What Would Cause Air Bubbles in Pool Pump Suction Basket? – Basic Pool Knowledge

It’s a good time to dive into the pool and everything seems right except for those aggressive bubbles shooting out of the return jets on the pool walls. A few bubbles in the pump or pool is normal, but lots of bubbles and noisy churning indicate that you could be having a problem. So, what would cause air bubbles in pool pump suction basket? 

What Would Cause Air Bubbles in Pool Pump Suction Basket?

What Would Cause Air Bubbles in Pool Pump Suction Basket
What Would Cause Air Bubbles in Pool Pump Suction Basket

In this post, we’ll discuss what air bubbles in your pool mean, some of the reasons why they’re there and how to deal with the problem.

Air bubbles will commonly occur when you’re opening your pool after a long time. But if the bubbles are too aggressive, that means there’s air being sucked into the line on the suction side of the pump. When you open your pool for the season, you’re putting plenty of things back together in the filter system. Chances are the issue is in the above ground equipment rather than the underground plumbing.

Most Common Reasons for Pool Air Bubbles

Is Your Water Level Correct?

Start by checking for the proper level of the water in relation to the skimmers. Water level that’s too low will result in skimmers sucking in air and sending it to the pump/filtration system. Experts recommend ensuring the water level is halfway to three-quarters up the skimmer. And if you have a fiberglass pool, never drain it as that may damage the pool and void your warranty.

Is Your Strainer Lid on Tight?

Your next step is to check whether the strainer pot lid is closed tight. A lid that’s not snug will suck air through the lid into the pump. Here are a few tips on checking the O-ring under the lid:

  • Turn off the pool pump
  • Take off the lid
  • Confirm that the O-ring is there and that it’s in good condition
  • Make sure the O-ring is sealed
  • Get rid of any debris or grit that could be preventing the lid from getting a secure close.

Is Your Valve/Pump Union on Tight?

Your next step is to check the fitting (union) between the valves and the pool pump. When you’re facing bubble problems, this is the most common culprit. This is where the plumbing is taken apart, so it’s highly likely for missteps. There’s also an O-ring at this union so here are some tips on checking it out:

  • Turn off the pool pump
  • Unscrew the nut over the union
  • Confirm that the O-ring is there and in good condition
  • Make sure the O-ring is well placed
  • Confirm that there’s no debris or grit that’s obstructing the union from closing tightly
Bottom Line

With the tips mentioned above, you now know what would cause air bubbles in pool pump suction basket. If you’ve checked all three things and still have air bubbles, you might be dealing with a bigger problem. If that’s the case, it’s important to call your local pool professionals such as our team here at Ironman Pool Care and we’ll be more than happy to help.