Become a TFP Supporter Pool Math Forum Rules Pool School
Results 1 to 17 of 17

Thread: Air Bubbles in Pump Basket (I'm Stumped)

  1. Back To Top    #1
    Texas Splash's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2014
    Location
    South-Central Texas, Marion/San Antonio
    Posts
    12,968

    Air Bubbles in Pump Basket (I'm Stumped)

    Hi TFP friends. I've been working and researching this for quite some time. I get small champagne-sized bubbles in my pump skimmer basket. Over time, it accumulates to basically cover the entire lid with an air pocket, maybe about 1/8 - 1/4 inch deep, but never enough to stop the flow of water to the pump or lose prime. Besides the info in my signature, here's the specs on my pump: Waterwey Supreme, HP 2.0 - .25 SPL (2-speed), P/N PSP2200-6, Model PS-20-2N11CD. Here's what I've done so far (All the basics):
    Verified water level to skimmer, skimmer weir/flap, skimmer basket O-ring good & lubed, checked all return lines/fittings coming out of the ground to my pump with hose water and shaving cream test, no vortex in skimmer, etc. Today I even removed my check-valve and found an old piece of concrete jammed in there which I hoped may had been the culprit (vibrating), but it did not resolve the bubbles. The bubbles entering the pump basket are very small (pin-sized), but eventually gather together to form a pocket across the inside of the lid over the course of 4-6 hours. On low, I usually don't see any bubbles from my returns, but on high I may see a few from 2-3 of my 6 returns. I left a message with Waterwey to ask a technician about this issue. Still waiting to hear back from them. Based on the TFP experts on this site, and my personal experience learning from you with my (now) crystal clear pool, I have more faith in your replies anyways. Like I said, I don't lose prime, so am I just being exceptionally picky about these tiny bubbles? I have gone 3-4 days at a time without checking on the pump and the air gap is the same. I just switch the pump to high and bleed the air out of the filter housing and press on. I hate to get all "OCD" on this, but I think I'm already there. ha. What do you think? V/r ~ Pat
    Last edited by Texas Splash; 05-06-2015 at 06:05 PM. Reason: Added my name
    Pat (a.k.a. Texas Splash) ~ My Pool: Viking Fiberglass; 17,888 Gal; Waterway Supreme 2-sp/2-hp pump; Hayward Ctg filter; TF-100 w/ Speed Stir
    Vital Links: POOL SCHOOL, RECOMMENDED LEVELS, RECOMMENDED CHEMICALS, Poolmath Calculator, SLAM, Chlorine/CYA CHART.
    If you enjoyed your TFP experience, please consider donating to Support TFP!

  2. Back To Top    #2
    Smykowski's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2011
    Location
    Gurnee, IL (North Suburban Chi-town)
    Posts
    3,065

    Re: Air Bubbles in Pump Basket (I'm Stumped)

    Do you get the air bubble when the pump is on high?
    33' round, 23,000 gal AG vinyl , 1HP 2spd PowerFlo Matrix downsized with 3/4HP impeller (X2), Hayward S180T 150# sand filter (X2), Hayward H250 NG heater Pool Store year 1 - $850 for 2 months; Pool Store year 2 - $440 for 2 months, TFPC year 1 - $170 for 4 months; TFPC year 2 - $95 for 4.5 months
    The most important article on this site - The ABCs of Pool Water Chemistry

  3. Back To Top    #3
    Texas Splash's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2014
    Location
    South-Central Texas, Marion/San Antonio
    Posts
    12,968

    Re: Air Bubbles in Pump Basket (I'm Stumped)

    I do, but they are very small and don't accumulate under the lid like on low. I have to really get close to the basket lid to see them coming through. When it's on high, they usually get pulled right on through to the filter housing where I occasionally purge the air once we're done swimming.
    Pat (a.k.a. Texas Splash) ~ My Pool: Viking Fiberglass; 17,888 Gal; Waterway Supreme 2-sp/2-hp pump; Hayward Ctg filter; TF-100 w/ Speed Stir
    Vital Links: POOL SCHOOL, RECOMMENDED LEVELS, RECOMMENDED CHEMICALS, Poolmath Calculator, SLAM, Chlorine/CYA CHART.
    If you enjoyed your TFP experience, please consider donating to Support TFP!

