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Pool Skimmers Unveiled: Functionality and Selection Guide

Pool Skimmers Unveiled: Functionality and Selection Guide

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Pool Skimmers Unveiled: Functionality and Selection Guide

Do you have a comprehensive understanding of pool skimmers? They are crucial components of swimming pools. Let's explore their styles, prices, functions, and maintenance tips.

Types of Pool Skimmers:

Pool Skimmers Unveiled: Functionality and Selection Guide

*Skimmers for In-Ground Pools

Pool Skimmers Unveiled: Functionality and Selection Guide

Surface skimmers for in-ground pools are typically made of plastic (PVC) or precast concrete. They consist of a tank with a protruding throat on the upper side. The skimming action is performed by the pool weir, which controls the amount of water entering the skimmer. By adjusting to allow only a thin layer of water to overflow, the weir quickly removes water from the surface, keeping a large portion of the water surface clear in pools equipped with skimmers.

In-ground pool skimmers are rectangular in shape and the number needed depends on the pool size. They are positioned inside the pool, near the top of the wall. Proper operation requires the skimmer to be filled to its midpoint with pool water. If the water level is below this point, you should add water. If it drops below the skimmer, you must shut off the equipment, refill to the midpoint, and then restart. With a main drain, if the water drops below the skimmer, you can close it and run the equipment on the main drain until the water level is back to normal, then reopen the skimmers.

Pool Skimmers Unveiled: Functionality and Selection Guide

Skimmers are typically made of white plastic and have a door or flap called a weir. This weir is positioned over the entrance into the skimmer box, opening and closing with the water level and movement. While the equipment is running, the weir collects debris by opening and closing. When the equipment is off, the weir closes to prevent trapped material from re-entering the pool. To clean the skimmer, remove the lid from the deck, lift out the basket, empty it, and then replace it. If the skimmer basket is damaged, it should be replaced promptly.

*Above-Ground Pool Skimmers

Pool Skimmers Unveiled: Functionality and Selection Guide

Floating pool skimmers are commonly used for above-ground pools due to their thin walls, although there are also units that can hang on the pool's edge. To maintain proper functionality, it's advisable to clean out the skimmer basket daily during the swimming season for both above-ground and in-ground pools.

*Robotic Pool Skimmers

Pool Skimmers Unveiled: Functionality and Selection Guide

Recently, floating and robotic pool skimmers have become available, providing an alternative to stationary models. These automatic skimmers are powered by batteries or solar energy and float on the pool's surface, collecting debris as they move. Many users find that these skimmers reduce the time and effort required for pool maintenance, especially in areas prone to wind-blown debris or insect activity. Additionally, they can help lower energy costs since they operate independently of the pool pump.

*Skimmers for Spas and Hot Tubs

Skimmers for redwood hot tubs typically do not have a basket; instead, they use a plastic screen to skim the surface and capture debris. Some portable spas feature skimmers with integrated cartridge filters. In contrast, hard-sided hot tubs and spas come equipped with built-in skimmers that continuously clear the water's surface, offering superior water quality compared to manual skimming with a net, which is common for portable and inflatable hot tubs.

Pool Skimmer Prices

Pool Skimmers Unveiled: Functionality and Selection Guide

Skimmer prices vary widely, ranging from $10 for a basic handheld skimmer net to over $1,000 for a fully programmable "smart" robot skimmer. These advanced models can be controlled via wifi and an app, offering multiple cleaning cycles and automatic sensors.Choose the skimmer from your needs.

How many skimmers do you need for your pool?

The number of skimmers required depends on your pool's size. A general rule is to install one skimmer for every 25 cubic meters of water. The Pool and Hot Tub Alliance and the Association of Pool and Spa Professionals recommend a minimum of one skimmer per 400 square feet of pool surface area.

Should You Add Chlorine Tabs to a Pool Skimmer?

Many people place chlorine tablets directly into the skimmer basket, thinking that the water flow will dissolve the tablets faster than using a floater in the pool. However, we advise against this practice. The high concentration of chlorine can degrade the filter parts, potentially requiring more frequent replacements. Instead, consider using a separate chlorinator dispenser or a floating chlorine dispenser that disperses chlorine evenly throughout the pool.

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