Common Pool Problems

Common Pool Problems Arizona

If you are looking for common pool problems and solutions, this article should help.

Common issues and solutions:

  1. Slow addition of chemicals.

Solution: add a supplemental chemical like granular chlorine which may be needed for super chlorination.

  1. Chemical fumes.

Solution: Wear safety gear when you check the system. Try to add chemicals to an empty feeder only. Never add residual dust that is in the container.

Filter Run is the time between your cleanings which is expressed as total running time of your system and is called the filter cycle.

Common issues and solutions:

  1. Irregular or inconsistent cleaning causing turbid water. Awareness of the filter run allows you to predict the need of cleaning.

Solution: Keeping records, including flowrate changes, pressure differentials, and tank pressure will show patterns of your filter run.

The flow meter is a device that is used to measure the rate of water that goes through a pipe, it is expressed in GPM or gallons per minute.

Common issues and solutions:

  1. The painted numbers on the flowmeter are faded.

Solution: replace the flowmeter that has faded numbers to avoid violations.

  1. The float is stuck, which causes a bad reading.

Solution: lightly tap the flowmeter to vibrate the float and dislodge it. Be careful to not put too much force behind it, as it is plastic and will break.

Flow rate is the volume of water that goes through a point at a certain time, and is expressed in GPM or gallons per minute.

Common issues and solutions:

  1. The flow rate is much lower than required.

Solution: The low flow rate will not work for the county inspector and may be a sign that you have filter or pump restriction, or an improperly sized pump for your pool. A high flow rate is acceptable as long as it isn’t exceeding the filter system capacity.

The gate valve is the valve that will restrict water flow by lowering and raising a disc across the diameter of the pipe by a worm drive.

Common issues and solutions:

  1. There are stripped threads at the worm drive, and the round handle is spinning without the disc being moved. The issue isn’t visible.

Solution: the damaged valves will need to be repaired or replaced.

Gauge is a measuring device such as a pressure gauge. Normally from 0 to 60 psi. It is used to measure influent pressure, effluent pressure and tank pressure for filter systems.

Common issues and solutions:

  1. There are some gauges that are made with metal which won’t last in a pump room due to chemical fumes which cause deterioration.

Solution: replace the gauges that don’t zero out when the system is off. Replace whenever the unit fills with water or the needles are damaged.

Gunite is a dry mixture of cement and sand that is mixed with water at the nozzle and then sprayed onto supported surfaces to create a spa or pool, making the shell of your pool.

Common issues and solutions:

  1. If the shell hasn’t been waterproofed properly, then damage to the pool shell can happen in freezing temperatures.

Solution: Whenever the coping is removed, the damage can be seen and needs to be repaired by removing the deterioration and completely rebuilding.

High rate sand filters are filters that use sand which is made for high flow rates. It strains contaminants larger than 50-80 microns and uses pool water to clean any dirty filter.

Common issues and solutions:

Solution: you may need to change filter sand because of channeling around the sand instead of through it.

  1. Sand erosion.

Solution: water passing over the sand will make it round instead of faceted and rough. Smooth sand won’t catch and trap dirt effectively.

  1. Sand is forced into the pool.

Solution: the internal components have failed and can be replaced, but it does show future maintenance needs. It is recommended to replace the whole unit.

Hose bibb is the faucet where a garden hose is attached.

Common issues and solutions:

  1. Will need a backflow preventer and will fail inspection if missing.

Solution: ensure all hose bibbs have backflow preventers and are in place and working correctly to protect the potable water supply.

Hydrostatic valve is a check valve that is located within the main drain of your pool to relieve pressure caused by groundwater. The valve lets ground water into the pool but doesn’t let it out.

Common issues and solutions:

  1. If the spring loaded top is stuck in the open position, the pool will leak when full.

Solution: before the pool is full, check the operation. Once it is filled and leaking, it could be a common source. Check by dropping and lifting the top to insure a seal.

Impeller is a rotating part of the pump that will create centrifugal force. The impeller is glossed when covered on both sides or semi-open if covered on one side, while the interior surface which creates a cover on the other side.

Common issues and solutions:

  1. If the impeller is clogged, damaged or obstructed the flow rate is reduced.

Solution: protect the impeller with a clean strainer basket that has no holes and isn’t damaged. Ensure the basket is in place.

