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Thread: Can't run Skimmer and Vac line simultaneously

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    Can't run Skimmer and Vac line simultaneously

    Hey Guys/Gals,

    I have an 11,300 Gallon pool which has a Vac Line, Skimmer and Main drain. On the pad there are three different pipes coming in each with a shut off valve labelled "Vac", "Skimmer", "Main Drain".

    I used the Flow Gauge that came with the Hayward Navigator and in order to set it between the "Min" and "Max" lines on that flow gauge, I have to run the vac line by itself. Otherwise, there is not enough suction. My sand filter was backwashed and shows 10-12psi, the lines are for sure not clogged, pump shows no air bubbles during operation. There just isn't enough juice to run both the skimmer and the Navigator at the same time. Isn't it suppose to work this way? Skimmer and Vac line together? If I try the Navigator doesn't move.

    I really, really want to run both at the same time otherwise it defeats the purpose of having a dedicated vac line in the first place if I have to always shut off the skimmer to run it. What do I have to do in order to achieve this?
    11.5K gal, IG vinyl, 3/4 HP Hayward Pump, Hayward sand filter, Hayward Chlorinator (Turned Off), Hayward Pool Vac Ultra

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    Re: Can't run Skimmer and Vac line simultaneously

    That's somewhat typical. A dedicated vacuum line typically has a separate booster pump dedicated for that purpose as a single main pump isn't enough to run everything.

    When I manually vacuum I close the drain 3/4 way to dedicate suction to the vacuum head which is attached to the skimmer.
    18x36 inground vinyl lined, Hayward sand filter and tablet chrolinator, approx 18k gallon

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    Mod Squad Bama Rambler's Avatar
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    Re: Can't run Skimmer and Vac line simultaneously

    Tell us more about your equipment. Pump size, filter size, piping sizes, etc.?

    Depending on the size of your pump and what the piping sizes and lengths are, it may be perfectly normal to have to shut off the skimmer and/or main drain (at least partially) in order to get the vacuum to work.
    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: Can't run Skimmer and Vac line simultaneously

    Ok, I just got around to getting more info about my equipment. It's Hayward pump (model C4J2N13B1) which I think is 3/4 HP. The pipes look to be about 2 inch thick. The filter is a Hayward Sand Filter which I have just backwashed.

    My other question is then why would the original home/pool owner go to the trouble of putting in/paying for a dedicated vacuum line just to shut off the only skimmer in order to use it. What is the point? What am I missing here?
    11.5K gal, IG vinyl, 3/4 HP Hayward Pump, Hayward sand filter, Hayward Chlorinator (Turned Off), Hayward Pool Vac Ultra

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    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: Can't run Skimmer and Vac line simultaneously

    Well, the alternative would be to have the vac hooked up in the skimmer ... which would also remove the skimming ability.

    It is possible that they used to have a larger pump that could run both, but have since put in a smaller pump to save money on electricity.

    Please add your pool details and location as described HERE as it will help us help you.
    Jason, TFP Moderator
    18k IG pebblesheen pool, Hayward ProLogic P4 w/ T-15 SWG, Pentair 1HP 2-speed Superflo, Hayward 6020 DE filter
    500 sqft Heliocol solar panels, ThePoolCleaner, TF-100 test kit w/ SpeedStir
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    Re: Can't run Skimmer and Vac line simultaneously

    I updated my sig and added location to my profile. Just gotta get the size of my sand filter and heater specs as I'm not to sure.

    So, if I eventually upgraded my pump would that solve my issue and allow me to effectively run the skimmer and pool vac at the same time? What about a booster pump instead?
    11.5K gal, IG vinyl, 3/4 HP Hayward Pump, Hayward sand filter, Hayward Chlorinator (Turned Off), Hayward Pool Vac Ultra

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    Mod Squad Bama Rambler's Avatar
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    Re: Can't run Skimmer and Vac line simultaneously

    It all depends on how it's plumbed.
    You say the pipes look to be about 2" which means they're 1½" pipes, so upgrading the pump may not help. Like I said, it all depends on how it's plumbed.

    Can you post a pic of the pad?
    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: Can't run Skimmer and Vac line simultaneously

    Sure.. This is the pad...







    Thanks again
    11.5K gal, IG vinyl, 3/4 HP Hayward Pump, Hayward sand filter, Hayward Chlorinator (Turned Off), Hayward Pool Vac Ultra

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    Mod Squad Bama Rambler's Avatar
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    Re: Can't run Skimmer and Vac line simultaneously

    When you're running the vacuum, I'd cut the main drain completely off and cut back on the skimmer until the vacuum works and see how that works out.
    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: Can't run Skimmer and Vac line simultaneously

    Quote Originally Posted by Bama Rambler
    When you're running the vacuum, I'd cut the main drain completely off and cut back on the skimmer until the vacuum works and see how that works out.
    The problem is there isn't enough suction until the Vac Line is open solely by itself, cutting off the main drain and skimmer completely. To make sure the fault was not with the Hayward Vac unit, the Vac unit was serviced and I used the included Hayward "Flow Gauge" to test the flow and this gauge confirms that the appropriate flow is reached when only the Vac line is open by itself.

    From the pics posted above, does it seem that either a larger pump or "booster pump" will give me the suction required to run just the Skimmer and Vac Line simultaneously?
    11.5K gal, IG vinyl, 3/4 HP Hayward Pump, Hayward sand filter, Hayward Chlorinator (Turned Off), Hayward Pool Vac Ultra

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    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: Can't run Skimmer and Vac line simultaneously

    I don't think a booster pump will do what your are asking.

    What size are all those pipes?
    How often do you run the heater? You could add a bypass line around it which might reduce the head loss and increase flow rate.
    Is there only a single return line?

    You could easily go to a larger motor/pump though since you have 3 separate suction lines.

    OF course if you get a larger motor, I would get a 2-speed so you can run on low when you do not need the vac on.
    Jason, TFP Moderator
    18k IG pebblesheen pool, Hayward ProLogic P4 w/ T-15 SWG, Pentair 1HP 2-speed Superflo, Hayward 6020 DE filter
    500 sqft Heliocol solar panels, ThePoolCleaner, TF-100 test kit w/ SpeedStir
    Pool School + Test Kit + PoolMath = A TROUBLE FREE POOL
    If you found TFP helpful and we saved you money ... Become a TFP Supporter!

  12. Back To Top    #12

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    Re: Can't run Skimmer and Vac line simultaneously

    Thank you for your help. I will measure the pipes. I have two return jets in the pool. I will definitely look into a larger 2 speed pump eventually.

    I just don't understand why the original owner and PB decided on a dedicated vac line in this case. Seems kind of useless to me if you can just plug a vac into the skimmer. Can't run both together, so why put em' both in?
    11.5K gal, IG vinyl, 3/4 HP Hayward Pump, Hayward sand filter, Hayward Chlorinator (Turned Off), Hayward Pool Vac Ultra

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