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Thread: How to keep prime when cleaning basket?

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    How to keep prime when cleaning basket?

    When we first had our pool built, the builder showed me to 'lock in the prime' when turning the pump off to clean the basket. I would turn the valve so that the 'off' portion of the handle was facing the pump. Anyhow, I've noticed lately that this no longer works and when I open the top of the basket, I hear all the water flush back. When I restart the pump it take about 2 minutes to refill and be back to normal. Is there some way to correct this and does it damage the pump, even though it says 'self priming'?
    16 X 32 Vinyl. Hayward aqua rite salt system, T -15 cell. Hayward H250 gas heater, Hayward 1HP superpump.

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    Mod Squad Bama Rambler's Avatar
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    Re: How to keep prime when cleaning basket?

    It really doesn't damage the pump, but if you have a valve on the suction of the pump (it sounds like you do) you might as well use it.

    Since it sounds like you've been closing the valve to hold the water in the piping, but now it's leaking and not holding the water in the line. depending on what valve it is, it may be possible to rebuild it. That's where I'd start.
    Dave J. TFP Moderator
    24' x 52" Round AGP. 2hp/¼hp SPL Power-Flo 2-speed pump. 200sqft Waterway Cartridge Filter. 45MHP2(3GPD) Stenner Peristaltic Pump
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    Re: How to keep prime when cleaning basket?

    Quote Originally Posted by Bama Rambler
    It really doesn't damage the pump, but if you have a valve on the suction of the pump (it sounds like you do) you might as well use it.

    Since it sounds like you've been closing the valve to hold the water in the piping, but now it's leaking and not holding the water in the line. depending on what valve it is, it may be possible to rebuild it. That's where I'd start.
    It's the same valve that I use to switch between the skimmer and auto clean. Those settings work fine if that matters. What does it mean to run the pump when it's dry then?
    16 X 32 Vinyl. Hayward aqua rite salt system, T -15 cell. Hayward H250 gas heater, Hayward 1HP superpump.

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    Re: How to keep prime when cleaning basket?

    Do you have valves you can close both downstream and upstream of the pump? I can close mine and the water level in the pump basket stays put.
    20x44 IG vinyl. Intelliflo, Pentair Cartridge Filter (420ft^2), Raypac 336K, Kreepy Krauly

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    Mod Squad Bama Rambler's Avatar
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    Re: How to keep prime when cleaning basket?

    Running the pump dry for an extended period of time will damage the pump, no doubt, but they're designed to run for a few minutes once they've been primed once. When you open the pump basket not all the water in the pump housing runs out so there's enough in there for cooling and lubrication for a few minutes.

    Can you post a picture of that valve?
    Dave J. TFP Moderator
    24' x 52" Round AGP. 2hp/¼hp 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: How to keep prime when cleaning basket?

    OK, old post but I just want to make sure I have this process correct.

    My pump is about 6" or so above water level...so of course when I open the basket to clean the strainer we know what happens. It took 2-3 minutes to "re-prime", not sure I love the idea of the pump running semi-try for that long, understand though they are made for that...BUT I have a bit of OCD so....

    Now that I found this post...I assume this is my new procedure.

    1) shut off pump
    2) close all 3 incoming water lines (main drain 1, main drain 2 and skimmer)
    3) open basket and clean
    4) close and seal basket
    5) open incoming lines back up
    6) start pump
    14,750 GAL IG Fiberglass (16 x 33) NE Ohio || Jandy 1HP 2 speed Pump || Waterco MultiCyclone 16 Centrifugal pre-filter (removed due to not working with sand filter) || 30" 575 Lb. Sand Filter || AquaCal 140K BTU Heat Pump || Solar Cover || Inter-fab Adrenaline Slide || GLI Monsoon Solar Cover Reel || K-2006C Test Kit || BBB with Liquid Chlorine Stenner Injection || Rayner Mighty Mesh Winter Cover

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    Re: How to keep prime when cleaning basket?

    If you're really all that concerned about it - while you have the cover off for cleaning the strainer, fill it up with water, put the cover on, and start the pump.In 1-3 minutes you should see the pump back to normal operation.
    16x32 IG 19,000 gallons, Pentair 1.5 hp Energy Efficient Superflo pump (348024),vinyl liner, Chlorine dispenser, Hayward S-244T sand filter

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    Re: How to keep prime when cleaning basket?

    Mmmm, yeah I actually poured 4 - 5 gallon buckets of water and the level just kept dropping. OH DUH - guess you meant keep the valves closed and then add the water - then open the valves, etc.
    14,750 GAL IG Fiberglass (16 x 33) NE Ohio || Jandy 1HP 2 speed Pump || Waterco MultiCyclone 16 Centrifugal pre-filter (removed due to not working with sand filter) || 30" 575 Lb. Sand Filter || AquaCal 140K BTU Heat Pump || Solar Cover || Inter-fab Adrenaline Slide || GLI Monsoon Solar Cover Reel || K-2006C Test Kit || BBB with Liquid Chlorine Stenner Injection || Rayner Mighty Mesh Winter Cover

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    Re: How to keep prime when cleaning basket?

    The only valve I seem to have is the one at the pump that switches between auto clean and skim. Half way is the pump where I would leave it during basket cleaning festivities. I have filled the basket back up just like the post above and as soon as the pump is turned on, that water is sucked out and the 2-3 minute priming process begins. I should say when I open the valve and put it back to skimmer, some water does run out into the pump basket. If it's not damaging the pump, I'm okay with it though.
    16 X 32 Vinyl. Hayward aqua rite salt system, T -15 cell. Hayward H250 gas heater, Hayward 1HP superpump.

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    Re: How to keep prime when cleaning basket?

    So I wanted to report what step I added and my pump primed nearly instantly.

    I closed not only all three suction sides, but all I closed the multi valve on the filter (of course after the pump was off)

    Open the basket - cleaned it out, put back on...opened all valves and WHAM a few bubbles and full prime in less than 10 seconds.
    14,750 GAL IG Fiberglass (16 x 33) NE Ohio || Jandy 1HP 2 speed Pump || Waterco MultiCyclone 16 Centrifugal pre-filter (removed due to not working with sand filter) || 30" 575 Lb. Sand Filter || AquaCal 140K BTU Heat Pump || Solar Cover || Inter-fab Adrenaline Slide || GLI Monsoon Solar Cover Reel || K-2006C Test Kit || BBB with Liquid Chlorine Stenner Injection || Rayner Mighty Mesh Winter Cover

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