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Thread: Trying to pinpoint suction-side leak

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    Join Date
    May 2013
    Location
    Tempe, Arizona
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    21

    Trying to pinpoint suction-side leak

    Hi folks,

    I've been trying to find the source of a suction-side leak for the past week. I've had a pool for about 10 months now -- we bought a home with a pool -- and am still learning. You all were great helping me maintain proper water balance and I';m hoping you can help me out with this.

    Some background: My pump is new, installed in May, and cleaner is a couple months old.

    The situation: I noticed about two weeks ago that my cleaner wasn't moving when it was supposed to. The pump was running, but it wasn't generating enough suction for the cleaner to move around the bottom of the pool. It would run for two or three minutes after the pump turned on, then not move. There were a bunch of air bubbles in the pump basket; more than I remembered seeing in the summer.

    Here's what I did:
    1. Checked the impeller; it's clear.
    2. Lubed o-ring on pump cover after emptying pump basket of minimal debris.
    3. Cleaned cartridge filter.

    At that point, the issue persisted, so I called a pool guy. First guy came out and lubed o-rings on jandy valves and slopped some glue on the valves. It seemed to work as the cleaner was humming, but it stopped after about 15 minutes, despite the pump still running. A second guy came and here's what he did:

    1. Replaced caps and o-rings on two jandy valves that lead to pump.
    2. Replace gauge on top of filter (He said it had a small leak. Don't know if that's true or not, but I was going to replace it anyway because the Phoenix sun had faded the plastic and I could barely read it anymore.)

    When he finished, the cleaner was moving great and there were almost no air bubbles in the pump basket. I really thought he had figured it out. But about 15 minutes after turning on the cleaner, the cleaner stalled. I checked the cleaner for debris -- it was clear. I turned the pump off, waited a minute, turned it on again and the cleaner started right up and moved. Until it stopped. About 15 minutes later. And there were a bit more air bubbles in the pump basket now.

    I called the pool guy and he suggested I check the leaf canister or cleaner hose for any cracks that could be the source of the air leak. He told me to remove the hose from the port and see if bubbles still appear in the pump basket. I'll try this when I get home tonight. Are there any other suggestions? Should I have the entire jandy valve replaced and not just the cap?
    16,000 gallon, inground plaster pool with raised spa; Pentair EasyTouch 8 automation; IntelliFlo VS pump; Clean & Clear Plus cartridge filter; Poolvergnuegen cleaner.

  2. Back To Top    #2
    Mod Squad JohnT's Avatar
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    Apr 2007
    Location
    SW Indiana
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    9,086

    Re: Trying to pinpoint suction-side leak

    I suspect the hose.
    TFP Moderator
    20K Gallon 20X36 Vinyl Inground
    Hayward S244T Sand Filter with 1HP Whisperflo Pump. Liquidator C-201 and Solar Heat

  3. Back To Top    #3

    Join Date
    May 2013
    Location
    Tempe, Arizona
    Posts
    21

    Re: Trying to pinpoint suction-side leak

    I hope you're right, John. I'll be happy to have solved the problem, but irritated that a 2-month-old hose needs replacement.

    Thanks for the advice; I'll post after seeing if this works.
    16,000 gallon, inground plaster pool with raised spa; Pentair EasyTouch 8 automation; IntelliFlo VS pump; Clean & Clear Plus cartridge filter; Poolvergnuegen cleaner.

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    duraleigh's Avatar
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    Apr 2007
    Location
    Sebring, Florida
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    Re: Trying to pinpoint suction-side leak

    Probably the hose but have you read the article in Pool School?
    Dave S.
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
    TFTestkits , PoolMath , Pool School

  5. Back To Top    #5

    Join Date
    May 2013
    Location
    Tempe, Arizona
    Posts
    21

    Re: Trying to pinpoint suction-side leak

    Update: It seems that the issue was related to the vacuum hose and/or leaf canister, so you guys were right.

    I removed the hose from the suction port on the wall and turned the valve all the way to skimmer. No more bubbles. I replaced the hose in the port and there was a steady stream of bubbles. So I tightened the unions (junctures?) of the hoses and took the canister inside for a good cleaning and lubed the o-ring. Put everything back together and in the pool. Turned the valve back so the vacuum would get suction, too, and turned on the pump. I could see an air pocket building in the canister (probably from water already in the hoses) so I submerged it and tipped it, allowing the air to escape through the top of the canister and into a hose. No more bubbles, so I'm guessing my hoses needed to be tightened or the o-ring lubed on the canister? Vacuum has been going for more than an hour now.

    One more question: One of the pool guys that came out removed the float valve assembly from my skimmer. He said it wasn't really necessary and could be restricting water flow. My skimmer is missing the o-ring that is supposed to go at the bottom of the skimmer, so it's probably it wasn't even working properly. Is he right, is this piece unnecessary? Or should I get the missing o-ring and put it back in? And what does it even do? My skimmer has two holes in the bottom.

    Oh, duraleigh, yes, i read the articles in pool school. I attempted to use a hose to run water over my plumbing, but I did not notice any leaks or was doing it wrong. Probably some of both.
    16,000 gallon, inground plaster pool with raised spa; Pentair EasyTouch 8 automation; IntelliFlo VS pump; Clean & Clear Plus cartridge filter; Poolvergnuegen cleaner.

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