Troubleshooting common cleaner problems
In general, troubleshooting most automatic cleaners isn’t that complicated. The following is a list of common issues with the various types of cleaners and how to address them.
Pool cleaner is not moving at all
First, make sure that the cleaner hose is fully affixed to the suction line at the skimmer. Check the hose segments for air leaks where the sections are attached to one another. Check the diaphragm in the pool cleaner for tears or blocks.
Pool cleaner is slow
The usual reason for a sluggish suction side cleaner is some sort of congestion such as clog at the intake hole of the cleaner or a dirty filter. Flip the cleaner over and check the intake hole. Ensure that there aren’t any obstructions in the hose. Clean out the skimmer basket and the pump basket. Backwash the filter. Check for trapped air. Ensure all connections and fittings are tight.
Pool cleaner is too fast
Suction pool cleaners operate based on water flow from the pump. If the cleaner seems to be flying around the pool, the pump may be operating at speeds too powerful for the cleaner. Many suction cleaners have a speed control valve in the skimmer that permits flow management.
Cleaner is not covering the pool
It is likely an inadequate hose length. The hose must be long enough to reach from the skimmer to the furthest point of the pool, with three feet to spare. Try adding an extra section of hose. A different issue may be that the return jets may be pushing the cleaner away from that area of the pool. Try adjusting the direction of the jets. Adjust the hose float as necessary, which is especially important with big depth changes. Make sure the hose is not kinked or coiled. Make sure the hose is not cracked or damaged.
Air bubbles at the return line
This could be due to air leaks in the hoses or where the hoses are connected to one another. Check for tears or punctures in the hoses or misaligned hose segments. Replace hose segments if necessary. Try tightening the vacuum connection. Make sure that the cleaner is the problem. Disconnect the cleaner and check for air bubbles.
Hose is frequently tangled
This is usually a question of improper storage. Take the hose outside and straighten it out, laying it in the sun. It may take a few days to return to straight.
The bottom of the pool is not getting cleaned
If the cleaner is moving at the right speed and reaching all sections of the pool but the bottom isn’t getting cleaned, it could be worn brushes or suction vents. These parts wear out and require occasional replacement.
Pool cleaner won’t climb the wall
The float position may need adjustment. Ensure that the float is 24 inches away from the pool cleaner. The hose may to too short. Make sure the cleaner is designed to climb walls.
Pool cleaner climbs out of the pool
The tire treads or skirts could be worn. Replace if necessary. Adjust the pressure regulator. Ensure that the cleaner is an appropriate size for the pool.
Pool cleaner floats above the pool floor
Make sure that there is no air in the system and that the hose is long enough. Check return jets and redirect if needed.
Cleaner gets stuck on steps or ladders
Many cleaners have a device that snaps onto the throat to keep it from getting stuck. This is sometimes sold separately. Consider installing a ladder guard.