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Thread: Main drain question

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    Main drain question

    how do I use just the main drain? the skimmer has 2 holes in it. is one the main drain? can i connect a u shaped tube to it to just suction from the main drain?
    Curtis

    Sydney Nova Scotia Canada
    Pool size: 26,500 gallons, Laser Sand filter 225(250lb), in ground, vinyl, hayward pump 1hp pump, Taylor Test Kit k-2006

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    Richard320's Avatar
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    Re: Main drain question

    Easier to just buy a diverter.


    There's a flapper on the bottom that slides that lets you regulate drain vs skimmer, so you can get both going at once.
    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.
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    Re: Main drain question

    I have one of these diverters under my skimmer and I've never moved the flapper on it. It is partially covering the hole on the bottom of the diverter. I seem to remember reading that when covering the hole completely with the flapper, the suction is all main drain, and when the hole is completely uncovered the suction is all skimmer. Is this true?

    Thanks,
    Greg
    12000 gal IG pool/spa combo,60 sq ft Jandy DEL filter,2 hp Jandy Stealth pump,Jandy LX400 400K BTU gas heater,Pentair Rainbow 300 off-line feeder (never gets used),Jandy Aqualink RS4 with PDA remote,3 Jandy 12" sheer descent waterfall features, Dolphin Oasis Z5 robotic cleaner

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    Richard320's Avatar
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    Re: Main drain question

    Quote Originally Posted by rhythm
    I have one of these diverters under my skimmer and I've never moved the flapper on it. It is partially covering the hole on the bottom of the diverter. I seem to remember reading that when covering the hole completely with the flapper, the suction is all main drain, and when the hole is completely uncovered the suction is all skimmer. Is this true?

    Thanks,
    Greg
    Yes. But if the float inside stops floating for whatever reason, it goes all main drain.
    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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    Re: Main drain question

    I have a skimmer that has 2 holes in it with no diverter. are diverters all the same and where can I get one locally?
    11,000 gal Fiberglass IG, Jacuzzi sand filter, Pentair Superflo 1.5hp 2speed pump, Hayward AQR15, Maytronics Active20, K-2006 kit, K1766, SpeedStir

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    Richard320's Avatar
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    Re: Main drain question

    Quote Originally Posted by nismostate
    I have a skimmer that has 2 holes in it with no diverter. are diverters all the same and where can I get one locally?
    I just measured the inside of the skimmer to get the diameter and went to the local pool store. Told the guy what I wanted, he picked one off the shelf, and that was that. I'm not even sure if they come in different sizes. It was only about ten bucks.
    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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    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: Main drain question

    there is another design that looks like a Twinkie which is oval. Looking at the bottom of the skimmer you should be able to tell if you need the round UFO or the oval Twinkie.

    Posted from my Droid with Tapatalk ... sorry if my response is short
    Jason, TFP Moderator
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    Re: Main drain question

    Brand new to pools but my pool people told me there was little advantage to these and they easily break. So are they worth it?
    16,000 In Ground Kidney Plaster Pool, SWG, Sand Filter

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    BobinBaltimore's Avatar
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    Re: Main drain question

    We called them Turtles back in the day. The diverter on the bottom can break, but they are pretty tough and I recall them lasting for a couple of seasons. Our primary use for them was to avoid pulling from the skimmers when the water level was low or highly variable for some reason. When the level in the skimmer box is low, the float falls to seal off the skimmer intake (or at least mostly block it, reducing the flow). It was cheap insurance for that purpose.
    25' x 37' freeform, 22,000 gallon saltwater, 3'6" to 6'6" deep, including baja shelf and benches, 120 ft EP Henry retaining wall
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    Richard320's Avatar
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    Re: Main drain question

    Quote Originally Posted by bchance1
    Brand new to pools but my pool people told me there was little advantage to these and they easily break. So are they worth it?
    I like having it.

    It guarantees bottom circulation for starters. I also don't have the temperature stratification I've felt in many pools - it's the same at the top as at the bottom. If there's only a few pieces of debris on the bottom, I've gotten pretty good at brushing them towards the drain and away they go. No messing with the vacuum.
    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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    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: Main drain question

    I have never had a diverter break ... Although I have only had them for about 5 years. I would think they would only get weak if you were putting tablets in the skimmer.

    Posted from my Droid with Tapatalk ... sorry if my response is short
    Jason, TFP Moderator
    18k IG pebblesheen pool, Hayward ProLogic P4 w/ T-15 SWG, Pentair 1HP 2-speed Superflo, Hayward 6020 DE filter
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    Re: Main drain question

    So to get half the suction from the main drain and half the suction from the skimmer, you have to have the bottom flapper on the diverter 1/2 open?
    23,000 gal IG Plaster 1989
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    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: Main drain question

    that is the basic idea. Open it more to have more skimmer. I actually leave my flap open all the way to maximize skimming while running my pump on low speed ... based on the leaves on the bottom drain occasionally, I must still be getting a little suction through the bottom.

