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Thread: Pump Problem - Hums & then pops breaker

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    Pump Problem - Hums & then pops breaker

    When I attempt to start the pump:
    - Motor hums for a few seconds
    - Circuit breaker pops

    I tried opened the downstream bleed-air valve and it was enough to allow the pump to start turning and then it appears to have run fine. Water flow (based on eyeballing the spill over into the pool from the spa) appeared to be normal & the pressure at the filter also appeared normal. But, if it's left alone ... it won't get going by itself.

    I also opened the strainer on both this pump and the waterfall pump. I can turn the waterfall impeller by hand but I am unable to turn the pool pump's impeller by hand. If I put a wrench on the back of the pump motor, I can turn it fairly easily. So, the impeller isn't jammed but it does seem to turn hard.
    Recently, I had a control valve actuator go bad and the system ended up draining the spa overnight and running the pump dry - no idea for how long. If it matters, it wasn't hot out (in fact, it was the Freeze Protection mode that kicked it on at night).

    Does it sound like I just have a bad start capacitor? Or, is the pump binding for some reason?

    Thanks,
    M2

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: Pump Problem - Hums & then pops breaker

    Welcome to TFP!

    If it ran dry for a while it would have over heated the pump body, which probably then distorted and is now partially jamming the impeller. Chances are you now need a new wet end chassis. The other possibility, rather less likely, is that the motor bearings are starting to go bad, but that would have developed slowly over time, which it doesn't sound like your problem did.
    19K gal, vinyl, 1/2 HP WhisperFlo pump, 200 sqft cartridge filter, AutoPilot Digital SWG, Dolphin Dynamic cleaning robot
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    Re: Pump Problem - Hums & then pops breaker

    Thanks for the reply. I see that I could have been clearer in my original post...this problem was occurring before the spa ran dry but only occasionally. Now, it's every time. Is there a way to test/inspect and determine if the pump body is warped? I haven't noticed any of the typical noises associated with a bearing going out (e.g. squealing)

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    Mod Squad Bama Rambler's Avatar
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    Re: Pump Problem - Hums & then pops breaker

    You should be able to turn the impeller by hand fairly easily. If you can't then something is binding. It could be a bearing and it not make a squealing noise. It could be something caught between the impeller and the casing. Or, as Jason mentioned it could be something warped.
    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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    bobodaclown's Avatar
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    Re: Pump Problem - Hums & then pops breaker

    Remember that the pump is really 2 different things. The electric motor and the wet end (actual pump).
    It could be an old leaking seal, that makes bearings go bad. If you overheat the motor enough the insulation on the winding starts breaking down, then the motor will be no good.
    As Jason said, if the actual pump housing heated and deformed then you might be able to salvage things, but it won't be all that easy.
    You'll may have to pull the motor to check.

    What kind of pump?
    How old is the motor?
    17K Kidney Shaped Pool Concrete (Diamond Bright) Pool, 3/4 hp 2 speed 115V Sta-rite Duraglas PEA5D-180L/P2R5D-181L (Impeller C105-92PS Diffuser C1-216P), 1.5 piping, Pentair CC100 Filter , Heat Siphon 100K BTU Heat Pump Pool Heater, Flow meter Blue White Flowmeter Model No. F-30150P, Hayward Astrolight SP0581N, SWCG CalimarTitanium Edition TE45 , Dolphin Nautilus Plus with CleverClean, Lakeland Florida

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    Re: Pump Problem - Hums & then pops breaker

    1.5HP Whisperflo
    I'll go ahead & pull the motor off and see if I can find out more.

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    Re: Pump Problem - Hums & then pops breaker

    Problem-solved.

    Dog hair

    The strainer let just enough through to wedge the impeller. Now... for the "other" problem: keeping the dang dog out of the pool.

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    bobodaclown's Avatar
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    Re: Pump Problem - Hums & then pops breaker

    GREAT!
    17K Kidney Shaped Pool Concrete (Diamond Bright) Pool, 3/4 hp 2 speed 115V Sta-rite Duraglas PEA5D-180L/P2R5D-181L (Impeller C105-92PS Diffuser C1-216P), 1.5 piping, Pentair CC100 Filter , Heat Siphon 100K BTU Heat Pump Pool Heater, Flow meter Blue White Flowmeter Model No. F-30150P, Hayward Astrolight SP0581N, SWCG CalimarTitanium Edition TE45 , Dolphin Nautilus Plus with CleverClean, Lakeland Florida

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    Mod Squad Bama Rambler's Avatar
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    Re: Pump Problem - Hums & then pops breaker

    Glad it was nothing more serious.
    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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    In the Industry

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    Re: Pump Problem - Hums & then pops breaker

    that had to be A LOT of hair to do that lol

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    Melt In The Sun's Avatar
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    Re: Pump Problem - Hums & then pops breaker

    Using skimmer socks should keep the hair out of the pump, at least!
    11,200 gal, Pebble-Tec; Tristar 2-speed 1hp - Swimclear 325 ft2 cart - SWG - A & A in-floor cleaner - Heat pump. For the poolside cooking, a Yoder Wichita and a Big Steel Keg!
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    Re: Pump Problem - Hums & then pops breaker

    Quote Originally Posted by Melt In The Sun
    Using skimmer socks should keep the hair out of the pump, at least!
    Excellent. Didn't know about those. Thanks for the tip.

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