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Thread: Small pump won't run cleaner

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    Small pump won't run cleaner

    Split by moderator from HERE. Please start your own thread for your own questions. Thanks, jblizzle

    I looking for similar information. I have a 3/4 HP motor that works fine for circulation, but will NOT run a pool cleaner. I even bought the lowest flow pool cleaner I could find reviewed, opened it wide, it still runs very slowly, and the motor is now making a loud whine even though it wasn't terribly old so I guess it strained it. I take it that I could just replace my motor with a 2-speed and get a smaller impeller? I just want to be prepared before I go to a pool store and they try to sell me more than I need!
    23K gal., kidney IG vinyl, 3/4 HP pump, sand filter, Baracuda G2

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    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: Small pump won't run cleaner

    Can you please be more specific about what pump you have (not the motor).

    I think a 3/4 HP pump should have plenty of suction to run a cleaner ... so I wonder if you have some sort of plumbing problem.

    A smaller impeller is not going to help you. If you think you need more power, then you would want to buy a larger 2-speed motor and would also need to get a larger impeller.
    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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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: Small pump won't run cleaner

    There are a couple of different kinds of pool cleaners, some require a specially designed pump, not a regular pool pump, while others will work with a regular pool pump.

    Another possibility is that some of the water is avoiding the pool cleaner, running a different route. For example suction cleaners often require that you block off the main drain to get enough water to go to the cleaner.

    What brand/model of pool cleaner do you have?
    19K gal, vinyl, 1/2 HP WhisperFlo pump, 200 sqft cartridge filter, AutoPilot Digital SWG, Dolphin Dynamic cleaning robot
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    Re: Small pump won't run cleaner

    It is a 20+ year old Hayward Super II. It does seem like it lost power after a couple of hurricanes in the mid-90s. The impeller has been changed and it didn't seem to result in much improvement. I am willing to buy a new pump also if that is necessary. Would a 20+ year old sand filter need replacing as well? I mean the whole thing- not the sand! My husband thinks we should just replace everything if it is in our budget, but I tend to be more frugal!
    23K gal., kidney IG vinyl, 3/4 HP pump, sand filter, Baracuda G2

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    Re: Small pump won't run cleaner

    Quote Originally Posted by JasonLion View Post
    There are a couple of different kinds of pool cleaners, some require a specially designed pump, not a regular pool pump, while others will work with a regular pool pump.

    Another possibility is that some of the water is avoiding the pool cleaner, running a different route. For example suction cleaners often require that you block off the main drain to get enough water to go to the cleaner.

    What brand/model of pool cleaner do you have?
    It is a Baracuda G2. I picked it out because it is supposed to work with low-powered pumps. I have also used other brands with similar results. Believe me, I do close off the main drain and the other skimmer line to get it to run at all! The only thing that I can think to do is to replace the motor and pump! I'm getting very frustrated!
    23K gal., kidney IG vinyl, 3/4 HP pump, sand filter, Baracuda G2

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: Small pump won't run cleaner

    20 years is a long time for a sand filter to be around. Many filters will fail before they get 20 years old. On the other hand, if it is still working then there isn't really any need to replace it. We finally gave up on a 45 year old sand filter a few years ago, it was getting really iffy, several broken parts, and repair parts were no longer available. So it is possible to keep things a long time if they get proper maintenance.
    19K gal, vinyl, 1/2 HP WhisperFlo pump, 200 sqft cartridge filter, AutoPilot Digital SWG, Dolphin Dynamic cleaning robot
    Creator of PoolMath and Pool Calculator. Other handy links: Support this site, TF Test Kits, Pool School

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    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: Small pump won't run cleaner

    A Super II, even a 3/4HP one, is a good size pump ... likely more powerful than the pump that I currently have. I still have to suspect that something is wrong and not that the pump is too small.

    How big is the sand filter? What pressures to you see on the gauge?
    Can you post some pictures of your plumbing setup?
    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: Small pump won't run cleaner

    Quote Originally Posted by JasonLion View Post
    20 years is a long time for a sand filter to be around. Many filters will fail before they get 20 years old. On the other hand, if it is still working then there isn't really any need to replace it. We finally gave up on a 45 year old sand filter a few years ago, it was getting really iffy, several broken parts, and repair parts were no longer available. So it is possible to keep things a long time if they get proper maintenance.
    OK, thanks! I'll prepare myself for a big bill! It will be worth it, though, if it makes it easier to keep the pool clean!
    23K gal., kidney IG vinyl, 3/4 HP pump, sand filter, Baracuda G2

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    Re: Small pump won't run cleaner

    Quote Originally Posted by jblizzle View Post
    A Super II, even a 3/4HP one, is a good size pump ... likely more powerful than the pump that I currently have. I still have to suspect that something is wrong and not that the pump is too small.

    How big is the sand filter? What pressures to you see on the gauge?
    Can you post some pictures of your plumbing setup?
    Thanks but I've done all that before so I guess it's just time to try pool companies and hope I get a knowledgeable repair person.
    23K gal., kidney IG vinyl, 3/4 HP pump, sand filter, Baracuda G2

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    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: Small pump won't run cleaner

    Well, you never bothered to follow through in your thread last July when Mark was trying to help.

    If you think you will get better advice from someone local who is making money off of you ... good luck with that. You know where to find us
    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: Small pump won't run cleaner

    I did all the things he recommended as far as checking for suction side leaks and lubing the plugs. That's why I figured it was time to look into upgrading the equipment. Maybe If I shop around, I can find someone to pay who will fix my problem and be slightly less condescending to me!
    23K gal., kidney IG vinyl, 3/4 HP pump, sand filter, Baracuda G2

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