Caretaker pressure issues

Jpschulz

Member
Jul 11, 2021
10
Gilbert, AZ
I have a pressure issue with my in-floor cleaning system that I can’t seem to solve. I have a Pentair cartridge system and a Caretaker 5 port in-floor cleaning system. When I have the Caretaker system engaged I’m getting 8 PSI at the water valve assembly while I’m getting around 30 PSI at the cartridge filter housing. Due to the low pressure my heads barely pop up which is creating obvious issues. If I bypass the Caretaker housing by switching to the return, the pressure at the filter housing drops to 15. I’ve cleaned the cartridges, replaced both pressure gauges (so I know the pressure readings are accurate) and cleaned/rebuilt the Caretaker water valve housing. The only thing I haven’t done that I can think of is replace the cartridges but given that I cleaned them, I wouldn’t think that’s the issue. I suppose another resolution would be to replace the pressure relief valve in case that’s leaking pressure. Any idea as to what’s going on here? Thank you in advance!
 

proavia

LifeTime Supporter
TFP Guide
Feb 6, 2015
2,532
Chandler AZ
Pool Size
12300
Surface
Plaster
Chlorine
Liquid Chlorine
See the pic in this link (used for display purposes only, not an endorsement of the site)

Make sure the screen type strainer shown near top of water valve is entirely clean. This screen needs to be cleaned frequently - especially if you see a performance drop in your infloor. While the water vavle is apart, double-check for any other debris or obstructions.

If that doesn't do it, remove the cartridges from the filter and run system without cartridges as a test. If that works, you may need to thoroughly clean the cartridges and soak in TSP to deep clean them.
 

Jpschulz

Member
Jul 11, 2021
10
Gilbert, AZ
See the pic in this link (used for display purposes only, not an endorsement of the site)

Make sure the screen type strainer shown near top of water valve is entirely clean. This screen needs to be cleaned frequently - especially if you see a performance drop in your infloor. While the water vavle is apart, double-check for any other debris or obstructions.

If that doesn't do it, remove the cartridges from the filter and run system without cartridges as a test. If that works, you may need to thoroughly clean the cartridges and soak in TSP to deep clean them.
Thank you again for your help! We are up and fully functional. The issue was the screen on top of the water valve. I had never noticed it as it was stuck up in the the PVC coupler so when I pulled it off it wasn’t easily visible. I do have a quick follow-up question. While running it for several hours, I kept noticing the pressure dropping again so I’d open it up and the stainer would be clogged yet again. Am I correct in assuming of a lot of debris are making it that far I likely need to replace the filter cartridges, correct?

Thank you again!!
 

proavia

LifeTime Supporter
TFP Guide
Feb 6, 2015
2,532
Chandler AZ
Pool Size
12300
Surface
Plaster
Chlorine
Liquid Chlorine
Double check that it is plumbed after the filter and not directly after the pump. You shouldn't get much if any debris past the filter if the catridges are installed correctly and are intact.

Fill out your signature with your pool, pool equipment (including manufacturer and model numbers) and what test kit you are using. Doing so helps us better help you without needing to ask you questions about the pool and equipment each time.

Also have a look thru ABCs of Pool Water Chemistry.
 

Jpschulz

Member
Jul 11, 2021
10
Gilbert, AZ
Heres a pic of the plumbing with the caretaker definitely correctly plumbed after the filter. I checked the strainer cup today on the caretaker after cleaning it last night and it again was totally full of debris. The filters look good but I suppose there could be a tear I couldn’t easily see. Is there anything else that could allow debris into the caretaker?
 

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proavia

LifeTime Supporter
TFP Guide
Feb 6, 2015
2,532
Chandler AZ
Pool Size
12300
Surface
Plaster
Chlorine
Liquid Chlorine
Yeah - that plumbing is certainly correct. I think it's weird that they even need a strainer. I have a different brand and it doesn't have a strainer. In my mind, the only way the strainer in the water valve can get debris in it is if the debris gets thru the filter media. Seems a thorough,carful inspection may be warranted.
 

jesser

Gold Supporter
May 2, 2021
93
Illinois
Pool Size
32000
Surface
Plaster
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
FYI.... how old are your Caretaker pop up heads? Caretaker/Jandy came up with a newer model head that has a lower spring rate on it, meaning they pop up easier .. They did this because of the variable speed pumps that are common now. I have (well, had) heads that were 12 years old. Getting them to pop up was much harder than with the brand new heads I bought. Just food for thought.
 

Jpschulz

Member
Jul 11, 2021
10
Gilbert, AZ
I appreciate the follow up. It turns out my problem was the strainer cup on top of the caretaker water valve unit. I never noticed it as every time I took off the pipe it stuck inside the pipe. I was looking at a diagram online trying to figure on what was up and noticed it. Sure enough, it was full of debris. Once I cleaned that out, it works perfectly!

Out of curiosity, how much did those new heads run you? Like $80 a pop?
 

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jesser

Gold Supporter
May 2, 2021
93
Illinois
Pool Size
32000
Surface
Plaster
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
$50-55 each , not cheap.. I have 37 of them. But the system works great now!
 
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