    Posted from my Droid with Tapatalk ... sorry if my response is short
    Jason, TFP Moderator
    18k IG pebblesheen pool, Hayward ProLogic P4 w/ T-15 SWG, Pentair 1HP 2-speed Superflo, Hayward 6020 DE filter
    500 sqft Heliocol solar panels, ThePoolCleaner, TF-100 test kit w/ SpeedStir
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    CUTiger78's Avatar
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    Re: Main drain question

    Quote Originally Posted by bchance1
    Brand new to pools but my pool people told me there was little advantage to these and they easily break. So are they worth it?
    Little advantage to them? I don't know what that means, but you won't get any suction from the main drain without one.
    36K gallon 42X22 gunite/plaster kidney-shaped IG;
    1 hp Hayward Super Pump (new in 2012);
    Hayward S244T sand filter w/ Zeosand (both new in 2009);
    175K BTU LAARS Lite2 LG natural gas heater; Polaris 380;
    TF-100 test kit.

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    Re: Main drain question

    They simply said there was no advantage to having them over just leaving the skimmer as the main suction. So I guess the real question is do you NEED suction from the bottom drains? Also any suggestions where to pick one of these up online?
    16,000 In Ground Kidney Plaster Pool, SWG, Sand Filter

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    BobinBaltimore's Avatar
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    Re: Main drain question

    You absolutely want to have suction from the main drains, in combination with skimmers. Not only can it help level out the temperature (as someone mentioned above), but it ensures that water toward the bottom is pulled in and filtered, avoiding dead zones. Additionally, when you sweep the pool bottom, you can push toward the main drains and know that at least some of that "goodness" will make it right to the filter. Pools are intended to be thought of as a three-dimensional system. Pulling only from the skimmers can - depending on the location of your inlets - lead to circulating only the top couple feet of water. If the pool is being used often and the water chopped up, perhaps not a big deal. But for my pool, which is used primarily on weekends, I would hate to have the bottom third of water sitting there.

    That said, ever pool is different and tuning each system takes some plain old trial and error. You may not need or want to pull from the mains all the time, or at the same rate, depending on circumstances. But it can be a very helpful thing!
    25' x 37' freeform, 22,000 gallon saltwater, 3'6" to 6'6" deep, including baja shelf and benches, 120 ft EP Henry retaining wall
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    UnderWaterVanya's Avatar
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    Re: Main drain question

    Quote Originally Posted by CUTiger78
    Quote Originally Posted by bchance1
    Brand new to pools but my pool people told me there was little advantage to these and they easily break. So are they worth it?
    Little advantage to them? I don't know what that means, but you won't get any suction from the main drain without one.
    ? Can't you just have main and skimmer plumbed separately?
    Inlaws Pool Boy since June 14th 2012, Pool built ~ 2003, In-Ground, 16'x32'
    13500 gal, Vinyl Liner, Fiberglass Slide, TF-100 Test Kit, Hayward 210T
    sand filter, A.O. Smith 1.5HP main pump motor (C48L2N134C1),
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    CUTiger78's Avatar
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    Re: Main drain question

    Quote Originally Posted by UnderWaterVanya
    Quote Originally Posted by CUTiger78
    Quote Originally Posted by bchance1
    Brand new to pools but my pool people told me there was little advantage to these and they easily break. So are they worth it?
    Little advantage to them? I don't know what that means, but you won't get any suction from the main drain without one.
    ? Can't you just have main and skimmer plumbed separately?
    Sure ya can. If they're plumbed together, though, you need a diverter gizmo to get suction from both. I probably wasn't clear in my first response.
    36K gallon 42X22 gunite/plaster kidney-shaped IG;
    1 hp Hayward Super Pump (new in 2012);
    Hayward S244T sand filter w/ Zeosand (both new in 2009);
    175K BTU LAARS Lite2 LG natural gas heater; Polaris 380;
    TF-100 test kit.

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    UnderWaterVanya's Avatar
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    Re: Main drain question

    Quote Originally Posted by CUTiger78
    Quote Originally Posted by UnderWaterVanya
    ? Can't you just have main and skimmer plumbed separately?
    Sure ya can. If they're plumbed together, though, you need a diverter gizmo to get suction from both. I probably wasn't clear in my first response.
    It's my relative lack of knowledge more than your post that was the cause here I suspect.

    Thanks for the clarification - I just don't know enough to know if I know or if I only think I know on some of these questions.
    Inlaws Pool Boy since June 14th 2012, Pool built ~ 2003, In-Ground, 16'x32'
    13500 gal, Vinyl Liner, Fiberglass Slide, TF-100 Test Kit, Hayward 210T
    sand filter, A.O. Smith 1.5HP main pump motor (C48L2N134C1),
    Hayward SuperPump (model ?), Polaris 380 & PB4 Booster Pump

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