underground pool-skimmer pipe is blocked-how to unblock it?

Pool pumps, filters and the plumbing of swimming pools. Problems relating to the piping and pumping of the swimming pool water.

clogged pool lines

Postby Russelllyn » Mon 12 May, 2008 19:13

Help please. This is my second year of owning an inground pool. Stupid me listened to idiots about winterizing my pool and I ended up with a pool full of algea to clean up. After three weeks of vacuuming and backwashing my pool close to being cleaned (still green in the deep end, but clearer in the shallow end). And now I get nothing from my vacuuming or backwashing. The pump is running, but nothing is happening. I suspect my pipes are fully clogged... How do I unclog them without having to pay an arm and a leg? Not too up on pool lingo other than skimmer, filter, pump and a couple others so please use details. I'm really frustrated with my local pool store because everytime I talk to them I get a different answer.
Russelllyn
 

clogged line

Postby Pool User » Tue 13 May, 2008 00:28

If your suction line is clogged, the drain jet is a good option. You can get them at any Home Depot.

You put the drain jet into one end of the suction line. Either the skimmer end or into the pipe that leads into the pump. The drain jet connects to a garden hose. When the water is turned on, the drain jet swells and blocks the pipe. This forces the water through the suction line.

If you use the skimmer end, watch the pump basket for debris coming through. You should see water coming through even if there isn't debris.

In a stubborn line you can alternate from skimmer end to pump end to loosen whatever is in there.

This is all done with the equipment turned off.
Pool User
 

Re: clogged pool lines

Postby DBServices » Tue 13 May, 2008 18:15

Russelllyn wrote:Help please. This is my second year of owning an inground pool. Stupid me listened to idiots about winterizing my pool and I ended up with a pool full of algea to clean up. After three weeks of vacuuming and backwashing my pool close to being cleaned (still green in the deep end, but clearer in the shallow end). And now I get nothing from my vacuuming or backwashing. The pump is running, but nothing is happening. I suspect my pipes are fully clogged... How do I unclog them without having to pay an arm and a leg? Not too up on pool lingo other than skimmer, filter, pump and a couple others so please use details. I'm really frustrated with my local pool store because everytime I talk to them I get a different answer.


Is it possible that your pump has clogged? Did you get a lot of leaves in your pump strainer basket? Did you have to clean the pump strainer basket many times? If yes than some of the leaves could be in the pump impeller.
Dave
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DBServices
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Similar Issue...Only with Bottom Drain Line

Postby BobM » Wed 14 May, 2008 11:38

I followed this closely for ideas but blowing things backwards into my Bottom Drain doesn't seem feasable. I'm leaning toward obstruction but remain unconvinced.

My specific circumstances are an inground liner pool with a skimmer and bottom drain. Skimmer suction is great but anything more than about 20% open on the Jandy valve to the Bottom Drain results in a tremendous amount of air in the suction (and consquently the jets). 100% Bottom Drain open and the suction strainer will run dry! For this reason I am thinking obstruction. I'm also trying to think of a way to do a pressure test to eliminate the cracked/broken piping issue. I'm looking at isolating that line and using the head of water at the drain as a valve and seeing if it will hold the calculated pressure for a period of time. At 8 feet, about 3.5 psi. My problem, I don't know the piping mechanics. Is it a straigt shot, or is there a check valve?

I'll take all the advise I can get.

Thanks

Bob
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Pool lines clogged

Postby Jamie » Wed 14 May, 2008 18:26

I've been following this closely also and am hoping for some help. I would love to do this myself and forego the cost of a pro. but don't want to make the situation worse in doing so.

My situation is opposite BobM in that i'm getting no flow from my skimmer and decent flow from the drain.

I've purchased the King Drain and used it three times today with no results. However, i've only used it on the skimmer side and not the pump side. Skimmer and pump baskets are clean. My main question is should i shut down the flow to the main drain when i try to flush out the clog from the pump side to the skimmer? I'm afraid of introducing too much pressure on the pipes.

thanks for any help you can give!
Jamie
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Clogged lines

Postby Pool User » Wed 14 May, 2008 18:54

Yes, you want to shut off the main drain line and isolate the skimmer line.

Whichever end you run it from, look for water coming through the opposite end. Blocks in the line will seldom be complete so you should see water coming through.

You said you are getting decent flow through the main drain line. Make sure there is nothing clogging the impeller. With the system off check the impeller with your finger to see if there is anything in there.

If your blockage is leaves and debris, blowing from one end and then the other will often loosen and then clear it. If it's a rock or something solid, it may not work.

Good luck.
Pool User
 

skimmer pipe blocked

Postby janine » Mon 19 May, 2008 12:46

Anyone know if a wet dry blower/vac would work to unblock the skimmer line. I was going to go out and buy one but wanted to know if anyone had tried it first before i wasted my money on it
janine
 

Similar problem - clogged return line

Postby Wiley17 » Mon 26 May, 2008 12:49

I just found this thread through Google and was wondering if I can get some help on clogged return lines. There are two return lines and one line where the pool sweep attaches.

I noticed the pressure in the filter was higher than normal and thought it was dirty. I cleaned it and noticed that the pressure did not go down at all...remained at 20psi where normal is about 12psi. Well, I then realized that the pressure was up because all the water was being returned only through the pool sweep line instead of all three. There is very little, if any, flow through one of the returns and none coming through the other.

I looked into the drain king as other have suggested but it will be too big to push through the 1" return lines. I tried using a plunger as a 'cheap' fix but of course that didn't do anything. Does anyone have suggestions as to what I can do before I hire somebody? Thanks in advance.
Wiley17
 

problems with vacuum

Postby eet » Sun 27 Jul, 2008 10:25

the pump runs fine and its sucking water becuse i can see it splashing in the pump. but when i change the two valves leading into the pump (drain and skimmer) it stays at the same amount of water comming in. but nothing is happening to the skimmer...it doesnt pull anything in. what could be wrong? thanks for the help
eet
 

Re: problems with vacuum

Postby Pool User » Sun 27 Jul, 2008 17:38

Is the water coming into the pump filling the pump completely? Your description of the water splashing around sounds like low flow.

I would close the skimmer line and open drain line. See how the flow is and what the pressure is at the filter.

Then reverse that and open skimmer line and close drain line. Is there any flow? Does the filter pressure drop?

eet wrote:the pump runs fine and its sucking water becuse i can see it splashing in the pump. but when i change the two valves leading into the pump (drain and skimmer) it stays at the same amount of water comming in. but nothing is happening to the skimmer...it doesnt pull anything in. what could be wrong? thanks for the help
Pool User
 

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