title pretty much says it all. everytime i got to backup my phone before trying a new ROM my SPrecovery says Error: exited with status 31 or something like that. please put in fairly simple terms trying to learn "lingo" lol
Well that would normally mean that your sdcard is corrupted and needs to be reformatted. Copy your files to your pc, format sdcard (some suggest only doing this in the phone, but I've done mine twice in the pc) and then put files back on sdcard.
Others have reported getting a status 31 error and then finding that it meant they were no longer rooted. But you seem to be able to load roms and that would, of course, mean you're still rooted.
You might try to verify that you are actually still rooted by doing something that requires root. Open setcpu or root explorer, or some other app that requires SU permissions, and see if the app works.
I would try the following some/any/all of the following:
1. Reflash sprecovery.
2. Try a switch to Clockwork Recovery.
3. If you use Rom Manager to flash SPR, then flash CW and then reflash SPR.
4. Try a different sdcard. It can still, even though you reformatted, be a bad card.