How To Install Pool Diverter Valves for a Basic System + Suction Port

This guide provides you with the information on how to set up and operate a set of diverter valves for a second basic pool system. This pool system includes a main drain, one skimmer, a suction port, and a set of return ports. Water will flow from the pool to the pump, through a filter and back out to the pool.

1. SUCTION SIDE SETUP - This picture shows a typical diverter valve configuration for the suction side for a pool with a main drain, a skimmer and a suction line for a cleaner.. This setup uses two three way diverter valves to control the incomming flow to the pump from the three sources. The follwing steps show examples of handle postions for contolling this water flow.

2. VALVE INSTALLATION - When installing these 3 way diverter valves, you have to watch how they are positioned. These valve have three ports: two ends and one center. By design you can close off part of all of the water flow from either end ports, but you cannot shut off the center port. The handle will only rotate 180° on the side away opposite the center port. If this valve is installed incorrectly, as shown later, it is possible to inadvertantly shut off all water to the pump and run it dry. In this setup Valve 1 selects the flow from either the pool drain or the skimmer or both. Valve 2 selects the flow from the pool vacuum line or Valve 1.or both.

3. ALL PORTS OPEN - In this picture all ports are open so that water flows to the pump  from all three sources: the pool skimmer, the pool drain and the pool vacuum line.

4. SUCTION LINE ONLY OPEN - If you want to use your pool siction cleaner and your pool suction is too low to run the cleaner, you may want to close off the main drain and skimmer to direct more suction to the vacuum line. This picture shows flow from valve 1 completely shut off.

5. SUCTION LINE OPEN WITH PARTIAL FLOW FROM DRAIN AND SKIMMER - You may find that in shutting off valve 1 you have too much suction on the vacuum line or that your pump isn't getting sufficient flow from the one one to maintain prime. In this case you will have to partially open up valve 1 to increase flow and reduce the suction on the vacuum line. This pictures shows opening up the flow from valve 1 by rotating the valve 2 handle counter-clockwise 45 °.

6. SUCTION LINE AND SKIMMER OPEN -  Another option to backing off on the vacuum line suction is to open up the skimmer line while keeping the main drain line closed. This is accomplished by rotating Valve 2 so that is is completely open and by rotating Valve 1  to close off the main drain while opening the skimmer, as shown

7. INCORRECT SETUP - Here's an example of how you shouldn't set up your diverter valve. If you  glue the valve in this configuration, you will see that the handle can be rotated to completely shut off the flow of water to the pump. The pump will not run long in a dry mode without damaging the motor shaft seal. Any port that should always be open, in this case the to pump port, has to be attached to the center port of a three way diverter valve.

8. RETURN PORTS - For this pool system configuration, the return water flow after the pump and through the filter does not require a diverter valve. The only return option is to the 3 to 4 return ports in the sides of the pool. These are generally all open when the pump is operating. So, as this picture shows, the plumbing for the return side is a pipe coming from the filter and branching out to the return pipes. Note if your system has a chlorinator, the connection will be a pipe from the chlorinator to the return pipes.

If you have any other questions about pool and spa products please do let us know - we are here to help!

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