  4. Back To Top    #4
    Mod Squad zea3's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    Location
    Houston, Texas
    Posts
    9,200

    Re: Air Bubbles in Pump Basket (I'm Stumped)

    Double check the pipe joints and be sure to check on the underside, not just on top. You can also try a thicker layer of lube on the pump pot o-ring.
    TFP Moderator
    Helpful links: TF Test Kits,TFP Pool School, PoolMath
    Vogue 21' round AG, Pentair 1 hp 2 speed pump, 36 sq ft DE filter, Hayward S180T 150# sand filter, Houston, Texas
    Love TFP? Become a
    TFP Supporter!

  5. Back To Top    #5
    mas985's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Pleasanton, CA
    Posts
    11,489

    Re: Air Bubbles in Pump Basket (I'm Stumped)

    Small champagne-sized bubbles that form on the pump basket are usually caused by out gassing of the air in the water which in turn is caused by the low pressure in the pump basket. High speed has enough flow rate to remove them but the lower flow rates usually don't. Many people with two speed and VS speed pump experience this to differing degrees depending on the amount of dissolved air in the water.
    Mark
    Hydraulics 101; Pump Ed 101; Pump/Pool Spreadsheets; Pump Run Time Study; DIY Acid Dosing; DIY Cover Roller
    18'x36' 20k plaster, MaxFlo SP2303VSP, Aqualogic PS8 SWCG, 420 sq-ft Cartridge, Solar, 6 jet spa, 1 HP jet pump, 400k BTU NG Heater

  6. Back To Top    #6
    Texas Splash's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2014
    Location
    South-Central Texas, Marion/San Antonio
    Posts
    12,968

    Re: Air Bubbles in Pump Basket (I'm Stumped)

    So Mark, does that then imply that what I am experiencing is to some degree considered normal? Zea3 - I did in-fact look closely all around the exposed pipes, and have checked and re-lubed the O-ring 3 times so far with no change. I was quite patient while looking at the pipes. Also, it's been about 3 hours since my pump has been on low, and there's about 3 quarter-sized bubbles and numerous smaller ones under the lid - covering about half. I expect by morning it will be predominantly covered, and will remain at that point until I place the pump on high to push it through and purge. It will not however need to be primed. By the way - thanks everyone for chiming in so quickly. V/r ~ Pat
    Pat (a.k.a. Texas Splash) ~ My Pool: Viking Fiberglass; 17,888 Gal; Waterway Supreme 2-sp/2-hp pump; Hayward Ctg filter; TF-100 w/ Speed Stir
    Vital Links: POOL SCHOOL, RECOMMENDED LEVELS, RECOMMENDED CHEMICALS, Poolmath Calculator, SLAM, Chlorine/CYA CHART.
    If you enjoyed your TFP experience, please consider donating to Support TFP!

  7. Back To Top    #7
    mas985's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Pleasanton, CA
    Posts
    11,489

    Re: Air Bubbles in Pump Basket (I'm Stumped)

    Yes, in some cases, you can get air in the pump basket without any air leaks. But out gassing accumulates very slowly, many hours for just a small bubble. But you seem to be accumulating it a little faster than that so it could be a leak. Also, a pump basket lid can leak more on low speed than high speed because there is less of a vacuum to hold it down. Sometimes it is just hard to tell which it is.

