Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Pump Troubleshooting / FAQ - Part II

My pump is noisy/ making noises?

When installing your pool pump, we always advise customers to carefully consider the location; under a bedroom window may not be an ideal location. Spa motors are generally enclosed in the spa cabinet so their noise tends to be less; because spa motors are enclosed tell-tale signs of motor failures are often masked.

There are a few culprits for noisy motors:

Motors have internal cooling fans. One can easily identify the noise made by cooling fans but if your motor has excessive noise. Check for debris in the cooling fan housing or if the cooling fan blades are interfering with the fan cover. Click here for replacement cooling fans.
Motor bearing(s) can also be a source of noise. Leaky shaft seals are the usual culprit for noisy front motor bearings. It is important to quickly repair parts showing evidence of leaks. If you cannot afford to replace an entire motor with a newer more energy efficient model we recommend that you replace all the motor bearings at the same time.Click here for replacement bearings.
Vibration between the pump stand and base (where the pump is fastened down) could cause the pump to be noisy. Check that pump is correctly affixed to the base, a rubber or carpet could be installed to act as an insulator to reduce noise. Always ensure that the pump is level. Suctions should not be higher than the pump.

Another source of noise can come from cavitations, this is when the pump is starved of water. Cavitations are simple; they typically come from one of two causes, both water flow related. 
1/ Suction lines are undersized. If suction plumbing capacity is insufficient the pump cannot draw a required volume of water to allow the pump to operate correctly. Blockages along the suction plumbing can also result in cavitations. There are two solutions for undersized plumbing; increasing the suction pipe size is the most suitable option but it is also possible to decrease the size of the impeller both will also work to quiet the pump. 
2/ Little or no back-pressure on the outlet of the pump. Adding a valve or reducing the plumbing diameter would be possible solutions to create back-pressure.

How do I winterize my pump?
According to Waterway Plastics: To winterize a Waterway pool pump, turn off the electrical circuit breaker that supplies power to the pump. Also, make sure that there is NO water left inside the pump. All Waterway pumps are equipped with drain plugs that will allow excess water to drain once the plugs are removed. Disconnect the pump from the system and after all the water is drained out, store indoors for the winter. 

How many hours per day should my pump Cycle? 
More use = longer cycles, keeping the water clean is key for bather satisfaction.
One should consider all of the following factors: bather capacity, volume of water, pump horsepower, type, size and capacity of filter. A pool industry average is typically around 6-8 hours a day, and 4-6 hours for a spa.
With cooler(pools), hotter (Spas) days and seasonal changes you could cut the run time down to around 4-6 hours. There are usually less bathers/swimmers in this off periods and your pool or spa requires less chemicals for the same reasons.

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