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Thread: Pump Keeps Losing Prime

  1. #1
    ellry99 is offline Established User Thread Analyst ellry99 0
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    Question Pump Keeps Losing Prime

    I have an inground pool and my pump keeps losing prime. Every morning when I start my pool up, I have to prime the pump to get it going. What is causing this? It is a brand new pump (last year).

    Thanks,
    Elle

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Pump Keeps Losing Prime

    Quote Originally Posted by ellry99
    I have an inground pool and my pump keeps losing prime. Every morning when I start my pool up, I have to prime the pump to get it going. What is causing this? It is a brand new pump (last year).

    Thanks,
    Elle
    A small leak somewhere letting air in. Strainer basket lid tight? Any water leaks around the filter like the pressure guage or handle? Does water squirt out of anything when you shut the pump off? Is your pump much higher than the water level?

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    Default Re: Pump Keeps Losing Prime

    Make sure you have the o-ring for the filter basket installed an that it is not cracked or otherwise damaged.

  4. #4
    ellry99 is offline Established User Thread Analyst ellry99 0
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    Question Re: Pump Keeps Losing Prime

    Quote Originally Posted by JohnT
    A small leak somewhere letting air in. Strainer basket lid tight? Any water leaks around the filter like the pressure guage or handle? Does water squirt out of anything when you shut the pump off? Is your pump much higher than the water level?
    Quote Originally Posted by Jlwine
    Make sure you have the o-ring for the filter basket installed an that it is not cracked or otherwise damaged
    Thanks for the responses. I'll check for small leaks around filter and maybe make the strainer pot lid tighter and see if that helps.

  5. #5
    Poconos is offline Super Moderator Sniggle Mechanic Poconos 4 stars Poconos 4 stars Poconos 4 stars Poconos 4 stars Poconos 4 stars Poconos 4 stars
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    Default Re: Pump Keeps Losing Prime

    Another possibility if you have a multi-port valve would be an internal leak to the waste line. There could be a scenario with pressure nothing leaks but with the pump off air leaks past the valve from the waste line that is open to air.
    Just a thought.
    Al

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Pump Keeps Losing Prime

    Sometimes you may not be able to detect a leak.
    TIPS (with the pump running):
    Suction side (before the pump) - you should see bubbles in the hair and lint strainer pot.
    Pressure side (after the pump) - water will be leaking out

    If you see bubbles in the strainer pot, get your garden hose with no hose nozzles and run the water over small areas at a time. Around your lid, diverter valves between the skimmer and main drain. Fittings. etc.
    If there is a leak at that area, the bubbles will go away because it will suck in the hose water rather than air.
    You can also do this with a very wet towel or t-shirt over these areas on the suction side...

    Pressure side leaks will usually appear as water leaking out. When the pump is off, the leak can allow air to be drawn in, causing your condition.
    Sean Assam
    Commercial Product Sales Manager - AquaCal AutoPilot Inc. Mobile: 954-325-3859
    e-mail: sean@teamhorner.com --- www.autopilot.com - www.aquacal.com

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Pump Keeps Losing Prime

    I'm having this same problem. I've recently got leaks coming from lots of places:
    - sometimes water comes out of the lid of the filter basket when I shut off the pump
    - drips coming from the cartridge filter
    - a few drips from one of the pipe connections
    - bubbles from the outlets

    They didn't all come at once -- they came in the order I listed over a few seasons. I've checked that the o-rings for the filter basket and the cartridge filter don't have cracks.

    Any suggestions on how I can fix this?

    Thanks.

  8. #8
    matt4x4 is offline Lifetime Member Whizbang Spinner matt4x4 2 stars matt4x4 2 stars
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    Default Re: Pump Keeps Losing Prime

    For teh pump lid, make sure you lube it up good with silicone pool lube and tighten the lid down good, when you think it's tight, it will tighten a bit more, I found you have to hit it with a plastic pipe to get it loose again in most cases, but it's relatively easy and painless. (I use a plastic pipe since it won't damage the lid). Lids are the primary reason for sudden suction side leaks. Water coming out of teh lid - definite sign it's not on tight.
    Pipe connections, I find every year I have to give them an extra little bit of a turn. if it's tigerflex try using a heatgun on the tube, then tighten, mine hasn't leaked for 2 seasons since I did that.
    Drips from the cartrige filter - where? If it's at a pipe thread, try replacing the teflon tape, if that doesn't do it, maybe it's where the clamp is.

  9. #9
    waste is offline PF Support Team Whizbang Spinner waste 3 stars waste 3 stars waste 3 stars
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    Lightbulb Re: Pump Keeps Losing Prime

    ChiInSFO, welcome to the forum. Please don't take this in any other way than the helpful suggestion which it is - it is considered bad form on the forum to ask your own question in the middle of someone else's thread (though I've been guilty of it too ), rather, you should start your own - it makes keeping the responses to the 2 questions separate and every questor here deservesto have their question answered, if possible. In this instance, I have some advice for you but nothing, yet, for Elle (who started this thread - but I have it bookmarked for follow up). I think the best way to do it would be to read the advice for the first poster, see if it fits your situation, and if not, start a new thread in the same section, then post on the original thread saying that you are having the same problem and give the link to your new thread, all the while keeping an eye on the original for stuff that could help you. It's a little more work, but it may end up getting both posters more views (& therefore more advice) and better 'case specific' advice. Just my $.02. I'll see if I can get a moderator to separate the 2 threads here for you.
    Meanwhile, on the pump 'spurting' when it's shut off:
    If there is no air in the pump while running and it happens, it's not a problem - some pumps are designed to fully seal when suction is applied, but that seal can be broken by 'back pressure' when the pump is turned off (this happens on quite a few of the Northstars I have to deal with, however, they are probably oversized for the system). (I realise that you do have bubbles now, but if they go away and it still happens - 'no problem Mon')
    If the problem is as Matt says, you probably need to replace the cover o-ring - If it hasn't been properly lubed, it might have worn down. On the other hand, if it's older and has been routinely overtightened, the o-ring may have 'squared off' (been so compressed that it's lost it's roundness).
    Again, welcome to the forum - I'm just trying to get you (and in this case Elle) the best help that can be proffered by the great folks here. - Waste
    Luv & Luk, Ted

    Having done construction and service for 4 pool companies in 4 states starting in 1988, what I know about pools could fill a couple of books - what I don't know could fill libraries

  10. #10
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    Default Re: Pump Keeps Losing Prime

    waste, thanks for the friendly advice. I need to go and start a few new threads

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