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Thread: Pump and Seal Plate damage - did salt issues cause it?

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    Pump and Seal Plate damage - did salt issues cause it?

    Hello everyone, it's been awhile!
    I guess we're all getting ready to open (if we haven't already), and I had an issue come up. At the end of last season, my pump motor (Whisperflo WF24) got REALLY loud and finally died.
    I got a new motor from my PB, and when I went to attach it to the body of my pump, I discovered that the old motor housing was corroded (white, flaky) and broken (where the bolts go through the holes in the housing)...and my plastic seal plate (where the pump attaches to the seal plate) was even cracked and broken.
    A sales lady at my PB said that it could be from low calcium (the water trying to 'find' calcium) and/or pH problems. I had my pH dialed in last year and tested it often, but I'm ashamed to say I didn't check calcium regularly...the few times I did, it was around 150.
    Could calcium be the issue? Or is this just to be expected with salt? Or maybe some other issue (metals)?
    thank as always
    Todd
    --------------
    Pool: 16x36, 16,800 gal., vinyl, sand filter, SWG & AquaCal Heat Pump
    Spa: Hot Springs Sovereign, 355 gal., ozone/ion
    The most helpful tool you'll ever have for your pool:
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    Mod Squad Bama Rambler's Avatar
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    Re: Pump and Seal Plate damage - did salt issues cause it?

    I don't think calcium had anything to do with your problem. It could be salt if there was a leak or it could be electrolysis. Is your pump bonded to the rest of the equipment? Depending on how old it was, it could be just normal corrosion.
    Dave J. TFP Moderator
    24' x 52" Round AGP. 2hp/¼hp SPL Power-Flo 2-speed pump. 200sqft Waterway Cartridge Filter. 45MHP2(3GPD) Stenner Peristaltic Pump
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    Re: Pump and Seal Plate damage - did salt issues cause it?

    When seals are left unchecked, the spraying water will frequently leave deposits. It sounds like the motor torqued itself free at least once or was run dry at some point. The created heat. The heat and torque created a distortion in the seal plate and the pressure cracked it.

    I have a hard time believing salt had anything to do with it.

    Scott
    Owner of - PoolGuyNJ LLC
    Expert Pool and Spa Repairs, Renovations, and Augmentation. Helping people decide what is the right gear for meeting their needs. Expectations Set, Expectations Met, No Surprises.

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: Pump and Seal Plate damage - did salt issues cause it?

    Low PH or extremely high FC levels (relative to CYA) could cause that, as could a seal plate that was either defective to begin with or not installed properly. Neither salt or calcium would have any significant impact on that kind of failure.
    19K gal, vinyl, 1/2 HP WhisperFlo pump, 200 sqft cartridge filter, AutoPilot Digital SWG, Dolphin Dynamic cleaning robot
    Creator of PoolMath and Pool Calculator. Other handy links: Support this site, TF Test Kits, Pool School

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    Re: Pump and Seal Plate damage - did salt issues cause it?

    the only way i see salt causing it is if you had a crack in it already, and salt would deposit inside it and slowly expand the crack. But it would have to have a crack or a leak already for this to happen.

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    Re: Pump and Seal Plate damage - did salt issues cause it?

    Aluminium when it corrodes can expand. This expansion can apply pressure causing distortion and breakage.
    7,500 gal, IG pool, L shape 22' x 15', 1.5 hp pump, cartridge filter, AquaPlus SWG/Controller, Pebble-Tec liner.

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    Re: Pump and Seal Plate damage - did salt issues cause it?

    OK thanks so much, I appreciate it.
    I do have a question about my equipment and whether it's grounded/bonded properly, I'll try to post a pic. tomorrow. thanks again!
    Todd
    --------------
    Pool: 16x36, 16,800 gal., vinyl, sand filter, SWG & AquaCal Heat Pump
    Spa: Hot Springs Sovereign, 355 gal., ozone/ion
    The most helpful tool you'll ever have for your pool:
    http://www.poolcalculator.com/

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    Re: Pump and Seal Plate damage - did salt issues cause it?

    Quote Originally Posted by PoolGuyNJ
    When seals are left unchecked, the spraying water will frequently leave deposits. It sounds like the motor torqued itself free at least once or was run dry at some point. The created heat. The heat and torque created a distortion in the seal plate and the pressure cracked it.

    I have a hard time believing salt had anything to do with it.

    Scott
    +1 good explanation scott!
    16K IG Plaster Pool w/ Hayward 36sq.ft. DE filter I'll have to add the pump info when I can get to it.
    Testing with TF-100!!

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    Re: Pump and Seal Plate damage - did salt issues cause it?

    Quote Originally Posted by MikeMan
    Quote Originally Posted by PoolGuyNJ
    When seals are left unchecked, the spraying water will frequently leave deposits. It sounds like the motor torqued itself free at least once or was run dry at some point. The created heat. The heat and torque created a distortion in the seal plate and the pressure cracked it.

    I have a hard time believing salt had anything to do with it.

    Scott
    +1 good explanation scott!
    +1 here too. I had similar thing happen to one of my free standing spa pumps; low speed, low flow circulation pump very near the heater too. Sounds similar to what the spa guy explained to me. He said if I had caught it earlier the whole pump probably wouldn't have needed replacing. But I had no indication other than what looked like charred stuff spewed onto some close by pipes when I looked inside surround to investigate why it had stopped working. The charred stuff might have been there earlier and I didn't notice it. That's what he suspected at least. I had no argument with him as I very possibly could have overlooked it. Also, if I had caught it a couple of months earlier the warranty would have covered it. Darn.

    BTW... this was before I found wonderful TFP. If it needed replacing now I would get very good advice and save some money replacing it myself. Some spa things are so easy to do especially if it's right there in sight when you open the surround door.

    gg=alice
    1981, 25K, IG, Blue Plaster 1996, somewhat oval, widens a bit at shallow end, 1.5" pipes, 2" at Pad, 1 separate main drain, 1 skimmer, 4 returns + dedicated cleaner return, 10 ft deep end with very fast decline from shallow, Pentair Quad 80 DE, Pentair Intelliflo VF, 3/4 HP Booster Pump (equipment pad about 8 ft below top of pool), Challanger 3/4 Trash/Emergency Pump 120v, Polaris 280 (pressure), iRobot Verro cleaner (robotic), Aquabot Turbo (robotic), Jacuzzi Tracker 4X (vacuum) Pool Blaster (Buster), Two (2) PoolSkims, Solar Breeze (solar powered top skimmer) (beta to ver. 2, release date 2010), ColorSplash LED replacement bulb. Aries 550 gal separate spa, 2002 (our 3rd and BEST spa) , BBB-Bromine

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