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Thread: Water shoots out of skimmer basket

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    Water shoots out of skimmer basket

    Hi all, I am not a new pool owner but I am new to these forums. I am so glad to have found an online pool resource. As I said, I have had my pool for 12 years now (before that I was my parent's pool boy for years), but I am trying to get the pool going again after a long period of inactivity. My pool was damaged in a storm and sat for a couple of years without being used while I saved to repair it. I have now replaced the liner, the lights, the pump and motor and put new sand in the filter and replaced the control valve and gaskets on top. The filter is a Tagelus TA-60. Now that everything is up and running I have a problem that I have never run across before and maybe someone can shed a little light on what may be causing this. After the pump runs a few minutes it seems to be laboring, the stream of water from the jets is very aerated and it coats everything in the pools with air bubbles. When you shut the pump off it makes a massive sucking noise and water shoots out of the skimmer basket with enough force to actually blow the lid off. When you restart the pump it seems to have lost it's prime and takes a couple of minutes before there is any water flow. I haven't seen any dirt from the jets that would indicate a burst line, my thought is that it is the filter but I really don't know. Any ideas?
    Regards
    Mike Court
    In ground Pool size 12m x 5m x 1.3m av
    Concrete construction with tiled base and sides
    750 Sand Filter
    1.5k Pump
    I don't have a skimmer, around the perimeter of the pool is a plastic grate above a concrete channel that directs overflow into holding tank.

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: Water shoots out of skimmer basket

    Welcome to TFP!

    The cover is blowing off the skimmer because the filter is mostly full of compressed air (which it shouldn't be). The question is where is the air coming from? Assuming you bled the air out of the filter the when you first started up, the most common source of air is a suction side leak. Air can also come in through a vortex in the skimmer that draws air in along with the water.
    19K gal, vinyl, 1/2 HP WhisperFlo pump, 200 sqft cartridge filter, AutoPilot Digital SWG, Dolphin Dynamic cleaning robot
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    Re: Water shoots out of skimmer basket

    Quote Originally Posted by JasonLion
    Welcome to TFP!

    Air can also come in through a vortex in the skimmer that draws air in along with the water.
    I've looked in the skimmer and don't see a vortex. So you are saying air is getting sucked into the system somewhere? That makes sense. What would be the best way to find the source of this air leak?

    BTW, the guy who did the work on my pool tried to tell me it was the filter and that you couldn't get parts anymore (I have found that to be untrue) and wanted to sell me a new one.
    Regards
    Mike Court
    In ground Pool size 12m x 5m x 1.3m av
    Concrete construction with tiled base and sides
    750 Sand Filter
    1.5k Pump
    I don't have a skimmer, around the perimeter of the pool is a plastic grate above a concrete channel that directs overflow into holding tank.

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    Mod Squad JohnT's Avatar
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    Re: Water shoots out of skimmer basket

    Check the skimmer basket lid first. Try a new O-ring with pool-lube. Cheap and easy.
    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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    New2Me's Avatar
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    Re: Water shoots out of skimmer basket

    Does your multi-port valve have a BYPASS position? If you bypass the filter does that make any difference in pump ease of priming/running, and does it still backblow the lid off? If things work OK in bypass, check the filter, something might be plugged, if not start suction leak hunting. Good Luck!
    22 x 40 IG vinyl lined, 23,570 gal.
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    Re: Water shoots out of skimmer basket

    Welcome to TFP!!

    While Jason, John and Andy have offered good advice I'd just like to know if the pump sits higher than the pool (like 3+ feet). Also, as a suction leak is a strong possibility, please take a look at this from Pool School to help find the leak.

    Again welcome here - we'll do our best to get you to a trouble free pool 8)
    Luv& Luk
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    Having done construction and service for 4 pool companies in 4 states starting in 1988, what I know about pools could fill a couple of books - what I don't know could fill a couple of libraries :-D

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    Re: Water shoots out of skimmer basket

    Quote Originally Posted by JohnT
    Check the skimmer basket lid first. Try a new O-ring with pool-lube. Cheap and easy.

    All that stuff is brand new and looks good.
    Regards
    Mike Court
    In ground Pool size 12m x 5m x 1.3m av
    Concrete construction with tiled base and sides
    750 Sand Filter
    1.5k Pump
    I don't have a skimmer, around the perimeter of the pool is a plastic grate above a concrete channel that directs overflow into holding tank.