    Do you have any water features?
    Mark
    Hydraulics 101; Pump Ed 101; Pump/Pool Spreadsheets; Pump Run Time Study; DIY Acid Dosing; DIY Cover Roller
    18'x36' 20k plaster, MaxFlo SP2303VSP, Aqualogic PS8 SWCG, 420 sq-ft Cartridge, Solar, 6 jet spa, 1 HP jet pump, 400k BTU NG Heater

  8. Back To Top    #8
    Texas Splash's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2014
    Location
    South-Central Texas, Marion/San Antonio
    Posts
    12,968

    Re: Air Bubbles in Pump Basket (I'm Stumped)

    I have the option to switch a 3-way from jets to a small waterfall on the pressure side, but I don't use it very often. When I put my face close to the clear lid, it just seems as though the tiny bubbles are coming from the line (opening) into the basket inlet. Maybe it's deceiving to the eyes. But I've messed with that lid a bunch. Oh, I forgot to mention this pump and basket are only about a year old. Our PB swapped the original out for a noise, so this one is still quite new.
    Pat (a.k.a. Texas Splash) ~ My Pool: Viking Fiberglass; 17,888 Gal; Waterway Supreme 2-sp/2-hp pump; Hayward Ctg filter; TF-100 w/ Speed Stir
    Vital Links: POOL SCHOOL, RECOMMENDED LEVELS, RECOMMENDED CHEMICALS, Poolmath Calculator, SLAM, Chlorine/CYA CHART.
    If you enjoyed your TFP experience, please consider donating to Support TFP!

  9. Back To Top    #9
    mas985's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Pleasanton, CA
    Posts
    11,489

    Re: Air Bubbles in Pump Basket (I'm Stumped)

    Do you have any valves on the suction side of the pump? Another possible leak location.
    Mark
    Hydraulics 101; Pump Ed 101; Pump/Pool Spreadsheets; Pump Run Time Study; DIY Acid Dosing; DIY Cover Roller
    18'x36' 20k plaster, MaxFlo SP2303VSP, Aqualogic PS8 SWCG, 420 sq-ft Cartridge, Solar, 6 jet spa, 1 HP jet pump, 400k BTU NG Heater

  10. Back To Top    #10
    Texas Splash's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2014
    Location
    South-Central Texas, Marion/San Antonio
    Posts
    12,968

    Re: Air Bubbles in Pump Basket (I'm Stumped)

    The only 2 items on the suction side are my check valve (that I cleaned some debris out of today - probably from initial construction) and a 2-way valve just before the pump basket for shut-off. I did my best to check all over both of those items for any leaks with the water hose and shaving cream tests.
    Pat (a.k.a. Texas Splash) ~ My Pool: Viking Fiberglass; 17,888 Gal; Waterway Supreme 2-sp/2-hp pump; Hayward Ctg filter; TF-100 w/ Speed Stir
    Vital Links: POOL SCHOOL, RECOMMENDED LEVELS, RECOMMENDED CHEMICALS, Poolmath Calculator, SLAM, Chlorine/CYA CHART.
    If you enjoyed your TFP experience, please consider donating to Support TFP!

  11. Back To Top    #11
    Texas Splash's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2014
    Location
    South-Central Texas, Marion/San Antonio
    Posts
    12,968

    Re: Air Bubbles in Pump Basket (I'm Stumped)

    Well, the Waterwey factory called me back to say there wasn't much they could say or add based on everything I have done already. The tech kind of alluded to the fact that it was possible for some air bubbles to be pulled out of the water during the transition in the pump basket, but really not much more than that. Since I'm not losing any prime to the pump, they weren't too concerned and said I shouldn't be either. The weather is horrible here locally, so when things clear-up I may poke around the fittings and stuff one more time. Yesterday I replaced the lid O-ring (again) with no change. Also, I realized that even though there is a small air gap under the lid, when I do remove the lid, the water is at the top edge of the pump basket (full) - the lid has a slight dome shape to it. I really think the bubbles are coming from down the line (into the pump basket) anyways. Not earth-shattering, just puzzling to me.
    Pat (a.k.a. Texas Splash) ~ My Pool: Viking Fiberglass; 17,888 Gal; Waterway Supreme 2-sp/2-hp pump; Hayward Ctg filter; TF-100 w/ Speed Stir
    Vital Links: POOL SCHOOL, RECOMMENDED LEVELS, RECOMMENDED CHEMICALS, Poolmath Calculator, SLAM, Chlorine/CYA CHART.
    If you enjoyed your TFP experience, please consider donating to Support TFP!

