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Old 04-20-2009, 11:58 AM   #11
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The griding noise sounds like there is an issue with the impeller. Did you take the top off and pull out the impeller? Making sure it was installed properly? Sometimes they get knocked around during shipment. Be sure that the baskets are secured properly and that the top snaps easily. You shouldn't have any issues. I've only had the grinding issue when the impellar was knocked out of place. The initial setup takes a little bit to prime because you are pulling water into the tubes too. The next time you do this it won't be a big deal since the tubes will already be filled. Try that before returning.
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Old 04-20-2009, 01:45 PM   #12
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Thanks, I'll take the impeller out and see if it might have gotten loose. Because pushing the pump button does nothing, I'm thinking the connection isn't entirely secure somewhere.
In the instructions there was a step where I was supposed to stick a connector and rubber ring into the motor opening so it connects to the tube that runs through the baskets. It looked as if that connector was already assembled on my motor, but now I'm wondering if that connector peice just wasn't included in my box and that is why nothing is pumping. I dont know...
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Old 04-20-2009, 02:23 PM   #13
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No, the connector shouldn't be already assembled. It is a white hard plastic tube that has the black ring on it. It connects to the hole in the top basket. Do you have that or were you missing the small tube? I say small but it is the diameter of the hole in the basket and maybe 2" long.
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Old 04-20-2009, 02:32 PM   #14
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Aha! I knew it! No I certainly don't have that peice. There was a black rubber ring about an inch long that was already attached to the black motor. That ring on the motor fits fairly snuggly into the long white tube that runs the length of the canister (through all the baskets) but there is no 2" tube that connects those peices. That must be why there is no suction. Grr. Ok. I'm placing another call to the company that makes it. Thanks!
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Old 04-20-2009, 02:37 PM   #15
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Ok, wait a second. haha They have changed the design slightly. I don't have a tube that runs the length of the canisters. They must have replaced the small tube with the long one. Makes sense to do that though. Check the impellar. If it still doesn't work, contact the company because I'd be at a loss.
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Old 04-20-2009, 02:51 PM   #16
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Actually, you're right. I appologize. I've thinking about this so long I'm jumpting to conclusions. I don't have one long white tube either. each plastic basket has a few inches of tube built into it as once peice and when the four baskets are stacked together this creates one long tube.

Looking at the instructions online though, I notice I placed the black rubber ring on top of the mesh basket cover rather than underneith it. Perhaps that could be where the connection is failing. I hate to get my hopes up again, but at I'll fix that oversite when I get home tonight and let you know.
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Old 04-20-2009, 04:58 PM   #17
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Keep me posted. Like I said, once you do the initial prime, you won't have to do that again until you empty your tubes. Definitely check the impeller and the sealer.
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Old 04-20-2009, 09:10 PM   #18
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Pennplax didn't give the impression that they would ever be available so I tried Big Al's where I purchased it from. Before I got half of my problem out, the girl was already looking over the instructions for the Cascade 1200. I don't think I've ever experienced better customer service. She's mailing out the missing part express. I really hope that's the problem. She has never used a Cascade before but had plenty of experience with canisters so we'll see. Again, Big Al's is amazing.
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Old 04-20-2009, 10:53 PM   #19
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As far as starting the water fill, since you've definitely got a sealed system if you can blow in the intake and get bubbles at the exit tube, you should be able to suck on the exit tube to get the water flow started, and then it's physics, just like a siphon - the water should travel to the point of least resistance through the intake into the bottom of the tub, and when that fills completely, then the water should rise to the level of the tank in the exit tube. Why the pump feature isn't working is certainly strange, because no matter what, the physics of a siphon should apply!

So did you have a missing part after all? I would think even if you did, the tub would start filling on it's own, and the impeller sound would be a totally separate issue...
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Old 04-21-2009, 12:07 AM   #20
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I did try sucking on the end and getting the flow moving. It worked (yay physics!) but seems to only fill up the top motor part of the filter. In other words the part where the baskets go remains dry. I'm hoping only that top motor part is meant to fill until you turn on the power and then the impeller will move the water into the lower chambers and back out the exhaust. Otherwise I guess this is just one of several problems I have in front of me.
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