Pump not drawing/won't prime
We are getting a new liner for our pool, but it has been delayed due to incessant rain. It rains for a few days, then stops for a day or two... then rains again. We have had 9 " so far in May. As a result, the water table is too high to get the liner installed right now. Sooooo... I haven't put much thought into the pool until a few days ago. It is at this point that my sad tale begins...
When I pulled the cover off, the water was pond-ish green, scummy, looking. I closed the pool as per our pool store directions, but still had awful water. I drained all lines and capped them, (i.e. the 2 return jets, 2 skimmer ports with homemade plugs) I missed the main drain... forgot to plug it.
We wanted to paint the coping before the new liner was installed, so I thought I would try to get the pump running so I could drain off a couple of inches so I wouldn't be face to face with the mucky water and tadpoles and such. When I went out to the pump/filter area, I noticed that the pipes on one of the skimmer lines were broken/busted. I repaired them. I actually replumbed the suction side pipes for both skimmers and the main drain. I can't get the pump to draw water. Not on either skimmer line, or the main drain, or the all three together. I read somewhere in these forums that the lines might be plugged so I bought a drain clean bladder and flushed the lines out for 10-30 minutes each. Still no draw. Here is what I am trying...
1. close all valves on suction side
2. remove pump basket lid
3. fill with water until it holds no more water.
4. replace pump basket lid
5. slowly open valve
6. wait 30-60 seconds to see if it draws
7. If not repeat.
Note: When I turn on the pump the water in the basket is sucked down rapidly.
Before I tried this procedure I had closed all valves but one, then let the pump suck on that line for 30 minutes and got no results.
Do I have a leak on my suction side?
How can I determine if I have a leak and where?
I have no soggy ground anywhere along the path of the pipes from the pool to the pump system, so I don't think I have a leak underground.
BTW... Once I get this running again, it runs 12 months a year... I am not opening a cement pond again! I'd rather pay to run it all year.