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Thread: Repairing/replacing ball valve from floor drain line

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    mtheaded's Avatar
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    Repairing/replacing ball valve from floor drain line

    I havenít had to reach out to my TFP friends for quite some time, but Iím in a bit of a mess and not sure how to get out of it!

    I just went through the process of opening my 26,000 gallon vinyl lined in-ground pool over the weekend and when I opened everything up and turned on the pump, one of the true union ball valves that control the flow to the pump is leaking like crazy. This means that it leaks water when the valve is set to the open position and it sucks air into the system when the pump is turned on. This makes it impossible to get a true secure prime with air coming from the leaky valve so I am afraid to leave it on so I can treat the water. Here is a pic:

    Pipes.jpg

    Now I am trying to figure out how to replace or repair this valve. I have sealed off the skimmer intakes and the returns again and closed the multiport on the filter. My hope was that the existing water in the pipes would drain out and allow me to disassemble the existing valve. However, this must be the valve to the floor drain as I can open the other two in this situation and no more water pours into the strainer but I get a steady flow of water when I open this valve. SoÖhow the heck do I stop the water flow so I can disassemble this valve?

    BTW Ė my pump sits a few feet below the grade of pool if that makes a difference. I saw a thread where someone said get in the pool and seal off the main with plastic wrap and a rubber cover weighed down, but my pool is a nice shade of green right now and the water is cold so I donít see that as a possibility!

    Any advice on where to go from from here? I need to resolve this ASAP as my pool will turn solid green in a few days!
    26,000 gallon IG Vinyl Lined, Hayward DE2400 Filter, Hayward SP2610X15 1/2 HP pump, Dolphin Sprite robot, open May to October

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    n240sxguy's Avatar
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    Re: Repairing/replacing ball valve from floor drain line

    Where is it leaking? Is it coming out around the valve handle or somewhere else? If it's just the valve that's leaking, I would close all the valves, loosen all the top unions and the pump union, and take the manifold off. Then take the leaky valve off and put the new one on as fast as I could to minimize the water loss. If that doesn't work, you could try to stuff a rag or something in the pipe to stop/slow the water while you put the valve on, then fish it out and close the valve. Then reassemble the manifold.


    30K gallon IG vinyl. 1.5HP 2-speed Waterway Mustang pump. 600 lb sand filter. Polaris 280. Circupool SI-60+. TF-100

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: Repairing/replacing ball valve from floor drain line

    If the equipment pad is above water level all you need to do is open the air vent on the top of the filter and wait a minute or two. If the equipment pad is below water level you have much more of a challenge.
    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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    mtheaded's Avatar
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    Re: Repairing/replacing ball valve from floor drain line

    Well, there is the rub JasonLion....the pad is below water level, unfortunately. Having said that, I can't be the ONLY person that has ever been in this situation! I was looking on line yesterday and I saw one guy say he opened the line then shoved an over sized raw potato in the line to seal the line while he did the repair. I thought that was pretty wacky but now I'm wondering if I am going to have to do something equally as wacky! Any ideas? I'm starting to feel a little desperate here!
    26,000 gallon IG Vinyl Lined, Hayward DE2400 Filter, Hayward SP2610X15 1/2 HP pump, Dolphin Sprite robot, open May to October

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    n240sxguy's Avatar
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    Re: Repairing/replacing ball valve from floor drain line

    Other than a rag or a potato, someone else on here used one of the rubber winterizing plugs to do a repair like that. I think he had to trim or replace the washer on it so it would fit through the new valve. Basically follow what I said earlier except put the plug in there when you take the valve off. Then you'll have to use long needle nose pliers to loosen and remove the plug through the newly installed valve.


    30K gallon IG vinyl. 1.5HP 2-speed Waterway Mustang pump. 600 lb sand filter. Polaris 280. Circupool SI-60+. TF-100

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    Re: Repairing/replacing ball valve from floor drain line

    These are my best friend when dealing with stuff like this.
    http://www.homedepot.com/p/CHERNE-Mu...vZbqlsZ1z0xeb1
    and the extension hose http://www.homedepot.com/p/CHERNE-2-...erne+extension

    You push it though the valve blow it up and remove the old valve. Once you are done you remove the plug then close the valve and reassemble the manifold.

    Many plumbing supply houses carry these.
    20X40 30,000 gallon gunite pool

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    mtheaded's Avatar
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    Re: Repairing/replacing ball valve from floor drain line

    Thanks everyone! I see there are a variety of potential plugs I can use that are available at local box hardware stores for just a few bucks, like

    Plug01.jpg and Plug03.jpg and Plug04.jpg

    as well as racket's suggestion so at least I now have a plan. In the meantime, I managed to rig a temporary solution so I could continue with my opening and treat the pool. I used Rescue Tape (http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00...?ie=UTF8&psc=1) to seal the leak. That stuff is amazing. I used it once before to fix a small leak in a piece of PVC pipe and it is still working years later. I highly recommend keeping a roll around the house and maybe one in the car too! It should hold fine until my water is cleared up and the weather is a little warmer and then I will replace all three valves.

    Once again, I do love TFP. If you own a pool and aren't a member of TFP you are nuts!
    26,000 gallon IG Vinyl Lined, Hayward DE2400 Filter, Hayward SP2610X15 1/2 HP pump, Dolphin Sprite robot, open May to October

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