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Thread: Bubbles in Filter Basket

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    Bubbles in Filter Basket

    This all happened after the pool company came out and vacuumed the pool floor. I now have bubbles in the pump basket. They go away when I shut off the skimmer line. They go away randomly sometimes and then when I mess with the valves, backwash, clean out pump basket they return. They go away sometimes when it rains. I don't see any air going through the returns. I am not losing any more water than what I am used too with the pump off and the pump on. I'm stumped. I called the pool company and he said if its not losing a lot of water, who cares. He also told me that it would be late in the summer to come look at it. Pool companies in my city (Lincoln, NE) are always booked up for the 3 months of the pool season. I have also tried to put a hose with a towel in the basket to help if it was a clog and still no luck. I'm stumped. I'm very close to filling in the pool, I had a green pool until August last year. I'm exhaused with the pool and the lack of help from pool companies when I need it. You guys bailed me out from the green pool last year, so I am here again.
    16x32X8 Vinyl liner 21,000 gal.
    Hayward Pro Series S220T 250lb. sand filter hard plumbed
    Taylor K-2006 Test

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    Re: Bubbles in Filter Basket

    Look inside the skimmer, is it creating a vortex?

    remove the skimmer basket and look inside, there may be a small flap that can partially block the suction line. (assuming you have more than one skimmer?) If there is a flap and it's wide open, try blocking it 33-50% some pools use a diverter that looks like a UFO.

    how's your water level? a little low?
    IG gunite/plaster pool/spa Started 1/17/14, Plastered 5/16/14
    Size: 12'-21'x39' free form, depth ranging from 4' to 7, attached 6 person spa with spillover.
    Equipment: Whisperflo 2hp pump, Pentair 30" sand filter, Pentair Mastertemp 400k BTU heater, 1hp Whisperflo for waterfalls, and a blower for spa floor

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    Re: Bubbles in Filter Basket

    It creates a vortex when the skimmer basket is out but not so much when its in. My water level has been actually high. There is a circle plastic piece that is not over the hole. But if I move it over the hole, it will close the skimmer completely because of the suction.
    16x32X8 Vinyl liner 21,000 gal.
    Hayward Pro Series S220T 250lb. sand filter hard plumbed
    Taylor K-2006 Test

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    Pool Tool's Avatar
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    Re: Bubbles in Filter Basket

    Was the statement of the bubbles going away in the rain a joke? I can't tell reading it - sorry been a long day already and I'm too sarcastic myself.

    If the bubbles go away during rain, is it after a long soaking rain or at the onset of the rain? If after a long rain, it's likely that the ground is saturated with water so your leak is pulling in the water surrounding your pipe versus air underground. If the bubbles disappear at the start of a rain, there might be an above ground fitting leaking where the same thing happens. Generally you will only notice a leak on suction side when your pump is off.

    You can test your above grade suction piping by using a hose to run water over each exposed fitting/plug starting at the pump strainer drain plugs and moving up the piping and toward the pool. Since you say the bubbles stop when you shut off the skimmer, I assume you are closing a valve near the pump, you can rule out a leak on the piping between the valve and the pump and focus on the piping pool side of the valve.

    You may also have a partial blockage in the pipe causing a minor leak to act worse. I have seen this after vacuuming. You could try using compressed air or a water hose near the pump basket to push it back to the skimmer. Flush the line as best as you can and see if anything comes out.

    Maybe it will be just an annoyance and won't cause any major issues, but like everything else leaks tend to get worse with time.
    16' x 32' (21100 gal), vinyl, 1.5 hp Hayward SuperPump,
    Tagelus TA60/60D Sand Filter, Raypak 399K Digital Heater, TF-100

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    Re: Bubbles in Filter Basket

    I assume you have visible bubbles in the clear lid of the pump strainer basket when the pump is running. Is that correct?

    We're going somewhere with this but let's get very precise (and concise) on your details, OK?
    Dave S.
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
    TFTestkits , PoolMath , Pool School

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    Re: Bubbles in Filter Basket

    Quote Originally Posted by Zegster View Post
    It creates a vortex when the skimmer basket is out but not so much when its in. My water level has been actually high. There is a circle plastic piece that is not over the hole. But if I move it over the hole, it will close the skimmer completely because of the suction.
    .is it attached the the rest of the skimmer housing with a screw?