The laterals are slotted collection tubes located at the bottom of the sand filter and installed on a drain manifold hub.

Common issues and solutions:

  1. Broken laterals are allowing sand to enter the pool.

Solution: Its hard to repair laterals. This type of break it is recommended to replace the tank.

The Leafmaster is a device that vacuums debris from the pool by water pressure made with a water hose.

Common issues and solutions:

  1. Doesn’t work in shallow water. The wheels have broken and the bag isn’t secured properly.

Solution: Ensure that you have checked the equipment before you use. Ensure that the bag has been secured. Also remember that the more water pressure there is, the better the Leafmaster will be.

Leaf rake is a large net that is secured to a pole that is used to skim debris off the surface of the water. It is different from a leaf net which holds more.

Common issues and solutions:

  1. The net has ripped.

Solution: Keep it clean as a lot of weight can cause it to rip and debris go through.

The main drain is the suction fitting that is found on the lowest part of the water; it is secondary intake for circulation system.

Common issues and solutions:

  1. Non-VGB or single drain approved covers are entrapment hazards.

Solution: a dual drain that has VGB frames and grates are best. Never use the drain with the valve closed.

The manifold is an assembly that will combine components together; it is a pipe fitting that has several outlets for connecting other lines.

Common issues and solutions:

  1. The suction or filter manifolds have a leak or valves need to be replaced.

Solution: a suction leak will let air in while a pressure leaks will let water out. You need to find the leak source and replace or repair fittings or the pipe as needed.

Niche is the housing built into the wall of the pool for underwater lights.

Common issues and solutions:

  1. The conduit that protects the cord has a leak.

Solution: whenever the pool is empty, use a conduit sealer into the niche at the gap inside of the conduit.

National pipe thread or NPT is an accepted specification for any threaded plumbing fittings and pipe. NPT threading will be tapered slightly, so whenever the fitting is tightened it creates a seal.

Common issues and solutions:

  1. The joint compound has dried out and caused leaks. Heat will often distort the threads and break the seal.

Solution: whenever the thread is distorted, the device, plug, or fitting will need to be replaced or repaired.

Plaster is a hand applied combination of aggregates, white cement and additives that covers the shell to waterproof and add beauty to the pool. Plaster may also be colored.

Common issues and solutions:

  1. Failure or separation of the bond of materials also called plaster pops.

Solution: You will need to replaster if there it has been popped, chipped, cracked or becomes rough. You can do underwater patching with pool putty.

A pressure gauge is a device that will register the pressure of an air or water system and is show in PSI or pounds per square inch.

Common issues and solutions:

  1. Gauges are quite sensitive and may deteriorate when in a pump room with chemical fumes.

Solution: replace the gauge immediate if there are bad readings, doesn’t zero out, or sticking needles.

Prime is the process where you initiate the water flow in a pump to start circulation by displacing air within the suction part of circulation.

Common issues and solutions:

  1. The air is displaced by filling up with water and resealing the strainer. Ensure that the valves are closed to prevent water from going back into your pool. Before you start, ensure to check that the water level is high and that the skimmers aren’t stuck in upright, which will restrict the water flow to your skimmer line.

Solution: Displacing the air may take a few tries. Listen to the sound that the pump makes when working. Listen for noises that mean its finished. Turn the pump off and close the valves at the suction manifold. Open and clean your strainer and fill with water. Seal the strainer lid. Open the air reliefs and allow water to displace the air as the tanks fill up. Turn the pump on and slowly open your suction valves to let water enter the strainer and pump.

PSI is Pounds per Square Inch.

PVC is a type of plastic pipe and fittings that are used in spa and pool plumbing.

Common issues and solutions:

  1. Connections are done with gluing the pipe to connectors. While a glued joint is trouble free, threaded connections may leak.

Solution: Each time you use a threaded connection, use a thread sealant before you screw them together. If the threads are distorted, the section will need to have new fittings.

Return is the fitting and/or line that water is discharged into called an inlet. Return fittings are made with adjustable plates that let water flow through to be regulated. The returns that are closest to the pump will have more flow.

Common issues and solutions:

  1. The plastic covers can break and screw hole threads will strip.

Solution: return repairs are easy when the pool is empty. Check for issues before filling. Repairs are hard underwater. You can repair with underwater epoxy or use an oversized stainless steel screw.

