cannot get sufficient waterflow into spa to maintain the waterfall into poo

fujijohn0

Active member
Feb 16, 2014
27
NC
the waterfall from my spa into the main pool had dropped to a trickle. i assumed it was the pump as it has been slowly failing for the last few months. I just had a new pentair whisperflo pump installed, exactly same model as the old one. i have been in this home for just over a year, the waterfall worked fine when we moved in.
in spite of the change the waterflow into the spa has not increased and i am still only getting barely any overspill from spa into the pool.

when the problem first started i did experiment with the jandy switches (some of which i am not sure what they opened and closed)

the filter (Hayward 60 DE) is not in good shape with a couple of small tears in the panels - i just ordered a repalcement and what look like small stress fractures in the manifold.

is the filter likely to be the problem...
 

JasonLion

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May 7, 2007
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There are two things to check. First, are the pool returns and spa jets still strong when they are each turned on? Second, is the spa drain valve fully closing. Typically the spa drain valve is a three way valve that controls where the pump draws water from. To get the spa to overflow that valve should be set so the pump draws water only from the pool. If the spa drains are turned on, water won't overflow very much, as it goes down the drain instead
 

fujijohn0

Active member
Feb 16, 2014
27
NC
thanks. in normal operation then should the spa drain be closed. i have a jandy valve that controls the water being sucked into the pump (the spa does not have a separate pump), its slightly open , i will close it fully and see if it creates increased water flow.

last summer i noticed that not all the jets into the spa where returning water. i put that down to the pump operating suboptimally, since new pump the return into the pool when turned fully to pool is very strong, the cleaner is flying around the pool. i will check the return into spa tomorrow, i would need to switch the jandy to direct just to spa , is that correct
 

mas985

TFP Expert
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May 3, 2007
14,025
Pleasanton, CA
Pool Size
20000
Surface
Plaster
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
For pumps, they either work or don't. There is no in-between.

Is the filter pressure different from what it normally is?

Also, you don't want to close off the suction valve. That should be fully open to the pool suction ports. As should be the spa return also at 100%. Otherwise, you might be splitting the flow to both the pool and spa which will reduce the flow to the spa.
 

JasonLion

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May 7, 2007
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There are various modes, each of which uses different valve settings. In pool only mode you want 100% of both suction and return to the pool. In spa mode you want 100% of both suction and return to the spa. In spill-over mode you want 100% of suction from the pool and the return should be adjusted to go to both the pool and spa at the lowest flow to the spa possible that still makes the spill-over look good. Typically you run in spill-over mode for one hour a day, pool mode for the rest of the daily cycle, and spa mode when you are using the spa. However, some setups don't use all three modes, or vary the pool/spill-over relative times.
 

fujijohn0

Active member
Feb 16, 2014
27
NC
by suction valve do you mean the valve just in front of the inlet for the pump ?

when i leave that even slightly open the spa is draining
 

JasonLion

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May 7, 2007
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Yes, the "suction valve" is normally right in front of the pump. You should only have it open to the spa when you are in spa mode, 100% of both suction and return going to the spa in spa mode. The spa will indeed drain if you have that open to the spa under any other circumstance.
 

fujijohn0

Active member
Feb 16, 2014
27
NC
i cannot get any strong flow through the spa jets, its just a trickle and not from all 6 jets
maybe i dont have it turned on, not sure what needs turning on.
where will the valve for spa jets be located
 

Richard320

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Jan 6, 2010
23,932
San Dimas, CA (LA County)
It would probably be helpful if you posted several pictures of your equipment pad and the valves.

Just as an example, my pool has two 3-way Jandy valves. I can draw water from pool only or spa only or vary the amount of each. The same with the return. I have mine set so I draw only from the pool and return maybe 25% to the spa and the rest to the pool. Unless I'm using the spa, in which case its all spa in-spa out so it heats fast. You should have something similar, or some booster pump setup that's not working. Pictures will be a huge help.
 

fujijohn0

Active member
Feb 16, 2014
27
NC
there must be something wrong with my settings as when i switch to spa mode nothing happens in the spa, i cannot see any of the jets working within the spa, on the control board the light for spa mode will not come on. i have also noticed that the flapper on the jandy valve (with window) does not seem to be opening when water return is directed to spa