  8. Back To Top    #8

    Re: Water shoots out of skimmer basket

    Quote Originally Posted by New2Me
    If things work OK in bypass, check the filter, something might be plugged, if not start suction leak hunting. Good Luck!
    I haven't ran it in bypass yet to check that, but I am curious what could be plugged in the filter?
    Regards
    Mike Court
    In ground Pool size 12m x 5m x 1.3m av
    Concrete construction with tiled base and sides
    750 Sand Filter
    1.5k Pump
    I don't have a skimmer, around the perimeter of the pool is a plastic grate above a concrete channel that directs overflow into holding tank.

  9. Back To Top    #9

    Re: Water shoots out of skimmer basket

    Quote Originally Posted by waste
    Welcome to TFP!!

    While Jason, John and Andy have offered good advice I'd just like to know if the pump sits higher than the pool (like 3+ feet).
    No, The pump is virtually level with the pool.

    I would like to thank everyone for the greetings and the suggestions. I had a car problem recently and posted on a couple of forums that I had been members of for years and didn't get half this much help.
    Regards
    Mike Court
    In ground Pool size 12m x 5m x 1.3m av
    Concrete construction with tiled base and sides
    750 Sand Filter
    1.5k Pump
    I don't have a skimmer, around the perimeter of the pool is a plastic grate above a concrete channel that directs overflow into holding tank.

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    Mod Squad JohnT's Avatar
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    Re: Water shoots out of skimmer basket

    Maybe a little more info would help with the brainstorming. Number of skimmers/drains? Skimmer and drain plumbing separate and have their own valves? Skimmer weir moving freely? Does the pump prime easily? What size is the pump?
    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: Water shoots out of skimmer basket

    Quote Originally Posted by JohnT
    Maybe a little more info would help with the brainstorming. Number of skimmers/drains? Skimmer and drain plumbing separate and have their own valves? Skimmer weir moving freely? Does the pump prime easily? What size is the pump?
    The pool is a 16X32 with 1 skimmer and drain, not seperate. The weir moves freely. The multi-port valve is a new Hayward Vari-flow and does not have a bypass position. The pump is brand new, I don't know what kind it is right off the top of my head, the motor says Sta-Rite on it and I don't know how to tell what size it is.

    As for the question about it priming easily. After it runs awhile and you shut it off and the water and air blows up out of the skimmer basket, the next time you turn it on it takes several minutes for the pump to prime. I haven't run the pump much since I covered the pool for the winter for fear that all that running the pump dry would damage it. So I am trying to get an early start and get this sorted before swim season.
    Regards
    Mike Court
    In ground Pool size 12m x 5m x 1.3m av
    Concrete construction with tiled base and sides
    750 Sand Filter
    1.5k Pump
    I don't have a skimmer, around the perimeter of the pool is a plastic grate above a concrete channel that directs overflow into holding tank.

  12. Back To Top    #12
    New2Me's Avatar
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    Re: Water shoots out of skimmer basket

    A multi-port should have filter, backwash, rinse, waste and hopefully recirculate settings. When I said BYPASS, I actually meant recirculate, to bypass the filter media. IMHO you have an obstruction after the pump, and a system leak somewhere. Do you have a pressure gauge, and if so what are the readings? Who replaced the sand and other parts, and were the correct replacements and amounts used? Are all of the pool returns open, the eyeballs weren't inadvertently turned sideways? Was the new filter sand properly backwashed before filtering?
    When the pump shuts off, system pressure should dissipate through the filter and returns with very little back-flow towards the pump strainer basket-skimmer/drains. Water in the system will stay where it is, unless you allow air in, then it will drain to low points. Here are some Hayward sand filter tips that apply to most sand filters:
    Hayward Sand Filter Operation Tips

    SHUT OFF PUMP - Turning the filter Control Valve handle while water is being pumped through the filter can damage the valve and possibly other equipment as well. So Always shut off the system's pump before switching valve positions. Then, when turning the valve, be sure to fully depress the valve handle to prevent damaging the valve seal gasket.

    PERIODIC (NOT FREQUENT) BACKWASHING - A little-known fact is that a sand filter operates most efficiently during mid-cycle. Debris trapped in the sand bed actually help the filter work better - so frequent backwashing reduces efficiency. Sand filters should only be backwashed when the filter has collected so much debris that it begins to restrict water flow and increase water pressure.

    USE PRESSURE GAUGE - The use of a pressure gauge with sand filters is very important because the filter should not be backwashed until water pressure has risen 5 - 10 PSI (see owner's manual per unit) due to accumulated debris in the filter.

