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Thread: New Hayward EchoStar on old pool won't prime

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    New Hayward EchoStar on old pool won't prime

    I have read a lot of msgs dealing with the same subject and I know people hate reading the same thing over and over but I just spent the whole weekend trying to get my BRAND NEW EchoStar to prime with no luck. My old pump took a dive last week and before I could get the new pump in, my pool has turned green. The water in the pump reservoir sometimes fills all the way up, and sometimes it has about an inch left. I have three separate valves that I can turn on and off depending on what location I am drawing the water from. On all three setting I get the same results. The problem only came to light when I put the new pump in. As you know this pump is all electronic and does an automatic prime. With that being said, I am not sure that my old pump ever had a 100% prime. As you see in the picture, all three valves lead to the one single port going into the pump. I have taken the white plumbing apart and put a good ring of Teflon tape around it. The other white fitting is glued. The black fitting is also glued and also put a very light touch of plumbers grease on the O-ring.

    I am stuck and have no clue what else to look for. PLEASE HELP ME!!!!
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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: New Hayward EchoStar on old pool won't prime

    In the photo you have the pump setup to prime from just the main drain. Have you tried setting the valves so it primes from just the skimmer?

    I assume you are filling the pump strainer basket with water each time?

    It doesn't take all that much of a suction side air leak to prevent priming. Such a leak would be a little tricky to find or even confirm it existed in this situation.
    19K gal, vinyl, 1/2 HP WhisperFlo pump, 200 sqft cartridge filter, AutoPilot Digital SWG, Dolphin Dynamic cleaning robot
    Creator of PoolMath and Pool Calculator. Other handy links: Support this site, TF Test Kits, Pool School

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    Re: New Hayward EchoStar on old pool won't prime

    I have tried all three positions set one at a time to try and single down the culprit. The reservoir has water in at all three setting when I start. It will fill up the reservoir but after the 15 minutes, the pump fails due to the pump not priming.

    Just to mention, in that 15 minutes, I can draw enough water from the pool to fill up the connected spa. So I know it is pulling a good amount of water through it.

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: New Hayward EchoStar on old pool won't prime

    The next thing to try is to turn down the max speed on the pump to something like 2400 RPM.
    19K gal, vinyl, 1/2 HP WhisperFlo pump, 200 sqft cartridge filter, AutoPilot Digital SWG, Dolphin Dynamic cleaning robot
    Creator of PoolMath and Pool Calculator. Other handy links: Support this site, TF Test Kits, Pool School

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    Re: New Hayward EchoStar on old pool won't prime

    Will try that now...

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    Re: New Hayward EchoStar on old pool won't prime

    Well, that didn't do it either... dropped it down from 3500 to 2000. I also read where someone said to put shaving cream at the joints to see if you have any suction. Retired from the military 2 years ago and haven't shaved since (use only clippers) so I finally got a use for that old shaving cream. As you can see in the picture, nothing. I also included a picture of the outward water flow. I had to redo this from the old pump due to the fact it is a little longer. Would the flow going out in the picture cause a problem? Hard to see but I went from the larger pipe to a smaller one...

    Thanks again for your replies... never thought I would get help this fast.
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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: New Hayward EchoStar on old pool won't prime

    There is one more setting to try, change the priming period from auto sense to fixed 3 minute prime.
    19K gal, vinyl, 1/2 HP WhisperFlo pump, 200 sqft cartridge filter, AutoPilot Digital SWG, Dolphin Dynamic cleaning robot
    Creator of PoolMath and Pool Calculator. Other handy links: Support this site, TF Test Kits, Pool School

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    Re: New Hayward EchoStar on old pool won't prime

    Never thought of trying it that way. So basically I am telling it to only prime 3 minutes then do the action I told it to do. Did it and it is not stopping after the prime. So basically this is bypassing a safety feature I guess? At this point in time I really don't care. As long as it is not messing up the pump and it clears my pool up. Also want to mention that I am NOT getting air bubbles in the pool doing it either way.

    Edit - Let me clarify that... Didn't get bubbles in the pool with the 15 minute Auto and still not with the 3 minute so that is the reason I can't figure why it says it is not priming.

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: New Hayward EchoStar on old pool won't prime

    My guess is that the auto prime is not getting the minimum flow rate it wants because your plumbing is too small. With two inch plumbing it would probably be fine, but with smaller pipes you can actually be primed just fine yet still not meet it's threshold of what it expects to see when primed.
    19K gal, vinyl, 1/2 HP WhisperFlo pump, 200 sqft cartridge filter, AutoPilot Digital SWG, Dolphin Dynamic cleaning robot
    Creator of PoolMath and Pool Calculator. Other handy links: Support this site, TF Test Kits, Pool School

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    Re: New Hayward EchoStar on old pool won't prime

    My guess is your bringing too much water through those 1 1/2 tees. I have had so many issues with My Ecostar and once the Hayward rep finally came out to support my PB, bam it was fixed.
    Hayward recommends 2" plumbing into the pump. I would change your Tees to 2". They also recommend a minimum of 7 - 10" from the inlet to the first Tee to reduce turbulence.

    After my PB plumbed my Ecostar this way I have not have any more issues. I really believe you are just frankly starving your pump for water supply. Mine was so bad I couldn't backwash at high RPM. Think about 3, 1 1/2" pipes moving water volume into those Tees.
    16 x 32 Grecian Vinyl. Salt-Aqua Plus PS-4, Hayward Pro Series Sand Filter, Hayward Ecostar SP34000vsp, Gulfstream HE-125-T-A Heat/Cool heat Pump

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    Re: New Hayward EchoStar on old pool won't prime

    When you get a minute...

    I am not a huge fan of those compression couplings. If it were me I would change them to the "union" type. I cannot tell you how many of those I have replaced due to the seals failing. At least with the union, it is just an O ring.

    On the other hand, I guess that eveything works fine, until it fails. Just a musing and product preference!
    Science and Math Teacher
    Owner - SPS - part time pool biz
    18x36 IG Vinyl, 23000 Gallons with Jacuzzi (the bane of my existance) pumpworks
    Polaris 280 w/ PB4 booster

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    Re: New Hayward EchoStar on old pool won't prime

    All great comments and all make sense. From the last elbow to the intake there is 10" but it's not clean all the way so that could cause some friction/stoppage of water. I think I will leave it the way it is right now and in the mean time, build a replacement. Not a real big fan of the way this thing is laid out.

    Again, thanks for all the great replies and help

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