Skimmer used as water source for booster pump on water feature

crob1979

New member
Jun 26, 2019
3
Argyle / TX
Hello Everyone, my construction is complete and I'm second guessing what my pool builder did. He indicated he forgot to plumb for a drain to support the booster pump so he tapped into 1 of my 2 skimmers. This resulted in my booster pump drawing water direct from my skimmer to the booster pump that is feeding my grotto. I have the following equipment below and also included some pics. My complaint when he just had everything running off the variable speed pump was the water flow was not that great for the grotto. So he installed the booster pump and I don't like the idea that my water feature is using water direct from the pool / skimmer and not going through the filter. I think long term this will be bad. Also I indicated that I wanted to have the water feature on while I was in the Spa to block out noise or others hearing my discussions in the back yard.

Is there something else that could have been to not lose a skimmer? Someone suggested he could have done a 3 way valve or maybe programmed the variable speed pump to support. Is what he did correct or could there have been something else better? Thanks in advance for reading and providing advice.

Pentair Equipment
3 HP Variable Speed Pump - Currently supports a 35K gallon saltwater pool with 5 returns, 2 bubblers in the tanning ledge, and a spa with 5 jets, 1 drain, and 1 return in the bottom when not in use / pool filter is running
1 HP Pump - For my cleaner
1 HP Pump - Added after to support the grotto water feature. Currently plumbed direct to skimmer as a water source going to water feature in grotto
 

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mknauss

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
Bronze Supporter
May 3, 2014
23,542
Laughlin, NV
Welcome to the forum!
Sorry you have not received any responses.
I do not see an issue with the water going to the grotto unfiltered. Now if both the booster pump and main pump are running, there could be an issue with starving one or both as they may not get enough water to them.
Most feature pumps (waterfalls, etc) that have a dedicated pump have dedicated suction from the wall. And do not go through the filter system.
Hope things work out.

I suggest you read ABC's of Pool Water Chemistry and consider reviewing the entire Pool School eBook.
 

crob1979

New member
Jun 26, 2019
3
Argyle / TX
Thanks for your input. The skimmer I'm referring to no longer goes to the filter its direct to the booster pump and then to the grotto. I was trying to see if there is a way to get my second skimmer back and still either use my booster pump or maybe do a 3 way on my variable speed pump and get rid of the booster pump. Key takeaway being I want to still use my water feature while my spa is running. Thanks in advance and will consider reading some of the materials you are suggesting.

Thanks,
Chris
 

mknauss

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
Bronze Supporter
May 3, 2014
23,542
Laughlin, NV
OK --- so they took one of the two skimmers from the main system and dedicated it to the feature pump.

If you have automation, you could use a three way valve on the skimmer line and have an automated valve there to switch the suction to the feature pump when running. Then under normal times that skimmer would go to the main pump. Realize the skimmers are not used when in Spa Mode.

I doubt your one VS pump could give you the flow rate for both a spa and the grotto.
 

crob1979

New member
Jun 26, 2019
3
Argyle / TX
Wow sounds like the 3 way can do what I want to accomplish considering the grotto is only on periodically. Also other than cost of 3 way the plumbing re route should be somewhat easy considering all completed in the equipment area as my booster is right next to the filter. I know I have automation as my electronic valves kick over in spa mode. Am I understanding everything based on your direction? Anything I'm missing before approaching my builder?
 

mknauss

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
Bronze Supporter
May 3, 2014
23,542
Laughlin, NV
Should be pretty easy fix. A picture of the equipment pad would be good. Also some specs of what you have put into your signature.

Few pool builders understand automation. The fact you have a make up line to your spa shows that. When you get up and running you will want to use your automation to eliminate the use of the make up line.