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Thread: Timer trips breaker

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    Timer trips breaker

    Any ideas to get me started diagnosing are welcome. Every time my intermatic timer reaches the "on" tripper, the pump circuit breaker trips. However, if I manually switch the pump to on, it runs fine with no circuit breaker issues. What the heck could be causing that?
    Walnut Creek, CA. 18k gallon Pebble Sheen + 1.5k gallon IG spa, 1.5hp whisperflo main pump, Pentair clean and clear 420, Intellichlor IC20, Polaris 360 w/booster,Jandy lite 2 natural gas, plus solar with Heliomatic 5000 controller and 3/4 hp booster

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: Timer trips breaker

    Water inside the timer could do that.
    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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    Re: Timer trips breaker

    It's unlikely that the timer is getting wet consistently. If, by some freak accident, it had gotten wet at some point, it would be dry by now.
    I guess I did not even realize the timer itself is on the same circuit as the pump. But I guess that makes sense.
    I don't think the circuit is overloaded because nothing has been added. Almost sounds like a short because it is so instant.
    Do timers go "bad"? I'm confused.
    Walnut Creek, CA. 18k gallon Pebble Sheen + 1.5k gallon IG spa, 1.5hp whisperflo main pump, Pentair clean and clear 420, Intellichlor IC20, Polaris 360 w/booster,Jandy lite 2 natural gas, plus solar with Heliomatic 5000 controller and 3/4 hp booster

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: Timer trips breaker

    Timers can certainly fail, though that is relatively rare. An very brief short to ground when it was switching could cause your problem.
    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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    Re: Timer trips breaker

    Further diagnosis, the pump often does not turn over when "cold" starting. Causes the breaker to trip. If i turn the shaft a bit manually, it will start on the next try. A barely noticable little bit of resistence fromt the shaft but in general it turns freely. I am going to replace the capacitor first and see if it works, otherwise a new motor is probably in my near future. Which I am not looking forward to. There will be a lot of busted knuckles and tears.
    Walnut Creek, CA. 18k gallon Pebble Sheen + 1.5k gallon IG spa, 1.5hp whisperflo main pump, Pentair clean and clear 420, Intellichlor IC20, Polaris 360 w/booster,Jandy lite 2 natural gas, plus solar with Heliomatic 5000 controller and 3/4 hp booster

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    Mod Squad JohnT's Avatar
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    Re: Timer trips breaker

    Quote Originally Posted by btolley View Post
    Further diagnosis, the pump often does not turn over when "cold" starting. Causes the breaker to trip. If i turn the shaft a bit manually, it will start on the next try. A barely noticable little bit of resistence fromt the shaft but in general it turns freely. I am going to replace the capacitor first and see if it works, otherwise a new motor is probably in my near future. Which I am not looking forward to. There will be a lot of busted knuckles and tears.
    Could just need bearing and seal replacement. Much cheaper than a motor.
    TFP Moderator
    20K Gallon 20X36 Vinyl Inground
    Hayward S244T Sand Filter with 1HP Whisperflo Pump. Liquidator C-201 and Solar Heat

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    Re: Timer trips breaker

    Quote Originally Posted by JohnT View Post
    Could just need bearing and seal replacement. Much cheaper than a motor.
    Most likely you are correct, but since I hate busting knuckles, and enjoy peace of mind, I might opt for a new motor instead of relying on the rusted hulk currently rotting away on the equipment pad.
    Walnut Creek, CA. 18k gallon Pebble Sheen + 1.5k gallon IG spa, 1.5hp whisperflo main pump, Pentair clean and clear 420, Intellichlor IC20, Polaris 360 w/booster,Jandy lite 2 natural gas, plus solar with Heliomatic 5000 controller and 3/4 hp booster

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    Re: Timer trips breaker

    In case it helps the next guy: the problem turned out to be with the seal plate. At some point in the past, the pump has been apart and somehow one of the bolt holes in the seal plate was damaged. It looks like they used some JB Weld to prop up the thread but this failed over time and allowed the seal plate and motor to become misaligned. The misalignment caused the impeller to begin rubbing which felt and sounded like a worn shaft or motor seal. Eventually the rubbing was too much for the motor to overcome.
    Walnut Creek, CA. 18k gallon Pebble Sheen + 1.5k gallon IG spa, 1.5hp whisperflo main pump, Pentair clean and clear 420, Intellichlor IC20, Polaris 360 w/booster,Jandy lite 2 natural gas, plus solar with Heliomatic 5000 controller and 3/4 hp booster

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