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Thread: Testing a flow switch

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    Testing a flow switch

    Hello all - first post from me. I saw other posts similar to this but wanted to ask a specific question about testing a flow switch. I recently replaced my pump motor (just bought the house and motor had a bad bearing and was extremely loud). New pump working great, no leaks. However, since I replaced it, every once in a while my system says "Chlorinator Off - No Flow" or "No Flow Filter Pump". My suspicion is that I stepped on something or kicked something replacing the pump and broke the flow switch. At any rate I did the following as tests:

    Unplugged the switch from the panel - same issue (obviously - no way for the loop to close)
    Turned the flow switch the opposite direction (to make sure I did not wire pump backwards and reverse the flow) - same issue

    The switch connects to the panel with an RJ-11 telephone jack. So I took a spare telephone cord, spliced it into a loop (to complete the circuit) and plugged it into the panel where the flow switch would normally plug in. Since I did that it's been running like a champ - pump and chlorinator. I have good flow, my water fall feature is working and the filter pressure is good. Is this proof that the switch is bad or should I do more testing? I ask because the switches are pretty expensive ($100 +) so I don't want to buy one if it is not my problem.

    Appreciate this forum very much - I have learned so much already!!!
    10K gallon built in 2008, in ground gunite, with attached spa, waterfall feature and cool deck.
    Two Hayward 1 HP pump motors, cartridge filter, Aqua Logic PS-4 automation system with saltwater chlorine generator.

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    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: Testing a flow switch

    Welcome to TFP!!!

    That proves the the flow switch is not closing the circuit as it should. So either you really do not have enough flow, or more likely something is wrong.

    Check the full length of the wire to make sure it is not cut, chewed, etc. You can unscrew the sensor out and replace it if required.

    To go a step further, you could unscrew the sensor, plug the hole, run the pump and push the sensor closed and that will definitively tell you that something is wrong with the sensor.
    Jason, TFP Moderator
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    Re: Testing a flow switch

    Thanks - I will try this. The house sat empty for 8 months before I bought it so the pool is a wreck. If I can keep the pump going I can get it on track. I will post back with results.
    10K gallon built in 2008, in ground gunite, with attached spa, waterfall feature and cool deck.
    Two Hayward 1 HP pump motors, cartridge filter, Aqua Logic PS-4 automation system with saltwater chlorine generator.

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    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: Testing a flow switch

    Sounds like you need to SLAM the pool then. And a SWG is not typically used for that process.
    Jason, TFP Moderator
    18k IG pebblesheen pool, Hayward ProLogic P4 w/ T-15 SWG, Pentair 1HP 2-speed Superflo, Hayward 6020 DE filter
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    Re: Testing a flow switch

    I had to replace my flow switch this spring after the pool's fourth season. Check on Amazon.com. Their prices should be cheaper than the local pool store.

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    Re: Testing a flow switch

    OK so it turns out the switch was not my problem - thanks so much for the recommendation. I plugged the switch back in, plugged the hole and held the switch closed as you recommended. It ran perfectly - so the switch works. So I began working on a flow issue. I noticed my filter pressure was 25 with the pump running - which I have heard is a little high. The pressure returned to 0 with the pump off. I removed the cartridge and closed the filter assembly, and started the pump with no cartridge in place. Holy cow! Water came over my waterfall feature like Niagara Falls!! I thought it was running right before but apparently not. Pressure in the filter housing without the filter was 8. The bands on the filter are not broken so I will work on cleaning it - but I will probably buy a new one anyway. As I stated before the house was vacant for 8 months so there is no telling what happened during that time - a new filter would give me a fresh start. Thanks so much!!!!!!
    10K gallon built in 2008, in ground gunite, with attached spa, waterfall feature and cool deck.
    Two Hayward 1 HP pump motors, cartridge filter, Aqua Logic PS-4 automation system with saltwater chlorine generator.

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    Re: Testing a flow switch

    Jbizzle - on your slam comment - we had that done. The pool was green green green two days before we closed on the house - so we told the owner it had to be fixed before closing. They did shock it (not sure how) and the chemicals are in good shape. We have had the house and pool for two weeks and it has stayed relatively balanced - hopefully the flow fix will help keep it that way long term. Thanks again!!!!
    10K gallon built in 2008, in ground gunite, with attached spa, waterfall feature and cool deck.
    Two Hayward 1 HP pump motors, cartridge filter, Aqua Logic PS-4 automation system with saltwater chlorine generator.

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    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: Testing a flow switch

    Just because the water is clear, dues not necessarily mean they eradicated everything. I would suggest at least doing the OCLT test part of the SLAM process to ensure there is nothing in the water.

    Glad I was able to help sort out the switch issue.
    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: Testing a flow switch

    Quote Originally Posted by dking1995
    So I took a spare telephone cord, spliced it into a loop (to complete the circuit) and plugged it into the panel where the flow switch would normally plug in. Since I did that it's been running like a champ - pump and chlorinator.
    Safety controls, such as a flow switch, can sometimes be jumped briefly for diagnosis, but they should never be left jumped.

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    Re: Testing a flow switch

    See if the switch is installed backwards. I have heard of hem being installed with the paddle/sensor in the wrong direction.
    -- 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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    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: Testing a flow switch

    The switch is fine, it was low flow due to clogged filter ... come on guys, read
    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!

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    Re: Testing a flow switch

    That will teach me to skim...
    -- 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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    Re: Testing a flow switch

    I was addressing the fact that the system had been left running for a period of time with a jumped flow switch. If it was a brief, supervised period, then that's fine.

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    Re: Testing a flow switch

    Hi JamesW - yes it was a brief period (about 60 minutes). With the flow issue the panel was reporting no flow or no flow pump consistently within 15 - 20 minutes of turning on the pump. Clean filter - all good now.
    10K gallon built in 2008, in ground gunite, with attached spa, waterfall feature and cool deck.
    Two Hayward 1 HP pump motors, cartridge filter, Aqua Logic PS-4 automation system with saltwater chlorine generator.

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