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Thread: air in pump basket

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    air in pump basket

    I can't figure out what is going on - when I attached my suction line vacuum (zodiac mx-8) properly air enters system. This particular vacuum comes with a gauge to test vacuum pressure. I decided to use the gauge so first had to insert a 4 inch tube apparatus into the skimmer hole (all underwater by 8 or more inches) with the pump perfectly primed, immediately I saw a small tornado and tons of air entered pump basket and prime was lost - when I removed the small tube the system was able to reprime itself. I thought it had something to do with the vacuum but now I am really confused how could just inserting a hollow tube make air enter the system???? Any help or ideas would be very much appreciated.

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    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: air in pump basket

    Welcome to TFP!!!

    I can not picture the setup that is causing the vortex in the skimmer ... can you add a picture?

    Usually that will only happen if the water level is too low or the skimmer weir door gets stuck closed. Is the vortex sucked into the tube or into the other hole of the skimmer?
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    Re: air in pump basket

    I tried to take a picture it doesn't show much. This is a 30 year old pool and it doesn't have a weir just a cutout in the pool wall that allows water to flow to circular plastic body skimmer into intake line to pump. The bottom of the skimmer has an open hole that flows to skimmer intake line (also where I attached vacuum) and another hole that has a plug in it. From waterline to hole is 16 to 17 inches. Yes, it funneled into the short piece of tubing, but I believe air was also introduced from somewhere else since the pump lost prime almost immediately.

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    Re: air in pump basket

    I am thinking that attaching a vacuum (not sure about such a small pipe) would increase pressure and therefore make a air leak in skimmer line worse, but could you still have an underground skimmer line air leak bad enough to cause complete loss of prime and cannot recover (with vacuum attached) and 1) NOT lost any water while running and 2) maintain a primed pump while running and turned off????

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    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: air in pump basket

    IF you put the tube into the hole, then all the suction was coming through the tube which was open close to the surface, so then air was pulled into the tube. To use that gauge aren't you supposed to hook up the entire vacuum? I think if you hook up the entire thing, then you may not have the probelm any more since the suction will come through the cleaner.
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    Re: air in pump basket

    have the same problem with the vacuum attached.

    could I have an underground skimmer line air leak bad enough to cause complete loss of prime and cannot recover (with vacuum attached) and 1) NOT lost any water while running and 2) maintain a primed pump while running and turned off (as long as vacuum not attached)????

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    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: air in pump basket

    Seems unlikely that the small increase in suction with the vac would result in massive amounts of air from an underground leak and no sign of air when the vac is not used.

    Post a picture of the vac and gauge setup as you have it in the skimmer.
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    Isaac-1's Avatar
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    Re: air in pump basket

    The underground suction side leak that I recently had to deal with started out with similar symptoms at first the only sign of a leak was air bubbles when a suction side cleaner / vacuum was plugged in, later the air leak was enough to cause the pump to loose prime, but only when a suction side cleaner was attached, it of course continued to get progressively worse.
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    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: air in pump basket

    Interesting ... although I do not understand the appearance of a vortex in the skimmer in this case.
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