Leak in Paramount Valve head and 30 PSI on sand filter


Well-known member
Mar 30, 2017
Lexington, SC
Let me start by saying I am new to this forum but have been reading it for a few weeks now and thank you to all the posters. I have learned a ton from just reading old threads. Now, on to my current situation... and let me go ahead and apologize for the length and detail I am about to go into.

I moved into a new house about 4 weeks ago in Lexington SC. The house has an in ground gunite pool which I believe was built in the early 90s. The pool was crystal clear and clean when we moved in. I have never owned a pool before and knew nothing of how they function until learning some stuff the last few weeks. We paid the home inspector to do an additional pool inspection (in retrospect, I think we should have used a separate inspector from a pool company to perform the inspection). The only issues he noted were a leak in the side of the sand filter where one of the pipes ran into it, the pool light was not functional, and the "pool valet" system was not functional. We requested that the seller repair all 3 of those issues. The seller responded by agreeing to fix the filter leak but not the other 2 issues. They stated that the "pool valet" system was antiquated and they did not use it and that the pool light was not connected to any electrical so it was not a hazard. We countered for just the light and they agreed to write a check for $750 for us to have the light fixed. The seller had a national company ASP come out and perform the filter leak repair a week or two before closing. On our closing date, the ASP Pool guy tells us that he went back out for some reason and found an additional leak that had sprung up in the pool valet system. This nearly delayed our closing but the seller agreed to write another check for another $750 to have this leak repaired. I personally found it odd that this company quoted the exact same amount for two very different jobs (repairing a pool light and repairing a leak in a pool valet).

Fast-forward a couple weeks and this guy at ASP Pool finally comes out after giving us the run around a couple times. He had told my wife previously that he just wanted to cut out the pool valet system at the pad area and cap it because the system was antiquated and some of the heads had been plastered over. Now he was saying that they were planning on just replacing the valve head and O ring. I also noticed that when we moved in the cover over the main drain at the deep end was off and sitting a foot or two from the drain. This concerned me bc the first thing my one year old son did was walk up to the pool and throw a rock into the pool that slowly rolled right up to the drain hole and stopped next to it. It looks like the perfect size to clog it. One of the pool valet heads was also missing completely. He stated that he thought the pressure in the system had caused the drain cover to pop off. When they repaired the leak at the filter they replaced the entire switch apparatus and the piping to it (the thing with the handle that you use to change from filter to backwash to rinse, etc). Apparently he felt that had caused the new pool valet leak because of some pressure build up in the system. He also went on to tell me that I need a new sand filter and my pool replastered, which the home inspector did not tell me. We cut the filter on and there was a pretty bad leak of water shooting up out of one of the pvc joints a couple inches above the pool valet valve head (I believe this is a paramount system). The sand filter psi showed 30. The ASP guy was alarmed by the 30 psi and kept turning the pump off. We did a backwash which didn't help the pressure. He attempted to tighten the pvc pipe above the paramount head with a wrench but the leak was not affected. He said he would be back in a few days to repair everything.

Two weeks later and about 6 more no shows later, I told the ASP guy thanks but no thanks. At this point, my pool has turned green and is full of pollen. I have done my best to clean by skimming with a long net, but he told me not to use the pump and not to put chemicals in it without running the pump so I'm stuck. I made arrangements with another company called Aquarian Pools who told me they specialize in older gunite pools and these pool valet systems. They advised me it would probably be best to just replace the paramount valve head, clamp, o ring, etc to resolve the leak without cutting the system out. They also said they could do that for much less than the $750 that ASP quoted me (it looks like the part is $200 on amazon). They said they would send someone out later that week. Well it's been 3 days since someone was supposed to come out and Noone has called or returned my calls and messages I've left.

So, as you can imagine, I am starting to feel like I may have to do this myself in order to actually get it done. It's a shame considering I have a $750 check just waiting to be paid out to a pool guy. So I did a bunch of reading today and went outside and got as much debris as i could out of the pool. I can no longer see more than a few feet down thru the green cloudy water. The filter gauge read 7 psi when it was off so that appears to be broken. I turned the jandy valve to skimmer only since I'm a bit nervous about the rock next to the uncovered main drain hole. (the options are skimmer only, main drain only, or both). I turned the pump on and it stabilized at about 28-30 psi after a couple minutes. At one point it did drop to 10 psi but I turned the pump off to tinker with some things and every time I turn it on since, it goes to about 30 and stays there. The pipe above the paramount head is still leaking pretty badly. I ran the pump for about an hour and a good bit of water had collected by the side of my house so I turned it off. I am wondering if all I really need to do is replace the sand filter gauge and then the pvc joint where the leak is coming from or if all of this could possibly be indicative of bigger problems. I have never really done any plumbing type work like that so I have no idea how to perform that leak repair. I don't care about the pool valet system actually working. I just want it to stop leaking and causing other problems. I want very badly to be able to run the filter for extended periods so that I can start putting in the necessary chemicals to bring my pool back.

Additionally, I would just like to know if my customer service experience with asp and Aquarian are typical of pool service companies? I'm legitimately shocked by how poorly this has gone. I have $1500 in checks written and waiting to be given to someone and it's like Noone wants the money.

Any insight and advice that you all can give me is much appreciated! Again, I apologize for the length of this post!


TFP Guide
In The Industry
Apr 5, 2015
tucson, arizona
You might try taking the valve apart and removing the module inside, put the valve back together and try running the system. Without some pictures of your equipment set and leaking pipe it's hard to determine what might help you through this. The module lifts straight out of valve.


Gold Supporter
May 18, 2016
West Bloomfield, MI
Additionally, I would just like to know if my customer service experience with asp and Aquarian are typical of pool service companies? I'm legitimately shocked by how poorly this has gone. I have $1500 in checks written and waiting to be given to someone and it's like Noone wants the money.
Unfortunately, that echoes my experience in Michigan. I contacted 8 of the higher-rated companies for a quote to replaster. Responses included that 40 miles away was too far, I was stood up by several others, some just went to voicemail and never called back. Two companies sent reps to the house. Only one of those followed through with a quote. I hired them and they sent an excellent, friendly crew for the tear-out. The next day I was surprised to see a subcontractor arrive to plaster. I hadn't thought to ask about that - lesson learned. They did the job and disappeared. I didn't appreciate the lack of communication, but I've been fearful of writing a review in case I need them in the future. At least they showed up!