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Thread: multiport valve - can't turn handle - pentair sm-20-2

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    multiport valve - can't turn handle - pentair sm-20-2

    So, new house, pool is a disaster - the previous owners repainted and it appears a lot of **** ended up at the bottom of the pool - old paint chips, etc.

    Got the big debris out, filter working well, water clear and chemistry OK.

    Time to vacuum! Except I'm missing the vacuum plate to attach to the top of the skimmer. Went to the pool store, 8 3/4 vac plate out of stock. "Take the filter basket out and stick the hose down the drain, you'll be fine!".

    Not.

    15 minutes later I go check. I can't move the multiport filter handle. At all. Unscrewed it. Can't lift it off. Now I'm stuck.


    I can, however rotate the part under the handle like so:


    This is a new multiport - the last one was old, stuck, then the handle broke off...

    Any suggestions?

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    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: multiport valve - can't turn handle - pentair sm-20-2

    You need to put the link directly to the JPG (not a website) in the IMG tags for them to show up.
    Jason, TFP Moderator
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    Re: multiport valve - can't turn handle - pentair sm-20-2

    Here's some of what I got from the filter basket near the pump (don't know what the salt-like stuff with blue granules is - looks like that fancy kitty litter)


    Lesson: When the pool's that filthy - vacuum to waste, not through the filter. Ugh.

    And here's a picture of the setup...


    Thanks!

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    Re: multiport valve - can't turn handle - pentair sm-20-2

    The only thing I can think of it maybe being able to get the handle off, then lifting the rest out, cleaning it up, and reassembling it.

    The instructions here look good. Except for the part where it's already out and on the floor
    http://www.inyopools.com/HowToPage/how_ ... pring.aspx

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    Re: multiport valve - can't turn handle - pentair sm-20-2

    You are missing the screws which hold the valve together. Goggl or log on to pentairpool.com and you will find the manual for your valve.
    10,000 gallons IG Freeform, 8ft raised spa,pebble finish
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    Re: multiport valve - can't turn handle - pentair sm-20-2

    I'm trying to take it apart - that's why the screws are missing. At this point I should be able to lift it out and I can't - it's completely stuck...

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    Re: multiport valve - can't turn handle - pentair sm-20-2

    Screw, M6 x 30mm, Stainless Steel -Valve requires 10 of these screws. Found this information on pent air website.
    Hope this helps.
    10,000 gallons IG Freeform, 8ft raised spa,pebble finish
    FNS 60 Sqft DE Filter,2HP Whisperflow for Pool/Spa filtering
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    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: multiport valve - can't turn handle - pentair sm-20-2

    Quote Originally Posted by crudsrus
    Screw, M6 x 30mm, Stainless Steel -Valve requires 10 of these screws. Found this information on pent air website.
    Hope this helps.
    It does not help. Seems like you did not read the thread. He took the screws out to try to open the valve.
    Jason, TFP Moderator
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    Re: multiport valve - can't turn handle - pentair sm-20-2

    Now I understand what you are doing. Are you able to place anything between the sections where the screws mount? If so maybe you can gently pry the assembly loose?
    10,000 gallons IG Freeform, 8ft raised spa,pebble finish
    FNS 60 Sqft DE Filter,2HP Whisperflow for Pool/Spa filtering
    2HP Whisperflow for Spa jets
    1HP Whisperflow for Waterfall
    Master Temp 400,000 Btu Heater

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    Re: multiport valve - can't turn handle - pentair sm-20-2

    I grabbed a screwdriver and tried gently prying the top from the bottom. No luck.

    So I tried really hard (as in, this is gonna break, hard), and it popped with an almighty grinding sound and about 1/2 lb of that silica cat litter stuff (from the picture) came off the top.

    Cleaned it up, reassembled it, and it seems to be working, i.e I can turn it and it backwashes, etc.

    So the answer is "Vacuum to waste when the bottom of your pool is full of silica kitty litter, otherwise force open the jammed multiport with a screwdriver".

    Wow.

    Thanks.

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    Re: multiport valve - can't turn handle - pentair sm-20-2

    My guess is there's so much of that grit that has made it past the basket that it's jamming up the top molded housing of the valve. It looks like you were able to rotate the top after you took out the screws. Does it feel gritty to move it that far? If so, I think you're just going to have to work the top assembly upwards with plenty of rocking motion and hopefully any scoring produced by that, won't diminish it's water tightness later.