- - - Updated - - -

will do
part of the problem is the pipes are not labelled, but i will taks some photographs and post
thanks
 

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Richard320

TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Jan 6, 2010
23,932
San Dimas, CA (LA County)
there must be something wrong with my settings as when i switch to spa mode nothing happens in the spa, i cannot see any of the jets working within the spa, on the control board the light for spa mode will not come on. i have also noticed that the flapper on the jandy valve (with window) does not seem to be opening when water return is directed to spa

- - - Updated - - -

will do
part of the problem is the pipes are not labelled, but i will taks some photographs and post
thanks
Sounds like maybe one of the actuators has stripped out, so it turns, but the valve below doesn't. I was just looking up the manual to see how to move things manually. Any chance you might have turned one off by mistake? http://www.inyopools.com/manuals/281/jandy_valves_actuators.pdf
 

fujijohn0

Active member
Feb 16, 2014
27
NC
flow_to_pump.jpgplumbing_by_pump.jpghere we gopipes_around_pumpjpeg.jpgpool_equip pipes post heater.jpgpipes_around_pumpjpeg.jpg

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schoolpoolboy

LifeTime Supporter
Dec 24, 2013
52
San Diego
I cant tell from pics? but, You should have bypass check valve (not jandy style) between pool suction and spa suction at pump. Take a good look at all check valves, and replace if you have any doubts. Like you we bought house less than year ago, pool had issues that seem to have shown up after we moved in. It took me a while to diagnose, but after replacing 3 bad check valves? many of my circulation problems were solved.

Just sayin?
 

JasonLion

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May 7, 2007
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Silver Spring, MD
There is a check valve in the second picture, it is black with a clear cover. If there is a problem with the check valve the spa will drain down to pool level when the pump is off.

The problem with the jets being weak means there is a problem with low water flow. You can narrow the problem down by checking if there is also low water flow from the pool returns when in pool mode.

If there is low flow in both the pool and spa then it has to be in the portion of the plumbing they share, while if it only happens in spa mode and overflow mode it has to be in the spa specific plumbing. In either case possible causes include blocked pipes and broken valves. If the pool also has a problem it could also involve a failure to fully prime the pump or an extremely dirty filter.
 

fujijohn0

Active member
Feb 16, 2014
27
NC
i believe the problem is with the spa as the pool returns are very strong when water flow directed more to pool than the spa
what i have just noticed is that the water returning from the heater when diverted to the spa is not powerful, the flapper inside the jandy valve with the window in pic 2 is not being raised much.
this water comes through a jandy valve and when the valve is moved to the pool flow the water return is very powerful, the pipes actually shake when the water is fully on return to the poolso it seems water is getting out of the heater ok and can be set to pool ok but when being returned to the spa it is barely a trickle

could the pipes to the spa be blocked, how best to test this theory ?
 

Richard320

TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Jan 6, 2010
23,932
San Dimas, CA (LA County)
i believe the problem is with the spa as the pool returns are very strong when water flow directed more to pool than the spa
what i have just noticed is that the water returning from the heater when diverted to the spa is not powerful, the flapper inside the jandy valve with the window in pic 2 is not being raised much.
this water comes through a jandy valve and when the valve is moved to the pool flow the water return is very powerful, the pipes actually shake when the water is fully on return to the poolso it seems water is getting out of the heater ok and can be set to pool ok but when being returned to the spa it is barely a trickle

could the pipes to the spa be blocked, how best to test this theory ?
I would seriously look at the Jandy valve. Maybe it got misaligned somehow and doesn't ever open the side for the spa. It's far, far more likley that there is a problem with the valve than with the underground pipes unless you recently had dump trucks full of gravel driving across the yard or something. If you look in that manual which I linked further upo the thread, there's instructions to loosen the lock nut 4 turns or something and push down to disengage the actuator motor and put it to manual control. I'd try moving the valve by hand. See if you can get it to move to spa. Maybe something is jammed, and you'll feel it. Or it will work perfect, in which case you get to figure out how to get the actuator and the valve aligned again!
 

fujijohn0

Active member
Feb 16, 2014
27
NC
thanks richard, will look at this in the morning. the valve that you are referencing is the one shown in the first photo earlier in the thread, the one that leads into the pump ? or are you referncing the one in picture 4
 

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