Contiuously Clogging Pop-up Screen


New member
Sep 13, 2010
Lots here, but my basic question is, what is the crystal stud forming on my pop-up screen evey time I run the pool pump?

I have a Polaris Pop-up in-ground cleaning system that until recently has been relatively pain free. So may story is that I have to clean the metal filter screen every night now, previously I clean the thing every six months. The screen gets so clogged that I create pressure and blow the seal on the pop-up intake. I currently run the returns also to keep the pressure from blowing the system completely. I am getting what appears to be crystal like substance forming around the screen every night that virtually clogs the intake into the dome. The substance kind-of looks like ice and at first I thought it was calcium or salt. It doesn’t taste like salt (really no taste) and when I dropped some into a little acid it didn’t bubble like it was a base. I wonder if a piece of plastic (like bubble wrap) blew into the pool and has been disintegrating in the system and is now breaking down. When I get into the pool, I can see some of these crystals deposited into a corner where the Pop-ups like to pile large debris. Here is a little background that may help.

I put Beautec in once per month (about 5 bottles so far this year for a 35K gallon) pool. I realize now that this may be too much and need to know if this is a contributing factor. The guy at Leslies indicated that you cannot use to much of this stuff (hmmm), but I have had a continued scaling problem at the water line, but the chlorinator is scale free.

I recently replaced my broken Pentair Saltwater Chlorinator with a new one and cranked it up to 80% (now at 60%) to get my chlorine levels up. I essentially had no measurable chlorine in the pool for at least of couple of days and kind of panicked a little I suppose. It was over 110 degrees in Arizona where I live and I could not get the tablets dissolved fast enough before it was being burn-off. This was going on for few days before I decided to replace my chlorinator, but I preceded that with a dump of some grocery store shock treatment (I wanted a quick chlorine surge). I noted that the shock treatment had some stuff in it that I thought might raise the calcium or hardness of the pool, but I dumped it in anyway. It didn’t dissolve right away and I wondered f the chemical compound of the treat meant had change since it was kind of old. Not sure if this is a contributing factor, but wanted to give all the details I could.

Any ideas would be welcome.


Mod Squad
TFP Expert
Platinum Supporter
LifeTime Supporter
In The Industry
Apr 1, 2007
Sebring, Florida

Welcome to the forum.

As you read through here, you will soon discover we are dedicated to getting pool test results so we can do more than just stab wild guesses at a problem.

I suspect you have calcium scaling (however, I'm guessing) but a complete set of test results can help us confirm if that's the likely culprit. Can you post some that are current?