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Scotsman

Spa Drains To Pool Level When Filter Not Running.

41 posts in this topic

I have a plaster based pool with a spa to the side that trickles into the pool i.e. while the pump/filter is running, the spa is designed to overflow like a small waterfall into the pool.

Some relevant background info: recently I started cleaning the pool myself. Since there's no polaris, I connect a long tube with vaccum cleaner type attchment into the skimmer to suck up the leaves. The first time I tried it, there was no sucktion and so I flipped a small switch on the back of one of the motorized valves that switches the inlet from skimmer to spa (I was thinking it maybe done spa to skimmer at the time). This didn't make a difference and then I realised that after about 10 minutes, my spa was half empty - I think it had fallen to the same level as the pool. I soon realized that I shouldn't mess with that valve and flipped the switch back and the spa filled back up again. I don't know how or when or why, but the skimmer did start to suck and I was able to clean my leaves.

The problem: a few days later, I noticed that every morning (the pump runs 9am through 8pm), the spa isn't as low as that one time but it falls about 8 inches. As soon as the pump comes on, its set to return through the spa and pool, so within a minute, the spa is back up again. I'm assuming the water is leaking into the pool through a valve each evening and not draining away somewhere else. Its been going on like this for a few weeks now. I tried flipping that motorised valve around and then back again incase it hadn't fully rotated but no difference. I should also mention that whenever we turn the spa on, that motorized valve turns to that same position as when I flipped the switch i.e. the valve turns quite regularly whenever we turn on the spa.

Q1) Can anyone please suggest what I've done wrong? I'm assuming that when the pump is off, the water is draining from the higher spa level to the lower water level in the pool and if so, I'm assuming its getting through via the drain or the return line. I'm assuming its through the return line via that valve I messed with a few days before but as the valve is back in its original position, I can't see how to fix it.

Q2) Assuming I'm not actually losing water, but just passing it from spa to pool and back, is there any danger with what is going on? For instance, could my plaster start to crack or something like that if its not submerged? This is my main concern.

- Allan

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There should be a check valve, (one way valve),installed in the spa return line to keep the water in the spa from escaping back into the pool when the filter pump shuts off. There might possibly be some debris in it, or If you never noticed it before it's possible that one was never put in in the first place.

It really wont hurt anything unless you are in an area where the finish could freeze, and since I am in florida and not sure how they deal with the winterizing up north. Why else would it happen suddenly is anyone's guess but they do sometimes go bad after time.

Sounds like everything is working normally aside from the check valve though, good luck..

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I have a question regarding this. I have the same issue as Scotsman...our spa drains down after the filter pump shuts off. No check valve installed on the spa return line

My questions is this: Can I install a checkvalve "AFTER" the main circ pump? Wouldn't that do the same thing?

There should be a check valve, (one way valve),installed in the spa return line to keep the water in the spa from escaping back into the pool when the filter pump shuts off. There might possibly be some debris in it, or If you never noticed it before it's possible that one was never put in in the first place.

It really wont hurt anything unless you are in an area where the finish could freeze, and since I am in florida and not sure how they deal with the winterizing up north. Why else would it happen suddenly is anyone's guess but they do sometimes go bad after time.

Sounds like everything is working normally aside from the check valve though, good luck..

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I have a question regarding this. I have the same issue as Scotsman...our spa drains down after the filter pump shuts off. No check valve installed on the spa return line

My questions is this: Can I install a checkvalve "AFTER" the main circ pump? Wouldn't that do the same thing?

There should be a check valve, (one way valve),installed in the spa return line to keep the water in the spa from escaping back into the pool when the filter pump shuts off. There might possibly be some debris in it, or If you never noticed it before it's possible that one was never put in in the first place.

It really wont hurt anything unless you are in an area where the finish could freeze, and since I am in florida and not sure how they deal with the winterizing up north. Why else would it happen suddenly is anyone's guess but they do sometimes go bad after time.

Sounds like everything is working normally aside from the check valve though, good luck..

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sorry for the double reply, the site is very slow

I have a question regarding this. I have the same issue as Scotsman...our spa drains down after the filter pump shuts off. No check valve installed on the spa return line

My questions is this: Can I install a checkvalve "AFTER" the main circ pump? Wouldn't that do the same thing?

