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Thread: Skimmer door got jammed by toys

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    Skimmer door got jammed by toys

    My problem is with my Hayward Max-Flow II pump. I have an 15K gallons AGP that does not have a bottom (main) drain, it only has a single skimmer. The problem is that once last year, and then again this past week, the skimmer door got jammed by toys, and there was not enough water getting to the pump to keep it primed, but it kept turning for many hours, heating up the little water it had in the pump strainer house to the point where it became so hot that it heated pieces around so much that they changed shape: the flexible tubing between the pump and the sand filter head twisted and got larger, the strainer basket now has a bump where the water goes to the impeller, and the strainer cover color changed from transparent to solid white.

    I would like your advice on how to avoid this situation to occur again, accepting the basic fact that that toys will again jam the skimmer door in the future. Installing a main drain at this time would not make sense, the pool is only 3 years old. Would there be another way to provide a second water access to the pump for when the skimmer gets jammed? Or could I install a heater sensor to stop the pump if it heats up again?

    I would prefer the second water source approach because I also have solar panels, so stopping the water circulation would not be ideal.

    Thanks in advance for your help.

  2. Back To Top    #2

    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Flower Mound, TX

    Re: Skimmer door got jammed by toys

    Welcome to TFP!

    I cannot think of a way to reroute water around a stuck skimmer weir and still allow for skimming action to take place. May just need to be more forceful in the "pick up your toys or lose them" department. I had the same problem with the noodles. Eventually, the noodles were removed and ended up being earned back. Now, the toys get picked up.
    10K gallon IG gunite with waterfall; Pentair CC320P filter; WhisperFlo 2 HP pump
    TF Test Kits - Pool Math - Pool School
    "It depends."- JohnT

  3. Back To Top    #3

    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    Sayville, NY

    Re: Skimmer door got jammed by toys

    Is it possible to add another skimmer? Or maybe put a guard in front of your current skimmer that will not allow it to get jammed? My skimmers don't have doors in them, don't know if that is bad or not, but would it help if you removed the doors?
    16 x 32 Vinyl IGP ~22000 G

  4. Back To Top    #4

    Re: Skimmer door got jammed by toys

    In the end keeping the water level a little higher resolved my problem. I am now keeping the water level at about 1 to 1.5 inch below the top of the skimmer mouth and all has been fine this summer. Thanks for your input.

  5. Back To Top    #5

    Join Date
    May 2009

    Re: Skimmer door got jammed by toys

    A couple of years ago I saw a guard plate at a pool store that snapped into the skimmer opening. It jutted out into the water a few inches with a grill face and provided enough water area around and behind it that no amount of toys or such would do what you described. It appeared to be a real simple an inexpensive fix for your problem. Sorry I can't remember the exact name or mfg. Maybe a google search will turn something up?
    28 foot doughboy AGP, dug out to 5 foot, about 18,000 gallons
    1 1/2 HP pump and 100 lb sand filter
    South Central Pennsylvania

  6. Back To Top    #6
    techguy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Antelope, CA

    Re: Skimmer door got jammed by toys

    I tried some of the guards but they keep popping off. They do help.
    -- Guy --
    10K gallons in 21' Round 52 inch wall Aqualeader AG, Hayward Power Flow LX 1.5 HP pump motor, Hayward Perflex EC50AC DE filter w/Cellulose, Wide mouth skimmer, 2013 new Diver Dan (craigslist) to replace the faded old Hayward AquaBug. TF-100

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