Thoroughly Vacuuming a Pool to Waste: A 12 Steps Guide

Like all other things, items, or spaces we own, pools can accumulate dirt and debris over time. Tidying up pools can be tedious if done without machine help – small particles like algae are inarguably tough to get out. Luckily for us, there are vacuums that offer the “waste” setting, which allows users to suck these particles directly out of the pool and into waste.

If you’re new to the chore, then here are 12 tips to vacuum pool to waste. Note that there are various filtration types for pools like sand, D.E. (diatomaceous), and cartridge. This guide is fit for owners using sand or D.E, or owners who have units similar to cartridge.

Things to prepare:

  • Pool vacuum extension pole
  • Vacuum head
  • Vacuum hose

1. Start by raising the pool’s water level.
– It’s important to raise the water level as you are vacuuming. Do this by positioning your garden hose in an angle that will not stir the dirt or debris.

2. Find the circulation pump of the pool and turn it off.
– Get the water to stay still by turning off the pump. This will naturally make the cleaning process easier.

3. Ready your pole and your vacuum hose’s swivel end.
– The house should be filled with water. After doing so, attach the other end to the skimmer vacuum plate and secure it tightly on top of the skimmer basket. You will need all the suction if you’re vacuuming to waste, so make sure your hair and lint pot is clean.

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4. Remember to turn off pool cleaners or heaters before starting.

5. Turn on the “waste” setting.
– Most vacuums will require you to dial the filter to the waste feature. You will need to act quickly once you turn the pump back on.

6. Pull the plate loosely so you won’t break suction. The hair and lint pot will accumulate with the debris after some time, so you will have to shut the pump off again, clean it and start over.

7. If your vacuum doesn’t have a waste setting, then follow this:
– Attach the vacuum head to the extension pole, then connect the hose’s one end to the pole. Dip the head into the pool – make sure you start at the deep end.

8. Stabilize the head as it sinks by holding on to the pole and then stretch out the hose beside the pool to the vacuum port.
– To fill the hose with water, submerge it in the pool until it sinks.

9.  Attach the hose into the skimmer port to activate suction.
– To start vacuuming, hold the extension pole and use it to move the vacuum head in a back-and-forth motion.

10. Stop vacuuming once you notice the water level dropping below the skimmer.
– Not being able to do so may cause equipment and pool damage.

11. Turn off the circulation pump once again.
– Remove the vacuum hose from the pool by unplugging it from the skimmer port. Clean your baskets afterwards.

12. At this point, you can either get your water level back up, turn on the “filter” setting and then the pump; or if you have filter multiport valve, you can rotate this to “filter,” open the draining valves or other skimmer-connected valves, and then switch on the pump.

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Bonus Cleaning Tips

  • A leaf trap can be useful but it’s not necessary if you’re vacuuming smaller things that won’t normally clog the skimmer line/port.
  • If the pool is freshly covered with fine dust after having its mesh safety cover removed, then the multiport valve setting should be turned to “waste” and not “filter.”
  • Automatic cleaners are great alternatives to maintain a pool’s cleanliness, but they are not ideal for vacuum-to-waste methods.
  • Brushing – yes, brushing – the pool at least once a week is actually important. Make sure to push everything down the main drain.
  • If you choose between a leaf skimmer and a leaf rake, choose the rake. Leaf rakes are better at getting the leaves at the bottom of your pool.
  • Avoid a tough clean-up after winter by making sure your pool is covered. To maintain the pool, you will also need to vacuum to waste a couple more times.

Good luck on the job and be sure to follow the guide strictly to avoid mess ups. If you want to save a life, share these 12 tips to vacuum pool to waste guide to who you think might need it!