  12. Back To Top    #12
    bobodaclown's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Location
    Lakeland, FL
    Posts
    2,351

    Re: Air Bubbles in Pump Basket (I'm Stumped)

    Don't make a problem where there is none. Maybe a little OCD kicking in. Lol. Enjoy the pool and savings from running on low. Have a beer.
    17K Kidney Shaped Pool Concrete (Diamond Bright) Pool, 3/4 hp 2 speed 115V Sta-rite Duraglas PEA5D-180L/P2R5D-181L (Impeller C105-92PS Diffuser C1-216P), 1.5 piping, Pentair CC100 Filter , Heat Siphon 100K BTU Heat Pump Pool Heater, Flow meter Blue White Flowmeter Model No. F-30150P, Hayward Astrolight SP0581N, SWCG CalimarTitanium Edition TE45 , Dolphin Nautilus Plus with CleverClean, Lakeland Florida

  13. Back To Top    #13
    Texas Splash's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2014
    Location
    South-Central Texas, Marion/San Antonio
    Posts
    12,968

    Re: Air Bubbles in Pump Basket (I'm Stumped)

    I think you're right. Thanks all for chiming-in. Cannonball!
    Pat (a.k.a. Texas Splash) ~ My Pool: Viking Fiberglass; 17,888 Gal; Waterway Supreme 2-sp/2-hp pump; Hayward Ctg filter; TF-100 w/ Speed Stir
    Vital Links: POOL SCHOOL, RECOMMENDED LEVELS, RECOMMENDED CHEMICALS, Poolmath Calculator, SLAM, Chlorine/CYA CHART.
    If you enjoyed your TFP experience, please consider donating to Support TFP!

  14. Back To Top    #14
    Texas Splash's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2014
    Location
    South-Central Texas, Marion/San Antonio
    Posts
    12,968

    Re: Air Bubbles in Pump Basket (I'm Stumped)

    Okay fellow TFP'ers. I've been plugging along fine with the occasional air bubbles that come out of a couple jets, trying to put my OCD aside. But today was the first time it was significantly different. After cranking my pump on high, I did what I typically do which is burp a little air out of the top of the filter housing. Only about 1 sec or so. Then we noticed out of the same two jets the champagne air bubbles flowing out in a continuing cycle. Imagine every 5 seconds or so ..... 2 seconds of bubbles flowing out, then about 3 seconds off, then 2 seconds on flowing out again, and then off, and so on and so on. No unusual sounds from the pump that I could tell (i.e. cavitation). The pump is not even 1 year old. The skimmer is quite full from the rain (I drained some to lower), so it is topped-off right at the top of the weir entrance, with water rocking up & down, would that cause any such effects water entrance effects?

    As noted previously, I've completed (more than once) the items noted on our TFP Troubleshooting for "Suction Side Air Leaks" and checked & re-checked the few above-ground fittings I do have on my suction side. A couple weeks ago I even applied some sealant to all of the coupler/unions on the PVC suction side, leaving only one threaded union fittings without sealant. The only thing I have not done is take apart the one & only 2-way valve just before my pump basket (made by Tru-Seal), or replace the gasket on my check-valve just before that. Both are only 2 years old and can be seen the in the "My pool" link below.

    So, aside from taking apart the 2-way valve or check valve, I'm almost out of above-ground options. Still can't explain the surging effect of those bubbles though. Any ideas before I run a temporary suction line directly from my pump basket to the pool to eliminate an underground issue?
    Pat (a.k.a. Texas Splash) ~ My Pool: Viking Fiberglass; 17,888 Gal; Waterway Supreme 2-sp/2-hp pump; Hayward Ctg filter; TF-100 w/ Speed Stir
    Vital Links: POOL SCHOOL, RECOMMENDED LEVELS, RECOMMENDED CHEMICALS, Poolmath Calculator, SLAM, Chlorine/CYA CHART.
    If you enjoyed your TFP experience, please consider donating to Support TFP!