    If so, move it over the hole, covering 1/2 the hole and tighten the screw.

    a picture is worth 3 billion words.
    IG gunite/plaster pool/spa Started 1/17/14, Plastered 5/16/14
    Size: 12'-21'x39' free form, depth ranging from 4' to 7, attached 6 person spa with spillover.
    Equipment: Whisperflo 2hp pump, Pentair 30" sand filter, Pentair Mastertemp 400k BTU heater, 1hp Whisperflo for waterfalls, and a blower for spa floor

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    Re: Bubbles in Filter Basket

    It has bubbles when it is on and then when I shut it off, the air comes to the top of the pump basket. It does have a screw. I'm at work, so I'll try the 1/2 cover and screw it down when I get home. The rain part going away is not a joke, but its random, so I don't know if the rain thing is correct. I've ran a hose all over the pump fittings, drain plugs, pipes exposed next to the filter and the bubbles don't go away.
    16x32X8 Vinyl liner 21,000 gal.
    Hayward Pro Series S220T 250lb. sand filter hard plumbed
    Taylor K-2006 Test

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    Re: Bubbles in Filter Basket

    It has bubbles when it is on and then when I shut it off, the air comes to the top of the pump basket.
    I am almost certain you have a suction side air leak. They are often hard to find but there is precious little else that wqill allow air into the system when the pump is running.

    Have you read the article on suction leaks in Pool School? Does that mostly make sense to you and describes the issue you are having?
    Dave S.
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
    TFTestkits , PoolMath , Pool School

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    Re: Bubbles in Filter Basket

    I have a few bubbles here and there visible in the pump window, but I could have sworn I was told it can be normal. Maybe not. Uh oh!

    (not hijacking, just following now)
    24'x40' 25k gal Imperial Mountain Pond IGP, full 28 mil VynAll Ocean Breakers liner. All Hayward system: 140k BTU HeatPro heat pump, 3/4HP single speed TriStar 2" Pump, DE6020 filter, AquaPlus Automation/Salt Chlorination, remote controls, ColorLogic 4.0 lighting. Polaris 280 w/PB4-60 BP. TF100 & K1766 test kits. Rinox Palazzo pavers and Spherik coping. Pool installed 9/2013, project completed 6/16/14.

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    Re: Bubbles in Filter Basket

    Quote Originally Posted by steveg_nh View Post
    I have a few bubbles here and there visible in the pump window, but I could have sworn I was told it can be normal. Maybe not. Uh oh!

    (not hijacking, just following now)
    The few bubbles that get trapped in the lid are normal...esp in lids with ridges.
    IG gunite/plaster pool/spa Started 1/17/14, Plastered 5/16/14
    Size: 12'-21'x39' free form, depth ranging from 4' to 7, attached 6 person spa with spillover.
    Equipment: Whisperflo 2hp pump, Pentair 30" sand filter, Pentair Mastertemp 400k BTU heater, 1hp Whisperflo for waterfalls, and a blower for spa floor

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    Re: Bubbles in Filter Basket

    I have zero bubbles in my pump basket.

    My neighbor's brand new pool... nearly the entire clear lid top is a bubble while the pump is running. PB said it was normal at low speeds (they have a VS pump).
    Joel - TFP Moderator - Minnesota - **Become a TFP Supporter!** Helpful Links: ABCs of Pool Water Chemistry - SLAM Procedure - Chlorine/CYA Chart
    40x20 Pool: 32K Gallons * Vinyl * Bleach Chlorination * Hayward S270T Sand Filter * Pentair SuperFlo 1 HP * Teledyne/Laars Heater * AquaVac Tigershark * TF-100 w/ SpeedStir
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    Re: Bubbles in Filter Basket

    I've noticed too, the longer it runs without me opening the basket, they do go away after a while....

    I'm curious to hear the OPs, solution and hopefully it's not a problem.
    24'x40' 25k gal Imperial Mountain Pond IGP, full 28 mil VynAll Ocean Breakers liner. All Hayward system: 140k BTU HeatPro heat pump, 3/4HP single speed TriStar 2" Pump, DE6020 filter, AquaPlus Automation/Salt Chlorination, remote controls, ColorLogic 4.0 lighting. Polaris 280 w/PB4-60 BP. TF100 & K1766 test kits. Rinox Palazzo pavers and Spherik coping. Pool installed 9/2013, project completed 6/16/14.

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    Re: Bubbles in Filter Basket

    I am guessing I have a suction side leak too. I have ran water on everything that I know that could cause it near the filter. What would be the next option? It use to run clean, so this is new, so something changed. It hasn't always bubbled. This might help, but I do notice when I close the skimmer line valve a little bit, the bubbles go away.
    16x32X8 Vinyl liner 21,000 gal.
    Hayward Pro Series S220T 250lb. sand filter hard plumbed
    Taylor K-2006 Test

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    Re: Bubbles in Filter Basket

    Did you try a little lube on the O ring of the filter basket?