Sight glass is a clear plastic or glass pipe section that lets you view the water in the pipe. It is used for backwashing and will let you know when the discharged water is clean.

Common issues and solutions:

  1. It could be the source of a water leak.

Solution: Ensure the parts are installed correctly and rubber seals lubricated correctly.

Skimmers are a part of the circulation system that will remove debris from the surface by drawing water through it.

Common issues and solutions:

  1. If the water level isn’t high enough it will suck air into the pump which will cause it to lose the prime. The skimmer can also get stuck to the side if it isn’t aligned and will restrict water flow causing the same issue.

Solution: Keep the water at above average levels and keep baskets clean and ensure that the skimmer is in place and not rubbing the wall. Check for cracks which can cause leaks.

The strainer basket is a mesh container made from stainless steel or plastic that strains debris in the  pool water flowing through it.

Common issues and solutions:

  1. If it has holes, debris will go through and clog the impeller. Flow is restricted if not cleaned.

Solution: Check the basket regularly for holes and to clean debris.

The strainer pot is the housing on the intake of the pump that has a strainer basket and serves as a reservoir to help with priming.

Common issues and solutions:

  1. Metal lids will rust and keep it from being airtight. Plastic lids are a maintenance fee.

Solution: Removing the rust and lubricating the rubber seal will prevent air leaks. Keep the plastic lids clean and lubricated.

Teflon tape is a thin fabric that is on a roll that is used to coat threaded fittings to prevent leaks.

Common issues and solutions:

  1. If it is not wound on the threads in the right direction, the tape may unravel as the threads are turned.

Solution: Wrap the threads counterclockwise. On the discharges use Teflon tape and silicone sealant for a good seal.

The telepole is a fiberglass or metal pole that extends and is used with most spa and pool cleaning tools.

Common issues and solutions:

  1. The pole can become bent which restricts the installation and removal of cleaning tools.

Solution: Hang the pole instead of standing on its end. Ensure that the pole locking mechanism has been well lubricated regularly and ensure that you don’t push too hard, as it could bend the pole. Never use near any power lines that are overhead.

Turbidity is cloudiness in the water.

Common issues and solutions:

  1. The ability to see through water has been restricted.

Solution: keep your filtration system clean and keep chemicals at the right levels.

The turnover rate is the amount of time for your system to filter all of the pool.

Common issues and solutions:

  1. When renovating the pool, the pump may need to be upgraded.

Solution: Once your pump is sized and installed, the turnover rate can’t be changed, it can only be maintained.

A valve is a device the controls the flow of water. There are 3 styles which are gate, wafer, and ball. The gate valve has a sliding plate that is threaded. The wafer valve has a circular disc and the ball valve has a sphere with a hole in the middle. They are connected to an arm handle, which takes it from open to closed.

Common issues and solutions:

  1. The main issue with valves isn’t valve failure, but the valve position understanding and how they are set for your pool. Air leaking valves and water leaks are common.

Solution: Valves that have threaded connections can be reused if it opens and closes correctly and does not leak. The correction for many valve issues involves removing and replacing the valve and the plumbing.

Weir is the barrier in the skimmer that water flows over. The floating weir will raise and lower the level to match your water level. There is another type similar to a barrel and it floats up and down inside the skimmer. It is designed so water constantly flows into the basket. This flow pattern collects debris. Correct skimmer usage will reduce your need for vacuuming.

Common issues and solutions:

  1. The weir may get stuck on the wall of the skimmer and will restrict water flow which causes the pump to suck in air. They are often made of plastic and corrode from pool chemicals and will break when brittle.

Solution: The weir may be trimmed to have better movement. They are inexpensive to replace and it can be easily done. Check the weirs regularly.

If You Are Experiencing Pool Problems In The Gilbert Area?

AquaPoolCo Service & Repair offers pool repair services in Gilbert, Arizona. If you are experiencing problems with your swimming pool, give AquaPoolCo a call today at (480) 241-7447 or visit our contact page to receive a free pool repair quote.

One thought on “Common Pool Problems

  1. Deb Pearl says:

    I didn’t know that if the shell of the pool isn’t properly waterproofed that damage can happen in freezing temperatures! We will have to see if our shell got properly waterproofed! We just got a pool and we really want to make sure that it is in good condition! Thank you for the information!

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