How To Maintain a Pool Skimmer


  4.1 out of 5 stars on 5 ratings
(Click on a star to add your rating)

A typical pool will have one or two skimmers like this American Products skimmer. Its purpose is to skim off the debris that floats on the top of a pool and to filter it from going into the pump. Although this guide makes specific references to a Americal Products skimmer, much of the information provided is common to all skimmers.

Step by Step


Step 1

This picture shows the main parts of an American Products skimmer (p/n 987004) embedded in the side of a pool.

Step 2

The skimmer operates on the suction side of the pool pump. Surface debris is sucked into the skimmer and collected in the skimmer basket. The weir at the front of the skimmer opening is a tilting gate that keeps debris in the basket from returning to the pool when the pump is shut off.

Step 3

To clean debris out of the basket, first turn off your pump then remove the cover by lifting up on its edge. It should lift off easily.

Step 4

Remove the basket by lifting it straight up out of the skimmer cylinder.

Step 5

Clean the skimmer basket with a hose. DO NOT knock the basket on the concrete to dislodge the debris. The basket will eventually break.

Step 6

Replace the basket all the way down into the cyclinder.

Step 7

Check the operation of the weir. The gate should move back and forth easily. If the weir is broken or does not move freely, it may have to be replaced.

Step 8

The weir pivots on two pegs at the bottom of the weir. To remove the weir, push the top of the weir all the way forward into the pool and lift one bottom corner off its peg. This will free the weir from its pegs.

Step 9

To replace the weir, lay the weir flat and place the lower corners over the pegs at the bottom of the skimmer opening. Press both corners onto the pegs and rotate the top of the weir up.

Step 10

Replace the skimmer cover.


(1 to 10 of 10)

InyoPools Product Specialist  Posted: 5/6/2012 

itacc - Please give us a call. We need more detailed information your weir.

Anonymous  Posted: 5/5/2012 

My original weir was a hayward spw1082. It had a hinge pin which fit 2 small holes at the top of the opening. searching the internet I have not been able to find one all are the same as the SPX1082K that you show. Hoe can I use this with the holes being so small. I do not believe that i can drill the holes any bigger due to the lack of room.

InyoPools Product Specialist  Posted: 3/31/2012 

skip - We need to know more specific information about your unit (manufacturer, model #) before we can answer this question. Please give us a call a 1-877-372-6038.

Anonymous  Posted: 3/29/2012 

Under my skimmer basket is a piece described as a diverter valve. It has a tab to close off water to the pump and two openings under this diverter valve. The gaskets appear to be worn and I am looking for replacements.

 Posted: 9/7/2011 

Great article! Thanks for the writeup

InyoPools Product Specialist  Posted: 8/26/2011 

The skimmer shown in the guide with part number 987004 is an old American Products Admiral. See our parts page for this item under Pool Parts, then Skimmers, then American Products - Admiral. Note: American Products was bought by Pentair.

Anonymous  Posted: 8/24/2011 

I am also trying to purchase a skimmer lid, part number 987004 (american products). Any suggestions would be appreciated. Thanks

Anonymous  Posted: 8/17/2011 

Having a problem with pool vacuum hose constantly being sucked into skimmer opening. Pool repair man suggested purchasing an adjustable bar or bumper to fit across opening thereby stopping hose from going in. Cannot find such a thing at any local pool supply. Any thoughts?

InyoPools Product Specialist  Posted: 7/12/2011 

Try matching your skimmer lid to the skimmer parts we show under - pool parts / skimmers / american products. If you do not see a match, call Pentair (now own American Products) and they should be able to help you. If they can identify your skimmer model, we can better help you.

Anonymous  Posted: 7/1/2011 

We are trying to purchase a skimmer lid as identified on your site. Part number 987004 (american products). Is there an equivalent to this part. We only need the lid. Any suggestions would be appreciated. Thanks