Hello TFP forum, glad I found you!
I could write several pages on my saga in getting this pool up and running over the past week (when I should have been unpacking boxes from our move!), but I'll give the short(er) version. I have a simple question, but I think this background may be useful.
Purchased a house that came with a 30 foot, circular, above ground pool that probably had not been opened since the 2010 season (in Chicago). I'd guess it is 5 years old or so. I am a reluctant pool owner, I wish the house did not come with this, but here it is.
Day 1 - Paid a guy $1400 to come "open" the pool which entailed pumping out the nasty water, cleaning out debris, cleaning, sanitizing the liner, etc (still seems expensive given that I was left with a verbal explanation of how things worked and a garden hose hanging in an empty pool) He did hook up the filter, but did not turn it on given there was no water in the pool.
Day 3 - 5 - Once the water line got high enough, I noticed that the pump was leaking badly (had not turned it on at this point) so went through several iterations of taking it apart - replaced gaskets, broken impeller - before getting it to work properly. I almost threw in the towel and bought a new pump, but glad I did not given that parts were only ~$25 or so. Of course, several days of frustration and multiple trips to the pool store was part of the cost as well.
Day 6 - 7 - Everything is running well, though I notice that a fair amount of air seemed to be getting into the pump/filter system - even with priming the water level in the pump basket stayed pretty low. Hmmm, the PSI guage was shot, so I tried replacing that hoping it was my source for air leaks. Put it in wrong 3 times(!) before finally getting it right, which entailed filling and draining the filter 3 times - what a mess! Here again I almost threw in the towel on the whole pool. I was ready to tear it down. PSI guage in right, but also still sucking a lot of air. Went through all of my fittings and finally found that a coupling on the intake hose was out of round so that was where the air was coming in. Got a new coupler and problem solved!
Day 8 (yesterday) - Wife and young daughters (ages 1 and 3.5) finally got to go for a swim and they loved it!
But here is my question -
The filter still seems to collect air, though there are no obvious signs of this. I only know because for the heck of it I opened the air valve after a few hours and it took about 35 seconds to start shooting water. Is this normal? Or should it stay mostly air free? Am I at risk of damaging something if I don't go bleed the air a couple of times a day? Pressure seems to run between 8-10 psi and all operations appear quite normal.
Also is it necessary to run the pump and filter 24/7?
Thanks for your help, I would have never gotten this far without you!