What is a Skimmer?

Pool skimmers are found in every pool and are considered one of the most important features. The rectangular openings located on the side of a pool are referred to as built-in skimmers. Depending on the size of the pool you may have one or more skimmers installed.

Pool skimmers are designed to draw water from the surface suck it through the pool’s filtration system. About 1/8inch of surface water is drawn into the skimmer – helping remove the contaminants and debris from the pool before they sink to the bottom. This occurs without most swimmers even noticing.

Components of a Skimmer

Regardless of which skimmer brand you have, they all feature the following parts:

Skimmer Lid: The lid is a visible component of the skimmer and works to keep larger debris such as twigs from being sucked into the pool’s circulation system. They also prevent you from steeping into the skimmer basket.

Skimmer Mouth: The mouth is the opening on the interior side of the pool. It is through the mouth that the water and debris get sucked into to be filtered.

Skimmer Weir: The weir is the swinging flap located inside the skimmer mouth and will pivot with the flow of the water. The main purpose of the weir is to prevent the debris from escaping back into the pool.

Skimmer basket: The skimmer or strainer basket collects the debris before it is pulled into your pump. This is an essential part of the skimmer – without the basket, debris will clog and damage your filtration system.

Skimmer Suction Line: The suction line is connected to the skimmer basket and is what drives the power of the skimmer.

How Do I Maintain My Skimmer?

Cleaning out your skimmer ensures that it works correctly and will prevent unnecessary damage to your pool’s filtration system. A clogged skimmer basket will also require your pump to work harder to cycle the water which ultimately decreases the lifespan of the seals and the pump itself.

Maintaining your skimmer is simple to do by following these easy steps:

  1. Turn off the pool pump
  2. Remove the skimmer lid
  3. Take out the skimmer basket and empty out the contents
  4. Return the basket back into the skimmer
  5. Replace the skimmer lid and repeat with the other skimmers if applicable
  6. Once complete, turn the pool pump back on

You should clean the skimmer basket at least once a week to keep your pool clean and your equipment functioning optimally.