2. Understanding How Your Swimming Pool Works
A typical swimming pool needs these major components:
• A basin
• A motorized pump
• A water filter
• A chemical feeder
• Set of Drains
• Surface Skimmers
• PVC plastic plumbing connecting all of these elements
The basic idea is to pump water in a continual cycle, from the swimming pool through the filtering, chemical treatment systems and back to the pool again. In this way, the pumping system keeps the water in the swimming pool relatively free of dirt, debris and bacteria. Some swimming pools also include a heater in the mix, in order to keep the water at a certain temperature.
Your swimming pool’s circulation system is unique. How many skimmers, bottom drains and return inlets, the size of pluming, type of pump and motor will vary. All of these factors can influence the length of time you should run your pump to circulate and filter your swimming pool water. Generally, this should be a minimum of 6 to 12 hours every day, up to 24 hours a day. Moving water allows your sanitizer to work more effectively, helps prevent dirt build-up, algae and allows your filter to effectively remove dirt and debris. Circulation occurs as water travels into the skimmers and drains, passes through the plumbing to the pump. It then is filtered and returned via the return inlets of the swimming pool. Check the skimmer and pump baskets frequently to be sure that they are clean and free of debris. When adding chemical treatments to your swimming pool it is usually best to be circulating the water.
An 3” x 4” overflow fitting has been add to the center line of the pool, usually in the mouth of the skimmer, during a rain storm or when filling the swimming pool, the overflow will drain excess water out of the swimming pool to a drain line.
The skimmer opening into the pool is half submerged under the water surface. You should monitor the water level in your swimming pool to maintain a level that is 1/2 up on the skimmer opening. If the water level drops below these levels the pump may begin to draw air and cavitate, possibly causing damage to the pump by allowing it to run dry. All swimming pool skimmers have a weir door. This door flaps in and out of the skimmer opening drawing floating debris into the skimmer. The door simply snaps into place in the skimmer mouth and should at all times move freely to allow unrestricted water flow into the skimmer. The skimmer body contains a basket for catching leaves and debris before they enter the pump and possibly clog the impeller area. You should check the basket regularly, every few days and empty as needed. If your basket becomes cracked it should be replaced. Manual vacuuming is performed through the skimmer.
Bottom main drains provide an additional source of circulation by moving water from the drain to the suction side of the pump through underground plumbing. Designed as the main source of draining pools they are generally located at the deepest (bottom) end of the swimming pool, hence the name bottom main drain. Today main drains are used primarily to enhance circulation pulling water from the bottom as most swimming pools do not require draining.
The Two-way and Three-way full-flow diverter valves make water flow management simple and easy. 3-Way valves to allow you to switch from pool to spa, 2-Way valves to allow control of the single lines to the skimmers and main drains, they are also used to control other features. Check valves prevent back flow on water features, raised spa returns and fountains.
Pool and Spa returns, the Swimming Pool and Spa Returns are the fitting that allows the clean filtered water back into the swimming pool or spa after it has gone through the entire filtration process. The swimming pool or spa return fitting is also commonly known as the return jet. The return fitting has many names as well. Some people refer to it as the ‘return fitting’, others refer to it as the “eye ball fitting” and some just call it the return. The male return fitting screws into the female return fitting that is mounted to the wall. The return fitting can be adjusted so that you can set the direction of the water flow of the swimming pool or spa water.
A fill line is connected to the hose bib on the house and plumbing is connected through the skimmer, to fill your swimming pool, you will have to turn on and off the water at the hose bib. It is recommended that you disconnect the fill line from the hose bib and cover in freezing conditions.
The Auto-fill is a optional device that will maintain exact water levels on swimming pools. It is simple and easy to adjust the float valve assembly to maintain proper water levels.