    WATCH BACKWASH CLOSELY - Backwashing can waste 50 to 300 gallons of water, so pay attention - this water has chemicals you paid to put in the pool, not the street. Backwash until the waste line water or site-glass water on the side of the valve becomes clear.

    NEW POOL CLEANING - Do not vacuum a new pool with the filter in the backwash mode, as this could plug up the laterals at the bottom of the filter with dust from the new pool surface.

    VERIFY FLOW RATE - If the filter's recommended flow rate is exceeded, a shafting effect (tunneling) will take place in the sand, allowing debris to bypass the sand's intended filtration effect.



    Hayward Sand Filter Repair Tips

    CONNECTING PIPES TO THE VALVE - We see a lot of cracks created by installers incorrectly attaching a pipe to the VAri-Flow valve. For a slip valve connection, use regular PVC glue to attach the pipes. However, for threaded valve connections, use Teflon tape or Permatex #2 so that a flexible non-permanent seal is created. Also, the use of unions with any tank top-mounted valve will allow for easy removal of the valve for sand replacement down the road.

    VALVE SEAT GASKET REPLACEMENT - When replacing the seat gasket, use Hayward adhesive (Part # SPX0710Z9) to seal the seat gasket - otherwise the seat gasket will roll out when the valve handle is moved. NOTE: the gasket is not replaceable on the model 714 multi-port valve.

    TANK REPLACEMENT - When replacing a damaged tank, the quickest way to get sand out is to drill four holes in a rectangular about 16" x 10" just below halfway line of the tank, then connect the dots with a reciprocating saw. The opening created will allow for quick and easy removal of sand.

    SAND REPLACEMENT - When replacing sand only (not tank), sand removal can be expedited with a wet-dry vac. When refill the tank with sand, cover the upper diffuser or stack pipe so sand does not get inside, and pre-fill the tank with a foot of water to protect the laterals.

    TYPE OF SAND - Filter sand should feel coarse; if not, it may be time to replace it. The type of sand commonly used is 20 silica sand, which is neither too coarse (allowing debris by) nor too fine (plugging up the filter permanently)

    AMOUNT OF SAND - Sand should be level in the tank, and fill about half the filter. Models vary, but a rule of thumb is to add sand until the top of the sand bed is 12" below the bottom of the valve (or top of the diffuser). The minimum height of the sand should at least reach the widest part of the filter.

    RINSE NEW FILTER, NEW SAND - When starting up a new filter or replacing sand, start the filter in the rinse cycle for 1 to 3 minutes to prevent small particles and impurities from blowing back to the pool. If that happens, vacuum the debris to waste

    I don't think that a properly sealing strainer lid gasket should squirt. If you have one with a flat lid and the screw downs on the front corners, it could be that the lid, or pump housing is distorted and is not allowing a good seal. There are some excellent threads for finding and fixing system leaks. Good Luck!!!
    22 x 40 IG vinyl lined, 23,570 gal.
    1 hp. Pac-Fab Challenger pump 300# sand filter
    Intex 8110 SWG, Hayward CL220 offline feeder
    Hayward 250K Btu gas heater
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  13. Back To Top    #13

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    Re: Water shoots out of skimmer basket

    If he has a Tagleus filter, why does he have a Hayward multiport?

    If the skimmer is burping the lid off, the returns are clogged, causing back pressure. This would show itself with a high pressure reading on the filter's gauge. Shutting the system off allows the back pressure to be relieved. The sudden relief is also sucking air in from somewhere and during the "burp" air gets in the pump basket, allowing the loss of prime.

    Possible causes of the symptoms as I read it:

    1) Wrong multiport
    2) Clogged laterals
    3) Collapsed return line(s)
    Owner of - PoolGuyNJ LLC
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    Re: Water shoots out of skimmer basket

    If the skimmer is burping the lid off, the returns are clogged,
    Yep. There has to be pressure building somewhere on the pressure side of the system which isn't getting relieved. It could be a closed valve, damage or something hooked up wrong, but the pressure side is blocked.

    A suction side leak (while perhaps another issue) wouldn't cause this condition in any scenario I can envision.
    Dave S. - Forum owner
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
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    spishex's Avatar
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    Re: Water shoots out of skimmer basket

    Quote Originally Posted by PoolGuyNJ
    If he has a Tagleus filter, why does he have a Hayward multiport?

    If the skimmer is burping the lid off, the returns are clogged, causing back pressure. This would show itself with a high pressure reading on the filter's gauge. Shutting the system off allows the back pressure to be relieved. The sudden relief is also sucking air in from somewhere and during the "burp" air gets in the pump basket, allowing the loss of prime.

