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Thread: Weirs and tennis balls

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    MikeInTN's Avatar
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    Weirs and tennis balls

    When I had my pool installed a couple years back, the installer didn't put the weir in the skimmer. It wasn't really needed per se because the pool store I bought the pool from recommended leaving the pump running 24x7. They also recommended leaving a tennis ball in the skimmer to break up the vortex that forms from the pump intake so that the pump wouldn't start sucking air. I decided this year to put my pump on a timer, and found out fairly quickly that I needed my weir in my skimmer to keep all of the **** in the skimmer basket from floating back out into the pool when the pump kicks off; however, I've noticed that the tennis ball sometimes gets underneath the weir when the pump's running. So, do I still need the tennis ball to break up the vortex, or will the water flow over the weir do that for me??

    TIA,
    Mike
    24' x 52" AGP - approx 13,500 gallons
    Pentair Optiflo 1 hp/2sp pump w/ Swimpro Voyager 150 sq ft cartridge filter
    Intex 8110 SWCG
    "Fear the Schnauz!"

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    If the water level is high enough there shouldn't be enough of a vortex to draw any air and you won't need the tennis ball at all. For my skimmer I only need the water to be one inch above the opening and everything is fine. That still leaves me several inches of water level variation between there and the top of the skimmer.
    19K gal, vinyl, 1/2 HP WhisperFlo pump, 200 sqft cartridge filter, AutoPilot Digital SWG, Dolphin Dynamic cleaning robot
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    Mike,

    The skimmer weir door is necessary, as it actually increases the suction from the pool into the skimmer, and as you found out, it keeps the debris in the skimmer box.
    You may want to try adjusting the valve between the skimmer and main drain to avoid the vortex and by all means, get rid of the tennis ball.
    Sean Assam - Sean@teamhorner.com
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    MikeInTN's Avatar
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    I'll try removing the tennis ball tonight and see what happens. In the past, I've had to keep the water level about an inch or so below the top of the skimmer, but that was also with the 2HP pump. Unfortunately, I don't have a ball valve between my skimmer and the pump (yet) so I can't adjust water flow that way. I usually cut the water flow off from the skimmer by plugging it with a rubber plug.

    Thanks guys!
    24' x 52" AGP - approx 13,500 gallons
    Pentair Optiflo 1 hp/2sp pump w/ Swimpro Voyager 150 sq ft cartridge filter
    Intex 8110 SWCG
    "Fear the Schnauz!"

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    MikeInTN's Avatar
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    Pulled out the tennis ball tonight, and all is well in the skimmer.
    24' x 52" AGP - approx 13,500 gallons
    Pentair Optiflo 1 hp/2sp pump w/ Swimpro Voyager 150 sq ft cartridge filter
    Intex 8110 SWCG
    "Fear the Schnauz!"

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    skimmers

    The vortex does work in conjunction with water level, each skimmer/pump combination will have it's own happy water level where the vortex disappears, if a pump draws higher GPM's the water level will need to be higher to avoid the vortex.
    The weir is nice to have not only because it keeps **** in the skimmer, but it also aids in pulling more **** into the skimmer.
    Remove the weir and you will see your water level rise in the skimmer, things really close (2") to the wall will start to flow right past the skimmer because there is no draw into the skimmer. add the weir, it acts like a set of rapids and water starts to flow faster and downhill into the skimmer because the partial blockage by the weir creates a lower water level in the skimmer compared to the pool, this in turn will draw water from further out in the pool outside of the skimmer, effectively grabbing the **** that flows along within 6 inches of the wall and sucking it into the skimmer.

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    NWMNMom's Avatar
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    Oh good explanation Matt! All I know is if it wasn't for that weir each time I vac, **** would backflow when the pump is shut off. I keep my water level at about 1" below top of skimmer opening - but I guess I did notice the thing about the stuff getting channeled into the skimmer.
    18x33x52 Buttressfree Seaspray (Wilbar) AGP - 1.5hp Pentair Maxim w/22" Pentair Meteor Sand Filter, Aqua Rite SWG System, Biltmore Walk In Steps - 2/4x20 Solar Panel Setup - Doheny Jet Drive (RIP -Pool Rover Jr) - finally hard plumbed the whole darned thing -
    Beats Driving to the Lake!

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