Hayward is a manufacturer that makes a well-respected series of swimming pool filter/pump units that use sand or diatomaceous earth (DE) for water filtration. They are remarkably trouble-free if used correctly and maintained as directed. If they do begin to malfunction, follow these steps to pinpoint the problem.

A Hayward pool pump.
credit: Hayward Inc.
Hayward makes a well-respected series of sand and diotomaceous filters for swimming pools.

Step 1 Check the Hoses

Tighten all hose connections on the pump and filter. Before troubleshooting the filter or pump, make sure it is properly connected. Dripping hoses can cause air to get into the system, which prevents water from flowing. Filters require a vacuum environment, and air in the system will cause it to malfunction.

Step 2 Inspect the Pressure Gauge

Check the filter pressure gauge. When troubleshooting a pool pump, the pressure gauge indicator gives you a good idea of problems. If the pressure gauge is running high and the return flow of water to the pool is low, then you know that the problem is probably either in the water entering the pool filter or in the pool filter itself.

Step 3 Check the Skimmer Basket

Look into the skimmer basket for debris. If the problem is the water entering the pump, then open the skimmer lid, pull out the basket, and dump any debris sitting in the basket.

Step 4 Remove Debris

Remove debris from the pool pump basket. Turn off the filter, open the pump basket lid, remove the basket, and dump all of the debris. After you replace the pump basket and lid, run the pool filter to see if that solves the problem.

Step 5 Inspect the Impeller

Clean the impeller, which is in the tube just beyond the pump basket. Turn off the motor. Then open the lid for the pump basket, reach down the tube just beyond the pump basket, and feel for the impeller. If you feel leaves, debris or dirt clogging the impeller, pull it out. Replace the lid. Then turn on the filter and see if the pressure gauge returns to a normal range.

Step 6 Backwash the Filter

Regenerate or backwash the filter. Diatomaceous earth filters made by Hayward are equipped with a handle that, when pumped, regenerates the diatomaceous earth, thus allowing it to clean the pool better by repositioning the DE. If you have a sand filter, perform a backwash by following the manufacturer's instructions. Once you're done, turn on the filter to see if the problem is resolved.

Step 7 Replace the Sand or DE

Replace the sand or diatomaceous earth, and clean the filter. For DE filters, if regenerating the diatomaceous earth didn't solve the problem, it's time to drain the filter, open it up, wash the filter fingers or cartridge (depending on which model filter you have) with a garden hose, and then reassemble the filter. Once the filter is up and running, add new diatomaceous earth through the pool skimmer.