How to replace a Great White Pool Cleaner Vacuum Skirt


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The Sta Rite Great White Pool Cleaner Vacuum Skirt is essential to aiding with the cleaner's traction when traveling the surface of your pool. Without this essential piece your Great White Cleaner may find it hard to properly function.

Step by Step


Step 1

Before disassembling your Sta Rite Great White Pool Cleaner be sure to disconnect the vacuum hose from the dedicated suction line of your pool. After hose is disconnected from the suction port then you may remove the Great White cleaner from the pool and remove the hose from the cleaner.

Step 2

With the Great White Pool Cleaner sitting upside down you should be seeing it from this vantage point. To access the Great White Cleaner's Rubber Skirt you will need to remove these four screws to unseat the unit's brush system. Replacement Sta Rite Great White Cleaner Vacuum Skirt part #: 3290-13, Brush part #: 3290-04, Screw Set part #: 3290-03

Step 3

Using the two openings on either side of the lower body lift the lower portion of Great White Pool Cleaner out of the cleaner casing. Replacement Sta Rite Great White Cleaner Lower Body part #: 3290-11

Step 4

The band we are replacing is the thin piece of rubber wrapped around the lower body of the cleaner being held in this picture.

Step 5

To remove this band, locate the rubber skirt fasteners and slip the tabs through the openings until free.

Step 6

The band will still be connected by these points on the lower body of the Sta Rite Great White Cleaner. The band will slip over this supports, do this action to all the points until the rubber skirt is removed.

Step 7

At this point we can now install the new Great White Pool Cleaner Rubber Skirt.

Step 8

Take the new skirt and attach it to the hook supports of the cleaner's lower body.

Step 9

When attaching the skirt be sure that the connecting tabs are situated in the middle of the flat side of the lower body.

Step 10

To connect the rubber band tabs correctly follow the next few picture steps.

Step 11

Step 12

Step 13

Step 14

With the new Sta Rite Great White Pool Cleaner Vacuum Skirt in place we can now secure the lower body with the 4 screws. Check for for any loose parts before resuming operation of your StaRite Great White Pool Cleaner.


(1 to 29 of 29)

 Posted: 4/20/2018 

I have had my Great White for about 5 years. It has been a very good pool cleaner. However, we are in the desert here in Arizona and this presents a problem since the wind sends a goodly amount of gritty dirt into the pool. The cleaner vacuums it up but the grit gets into the whole mechanism and causes quick wear. Many of the moving parts are made of plastic and they wear quickly. I am an engineer and fully understand how the mechanism functions in the Great White pool cleaner. I have been successful in troubleshooting problems since I purchased the unit. However I have now reached the point where I have not been successful in resolving the problem. This is a problem that has occurred a few times before but now resists my solution. Many people have reported that the cleaner stops turning or just gets stuck in one place. The problem is that the turner brush fails to extend and the unit will not turn. I have replaced all of the parts that cause the brush to extend and when manually operated out of the water it functions exactly as it should. Unfortunately when I put it in the water everything runs as it should but the unit that pushes the brush down fails to function. At this time I placed an order for the gear driven unit that actually forces the turning brush down. I cannot understand why when I manually toggle the unit that the water suction activates, this unit pushes the turning brush down but when I place it in the pool with the pool vacuum running and hold the unit under water, the turning brush never gets pushed down.

InyoPools Product Specialist  Posted: 9/21/2017 

Sanjay - Thank you for your comments on newer models. I've incorporated them into our guide.


 Posted: 9/20/2017 

The newer models of this cleaner require 6 screws to be removed - four around the outside and two in the middle. In addition, two tabs in the middle need to be gently moved aside to allow the assembly to be removed from its casing.

When reassembling, make sure that the gear assembly sits in the housing as its side pieces tend to fall out of their housing since it's up side down.

Finally, the vacuum skirt is supposed to have that small slit that is scaring everybody into thinking that it is damaged.


 Posted: 5/19/2016 



InyoPools Product Specialist  Posted: 1/5/2016 

Jon - Thank you for your comments on newer models. I've incorporated them into our guide.

 Posted: 1/4/2016 

To add to the discussion it appears the newer units are slightly different. 4 screws and two little tabs that need released with a small regular screw driver. The little tabs are where the 2 "interior" screws are shown in Step 2 of this guide. The outer 2 screws are actually where all 4 are located. Hope this helps someone.

 Posted: 10/6/2014 

To finish the story, the plastic holes were slightly worn, so all seemed to work outside of the water but in, not enough resistance to send the turn brush down for long enough to change the direction. Ordered a new great white through this site. Best deal around, I checked them all, and since there is a rebate, even better. Arrived the next day, with a clear (so you can see any blockages), light weight compartmentalized hose, which is so much better than my original one. Working great, now the pool is clean.

 Posted: 9/19/2014 

Update Great white stuck : (approx 8 year old unit) 2 phone calls to Pentair (very nice and helpful), I had the thing apart twice checking everything. All seemed to work fine out of the water, but still didn't in the water. Had the pool expert stop by to check it out. Everything seems like it's working however, his experience is that the "holes" in the plastic "wear" which makes the metal shaft holding the gears wobble slightly when in use. The combination of the older gears and the shake inhibits the "brush rotator" from fully popping down. He has replaced gears before and found it only lasts 3-6 months before the problem starts again. His advice replace the unit. Also said, his experience is, most of the pool cleaners only last 5-7 years. Advised me to shop it online.