There should be a check valve, (one way valve),installed in the spa return line to keep the water in the spa from escaping back into the pool when the filter pump shuts off. There might possibly be some debris in it, or If you never noticed it before it's possible that one was never put in in the first place.

It really wont hurt anything unless you are in an area where the finish could freeze, and since I am in florida and not sure how they deal with the winterizing up north. Why else would it happen suddenly is anyone's guess but they do sometimes go bad after time.

Sounds like everything is working normally aside from the check valve though, good luck..

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first of all make sure your valve actuators are sync'd up correctly now...aka when in spa mode its pulling and adding to the spa and pool mode its pulling and adding to the pool...then from there if the problem persists as it sounds it will...then install a check valve on the return side as everyone else has said

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first of all make sure your valve actuators are sync'd up correctly now...aka when in spa mode its pulling and adding to the spa and pool mode its pulling and adding to the pool...then from there if the problem persists as it sounds it will...then install a check valve on the return side as everyone else has said

I agree.

My question would be are you shutting the pool pump off for vacuuming purposes only?? More than just synchronizing the actuators, I am of the mind that one of the valves has not be properly calibrated. If you are settting the control pane to pool mode (assuming you have a raised spillover spa) The only way water could be leaving the spa would be through the plumbing lines. Ie: Drain line in spa is still open while vacuuming but return is closed.

I don't believe there is need to plumb in a check valve just yet. You should have been given operation manuals on your valves when your pool was completed, if not a simple visual check should tell you who made the valves. This manual will tell you how to change the pins inside so all valves are closed during pool mode. OR you would at least know who to call for replacement manuals.

Either way since check valves usually have an o-ring inside that deteriorates, it's only a matter of time before this solution becomes a problem.

Good luck!!

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I have the same issue as the others. I do have a check valve which I have replaed at the instruction of the local pool equipment supply house however the spa still drains back to the pool. Is there anything else I should look at?

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I have the same issue as the others. I do have a check valve which I have replaed at the instruction of the local pool equipment supply house however the spa still drains back to the pool. Is there anything else I should look at?

The pool/ spa valves may be another source of a drain down. If you have an infloor cleaner, that is in the spa as well, There should be a check valve for that too.

Does it leak down while the pumps are on? Or off?

If while off, does it leak down the same every nite?

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Hi everyone,

I just bought a home this past April and have had no problems with my pool until about a week ago. I have never had a pool before and I have no idea what is going on. Here is my problem:

Spa is draining down to pool level;

My pool is automated by a compool control panel and has two automatic compool valve actuators that control between the pool and spa. My pool has a connected spa that is designed to trickle into the pool when the pump for the pool is running. My issue is that when the pool pump is running it is sucking out all of the water out of the spa while it is still adding water to the spa. (The spa basically looks like a whirlpool because it is exiting out of the bottom, but water is entering through the side). One of the valve actuators that is not automatic is set at 50/50 on a pipe that says return/return and spa return. In order for the spa to quit draining while in pool mode I had to turn the valve to 100% spa return which then enabled the spa to fill. I have never had to mess with these valves before. Now when the pool is off the spa drains down to pool level.

Other information;

There is 3 check valves. One coming off the outlet to my pentair clean and clear plus cartridge filter. One coming off the spa return line, and one coming off the spa therapy jets line. I pulled them all off after reading previous posts and nothing seemed abnormal. The thing is that my psi was normally at about 8 psi and now with me turning the valve actuator to 100% spa return the psi is now at about 30. If I put the valve back at 50/50 between return and spa return it drops to a little less than 20 psi. I cleaned out the filters and emtied the baskets and that did not drop the pressure. I also have very little suction, and my shark pool cleaner does not move at all. I also see no movement in my skimmer basket. Does this have anything to do with freeze protection that turns my pool and spa on automatically when the temp is 41 degrees. It cycles between pool and spa back to back all night and morning.

Any advice would be greatly appreciated. Thanks. Marci.

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First to start, go out to the equipment and put the equipment into "service" first button on top. Light should change from green to red. Next, hit the button under the top button once. You should get a light next to spa. Now, look at both of the valve actuators.