    Edit: Guess I was 3 minutes late with a possible solution. Glad it worked!
    21K gal 16' x 40' in-ground pool built 1959, old school with Jacuzzi bronze pump, American Products 24" Sand Filter & Americana Multiport valve, Jandy Lite2 millivolt heater, Coverstar cover, and classic Kreepy Krauly.

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    Re: multiport valve - can't turn handle - pentair sm-20-2

    It could have been 3 minutes after I broke it

    Thanks!

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    Re: multiport valve - can't turn handle - pentair sm-20-2

    Great, glad you were able to loosen the handle. Good informationfor future reference.
    10,000 gallons IG Freeform, 8ft raised spa,pebble finish
    FNS 60 Sqft DE Filter,2HP Whisperflow for Pool/Spa filtering
    2HP Whisperflow for Spa jets
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    Master Temp 400,000 Btu Heater

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    Re: multiport valve - can't turn handle - pentair sm-20-2

    Curious as to what the "kitty litter" actually is. Probably some kindof "pool store miracle shhhhtufff". Selling it to customers would certainly be a good source of revenue via service calls.
    "The early bird might get the worm, but its the second mouse that gets the cheese." ~ W. Rian Adams
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    Relative's IG Vinyl | 16x32 | ~18,600 gals | Hayward 3/4hp Pump | Hayward S244T Filter | Pentair Model 300 Chlorinator (not used) | Polaris 180

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    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: multiport valve - can't turn handle - pentair sm-20-2

    Any chance you had a nature 2 or a pool frog mineral system? Although I am not sure what the stuff inside looks like, but a few have broken and put stuff in the pool.
    Jason, TFP Moderator
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    Re: multiport valve - can't turn handle - pentair sm-20-2

    If I remember correctly we've seen pictures of stuff like that before. I can't remember what it was now, but it certainly could have been from a mineral system. If I have time later I'll try to find it and see if it's relevent.
    Dave J. TFP Moderator
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    Re: multiport valve - can't turn handle - pentair sm-20-2

    20-20 hindsight, but after loosening the top of the multiport, I would've turned on the pump and see if the water flow didn't dislodge the debris and break it all loose.

    Do you have a pump strainer basket in your pump?
    Dave S.
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    Re: multiport valve - can't turn handle - pentair sm-20-2

    I did try using the pump to dislodge the ****, numerous times - no joy.... here's the postcript for anyone else going through this - it's the pool equivalent of sugar in a gas tank...

    If you have to get anything that looks like small white crystals about the size of large rock salt (like for driveways) with blue crystals in it... there was a ton of it at the bottom of a filthy pool, and of course, it doesn't look like anything when you first go try to vacuum it... until everything jams up. Once you see what you're up against, here's what I've done so far:

    1. Vacuum to waste. Make sure to overfill the pool because it's going to take a lot of water and time.
    2. Listen carefully while you vacuum. If you have a pump strainer, it's gonna clog - in about 5 minutes. You can tell because the flow will slow down or stop and the pump will whine.
    3. Stop the pump, empty the strainer, repeat.
    4. Eventually the multiport is going to jam. It'll be full of that crystal stuff - the handle won't be able to move. Take it apart, use force if needed, rinse it off, reassemble.

    By the end of the process you'll probably need a new spider gasket - mine is seriously worn but still filtering OK.

    Still vacuuming - there was a lot of this stuff in there - maybe 5 lbs or more...

    Thanks Dave, great forum.

  19. Back To Top    #19

    Re: multiport valve - can't turn handle - pentair sm-20-2

    Quote Originally Posted by bbunix
    So, new house, pool is a disaster - the previous owners repainted and it appears a lot of **** ended up at the bottom of the pool - old paint chips, etc.
    It might be blasting media (sand etc.).

    When vacuuming sand, use a skimmer basket with a skimmer sock or knee-hi stocking to catch the sand.

    Note: Even putting the multiport on "Waste" will jam up the multiport. However, vacuuming to waste can be done if the water is diverted to waste before the multiport.

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