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Thread: Low suction pressure from skimmer

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    Low suction pressure from skimmer

    I am not getting the suction power from my skimmer when I turn my Jandy valve to vacuum mode like I did last year. The water pressure starts to build for maybe 10 seconds, then it's as if I turned the valve back to the middle main filter drains. Water in the pump basket falls to almost nothing, pressure guage on the filter drops to zero, I have to open the relief valve to let the air out of the filter tank.

    There were lots of leaves in the pool when I opened this summer, and I vacuumed them out through the skimmer and the vacuum hose was constantly getting clogged where it empties into the skimmer. Could the skimmer line be clogged w/debris? Sometimes squirrels bring pecans to the pool to do whatever they do w/pecans in a pool (party?). I did use my large shop vac to blow through the line a couple of times.

    suggestions?

    thx
    4k, IG, Gunnite, Jandy Valve, 1HP Haywood, 2" flow, single 2" line for skimming & vacuum, Pentair FNSP 36 DE w/125 GPM Multiport 50 PSI, TF-100 Test Kit, built 1991, Hilton Head, SC

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    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: Low suction pressure from skimmer

    Is the water level high enough? Is the skimmer weir sticking? Is air being pulled in at the skimmer or not?
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    Richard320's Avatar
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    Re: Low suction pressure from skimmer

    If you're letting air out the bleed, you let some air in somewhere.

    Just to be sure, this only happens when you connect the vacuum to the skimmer, or just when you try to run the skimmer alone?

    If it's skimmer alone, the most common things are low water level creating a vortex or a sticking weir. (flapper)

    If it's when you connect the vacuum, it could be a clogged hose. Or it could be suction side leaks but they're really small and don't show up until you put the massive suction of the hose against the system. So check the drain plugs on the pump and ensure the pump strainer gasket isn't cracked and that it's clean and lubricated. You might also try spraying shaving cream on the multiport valve stem. If it slows sown the vacuum leak or sucks foam in, you've found it.

    You might also have a pinhole in the vacuum hose.
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    Re: Low suction pressure from skimmer

    It only happens when I turn the jandy valve to vacuum (counter clockwise). The weir is no longer present. Guess I should see if I can get a replacement, huh?

    I did notice that there was barely enough water in the skimmer when I moved the valve to vacuum. I can't even get back to the skimmer after turning the valve to get the round thingy (notice my technical knowledge of these items) on the end of the hose before the vacuum is lost and the skimmer fills back up with water again. I'll try your suggestion about a little more water up the sides of the tiles. I'm still waiting for a pool techie to come and check for my leak.
    4k, IG, Gunnite, Jandy Valve, 1HP Haywood, 2" flow, single 2" line for skimming & vacuum, Pentair FNSP 36 DE w/125 GPM Multiport 50 PSI, TF-100 Test Kit, built 1991, Hilton Head, SC

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    Mod Squad zea3's Avatar
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    Re: Low suction pressure from skimmer

    If the water level in your pool is low it will cause the skimmer to suck air into the system. Does it look like a whirlpool in the skimmer when you turn on the pump with the valve set to skimmer?
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    Re: Low suction pressure from skimmer

    Yes for about 10 seconds then reverts back to regular skimming
    4k, IG, Gunnite, Jandy Valve, 1HP Haywood, 2" flow, single 2" line for skimming & vacuum, Pentair FNSP 36 DE w/125 GPM Multiport 50 PSI, TF-100 Test Kit, built 1991, Hilton Head, SC

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    Mod Squad zea3's Avatar
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    Re: Low suction pressure from skimmer

    Try raising the water level in the pool to at least 1/2 way up the skimmer and see if that helps.
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    Re: Low suction pressure from skimmer

    That worked! Trouble is we have a severe leak. Working on a diagnosis.

    Thx!
    4k, IG, Gunnite, Jandy Valve, 1HP Haywood, 2" flow, single 2" line for skimming & vacuum, Pentair FNSP 36 DE w/125 GPM Multiport 50 PSI, TF-100 Test Kit, built 1991, Hilton Head, SC

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    Mod Squad zea3's Avatar
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    Re: Low suction pressure from skimmer

    Have you been able to locate the source of the leak?
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    Re: Low suction pressure from skimmer

    No. Suspect the grout around the tiles by the skimmer. Once I finish the SLAM going to close the skimmer line and use the red dye test.
    4k, IG, Gunnite, Jandy Valve, 1HP Haywood, 2" flow, single 2" line for skimming & vacuum, Pentair FNSP 36 DE w/125 GPM Multiport 50 PSI, TF-100 Test Kit, built 1991, Hilton Head, SC

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