You may have an automatic pool cleaner or you may not, either way, there is going to come a time when you are going to need to know how to vacuum your pool manually. You may not want to, but you will need to manually clean up your pool, especially if there is an outbreak of algae or large debris, such as leaves and dirt. Your automatic pool cleaner can do a lot of the work, but you are going to have to use a manual pool vacuum too.
Preparing to Vacuum Your Swimming Pool
Before you learn how to use a pool vacuum, you need to know what you need for the job. Most manual vacuums are relatively simple, there are a few main parts, and it is easy to couple them together and get cleaning. Manually vacuuming your pool is an easy task and the preparation is easy too.
You will need a pool vacuum head. This is the part which will come into contact with the bottom and sides of your pool and will draw the dirt from the surface.
You need a long pool vacuum hose. The hose will connect to the vacuum head on one side and a filter system on the other. This will draw the water through and trap the dirt and debris.
You also need a telescopic pole. This pole will also connect to the vacuum head, allowing you to move the vacuum head on the bottom of the pool and manipulate it.
What About My Pool Filter?
I bought a pool filter to clean my in-ground pool, and now I have to learn how to vacuum my in-ground pool. What’s the deal? A pool filter can only do so much, but there are some things which you can do and settings which you can use which will help to eliminate the need to vacuum your pool of waste.
The regular setting on your pool filter will work quite well if you are performing regular maintenance on it. If you are regularly cleaning your pool, then your regular filter setting will work just fine but what if you have unusually high winds and they blow off all of your leaves from your trees? What do you do then?
You are going to want to vacuum up the large debris and particles as they sink to the bottom of your pool, and you are going to want to change your filter settings to deal with this. Your filter may have a waste setting, which will prevent it from becoming clogged when you are vacuuming. The level of water may drop when you are vacuuming on this level so be sure to add some water after.
Assembling Your Tools
Now that you have your filter set to the correct setting, you need to assemble your simple vacuum tools and get to work. Even without reading the instructions, it is easy to figure out how to vacuum your pool with a hose.
You need to ensure that your filter is running. In the previous section we talked about the waste function; you should ensure that your filter is set to this. Now, it is time to assemble your pool vacuum. The telescopic pole should be attached to your vacuum head.
You should also attach one end of your vacuum hose to the vacuum head. You should be able to rest the vacuum head on the floor of your pool and manipulate it easily. The other end of the hose should be attached to a jet return to first push water through the system and get rid of any air.
You want the line in from the vacuum head to be the only line into your pump or particles from other places in the pool will be sucked into the pump, and you do not want that. Make sure that the pump is not sucking in water from any other inlet or debris will be sucked into your pump.
Remove the skimmer from your pump and attach it, while still under the water, to the free end of the hose. Place the skimmer back in the pump. The pump should now be pulling water through the vacuum and into the skimmer basket, catching any debris and particles.
How to Vacuum a Swimming Pool
This is where the hard part begins. If you have children (of your own) that you can put to work, then get to it. Start at the shallow end and move towards the deep end. Use sweeping strokes to move the pool cleaner over the surface on the bottom of the pool. Overlap your strokes so that you do not miss any of the pool surfaces.
The slower you go, the less debris you will kick up from the bottom of the pool. We recommend taking it slow and easy, or you are only going to make more work for yourself. If you find that the water is cloudy when you are done, then let it settle for a couple of hours and try again. It may take you a while, but it is worth it to keep your pool clean.
Once you are done cleaning your pool, you need to disassemble and drain your vacuum system. Remove your equipment from the pool and dry them thoroughly before putting them back into storage. You should then take care of your pool as needed.
For easy pool care, we recommend getting a robotic pool cleaner, which will reduce the frequency you need to manually clean your swimming pool. We review the best robotic pool cleaners to help you pick a suitable model. If you're budget is tight then an automatic pool skimmer is a helpful alternative, although not nearly as effective.
If you switched pool filter settings, you should put the filter back to the original setting. You should also remove the catch basket and empty it of debris, cleaning it before putting it back into the pump system. You should also top up the water in your pool if it has fallen below the recommended level.
Finally, you should test your pool water to ensure that the pH and chlorine levels are correct. If you're unsure about how to do this, check out our guide to pool chemicals first.
Keeping your pool clean is going to ensure that the pump and filter system is going to last as long as possible. It may seem like a lot of hard work, but you are going to save yourself money in the long run and be more enticing for your guests.