    --edit--

    Oh wait, just saw your post about closing the valve a bit...that's interesting.
    24'x40' 25k gal Imperial Mountain Pond IGP, full 28 mil VynAll Ocean Breakers liner. All Hayward system: 140k BTU HeatPro heat pump, 3/4HP single speed TriStar 2" Pump, DE6020 filter, AquaPlus Automation/Salt Chlorination, remote controls, ColorLogic 4.0 lighting. Polaris 280 w/PB4-60 BP. TF100 & K1766 test kits. Rinox Palazzo pavers and Spherik coping. Pool installed 9/2013, project completed 6/16/14.

  15. Back To Top    #15

    Re: Bubbles in Filter Basket

    I thought it was just too much suction and closing the valve stops the suction from being as powerful and stops the air from coming in with less suction (valve partially closed).
    16x32X8 Vinyl liner 21,000 gal.
    Hayward Pro Series S220T 250lb. sand filter hard plumbed
    Taylor K-2006 Test

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    Re: Bubbles in Filter Basket

    I'm still betting that you've got too much suction to one line and you're creating an air pocket/void in the skimmer. once you tinker with the diverter do-dad, we will find out if I'm wrong. (it's possible...but my fix is way too easy to not try).
    IG gunite/plaster pool/spa Started 1/17/14, Plastered 5/16/14
    Size: 12'-21'x39' free form, depth ranging from 4' to 7, attached 6 person spa with spillover.
    Equipment: Whisperflo 2hp pump, Pentair 30" sand filter, Pentair Mastertemp 400k BTU heater, 1hp Whisperflo for waterfalls, and a blower for spa floor

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    Re: Bubbles in Filter Basket

    It is worth trying to clear the skimmer line of obstructions with either air or water forced from the pump side since you noticed this right after the pool company vacuumed. Probably not an issue, but like mrcarcrazy mentioned, knock out as much of the easy stuff as possible. It definitely beats the alternative!
    16' x 32' (21100 gal), vinyl, 1.5 hp Hayward SuperPump,
    Tagelus TA60/60D Sand Filter, Raypak 399K Digital Heater, TF-100

  18. Back To Top    #18

    Re: Bubbles in Filter Basket

    This is kind of off topic on my issue, but few years back I had the pool company fix a bearing issue (pump was making noise) in my pump. I use to get like 12-14 psi at the pump but after they fix the bearing I was getting 16-18 psi. Also my returns push out water in my pool so strong, that the top of the water would splash a bit sometimes. Is there any way to slow down your pump?
    16x32X8 Vinyl liner 21,000 gal.
    Hayward Pro Series S220T 250lb. sand filter hard plumbed
    Taylor K-2006 Test

  19. Back To Top    #19

    Re: Bubbles in Filter Basket

    Ok, I moved the plastic diverter over and tighten the screw. It still was bubbling. I did find that spraying down the skimmer box and having some of it seep in the concrete around it, stopped the bubbles. I did it twice and both times it stopped the bubbles. I'm going to try again when it starts doing it again and make sure to not get any other place, to get a definite answer. Do you think it would be a small crack at the bottom of the skimmer. Is this very common place for a crack to form? Or possibly a loosen joint letting air in at the bottom of the skimmer? How much would it cost to put a new skimmer in?
    16x32X8 Vinyl liner 21,000 gal.
    Hayward Pro Series S220T 250lb. sand filter hard plumbed
    Taylor K-2006 Test

  20. Back To Top    #20
    Pool Tool's Avatar
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    Re: Bubbles in Filter Basket

    I am assuming the water was seeping down the outside of the skimmer box when it was stopping the bubbles? If so, that would lead me to think it is a leak on the fitting on the bottom of the skimmer connecting it to the piping back to the pump. By isolating the skimmer using the plastic diverter, you have effectively narrowed the leak being between the plastic diverter in the skimmer and the skimmer valve near the pump. And, since running water around the skimmer cleared the bubbles you can assume the leak is close to (and probably on) the skimmer.

    Kind of funny, our pool's design is very similar and unfortunately so it seems our leak!
    16' x 32' (21100 gal), vinyl, 1.5 hp Hayward SuperPump,
    Tagelus TA60/60D Sand Filter, Raypak 399K Digital Heater, TF-100

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