    Possible causes of the symptoms as I read it:

    1) Wrong multiport
    2) Clogged laterals
    3) Collapsed return line(s)
    Tagelus filters came standard with Hayward Vari-flo valves for many years. It's just an older filter.

    I concur with New2Me. It's a problem on the pressure side, you just need to find out whether or not it's in the filter (probably is). Run the pump on bypass/recirculate and see if the problem persists.

  16. Back To Top    #16

    Re: Water shoots out of skimmer basket

    Quote Originally Posted by spishex
    Tagelus filters came standard with Hayward Vari-flo valves for many years. It's just an older filter.

    I concur with New2Me. It's a problem on the pressure side, you just need to find out whether or not it's in the filter (probably is). Run the pump on bypass/recirculate and see if the problem persists.

    Thank you for all the help so far. Yes it is an older filter. I have to confess now that my pressure gauge doesn't seem to be working. I had a pool service replace the multiport and the sand. I have no idea how much is in there or if it was done correctly. All returns are open and no eyeballs are sideways obstructing flow. The person who did the work said something (I'm guessing he meant the laterals) might be clogged, that I needed to backwash the filter and if that didn't work it would require replacing the filter. I am starting to become a little suspicious of the quality of his advice and his work. This weekend I will try running the pump on recirculate and see what happens.
    Regards
    Mike Court
    In ground Pool size 12m x 5m x 1.3m av
    Concrete construction with tiled base and sides
    750 Sand Filter
    1.5k Pump
    I don't have a skimmer, around the perimeter of the pool is a plastic grate above a concrete channel that directs overflow into holding tank.

  17. Back To Top    #17
    New2Me's Avatar
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    Re: Water shoots out of skimmer basket

    Replacing the pressure gauge is very straight-forward, new gauges are ~$10 at most home stores. If the filter is restrictive, it can be an easy fix. Removing the sand is relatively easy if you have a wet vac. If you keep major **** out of it, you can remove the sand, inspect/clean the laterals and re-use the sand. A broken lateral can usually be replaced, or you can get creative and repair it. I have heard of using nylon window screen mesh wrapped around a cracked arm.

    Just remember what a sand filter is, and how it works- unfiltered water is introduced at the top, filters down through the sand media, and exits from the laterals. The purpose of the laterals is to even out the flow area, and contain the sand media. I have read threads hear about using pea gravel and rock layers to do the same thing. If you do take it apart, make sure to backwash it before putting it in to use. Good Luck, and Best Wishes
    22 x 40 IG vinyl lined, 23,570 gal.
    1 hp. Pac-Fab Challenger pump 300# sand filter
    Intex 8110 SWG, Hayward CL220 offline feeder
    Hayward 250K Btu gas heater
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  18. Back To Top    #18

    Re: Water shoots out of skimmer basket

    Quote Originally Posted by spishex
    I concur with New2Me. It's a problem on the pressure side, you just need to find out whether or not it's in the filter (probably is). Run the pump on bypass/recirculate and see if the problem persists.
    I ran the pump on bypass for a few hours with none of the issues that I have been concerned about. I guess that means it is inside the filter. Should I just order three new laterals and have those on hand when I disassemble it? Are there any other issues inside the filter that could cause this problem?
    Regards
    Mike Court
    In ground Pool size 12m x 5m x 1.3m av
    Concrete construction with tiled base and sides
    750 Sand Filter
    1.5k Pump
    I don't have a skimmer, around the perimeter of the pool is a plastic grate above a concrete channel that directs overflow into holding tank.

  19. Back To Top    #19

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    Re: Water shoots out of skimmer basket

    Should I just order three new laterals and have those on hand when I disassemble it?
    What is the psi when the pump is running and you are trying to push water thru the filter?
    Dave S. - Forum owner
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
    TFTestkits , PoolMath , Pool School

  20. Back To Top    #20
    spishex's Avatar
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    Re: Water shoots out of skimmer basket

    If you're not getting sand back into the pool then the laterals are probably fine. Just be careful not to move them around too much with sand still in the tank.

    Your problem is either going to be a gunked up sand bed, gunked up laterals, or a clogged stand pipe.

    I had a similar situation with a customer once years ago where a service tech for the company I worked for had just done a sand change. When he added the new sand he used a rubber plug to block the stand pipe instead of the usual strainer that comes with the filter. When he reassembled the filter, he forgot to take the plug out...

    You may come across some similar craftsmanship.

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