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Thread: Pump strainer not full help

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    Pump strainer not full help

    Hi pool experts. I need some help solving my pump problem. My new 1 hp hayward tristar isn't filling the strainer basket with water. The old pump never had this problem.

    I just replaced a 3/4hp sta-rite dura glass pool pump with a hayward tristar 1 hp pump. The old sta-rite worked well and filled the strainer just fine but kept eating motors due to a shaft seal leak I couldn't solve, so I replaced it with the new tristar.

    With the new tristar, the pump strainer won't fill completely with water. It only fills 3/4 of the way. It seems to move the water ok but the strainer housing is never full. After turning the pump off, it holds its prime with no problem so I don't think I have a leak anywhere.

    The plumbing configuration is as follows and it always worked fine with my old sta-rite. Its a 15,000 gal pool. The skimmer supply line in 1 1/2" pvc. The main drain is 2" pvc. The strainer and main drain both input into a 3-way jandy valve and the output of the jandy is 1 1/2" pvc into the tristar pump. The output of the pump is 1 1/2" pvc into a hayward c-800 cartridge filter. Output of the filter is 1 1/2" pvc into a heatpump. Output of the heatpump is 1 1/2" pvc split to (3) 1" pool returns.

    The water pressure on the guage on the filter is 20psi. I tried running the pump with the filter top open to see if there was some return restriction in the return causing the problem but that didn't help at all.

    Does anyone have any suggestions for what I should try next?


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    Mod Squad Bama Rambler's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    SouthWest Alabama

    Re: Pump strainer not full help

    Welcome to TFP.

    When you installed the pump did you lube the basket lid well?

    Have you tried running water over the lid and suction plumbing to see if it goes away when doing it?
    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: Pump strainer not full help

    I tried lubing the basket and checking for leaks but that didn't fix the problem.

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    duraleigh's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Sebring, Florida

    Re: Pump strainer not full help

    With the new tristar, the pump strainer won't fill completely with water. It only fills 3/4 of the way
    Welcome to the forum. If air is in your pump strainer (it is), then you have a suction side leak.

    They are maddeningly difficult to detect sometimes, and sometimes will ONLY occur when the pump is running but have faith that air is being sucked into your system somewhere between the pump and the skimmers.
    Dave S. - Forum owner
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
    TFTestkits , PoolMath , Pool School

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