1. Are they both rotating?

2. Do they both rotate all the way with the handles pointing nice and straight with the spa ports?

If they don't do both these things, then you have either a bad actuator, or it needs to be adjusted if handle not straight with plumbing.

Now, if at this point you begin to get water going over the spillway, go over to the suction side valve actuator (Its the one closest to the pump) and flip the little switch (on the back) to the other direction. You should see the actuator move to the other side. Now wait a couple of min to see if water stops going over the spillway.

If it stops, i think your problem is solved. If not, post so, and we'll continue.

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First to start, go out to the equipment and put the equipment into "service" first button on top. Light should change from green to red. Next, hit the button under the top button once. You should get a light next to spa. Now, look at both of the valve actuators.

1. Are they both rotating?

2. Do they both rotate all the way with the handles pointing nice and straight with the spa ports?

If they don't do both these things, then you have either a bad actuator, or it needs to be adjusted if handle not straight with plumbing.

Now, if at this point you begin to get water going over the spillway, go over to the suction side valve actuator (Its the one closest to the pump) and flip the little switch (on the back) to the other direction. You should see the actuator move to the other side. Now wait a couple of min to see if water stops going over the spillway.

If it stops, i think your problem is solved. If not, post so, and we'll continue.

Yes, both are rotating and lining up straight with the spa ports. So, I put them back to normal and turned on the pump and flipped the switch on the suction side actuator. This made the psi go down but the spa would not fill because now instead of draining out the bottom of the spa while the pool is running it is now draining out of one of the holes on the side. So I switched it back to how it was before. I did notice however that my pump has a slight leak where the bolts are. Do you think the spring went bad on the check valve for the spa return? If so, I think I will pick up one of those and a gasket for my pump. Any other ideas would be greatly appreciated.

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From your reply, it sounded like you didn't do things in the order i needed you to do them in. Thats OK.

I needed you to put it in spa mode (with the pump on) then wait to see if the water level went up or down.

Then flip the switch (while still in spa mode) only if you began to get water over the spillway, not put the valves back then flip the switch.

Try that. Do you know what kind of check valves these are that you have (there may be a name embossed in the plastic/bronze)?

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From your reply, it sounded like you didn't do things in the order i needed you to do them in. Thats OK.

I needed you to put it in spa mode (with the pump on) then wait to see if the water level went up or down.

Then flip the switch (while still in spa mode) only if you began to get water over the spillway, not put the valves back then flip the switch.

Try that. Do you know what kind of check valves these are that you have (there may be a name embossed in the plastic/bronze)?

Sorry, I was not sure if the spa was supposed to be running or the pool. I had put it into service mode and pressed on the spa button and nothing turned on, so I did what you said while the pool was running. When the spa turns on tonight during the freeze protect I will try it. My check valves are Jandy. I was thinking about purchasing a new one tommorrow, I am thinking maybe the spring is allowing water to seep through. Will all of this cause the suction for my skimmer and shark cleaner to be non- existent? Thanks for your input, I have no idea about pools and I am the more mechanicaly inclined over my husband. :) Also, with the spa acting up like this, is this why the pressure is so high?

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From your reply, it sounded like you didn't do things in the order i needed you to do them in. Thats OK.

I needed you to put it in spa mode (with the pump on) then wait to see if the water level went up or down.

Then flip the switch (while still in spa mode) only if you began to get water over the spillway, not put the valves back then flip the switch.

Try that. Do you know what kind of check valves these are that you have (there may be a name embossed in the plastic/bronze)?

Sorry, I was not sure if the spa was supposed to be running or the pool. I had put it into service mode and pressed on the spa button and nothing turned on, so I did what you said while the pool was running. When the spa turns on tonight during the freeze protect I will try it. My check valves are Jandy. I was thinking about purchasing a new one tommorrow, I am thinking maybe the spring is allowing water to seep through. Will all of this cause the suction for my skimmer and shark cleaner to be non- existent? Thanks for your input, I have no idea about pools and I am the more mechanicaly inclined over my husband. :) Also, with the spa acting up like this, is this why the pressure is so high? Oh and my heater has a light on for the pressure sw?

