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How a Swimming Pool Skimmer Works

Swimming Pool Skimmer

Swimming Pool Skimmer

A swimming pool skimmer is designed to pull water into the system from the pool’s surface with a skimming action, pulling in floating objects like leaves and dirt before they sink to the pool’s bottom.  Skimmers also are used to vacuum the pool with a manual vacuum or suction side automatic pool cleaner. Pools over 700 square feet we recommend two skimmers. Water pours over the weir that allows debris to enter, but when the pool pump is turned off, the weir floats into closed position that prevents debris from going back into the swimming pool.


Standard inground pool skimmers are built into the deck, accessible through a cover on the deck to remove the skimmer basket and empty debris that has been skimmed from the pool. We advise you to exercise caution when working on the skimmer with the pump, keep small objects away from the skimmer opening when the basket is removed and keep your hands from covering the suction hole at the bottom of the skimmer it may be dangerous. Large debris can clog the pipes and clause the skimmer to stop working completely.



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  1. Brandy says:

    Do you guys recommend a certain type or brand of automatic pool cleaner?

  2. Johnny says:

    Brandy, there are a lot of really good auto cleaners on the market. Polaris is our best selling brand. Use this link for more information about pool cleaners

  3. Westrock Pools says:

    Good post exploring how a swimming pool skimmer works. I think some people may find this useful.

  4. Above Ground Pools says:

    Very useful tips on how a swimming pool skimmer works. Thanks a lot for sharing this information.

  5. lisa says:

    Do you think a skimmer and a good cleaner would be enough power for good circulation for a 8ft deep, 15k gal inground pool? We are considering closing our main drain.

  6. Johnny says:

    Lisa, one skimmer should be fine. Since you have a good auto that should help keep the pool clean.

  7. Andy says:

    The tail on my Polaris pool cleaner keeps getting sucked up by the skimmer’s small intake hole just below the skimmer opening. I take out the float valve just below the skimmer basket to keep this from happening. Is it the right thing to do?

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