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Home > School Of Pool > Pool Pump Frequently Asked Questions
Why is my pump noisy?

 • The motor has an internal cooling fan that can be heard. When installing your pump, it is advised to carefully consider the location; under a bedroom window may not be an ideal location.
 • Vibration from the pump’s feet and the base (where the pump rests) can cause the pump to be noisy. A piece of old carpet or rubber between the pump’s base and equipment pad might reduce the noise.
 • Ensure the pump is level and the suction lines are not higher then the pump.
 • The bearing(s) might be noisy due to age or high concentrations of chemicals and heat. A leaky pump seal could damage the front motor bearing. It is very important to quickly repair any leaks around the pump to prevent extensive damage. It is recommended that you replace the bearings or the entire motor.
• Many times a noisy pump can come from cavitation. Cavitation has two possible causes, which are both hydraulically (water flow) related. The first is that the suction piping is undersized. If this pipe is undersized, the amount of water the pump requires to operate properly is reduced. Increasing the pipe size (increase water flow) or dropping the size of the impeller (decrease water flow) can quiet the pump. The second is that there is little or no backpressure on the pressure side of system (water feature pumps are a good example). Adding a valve or something to increase backpressure is advised.

Why are there air bubbles flowing into the pool from the return fitting(s)?

If air is returning into the pool there might be a leak on the suction side of the pump. Check the following items that maybe causing air to enter the system:
• The strainer cover and O-ring. Tighten if loose or replace gasket if damaged.
• Level of water in the pool is low causing water and air to mix into the skimmer.
• The skimmer weir may be stuck in the up position causing water and air to mix in the skimmer.
• Check the drain plugs on the pump strainer housing.
• Check all of the threaded fittings for leaks from improper sealants or sealing procedures.
• Check glued fittings for bad glue joints.
• Check all valves for possible leaks. Valve stem O-rings are a common suction leak point.
• Check and ensure the pump is not cavitating.
• Check pump housing for cracks.

Why is my motor running, but I do not see any water flowing?

• A dirty filter, blocked return line, or a valve that is shut or partially shut off on the return side of the pump can cause this problem.
• Check the strainer basket and make sure it is clean of debris.
• The pump’s impeller may be clogged if the pump is running but the pressure is very low on the filter. Inspect and clean the impeller.

Why won’t my pump fill with water (prime)?

• An air leak on the suction side of the pump.
• Check to make sure the suction line is free of obstructions.
• Check to make sure the impeller is still attached to the shaft of the motor. If the impeller has broken off, it will need to be replaced.
• If the pump is installed a distance from the pool or is elevated above the normal deck level, the time needed to prime the pump could be longer. For elevated installations, a check valve may be needed on the suction line to allow for easier priming.

Can I run my pump without water?

• Pool pumps should never operate without water. The pump seal assembly in the pump volute (The area between the strainer basket and the pump motor) protects the pump motor from pool water. This seal assembly gets hot and is cooled by the pool water. If the pump is running without water, the seal will overheat and melt, If left running without water for a long period of time, the heat generated could damage the PVC pipe and other system components.

Why does my multiport valve leak out of the backwash line?

• The valve seat gasket inside of the valve may have become worn or loose. If this is the case, you will need to replace the gasket. With the pump off, remove the cover screws of the valve.

NOTE: Mark the top and bottom of the valve with a marking pen. It's very important that you do not change the location of the cover when re-assembling. Some newer valves will have a flat spot along side one of the cover screws. When re-assembling, align the flat spots.

• GENLTY remove the old gasket and glue, ensuring the channels are clean and clear. Use 3M adhesive or crazy glue**. Lay a bead of adhesive into the channel where the gasket sits. Place the flat side of the gasket into the channel. Apply pressure to firmly seat the gasket and let dry for 24 hours. **Crazy Glue – Use caution when using crazy glue. You will have only ONE chance to seat the gasket.

Why does my filter run at a high filter pressure and has reduced water flow to the pool?

• A dirty filter maybe the problem. When the filter pressure rises 8-10 PSI over the clean starting pressure, it is time to backwash or clean the filter
• If there is algae in the pool, it maybe clogging the filter, keeping the pressure high. The filter cannot kill algae.
• If the filter pressure continues to run high with reduced water flow to the pool, the pump may be moving more water than the filter is designed to handle. Check the flow ratings of both the pump and filter to ensure they are sized correctly.
• You may have a blocked or plugged return line.

Why is the filter continuing to run at high pressure even after backwashing?

• Make sure you are following the instructions in your owner’s manual. The sand bed may be clogged with mineral deposits or other material that will not backwash away. Some calcium based chlorines and other alternative sanitizers could cause a build-up in your sand bed. You may need to change the sand.
• Before you change the sand in you filter, try removing approximately 1” of the top layer of sand, and replace with the exact amount of sand removed. This sometimes rids the sand bed of the deposits clogging the filter.
• You may have to clean you filter system with a special filter cleaner,
• Check to see if there is a closed or partially closed valve on the return piping.
• Your pump may be too small to provide sufficient flow for proper backwashing. Your filter will filter properly, but if your pump does not supply at least 60% of the filter’s designed flow rate, you filter will never backwash completely. Refer to the label on you filter for flow rate requirements. It may be necessary to upgrade the pump or downgrade the filter.
• Your pump may also be exceeding the maximum allowed flow rate of you filter causing excessive backpressure. Check your owners guide or the operations label on you filter for the maximum allowed flow rate. You may have to downsize the impeller or pump to a lower horsepower or change the filter for one that will accommodate the pump’s flow rate. If allowed to continue, a pump that exceeds the recommended flow rate of a sand filter could cause the sand bed to channel (small channels in the sand that allow debris to pass unfiltered). This would cause debris to by-pass the filter.