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Thread: New Pump won't prime

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    elainerader's Avatar
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    New Pump won't prime

    Installed new pump and re plumbed multi port after system has been sitting for over a month. Cannot get new pump (self priming) pump to prime. Tried several things including running hose into pump basket (not sure if this is correct terminology for it), closing bottom drain, closing off one of the weaker skimmers...nothing. Any suggestions? No apparent leaks above ground....could we have a broken pipe underground? (our ground never freezes except the top grass)Thanks for any input!
    25K GALLON IG VINYL
    LASER SAND FILTER, Hayward SP2610X15 Super Pump 1.5 HP Pool Pump
    UNDER WATER LIGHT
    14 YEARS OLD, LINER 5 YRS OLD

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    Mod Squad Jimrahbe's Avatar
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    Re: New Pump won't prime

    e,

    The most logical reason for a pump not to prime is a large suction side air leak... Like not having an O-ring under the pump lid...

    You could also have the multiport shut off or if you took it apart, put the lid on backwards..

    I assume it worked well before you installed a new pump??

    If you installed the pump with unions (Like you should) you can take the pressure-side pipe off and run a quick test to see if it primes then...

    Thanks,

    Jim R.
    Finished in 2015 - 17K Gal, IG, 20' x 25' Almost Rectangular Pool, Pebble finish, three rockport water falls. Pentair Equipment: EasyTouch 4, IC40 SWG, 3 HP VS Pump, CCP520 Cartridge Filter.
    TF100 with SpeedStir and SampleSizer, ColorQ Pro 7, Dolphin Premier Robot Cleaner, added Screen Logic 2, added small 3 person Caldera Spa.

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    elainerader's Avatar
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    Re: New Pump won't prime

    Thanks for your help! Yes we checked for O ring, we also installed new laterals and changed sand in the filter. How do you mean "multiport shut off"? Lid is on the correct position. Yes everything worked.....before the old pump burned up.
    25K GALLON IG VINYL
    LASER SAND FILTER, Hayward SP2610X15 Super Pump 1.5 HP Pool Pump
    UNDER WATER LIGHT
    14 YEARS OLD, LINER 5 YRS OLD

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    Mod Squad Jimrahbe's Avatar
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    Re: New Pump won't prime

    e,

    If you can post a pic of your equipment pad, we may be able to come up with some other ideas...

    Tell us more about your new pump..

    Maybe "shut off" was not the right term.. some multiport valves have a "closed" position... On the ones I have worked on, it is possible to install the handle backwards...

    Thanks,

    Jim R.
    Finished in 2015 - 17K Gal, IG, 20' x 25' Almost Rectangular Pool, Pebble finish, three rockport water falls. Pentair Equipment: EasyTouch 4, IC40 SWG, 3 HP VS Pump, CCP520 Cartridge Filter.
    TF100 with SpeedStir and SampleSizer, ColorQ Pro 7, Dolphin Premier Robot Cleaner, added Screen Logic 2, added small 3 person Caldera Spa.

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    Re: New Pump won't prime

    Installed new pump and re plumbed multi port
    My favorite phrase from Richard320 is, "The first thing to break is the last thing you fixed "

    Recheck all your connections where you did the work. You have a suction side air leak (s). The pump will prime when the air leaks are sealed.

    There is an article in Pool School that may help.
    Dave S.
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
    TFTestkits , PoolMath , Pool School

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    elainerader's Avatar
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    Re: New Pump won't prime

    Sorry for the late response...been wracking our brain on this. We have eliminated that any problem is coming from the connections from the filter. We tested the new pump to make sure IT wasn't the problem by running a pipe from it directly into the pool, works perfectly, primed immediately, flowing great. (and I can now at least circulate the water and start a slam!) Reconnected the pump directly to the skimmer line, bypassing the filter.....nothing. Won't prime. I would guess the air leak would then be in this line? most of it is under ground, no apparent leaks above.
    25K GALLON IG VINYL
    LASER SAND FILTER, Hayward SP2610X15 Super Pump 1.5 HP Pool Pump
    UNDER WATER LIGHT
    14 YEARS OLD, LINER 5 YRS OLD

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    Mod Squad Jimrahbe's Avatar
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    Re: New Pump won't prime

    e,

    I would use a Drain King and flush water from the pump inlet back into the skimmer and then reverse.. Do that several times.. It could be an air leak, but in my mind more likely a blockage of some type..

    Drain King looks like this and comes in different sizes.. https://www.googleadservices.com/pag...9aACCDI&adurl=

    Thanks,

    Jim R.
    Finished in 2015 - 17K Gal, IG, 20' x 25' Almost Rectangular Pool, Pebble finish, three rockport water falls. Pentair Equipment: EasyTouch 4, IC40 SWG, 3 HP VS Pump, CCP520 Cartridge Filter.
    TF100 with SpeedStir and SampleSizer, ColorQ Pro 7, Dolphin Premier Robot Cleaner, added Screen Logic 2, added small 3 person Caldera Spa.

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    elainerader's Avatar
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    Re: New Pump won't prime

    Trying that now, thanks
    25K GALLON IG VINYL
    LASER SAND FILTER, Hayward SP2610X15 Super Pump 1.5 HP Pool Pump
    UNDER WATER LIGHT
    14 YEARS OLD, LINER 5 YRS OLD

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    elainerader's Avatar
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    Re: New Pump won't prime

    OK water flowing in and out of both skimmers using the Drain King
    25K GALLON IG VINYL
    LASER SAND FILTER, Hayward SP2610X15 Super Pump 1.5 HP Pool Pump
    UNDER WATER LIGHT
    14 YEARS OLD, LINER 5 YRS OLD

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    Mod Squad Texas Splash's Avatar
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    Re: New Pump won't prime

    Always nice to hear of a success story and getting out of panic mode. Now you can relax.
    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!

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    Mod Squad Jimrahbe's Avatar
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    Re: New Pump won't prime

    e,

    When you say you "Reconnected the pump directly to the skimmer line, bypassing the filter..".. Do you mean you put the multiport valve in recirculate??? Or did you actually run a temporary line from the pump and back to the pool...???

    Is your equipment way above the level of your pool???

    Jim R.
    Finished in 2015 - 17K Gal, IG, 20' x 25' Almost Rectangular Pool, Pebble finish, three rockport water falls. Pentair Equipment: EasyTouch 4, IC40 SWG, 3 HP VS Pump, CCP520 Cartridge Filter.
    TF100 with SpeedStir and SampleSizer, ColorQ Pro 7, Dolphin Premier Robot Cleaner, added Screen Logic 2, added small 3 person Caldera Spa.

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    elainerader's Avatar
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    Re: New Pump won't prime

    Not a success! Just trying to see if skimmer lines were clogged and they are not... so that eliminates the problem of not priming from a clog in the line....back to air leak possibility
    25K GALLON IG VINYL
    LASER SAND FILTER, Hayward SP2610X15 Super Pump 1.5 HP Pool Pump
    UNDER WATER LIGHT
    14 YEARS OLD, LINER 5 YRS OLD

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    Mod Squad Texas Splash's Avatar
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    Re: New Pump won't prime

    We tested the new pump to make sure IT wasn't the problem by running a pipe from it directly into the pool, works perfectly, primed immediately, flowing great.
    This confirms the air leak is somewhere from the pump inlet back to the pool via any of those lines. Depending on how they are plumbed, it's best to try one line at a time if possible to find the culprit. Since your pool is 14 yrs old, it's possible some lines are joined together underground which could make it tricky. But when you go from the pump straight back to the water, you know it has to be in the original line(s). Don't rule-out any 3-way valves or check valves above ground either. As Jim noted above, a pic of your equipment pad may help.
    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!