My next move is to disassemble it again to check the plastic holes and gears for signs of wear. (just to check his theory) I'll be back.


 Posted: 9/4/2014 

As others have written but not followed up with solutions, I called pentair about my Pentair Great White pool cleaner getting "stuck" every where in the pool. The brush that is supposed to "pop down" and turn the unit is not "popping down".

Very pleasant and helpful, he gave me a few things to try. Open up the unit, check that the gears are free to move, check the metal piece is where it needs to be for the gears to rotate, and check that the piece that "pops" the brush is intact and working. I will comment when I finish these steps.


Anonymous  Posted: 9/4/2014 

I have the same trouble, "stuck" in one spot or another. My Pentair Great White troubleshooting manual says to examine the lift brush mechanism while submerged as the cleaner is operating, if the lift brush doesn't move to the "down" position within 2 minutes, call customer service.

Anonymous  Posted: 6/20/2014 

My model had 4 screws and there were plastic prongs that I had to push back with a narrow screwdriver to release the unit after I removed the screws.

InyoPools Product Specialist  Posted: 6/2/2014 

6-screws - I don't know why this unit isn't separating. I would suggest calling Pentair on this at 800-831-7133.

Anonymous  Posted: 5/31/2014 

The great white cleaner I have has 6 screws holding the lower body, not 4. With them all out, I can't get the lower body to separate, it's catching on something. Any idea what I'm getting wrong?

 Posted: 2/19/2022 

You have to remove the top cap where the hose connects. Rotate untill the top cap comes off. It holds the body in place.

InyoPools Product Specialist  Posted: 5/20/2014 

Mark - At this point I would suggest calling the manufacturer, Pentair, direct. Their number is 800-831-7133. Ask for tech support.

 Posted: 5/16/2014 

Ok I have now replaced the skirt, and the oscillator gears and seal kit. The cleaner moves better. Up and down the walls but now it gets stuck very frequently where it didn't use to. It gets stuck at the top of the wall at the waterline, a step, a light in the wall, corner, etc. what now. Sorry but I'm getting frustrated now.

InyoPools Product Specialist  Posted: 5/13/2014 

Mark - Check the cleaners oscillator and gear set. They may be clogged or damaged. See our guide on "How to replace a Great White Pool Cleaner Oscillator Kit and seals" for further instructions.

 Posted: 5/12/2014 

I have a great white pool cleaner that was not functioning, it would just sit there and not move until i moved it to the middle of the pool. Then it would go to the corner or the wall/floor corner and stay there. I replaced the rubber skirt and it seemed to help but now it moves very slowly but sometimes gets stuck. It almost seems like it has too much suction. Ive turned the valve so it doesnt have quite as much suction but it doesnt seem to help. Any suggestions?

InyoPools Product Specialist  Posted: 4/11/2014 

Sarah - Review steps 5 and 6. The band should slide off at each of the posts.

 Posted: 4/8/2014 

Thanks! But I'm trying to change the skirt and I have removed all the screws but the lower part will no come out. Do you happen to know what it could be stuck on? I don't want to try any harder than I am in fear I might break a part off. Please help!
Thank you!


InyoPools Product Specialist  Posted: 4/1/2014 

Sarah - I would replace the skirt first. The cleaner will operate better with full suction. Then check the Oscillator Assembly for wear or damage. Here's the link to the guide for replacing the Oscillator: "How to replace a Great White Pool Cleaner Oscillator Kit and seals."

 Posted: 3/28/2014 

Mine won't turn around when at the top of the pool or by a step. What part makes it realize it's stuck and turns around. The skirt does need to be replaced so I'm hoping that's it.

InyoPools Product Specialist  Posted: 10/29/2013 

Orlando fernandez - The Oscillator in this cleaner makes the cleaner move. You may have to repair or replace this this part. See our guide on "How to replace a Great White Pool Cleaner Oscillator Kit and seals".

 Posted: 10/27/2013 

I have great white pool vacuum for two year and now on the last week does not walk along the pool just turns & turn(rotate) on the same place all the time. Please help me

Anonymous  Posted: 7/14/2013 

Have problem reassembling the cleaner. Does the brush part go in before the other part (with the skirt) or afterwards. I cannot get the unit to sit flush and it rocks back and forth. The inner unit does not seem to fit back into the hole in the shroud. is there some trick to this? I'm lost at this point. Bigger images would really help.

InyoPools Product Specialist  Posted: 7/12/2013 

Freddy - If it's snug, you should be good to go.

 Posted: 7/9/2013 

Thanks for the tutorial. Worked out great for me. Just one question , the part I ordered was already tied around. I clipped the rubber gasket around per the tutorial. Do I need to tighten it further or not ? Feels snug as it is. Thanks.

InyoPools Product Specialist  Posted: 7/8/2013 

image size - We are working on these images. Newer HTGs have enlarge capability, but we have to reload older images to expanding them. For now, try expanding the whole page for a larger image.

Anonymous  Posted: 7/5/2013 

Images are way to small to be of much help - and there does not appear to be any way to enlarge them.