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Noob ? - pump started running dry

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Hi!  First year with a pool, probably some missing info:

100,000l inground, sand filter, salt water, solar heating

pump runs 12hrs a day on timer, solar blanket on unless swimming

i backwash/rinse every week

yesterday  went outside and noticed the pump was running dry - almost no water in pump skimmer basket, and the water that was there was HOT!  I see from other forums I have to replace some seals, o-rings and check for melting, I can do that...

but!  Why would this happen in the first place?

i can leave the hose turned on in the pump skimmer basket for 30 mins, and it never overflows and if I turn pump back on it immediately drains the pump skimmer basket and runs empty.

stumped.  All help, links are GREATLY appreciated 


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