave S.
    Site Owner 42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter, No SWG
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  11. #11
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    Re: Pump basket will not fill

    When I run the pump at 2790rpm (typical), my pressure right now is 18psi. After I backwashed a couple weeks ago, it started around 13psi.

  12. #12
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    Re: Pump basket will not fill

    That psi is not indicative of a blockage. If the flow from your returns seems strong (and I bet it is) then I doubt you have a blockage but rather a suction side air leak. find that leak and your issues are over.
    Dave S.
    Site Owner 42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter, No SWG
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  13. #13
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    Re: Pump basket will not fill

    I will start checking o-rings and valve fittings. Thanks so far to all those who replied.

  14. #14
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    Re: Pump basket will not fill

    Rereading your next to last post, if your psi has risen 25% or more since your last backwash, it is time to backwash again. That is completely unrelated to your issue but I wanted to mention it.
    Dave S.
    Site Owner 42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter, No SWG
    TFTestkits owner
    TFTestkits , PoolMath , Pool School

  15. #15
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    Re: Pump basket will not fill

    OK stupid question, on mine i have air in the top of the pump basket until i open the top of the basket till the water comes up to the top then its fine, could your fix be that?
    15ft round above ground pool (6600 gallons)
    Sand filter
    Jandy gas heater
    Intermatic timer

  16. #16
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    Re: Pump basket will not fill

    could your fix be that?
    Unrelated. OP has an IG pool.....priming is not the same as yours.
    Dave S.
    Site Owner 42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter, No SWG
    TFTestkits owner
    TFTestkits , PoolMath , Pool School

  17. #17
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    Re: Pump basket will not fill

    I changed out the o-ring on the pump basket after lubricating just about every other one. It looks promising as there is another basket before the pump and that one was having trouble filling, but now it is full with no air bubbles. I will wait while the air presently in the system has a chance to work its way through. I think the distribution mechanism for the floor cleaner will take a while to clear out, but after that I am hoping to be ok.

    I am aware of the need for backwash. In the past, there was no problem filling the basket when I backwashed, so I did not want to think my problem was solved. I'll give it a few hours.

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