The last thing I ever want to do is handling yard and swimming pool maintenance. So the best solution would be to minimize the amount of time I have to spend doing the maintenance job, especially during the hot summer month. No one wants to be sweaty cleaning their pool instead of taking a dip in it. This is where a pool skimmer comes into play.
A pool does need a skimmer, but it is not a necessity. However, the benefits of having a pool skimmer are too significant to ignore. It prevents debris from being sucked into your pool water pipes, which may end up clogging them. This will require hiring a professional to clear them, making it an expensive affair. It also makes cleaning the pool much easier.
As the name suggests, a pool cleaner skims and removes dirt from the water. Similar to the process of skimming excess fat from stews, bone broth, or soups. Some swimming pool skimmers are designed to be installed at the top of the pool. Other versions are meant to work at the bottom or move around cleaning the pool.
How Does a Floating Pool Skimmer Work?
Most floating swimming pool skimmers use vacuuming action to pull debris and preventing them from sinking to the bottom of the swimming pool, which makes it tougher to clean. It links directly to the pool filtration system, which pumps clean water from the pool after filtering the dirt.
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The floating skimmer works as the first step of filtering the water by removing the large debris from the dirty water going into the filtration system for cleaning. It also enables the filtration system to clean more pool water as most debris or already removed beforehand.
What is an Automatic Pool Skimmer?
This is a type of floating skimmers that move above the pool water surface, cleaning debris from the water without being attached to the filtration system. An automatic pool skimmer is similar to a Roomba but for use on the water. It uses artificial intelligence to self-propel, as well as determine its skimming actions.
Automatic pool skimmers are either solar-powered or battery powered. Some can even be programmed to skim the poll surface as per your instructions or timing schedules. They also tend to be less strenuous on the filtration system’s pump.
Should Pool Skimmers Be On All The Time?
No. It is not necessary. However, depending on the frequency of swimming pool use, you can opt to run it longer during periods when you are using it more frequently. Such as during the summer months. This season is also dryer, which increases the chances of debris getting into your pool.
As a rule of thumb, run you skimmer every twenty-four hours. This will help reduce the amount of debris while saving energy in the process. During less frequently used days, you can keep the pool covered or use a hand help skimmer to remove debris.
How Can I Improve My Pool Skimmer Performance?
You can start by removing large chunks of debris or objects that may clog the pool to make it easier to run without getting jammed. You can also run the filtration concurrently to allows the skimmer to benefit from the pump vacuum action of the filtration system.
Remove debris from the skimmer before you use it to make it easier to skim. You should also ensure the skimmer basket is installed correctly, so it collects debris while seamlessly allowing the water to flow through. Lastly, you can ensure your filtration system pump is working optimally to ensure it can support the skimmer.
Can I Run a Pool Pump Without a Skimmer?
Yes. You can, but you will have to take extra shifts cleaning your pool as you lose the automatic pool cleaning services that a skimmer provides. If your skimmer is broken and you no longer need it, shut it off, so it does not damage the filtration system pump.
Invest in a good quality pool net as you will need to do the skimming manually to ensure your pool is not overrun with debris, which will also overwork the filtration system and possibly ruin it. A good option would be a net with a telescopic pole.
The aquabot is also a good alternative when your installed pool skimmer breaks as you can use it interchangeably with the pool net to skim the pool on occasion. You will also need to shock your pool regularly. To remove any pathogens that may lead to the growth of algae in the pool.
Check the pool regularly to ensure the pH levels are not affected by the regular shocking.
How Many Skimmers Does a Pool Need?
The average coverage is one skimmer per 400 sq. Ft. you can use this as a guideline for your respective pool size—for instance, 700 sq. Ft pool will need two skimmers.
Does My Above Ground Pool Need a Skimmer?
Not necessarily. You can opt to do without a swimming pool skimmer. However, based on the benefits stated above, you will be better off getting a pool skimmer. An above-ground pool is just as capable of collecting debris as an in-ground swimming pool. It is also easier to install a pool skimmer because of the faceplate and gaskets.
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How Long Does a Pool Skimmer Last?
There are several factors you need to take into consideration, the skimmer’s brand, the strength of the filtration system, the use of the skimmer, location of the skimmer, and the size of the pool. A good quality swimming pool skimmer can last up to 25 years.
However, it would help if you did not wait until your skimmer is on its last leg before replacing it. It would be best to replace it while replacing other essential parts, such as the pool liner. This will ensure the optimal performance of the skimmer at all times.
To extend the skimmer’s lifespan, ensure that you install it in a location with constant water pressure to allow for proper suction for the skimmer to be able to remove as much debris as possible.