The Hayward Super Pump is a swimming pool pump that is made for in ground swimming pools but can also be used in some above ground applications, commercial pool filter systems and can be also used to filter ponds. This type of pump is called a “self priming pump” but does need to be primed at least once when it is completely dry.
So if you are just opening your pool for the first time, you are replacing your Hayward Super Pump or maybe your pump just won’t prime, then you’re in luck, I am going to tell you how to correctly prime your Hayward Super Pump and also what to look for to prevent suction problems down the road.
Your Super Pump WILL Want To Suck Air!
Before we even get started on showing you how to prime your super pump, there are some things that you should check on the pump and also on the suction union to make sure that you have a pump that is totally air free when it is running.
Check Your Pump Cover Gasket
Before you prime your pump you will want to check the condition of the strainer cover gasket. To do so, you will want to make sure the pump is off and loosen the two hold down knobs on the top of the pump. Once you loosen those knobs you can push them over to the side and take off the pump strainer basket cover and underneath you will find the gasket.
Now that you can see the Hayward Super Pump Strainer Cover gasket you will want to make sure that it is in good shape. You will want to look to see if it is completely flat and smooched. If the gasket does not protrude above the top of the pumps lip and is all flat that would mean you need to replace the gasket. If the gasket is all cracked, dry, or broken you will also want to replace the gasket.
If your pump strainer cover gasket is worn, broken , dry or needs to be replaced, it may allow air into your pool pump as its running and you then could wind up with bubbles coming out of your pool jets. Many people thing bubbles coming from the return jets are from the returns when in fact something as simple as the strainer cover allowing air into the swimming pool filter system will cause this.
Check Your Drain Plugs
The Hayward Super Pump has two drain plugs that allow you to remove the water from the pump volute for either service on the pump or for winterazion of the pump during the pool closing season. From time to time after these drain plugs are removed a few times, the Teflon tape on the threads will either wear out or the black rubber washer on the drain plug will go missing and the plugs could leak.
What you should do before priming your pump is remove the drain plugs and make sure that the rubber washers are in good shape if you have a newer Hayward Super Pump. If you have an older style you will want to make sure that you have at least 4 wraps of Teflon tape on the plug threads. Make sure that both of the drain plugs are tighten with a 9/16 socket or wrench regardless of what model or style of super pump drain plugs that you have. If these plugs are loose or leaking they will allow air into the volute of the pump and you will not get a full prime.
Check Your Suction Union o-Ring
The fitting on the front of your Hayward pump is called the suction fitting which is on the suction side of the pump. In most cases you will have a fitting called a “union” that is installed on the front of your pump. This union is made of twp parts and inside there is a black rubber o-ring that has to be inspected and lubed every once and a while. Also, if that o-ring is not in good shape or is missing your pump will not prime.
What you will want to do is grab a large size pair of channel lock or water pump pliers and loosen the union. Once you have loosed the union collar by turning it counter clockwise with your water pump pliers you then will see the o-ring inside.
Now that you see and have removed the o-ring you will want to inspect it for dryness, cracks and also look to see if any sides of it are flat. If any of these sounds like the o-ring you are holding or looking at then you will need to replace it. If your o-ring looks good, you will then want to lubricate it with some lube that can with stand water. Something like Jack’s magic lube or Hayward O-ring lube will do the trick.
Lubricating the o-ring has two benefits, one is so the rubber will last longer and also when you put the o-ring into the slot in the union it will stay in place better. You also will want to make sure you do not pinch the o-ring when you tighten the union. A bad suction side pump o-ring could cause your pump to suck in air and not become fully primed.
Water Level Must Be High Enough To Prime From Skimmers
Another common mistake many pool owners make is that the water level is not checked before they try to prime or start their pump. If you are trying to prime your Hayward Super Pump with a pool that is plumbed to a set of skimmers. you will first want to make sure that the water level in the pool is up to the “mid skimmer” point in the pool. If the water is any lower then the mid skimmer reference point, your pump is going to suck in air from the skimmer openings once it gets going.
So if your water is below the mid skimmer point in your swimming pool you should fill the pool water up first or your pump will not prime. In some cases the pump will prime but after the pump reaches full prime the water will create a water fall effect in the skimmer which will allow air into the skimmer.
How To Prime The Hayward Super Pump In Three Steps
Now that you have made sure your Hayward Super pump is free of all air leaks you can prime the pump.
Make sure the pump is off and open the pump strainer basket. To open the strainer basket you will have to loosen the two hold down knowbs that are on the top of the pump. Take a bucket of water and fill the pump completely up with water. Usually this will take a few gallons so grab a large bucket.
Now that the pump is filled with water you will want to place the pump strainer basket cover on the pump and tighten down the two knobs. Make sure you do not pitch the cover gasket when you are tightening down the cover. You can now start the pump up and watch it prime.
As the pump is priming you will want to stand by it for a few minutes to make sure that it fully primes. When the Hayward Super Pump is fully primed it will actually look like the cover is clear and water inside is not even moving but it really is. When you look through the strainer cover of a perfectly primed pool pump it will look like the water is not there.
If you do not see the perfect prime effect, you may want to check the places that were explained to you above for air leaks. Your pump will want to suck in air over water any day, so make sure that you make you pump air free.