Okay, just after the last post I went outside and the spa was on. The funny thing is, is that it was doing the waterfall effect while in spa mode. I do not think it is supposed to be pushing water out over into the pool while in spa mode. It is supposed to be just moving the water inside of it with the jets. So I went over and flipped the switch on the actuator for the spa suction and it did not stop the water from spilling over? So I switched it back and flipped the switch for the actuator on the jet side and it stoped the spill over but also the movement in the spa. I have no idea what is going on. Thank you again.

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OK! Just go and flip that switch we talked about on the valve actuator and the spillway should lessen then stop. Give that a try.

And sorry about before. You are right, i forgot to tell you to turn on the pump! :D

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Pool Clown,

Happy holidays! First off, you helped me before with an issue and I wanted to thank you again -- I sincerely appreciate your help!

I am experiencing a very similar issue to the one outlined in this string. I recently replaced a valve actuator -- one that I believe is the correct replacement (GVA-24) -- and ever since then my in-ground spa drains once the filter shuts off. I've tried adjusting the ON1 ON2 switches on each actuator, but no combination solves my problem; I am not able to get back to where everything is functioning normally. One guess is that my new valve actuator is turning a full 180 degrees when I believe the valve may have previously only turned 90 degrees. Could that be my problem? I hope a simple configuration correction is all that is needed, but I've tried a few different ones to no avail.

I've taken a few photos and a short video in hopes that this will communicate my issue and make for a quick and easy solution to be communicated back. Let me know if I can take any other photos to help you solve this mystery. And let me know if you'd prefer I start a new string on the forum.

http://picasaweb.google.com/jbcarlson/SpaD...feat=directlink

Thanks in advance for your time and any help you can offer during the holidays.

Brent

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Hey Brent,

One guess is that my new valve actuator is turning a full 180 degrees when I believe the valve may have previously only turned 90 degrees. Could that be my problem?

Yes that would be the problem.

I hope a simple configuration correction is all that is needed, but I've tried a few different ones to no avail.

You need to take the cover off the actuator and adjust the cams that trigger the micro switch that stops the valve at the correct position (so it will stop at 90 deg instead of 180). unfortunately, not the easiest to do if you haven't done it before. You must have patience. You can try shutting off the actuator as its rotating and stop it where the old one used to stop to confirm the draining has stopped.

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Hi again PoolClown,

Okay, so I have been outside all morning messing with the actuators trying to figure this out. I turned on the spa and flipped the actuator switch to the opposite direction for the spa suction and the spa still did the water fall effect and I waited 10 minutes. So I flipped the switch back and flipped the switch on the actuator for the therapy jets. The waterfall effect stopped but the spa started to drain down.

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You may have a broken valve shaft, the actuator still rotates but the valve diverter is not, and it seems to be stopped somewhere in the middle. I think at this point (without being there to see for sure), you need to call a professional.

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You may have a broken valve shaft, the actuator still rotates but the valve diverter is not, and it seems to be stopped somewhere in the middle. I think at this point (without being there to see for sure), you need to call a professional.

Do you mean something major or I need to replace the actuator. and do you think it is the one for the therapy jets since when that one was rotated while in spa mode the waterfall effect stopped?

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Do you mean something major or I need to replace the actuator.

I'm thinking the suction valve diverter itself (under the actuator)

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Do you mean something major or I need to replace the actuator.

I'm thinking the suction valve diverter itself (under the actuator)

Okay, thank you so much. I think I am going to take it off right now to see if it is broken off. (After I call around to see if anyone has any in stock). I'll let you know what I find.

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Do you mean something major or I need to replace the actuator.

I'm thinking the suction valve diverter itself (under the actuator)

Okay, thank you so much. I think I am going to take it off right now to see if it is broken off. (After I call around to see if anyone has any in stock). I'll let you know what I find.

Pool Clown you are awesome!

I took off the automatic valve actuator and the piece that goes from the valve diverter itself into the actuator was in pieces. So I am on my way to the store to pick up the new valve diverter. Gotta take off the rest of the screws to get in there in see what size it is though. Again, thank you so much.

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