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Thread: Struggling with air bubbles in the pump basket and returns

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    Struggling with air bubbles in the pump basket and returns

    The last 2 weeks I have been struggling with air bubbles in the pool and can see bubbles sucking in by the pump pot lid. I replaced the o ring and lubed it up really well. There will be no air bubbles for 2-5 minutes and I think I've won, but the darn bubbles keep coming back.

    It is a pentair whisper pump. I also replaced the motor gasket and put silicone around the suction pipes and pressure pipes. Please help.

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    Mod Squad Bama Rambler's Avatar
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    Re: Struggling with air bubbles in the pump basket and retur

    The lid may be warped or have a hairline crack.
    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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    Re: Struggling with air bubbles in the pump basket and retur

    Got a new lid and it almost seems like the air bubbles got worse, although its probably more of my annoyance of them. Any other suggestions?

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    Re: Struggling with air bubbles in the pump basket and retur

    Sorry, forgot to say thank you for taking the time to help me.

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    Re: Struggling with air bubbles in the pump basket and retur

    The best way I have found to find air bubble sources is to take a garden hose (without a nozzle on it) and run water over every exposed area of your suction side. Start at the pump lid and move down to where return pipe enters the pump housing. Slowly cover every area of your suction piping until where it goes underground. Be sure and concentrate on any valves. Also look for cracks in the pump housing. When you hit the air leak with the water the air bubbles will go away. Don't mess with your pressure side at all. Air will not enter there. Water will come out on pressure pipes. I know some use shaving cream but I have never had any success with it.
    17x37 IG vinyl, Grecian style, 20k gal, Hayward DE4800, Hayward Super Pump II 1 hp, Rainbow 320 Chlorinator, 6 Vortex 4x10 solar panels, Aquabot Turbo, Dolphin M5, loop-loc mesh cover

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    Re: Struggling with air bubbles in the pump basket and retur

    So I poured water over the suction side of the pump and it appears, although hard to tell, when I poured water over the skimmer basket and pump lid, the air bubbles stopped. I went over to the pool and the air bubbles were gone and have yet to reappear. This happens after the pump turns on, there will be no air bubbles at first and then will increase over time. The first air bubbles appear after 5-10 minutes.

    I am confused if it is the pump lid because I have already replaced the lid and put on a new o-ring. Could there be a crack in the actual plastic in the pump?

    Thank you for your help.

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    Mod Squad Bama Rambler's Avatar
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    Re: Struggling with air bubbles in the pump basket and retur

    Did you check the drain plugs? It could be that when pouring the water over the basket lid you covered the drain plug(s) with water and that stopped the air.

    It's possible that the pot is cracked or that the sealing surface for the o-ring is nicked.
    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: Struggling with air bubbles in the pump basket and retur

    I'll check the plugs and see if there are any cracks.
    And the bubbles are back with a vengeance.

    Thanks.

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    Re: Struggling with air bubbles in the pump basket and retur

    I would go back to that garden hose and start at the very bottom of the pump housing, then the plugs and continue to work you way up slowly. If necessary have a second person watch the bubbles as you do this. I assume you are able to view the bubbles through the lid on the pump housing. Maybe even form a little dam around the bottom of the housing so the housing is sitting in a little water. I say this because my housing actually had a crack on the bottom which was difficult to find.
    17x37 IG vinyl, Grecian style, 20k gal, Hayward DE4800, Hayward Super Pump II 1 hp, Rainbow 320 Chlorinator, 6 Vortex 4x10 solar panels, Aquabot Turbo, Dolphin M5, loop-loc mesh cover

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    Re: Struggling with air bubbles in the pump basket and retur

    So I haven't had time to go back to the garden hose to isolate the leak, however, I have been air bubble free today. There is still a leak somewhere because there is still water around the pump. I backwashed the filter yesterday, would that change anything? My pressure is 16-17 psi.

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    Re: Struggling with air bubbles in the pump basket and retur

    I have been air bubble free today
    What changed? Did you re-seat the pump basket lid? Something had to change.

    Water gathering around the pump (or anywhere else) is a seperate issue.
    Dave S.
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
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    Re: Struggling with air bubbles in the pump basket and retur

    Nothing. Just back washed yesterday. The air bubbles were pretty bad yesterday, so I back washed in the morning and the pump turned off at 2pm and did not start back til today at 8am. I'll updat tomorrow and see if they are back, but rather confused that they just went away today, actually wired not seeing them.

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    Re: Struggling with air bubbles in the pump basket and retur

    This is the first I have heard you say water around the pump. This sure looks like it's a leak in that area, possibly a crack in the housing. My crack would let air in creating air bubbles when running but also let some water out when the pump was off.
    17x37 IG vinyl, Grecian style, 20k gal, Hayward DE4800, Hayward Super Pump II 1 hp, Rainbow 320 Chlorinator, 6 Vortex 4x10 solar panels, Aquabot Turbo, Dolphin M5, loop-loc mesh cover

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    Re: Struggling with air bubbles in the pump basket and retur

    So the air bubbles have not come back. Wiered that they have been there for 3 weeks and after a backwash they disappear. Thought I'd let you all know. Thanks for your assistance.

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