  15. Back To Top    #15
    Texas Splash's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2014
    Location
    South-Central Texas, Marion/San Antonio
    Posts
    12,968

    Re: Air Bubbles in Pump Basket (I'm Stumped)

    The more I think about it, the more I'm really confused about the cycling of air bubbles from the jets (see previous post). Any ideas?
    Pat (a.k.a. Texas Splash) ~ My Pool: Viking Fiberglass; 17,888 Gal; Waterway Supreme 2-sp/2-hp pump; Hayward Ctg filter; TF-100 w/ Speed Stir
    Vital Links: POOL SCHOOL, RECOMMENDED LEVELS, RECOMMENDED CHEMICALS, Poolmath Calculator, SLAM, Chlorine/CYA CHART.
    If you enjoyed your TFP experience, please consider donating to Support TFP!

  16. Back To Top    #16
    Texas Splash's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2014
    Location
    South-Central Texas, Marion/San Antonio
    Posts
    12,968

    Re: Air Bubbles in Pump Basket (I'm Stumped)

    Today I discovered an improvement in the reduction (elimination really) of air bubbles coming from my 2 returns in "surges". I only did three things today:
    1 - After vacuuming, I removed my pump basket to clean it. Naturally I cleaned under the clear lid real well, and cleaned the surface of the basket housing. I then applied another coat of lube over the O-ring (so basically the same thing I've done many, many times prior).
    2 - Replaced by Hayward filter housing O-ring that seals the top from the bottom; lubed real well
    3 - Replaced my 29" filter cartridge

    Now, we all know air bubbles are "supposed" to come strictly from the suction side; but I did nothing different there. The filter housing O-ring is new, but I would've had a water leak if that was bad since it's on the pressure side (right?). Sooooooo, that leaves the new filter. I wonder if perhaps the old filter (about 1 yr old) was causing some back-pressure? Just enough back=pressure to cause water resistance within the filter housing/pump, thereby causing some bubbles to surge out of the return in bursts every 3 seconds or so. Well, all I know is that after doing those 3 things above, the air bubbles from my returns are all but gone.

    I still get a small gap (1/4") of air under the clear basket lid about 4-5 hours after switching back to low speed. Then it stays at that level, never losing prime. Once placed back on high, enough water comes-in to the pump basket to where it fills 100% with no air pockets. Anyways, that's the latest for anyone who may have followed this thread with the same problem. Or, maybe I'm lucky and it's just me.
    Pat (a.k.a. Texas Splash) ~ My Pool: Viking Fiberglass; 17,888 Gal; Waterway Supreme 2-sp/2-hp pump; Hayward Ctg filter; TF-100 w/ Speed Stir
    Vital Links: POOL SCHOOL, RECOMMENDED LEVELS, RECOMMENDED CHEMICALS, Poolmath Calculator, SLAM, Chlorine/CYA CHART.
    If you enjoyed your TFP experience, please consider donating to Support TFP!

  17. Back To Top    #17
    mas985's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Pleasanton, CA
    Posts
    11,489

    Re: Air Bubbles in Pump Basket (I'm Stumped)

    #1 is on the suction side and could be the reason. Debris in the pump basket causes higher suction and more air leaks.

    Also the filter oring could have been leaking air in while the pump is off.
    Mark
    Hydraulics 101; Pump Ed 101; Pump/Pool Spreadsheets; Pump Run Time Study; DIY Acid Dosing; DIY Cover Roller
    18'x36' 20k plaster, MaxFlo SP2303VSP, Aqualogic PS8 SWCG, 420 sq-ft Cartridge, Solar, 6 jet spa, 1 HP jet pump, 400k BTU NG Heater

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •