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Thread: filtration questions...if i stay on topic

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    filtration questions...if i stay on topic

    More questions...is there a cut-off point for us newbies?
    The flap door on the front of skimmers...why do some have it and some not...benefits?

    When I vacuum I have to just plug my vac. into the intake hole under the skimmer basket...is there a way to adapt this so that I can leave my basket and skimmer sock in while I'm vacuuming? I'm wondering if the dead algae I'm vacuuming up is being recirculated back into my pool. I saw some thing at Canadian tire today to plug your vacuum into that looked like it sits over your skimmer basket...but I wasn't sure if this would work or if it's something for AGs etc.

    Finally...for some reason I still have concerns that my filter is not working properly. For a while it was spewing out anything vacuumed up after less than 5 minutes of vacuuming. I did some major backwashing and rinsing, but since all I've been vacuuming up lately is dead algae I'm finding it hard to tell if the problem is really resolved. I replaced my pressure gauge this morning before asking this question as it seems that my pressure stays at 11 no matter what is happening...other than when I turn it off. I vacuumed 3 times since the last time I backwashed and my water is still pretty cloudy in the deep end and I'm vacuuming up large amounts of dead algae off the bottom each day. My pressure was at 11 before I vacuumed, after I vacuumed and then after backwash/rinse. Does this seem right.

    Should I have made a new thread for each of these questions.

    Sorry I know I have a lot of silly and simple questions but I'm just so grateful to finally have someone to ask them all

    Thanks,
    N
    [color=#0000BF]16x32 inground vinyl liner approx 23 000 gallons
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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Ask away.

    Having a door on the skimmer, commonly called a weir, improves the ability of the skimmer to remove surface debris and prevents stuff collected in the skimmer from getting back out into the pool when the pump turns off. But they aren't required.

    There is an attachement for the skimmer called a vacuum plate that allows you to leave your skimmer basket in. I recommend having one. You need to get a vacuum plate specifically designed to fit your partiular skimmer.

    It sounds like some of the water is able to go around your filter and get back into the pool without being filtered. This can happen if your main valve is broken internally or if the sand becomes channelized. How old is your sand? Does any water leak out the waste pipe during normal operation?

    Having a separate thread for each question prevents us from missing one of them, but for simple questions it isn't critical.
    19K gal, vinyl, 1/2 HP WhisperFlo pump, 200 sqft cartridge filter, AutoPilot Digital SWG, Dolphin Dynamic cleaning robot
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    ktdave's Avatar
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    survey,
    Don't worry, you can not ask too many questions. Most people here that have information to share do it because they enjoy it.

    The flap on the front of skimmers (called a weir) serves a couple of purposes, it creates a sort of "rapids" like motion that speed the water up as it goes into the skimmer thereby pulling harder on anything on the surface of the water near the skimmer. Secondly, it will flap closed when the pump shuts off to keep anything in the skimmer basket from going back into the pool.

    The thing you saw at the store was probably a vacuum plate that you can plug the vacuum hose into to that will sit on top of the skimmer basket and you can use a sock to catch anything that you don't want going to the filter and pump.

    EDIT: Well, looks like Jason beat me to it.
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    N, you've got questions, I've got answers! (BTW- there is no limit to the number of ?s you can ask - THE ONLY STUPID QUESTION IS THE ONE UNASKED - how are you supposed to find out this stuff if you don't ask the question??)

    The flap in the skimmer is called a 'weir' - it has 2 functions 1) it increases the surface flow of the water entering the skimmer allowing you to more effectively skim the surface 2) when the pump turns off it seals the skimmer so that all the debris you captured stays in there.

    Hayward makes one called a 'skim-vac' which has a sealing gasket on the bottom and a tube on the top to allow you to attach the vacuum with the basket in place. Be sure to get one that will fit correctly in your skimmer! I'd suggest a 'skimmer sock' or a nylon to line the basket to help catch some of the smaller stuff.

    (I see Jason has already answered whilst I type, but I'll keep going )
    There is a fair chance that what you are trying to vacuum up is smaller than the 'paths' through the sand (or the things Jason mentioned) if the sand isn't channeled and the multiport in good shape, ie not leaking or bypassing, you may want to try adding a small amt of DE to the filter to capture the smallest particles. To do this first get a bag of De (diatomacious earth a/k/a filter powder) Mix 1/2 cup in water and slowly pour it into the skimmer, with the system running, wait 20 min and see what the pressure increase has been (you are aiming to add 1psi by adding the DE) if you need to add more, mix it with water and do so until you get the 1 lb rise (in your case to 12 psi) This should allow you to filter much finer particles out of the water and will hopefully clear the water up in a day or so. If you need to backwash with the DE in, you'll need to add more after backwashing - so keep track of how much you use to get the 1 lb increase and just keep using that amt.

    Sand filters are the easiest to maintain, but sometimes need a little extra help to clear up problems caused by very fine debris - however, once you get through this you shouldn't have any more problems!! As another way to do things, if you have a multiport which allows for it, is to vacuum to waste, however that can very quickly drain too much water out of the pool and if you have fill water issues, may not be viable. As a last resort, sometimes you need to use a 'flocculent' to make the small particles 'stick together' so that they become large enough to be caught by the filter.
    Luv& Luk
    -Ted

    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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    Thanks for all the quick replies. My sand was changed two seasons ago. I don't think that there is any leaking from my waste line, but I'm going to go out and remove my waste hose now and watch it for a bit to be sure.
    I think that I will try the DE thing...it sounds to me like it couldn't hurt and I'd love to see the pressure go up on my filter so this could be a good test for it.
    I can vacuum to waste, but to be honest I'm getting sick of cooling off my pool so often with refilling after all the algae vacuuming I was doing.
    I definitely think that I need a weir and a vacuum plate. I'm assuming that installing the weir would just be a matter of taking off the current face plate and replacing it.
    I'm going to do some research to find a vac. plate locally right now. The one I saw today was fairly generic looking and didn't even have any measurements on it so I'm not sure how good of a seal it would form...for $6 perhaps I should just get one and try it out anyway.
    Thanks for all your help/answers everyone!
    [color=#0000BF]16x32 inground vinyl liner approx 23 000 gallons
    22" cyclone sand filter, 1 HP pump
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    Sorry it's been a couple of days, but Sunday is golf day and I hosted an impromptu party following our round yesterday

    What I want to mention is that the weir doesn't attach to the faceplate, it's in the mouth of the skimmer. You can either get a replacement for the missing one (if the 'dimples' it attaches to are still good) or they make 'retro-fit' ones that have a spring to hold them ~ in place.

    Good luck with cleaning up the pool - if you have any more questions, feel free to ask them
    Luv& Luk
    -Ted

    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

    POOL SCHOOL, TF Testkits, Jason's Pool Calculator, CYA vs. cl chart, (Just a few DARNED handy links!)

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    Hope you enjoyed your impromptu get together ... those are the only kind that I ever through It was a beautiful day here so hopefully you had the same.
    I searched high and low to find a weir and a vacuum plate for my skimmer. Unfortunately my skimmer is made by Jacuzzi which no longer exists so apparently parts that fit them are very hard to come by right now. I felt around in the skimmer and don't feel anything for the weir to be inserted into so thanks for that retrofit comment.
    However...I added the DE to my filter yesterday and WOW...what a difference that made. My water finally started to clear up at the rate I thought it should have been clearing. Woke up this morning to find that I could actually see where I was vacuuming around the entire pool and a filter pressure that had increased 8lbs over night so something was finally happening. How on earth did I go 3 years without finding out about this DE trick.
    My numbers all seem to be holding steady but my BF is pressuring me to put that blue stuff in the pool again as he wants the water to be bluer and pretty. I have assured him that if he gives me a few more days that I'll be able to get sparkling water in our pool again...with the help of you wonderful people I hope that I can hold true to my word.
    I had my CYA retested and it came back as 30 this time so I'm happy with that. They warned me that my phosphate level was over 1000 and to be careful to keep my chlorine up. Anything I need to do about this other than carry on as planned?
    Thank you so much for all your help so far...now to get it sparkling
    N
    [color=#0000BF]16x32 inground vinyl liner approx 23 000 gallons
    22" cyclone sand filter, 1 HP pump
    solar cover, solar heating panels
    Taylor K-2006 test kit

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Just ignore the phosphate thing. The phosphate level almost never matters. It is just the lattest way the stores have come up with to push products.
    19K gal, vinyl, 1/2 HP WhisperFlo pump, 200 sqft cartridge filter, AutoPilot Digital SWG, Dolphin Dynamic cleaning robot
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  9. Back To Top    #9

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    So I finally found a vacuum plate that fits and wow, what a difference that made too. Now on to my next question...could someone please give me the idiot's guide to retrofit weir installation? I think that the one I got just doesn't fit, but perhaps I'm doing something incorrect.
    Thanks,
    N
    [color=#0000BF]16x32 inground vinyl liner approx 23 000 gallons
    22" cyclone sand filter, 1 HP pump
    solar cover, solar heating panels
    Taylor K-2006 test kit

  10. Back To Top    #10

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    You can try these guys located in markham. They have a store in newmarket too and gave us a quote to install our pool. We ended up not going with them but I can remember the son telling me that his father used to work for Jacuzzi for many years before opening his own pool store, maybe they can get you that weir door.

    http://www.yellowpages.ca/business/0,0/ ... =&stype=ca

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  11. Back To Top    #11

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    I seriously don't know how the weir is supposed to be installed. It's a retrofit one with spring ends, I'm not even sure that it can fit. Could someone please help me out when you have a minute?
    Thanks for that link crazycanuck...if it turns out this one's the wrong size I will call them and see what they have available.

    Thanks,
    N
    [color=#0000BF]16x32 inground vinyl liner approx 23 000 gallons
    22" cyclone sand filter, 1 HP pump
    solar cover, solar heating panels
    Taylor K-2006 test kit

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