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    elainerader's Avatar
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    Re: New Pump won't prime

    Yes ran a temp line, it is a 30" rise from the pool level
    25K GALLON IG VINYL
    LASER SAND FILTER, Hayward SP2610X15 Super Pump 1.5 HP Pool Pump
    UNDER WATER LIGHT
    14 YEARS OLD, LINER 5 YRS OLD

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    Mod Squad Texas Splash's Avatar
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    Re: New Pump won't prime

    Yes ran a temp line, it is a 30" rise from the pool level
    Curious .. but with that single line we know it primes quickly as that's the only water source line and it's air-free. I suspect much easier to pull water through that one line. When the pump was connected to the original plumbing, how long did you leave the pump running to try and prime? 30 sec? Couple minutes? Longer?
    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!

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    elainerader's Avatar
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    Re: New Pump won't prime

    Here's the mess, (ignore the duct tape, that's just holding on some insulation needed this winter) at the moment the pump is next to the pool, as you will see in the last photo...nice huh.Attachment 73662
    25K GALLON IG VINYL
    LASER SAND FILTER, Hayward SP2610X15 Super Pump 1.5 HP Pool Pump
    UNDER WATER LIGHT
    14 YEARS OLD, LINER 5 YRS OLD

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    elainerader's Avatar
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    Re: New Pump won't prime

    won't let me upload any other photos, I guess these files are too big
    25K GALLON IG VINYL
    LASER SAND FILTER, Hayward SP2610X15 Super Pump 1.5 HP Pool Pump
    UNDER WATER LIGHT
    14 YEARS OLD, LINER 5 YRS OLD

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    Mod Squad Texas Splash's Avatar
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    Re: New Pump won't prime

    I'm only seeing one picture, but okay. (aahhh - reached your limit). Well, I do see a few issues right off the bat. You have some older ball and turn-type shut-off valves that are prone to going bad. In addition, you appear to have at least one indoor plumbing connection in your suction line (top corner elbow) as opposed to schedule 40 PVC that is rated for outdoor and pool use. Either of those may or may not be contributing to your air leak problem, but they are certainly worth looking at when you get a chance. Have you tried closing-off one suction line (drain first then skimmer(s) or visa versa) to see if it helps with suction? Try with red valve closed, then try with blue one closed? Give the pump a good 1-2 minutes to try and prime. Some pump manuals will even go as far as allowing up to 5 minutes or so to prime, although we typically don't like to see it take that long. If you can get the pump to prime somewhat, then you can try leak testing over those lines above ground with a garden hose, or wrap with some plastic wrap perhaps.

    - - - Updated - - -

    I should also mention as it's a basic item but we never confirmed ..... how is your water level in the skimmer(s). At least halfway to 3/4 up the opening? Plenty of water to suck-down into the skimmers? I know you have a drain, but we should still confirm.
    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!

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    elainerader's Avatar
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    Re: New Pump won't prime

    UPDATE: Before we dug up the yard my husband insisted we purchase a different pump....a Hayward, primed in 30 seconds hooked up to our newly re sanded and new lateral installed filter.....good to go! The no name pump, even though is supposedly met all the specs we needed, was a piece of junk. Lesson learned, you get what you pay for!
    thanks for all the advice and time spent trying to help figure this out!! You all are awesome!!
    25K GALLON IG VINYL
    LASER SAND FILTER, Hayward SP2610X15 Super Pump 1.5 HP Pool Pump
    UNDER WATER LIGHT
    14 YEARS OLD, LINER 5 YRS OLD

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    Re: New Pump won't prime

    Can you tell us the name of the "no name" pump, so we as a group know to stay away from it. I just had my two year old "no name" pump burn up, and it is a Splashpool pump. No parts, no info on it anywhere. I found one just like it on ebay for $149.00. My pool builder is reluctantly putting in a Jandy Flopro tomorrow.
    Mark
    20'x28' IG, Vinyl, (Sept 2015) 14,900 Gallon, 3'4 to 5'6 deep, Jandy Proflo 1.5 HP, 220v, 2 speed pump, Waterway Carefree 27" 400 LB Sand filter, Digital Nano plus SWG, TF-100 test kit /speed stir. Dolphin Primal x3 robotic cleaner

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