No Suction In Your Pool Skimmer: This Is What You Do

Pool Skimmer

A pool skimmer is used to clean a swimming pool and capture leaves, dead insects, twigs, and other dirt.

Skimmers are attached to a pool vacuum and built with a suction that traps dirt. If the pool skimmer has no suction, you must be alarmed that something is wrong with it.

Why is there no suction in my pool skimmer? It might be because of the low water level, dirty skimmer filter, discharge-side problems, pump problems, and vacuum unit problems. You are responsible for knowing the root of the problem, so it will be easier for you to find solutions to fix it.

This article will learn why the suction is not working appropriately in the pool skimmer.

I will also discuss the importance of a pool skimmer and the step-by-step guide on unclogging a pool skimmer below. Don’t miss out on anything.

The Reasons Why Suction Is Not Working

Most skimmers are made of PVC or precast concrete, which helps regulate water flow.

But suppose the suction doesn’t work correctly. In that case, it might encounter some internal problems, significantly when air hinders the system from doing its primary responsibility to draw water efficiently.

Low Water Level

When the water level is too low, it prevents all the lines covering the skimmer. You must check if the vacuum hose is placed correctly into the inlet port.

If the air isn’t getting into the pump, you have to turn on the pump and check if some bubbles are present. If you have seen one, try to remove the bubbles because this might be the reason behind the problem.

Dirty Skimmer Filter

The first thing you have to do is pull out the filter basket. After that, if some debris hinders the water flow, carefully remove them out to the pool pump.

When the filter cannot strain out impurities, it’s time to clean the filter basket. Please note never to use petroleum jelly when cleaning because it can degrade the rubber’s quality.

Discharge-side Problems

One of the most common problems is the discharge-side problem, where you have to start checking on the suction side.

The seal caused the problem, which resulted in water squirting from the union. You have to unscrew the union and tighten it with a pipe wrench to fix this problem.

Pump Problems

After all of the efforts you’ve put into fixing the suction, then the pump may be the last resort. If the problems persist, you will most likely need to replace the seal by dismantling the pump.

Since this is a complicated job, you may ask a pool professional to assist you in this job.

Vacuum Unit Problems

There are only two possibilities where the vacuum has a problem: air or filter clogging in the vacuum hose. If this is the case, the vacuum will only work correctly if filled with water.

A vacuum unit is only a simple device, so it’s easier to track down the cause of the problem and finally put a solution. The best way to fix the vacuum unit is to remove and clean the filters until it functions.

Types Of Pool Skimmers

A pool skimmer is an essential part of the swimming pool wherein it filters all the dirt before it can sink to the bottom of the pool.

With an efficient pool skimmer, it’s possible to trap down every debris. Here are the lists of the many types of pool skimmers:

Pool Skimmers for In-Ground Pools

Since skimmers are usually made of plastic, a tank regulates the water entering the skimmer.

When the skimmer is positioned in a great location, you’d expect that every debris will be accumulated efficiently by the skimmer; it will eventually put additional strain on the pump.

You have to ensure that every skimmer is equipped with an equalizer line. An equalizer line is a pipe that prevents air from being sucked into the system, and then it equalizes the water level for evaporation.

Using both pool skimmers and equalizer lines, make sure to equip it with an automatic water level control.

Robotic Pool Skimmers

Robotic pool skimmers are getting recognized nowadays because they can be an effective alternative to a stationary pool model.

This skimmer is mainly operated by solar power, so they float on the pool surface while collecting contaminants and debris.

Above-Ground Skimmers

Most above-ground skimmers have floating skimmers and are attached to the pool’s edge. This type of skimmer is used only to keep pools working correctly, especially during summer.

This unit also has the same function as the in-ground pool skimmer and needs the exact requirements of having an equalizer line and automatic water level control.

Spa And Hot Tubs Skimmers

This skimmer is the smallest, and it doesn’t require any more baskets. Instead, the skimmers would pull the contaminants and debris to a plastic screen.

The skimmers are usually built-in for spa and hot tubs, incredibly portable spas, and tubs.

What Do Pool Skimmers Do?

As discussed, the sole purpose of pool skimmers is to make sure that the water is clean, yet there are many benefits when you are using pool skimmers. Here are the lists of the functions of pool skimmers:

Water Cleaning

The more people swim into the water, the more chances to accumulate unwanted chemicals in sunscreen, shampoos, and other contaminants.

Although these contaminants are invisible to the eye, the pool skimmer can easily filter the dirt to ensure you’re swimming in clean water.

You may be able to know your skimmer’s effectiveness by using pantyhose on it. If it sucks smaller debris, then the skimmer is working well.

Circulation And Filtration

The gateway to the pool circulation would always point back to the pool skimmer because this is where water is passing through.

The pool pump’s responsibility is to suck water where the skimmer would filter down large debris that causes a blockage to water circulation.

When the skimmer pulls off these contaminants, the water goes back into the pool when everything is already filtered.

Pool Vacuuming

Keeping a pool skimmer is such a great way to save more time, especially when filtering out debris, isn’t an easy job. The pool skimmer would manually vacuum the pool, making the circulation system work correctly.

The vacuum is supposed to be inserted into the skimmer suction hole, making it easier for the vacuum to suck in debris.

How To Unclog Pool Skimmer

This job is quite tricky for those who are not mechanically oriented. Pool skimmers are made to help circulate chlorinated water into the pool without worrying about debris.

However, if clogging happens, you might need to loosen the water pressure to regain the water circulation.

Locating The Pool Pump

You must know how to locate the pool’s ump to access the clogged skimmer area easily. You have to lift the plastic cover positioned into the pool’s walking area when this happens.

Then, you have to pull the skimmer’s internal basket while tracking down the skimmers.

Accessing The Skimmers

You should firmly and deliberately plug the skimmer into the hole to ensure that the water won’t move outside the area when you have accessed the skimmers.

It will allow the skimmers to apply more pressure to remove the clog. Take note to also connect the high-pressure drain tightly to the garden hose.

Additional Tips For Unclogging Pool Skimmer

When working with skimmer plugs, you have to build each skimmer and use each plug to supply more pressure. It will block all water movement that distracts the skimmers from doing their job when this happens.

When unclogging, you have to use skimmer plugs, a cleaning net, a garden hose, and a high-pressure drain jet. If you can’t do the job right, then better call a pool expert to assist you.


The pool skimmer is supposed to do its job to filter all impurities and contaminants in a pool-safe and healthy swimming pool.

It is always essential to bear in mind some information about skimmers. So you will know what to do just in case something terrible happens to it.

Having a functional pool skimmer is always essential to keep your swimming even cleaner.

For more information and enlightenment on fixing and maintaining your pool skimmer, the best thing you can do is ask a pool professional.

The internet is also one click away when you need to clarify some information. If you cannot afford a new skimmer, there’s always a remedy to filter contaminants.

Recent Posts