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Solution For Pump Priming Problems

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Truman42

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Gday Gents,

I'm having a few problems trying to get my herm it pump primed when starting recirc from the mashtun.

In the photo below you can see the Y adaptor I use. I disconnect the fitting from the pump, open the tap on the Y adaptor then close it off just as the water reaches the hose between the Y adaptor and the fitting. Then connect it back up to the pump but it still doesn't want to flow. I end up having to do this a few times and shake the hoses etc until it eventually flows.

I was thinking of fitting some sort of air bleed valve on the outlet hose from the mashtun as this is the highest point and I think the problem may be the air cant escape at the top of this hose.

So anyone used something similar and can offer some comments, suggestions, advice?

Thanks heaps.

brewsetup.jpg
 

glaab

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try keeping all the hose between the tun and the pump above the pump intake so it self primes
 

Truman42

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try keeping all the hose between the tun and the pump above the pump intake so it self primes
Yeh I do, but I seem to get an airlock in there which stops the flow of water coming down from the mashtun to the pump.
 

glaab

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not sure what pump you have but the intake of the march pump goes at the bottom so when it fills up it pushes out any air
 

razz

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By the looks of your Hermit set up there is to much restriction after the pump, you're correct, you need to bleed out the air. I used to get this with my Herms and I still get it when I'm pumping from kettle to plate chiller. It's also worse when the liquid is hotter or close to boiling.
 

Truman42

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By the looks of your Hermit set up there is to much restriction after the pump, you're correct, you need to bleed out the air. I used to get this with my Herms and I still get it when I'm pumping from kettle to plate chiller. It's also worse when the liquid is hotter or close to boiling.
What do you mean the tap at the top of the pump or the hex coil? I keep the tap fully open and I didnt think the hex coil would hinder water flow too much.
 

Wolfy

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I'd suggest turning the pump up the other way so the outlet is at the top and there is not as much chance for an air pocket to form.
Also if your wort-return (into the mashtun) is under the surface the water pressure could also be causing an airlock, but if you lifted it out of the water it could act as the bleed valve you mentioned.
 

Truman42

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I'd suggest turning the pump up the other way so the outlet is at the top and there is not as much chance for an air pocket to form.
Also if your wort-return (into the mashtun) is under the surface the water pressure could also be causing an airlock, but if you lifted it out of the water it could act as the bleed valve you mentioned.
Maybe I didnt explain it properly. My bad..Heres a diagram showing the flow. The outlet of the pump is at the top. The mashtun drains down through the Y adaptor and into the base of the pump. Then out the otherside, through the hex and up into the top of the mashtun.

brewsetup.jpg
 

pk.sax

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mount the pump so that the central inlet is horizontal and the outlet is pointing up.

That will let the pump prime from the drop from the mashtun and the air to escape out the top.


its already like that, just lift the inlet hose so it doesn't go below the level of the pump inlet... can't think of why else.
 

mxd

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for me, I fill the MLT and HLT with a hose through the pump. That way all the air is out of the lines.
 

Truman42

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My wort return is above the surface and once I get the pump primed the air is pushed through the hex coil and up and out of the wort return.

My problem is the air that gets trapped in the line from the MLT outlet down towards the pump. This air lock stops flow out of the MLT. Thats why I thought some sort of bleed screw might help things.
 

mxd

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I also fill the MLT (I batch sparge) through the false bottom, I found the HLT had enough gravity on it's side to assist with moving the air bubble and the mash was stirred up enough to stop the stuck sparge
 

glaab

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my system is almost identical, any air is pushed straight out of the top of the pump. Somehow there must be enough air pressure to stop that happening. I know I already asked but you have tried lifting that black hose and keeping it above the pump intake? Is that a valve on the inlet side if the HERMS coil? Does it pump and prime ok from that HLT on the floor? Maybe try raising the pump above the herms while still keeping the hose above the intake.
 

Truman42

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my system is almost identical, any air is pushed straight out of the top of the pump. Somehow there must be enough air pressure to stop that happening. I know I already asked but you have tried lifting that black hose and keeping it above the pump intake? Is that a valve on the inlet side if the HERMS coil? Does it pump and prime ok from that HLT on the floor? Maybe try raising the pump above the herms while still keeping the hose above the intake.

I have tried lifting the mash outlet hose above the pump, I usually wiggle it up and down and shake it trying to get the air out.

There are no valves on the herms coil at all. After the pump its a free run up to the wort return.

I have similar problems from the HLT but not as bad and a few jiggles of the hose manages to fix it. The air bubbles up through the water in the HLT and it starts to flow.
 

black_labb

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I'm thinking you probably have some liquid in the bottom of the hex that is stopping the air from flowing correctly.
 

Truman42

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I'm thinking you probably have some liquid in the bottom of the hex that is stopping the air from flowing correctly.
No mate the hex is completely dry when I hook it all up.
 

jackson

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If I get air locks I normally flick the pump on and off a few times and if that dont work I pump the inlet tube iike that of an outboard motor fuel tank. I had actual thought of adding a pump bulb in line but once I lowered the pump to gain more gravity the issue went away
 

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