Best Pool Vacuum Head of 2018 & Buying Guide

Buying a new pool vacuum is one thing – the whole thing’s going to be put together in a package. You can read the descriptors and find out what features the unit has, then decide whether or not the vacuum will be good for your specific needs. Much easier than buying a pool vacuum head.

Buying a head for a pool vacuum means that you need to make a specific choice. The best pool vacuum head for a  small pool won’t be the best for a big pool that requires more suction and has a bigger volume of water for you to filter. Fortunately, we’ve done the research for you, and have compiled the best guide for buying a head for your pool vacuum. At the bottom, we’ve researched and reviewed what the best possible pool vacuum heads you could buy are.

So how do I know what makes a good pool vacuum head?

Keeping your pool clean is a very demanding task, and it’s also a task that is required weekly, if not daily. It’s very easy for algae and dirt to build up in your pool, so you need to make sure that you’re cleaning it properly.

You already knew that, though – that’s why you’re here, reading this article.Buying a ‘water vacuum,’ such as one for a pond or a fountain, won’t necessarily be able to provide the same degree of cleanliness that you’ll be able to get if you choose to buy a specific pool vacuum head. 

PoolSupplyTown Heavy-Duty Professional-Grade Flexible Weighted Pool Vacuum Head

PoolSupplyTown Heavy-Duty Professional-Grade Flexible Weighted Pool Vacuum Head

Pool baskets – the units that you hold by hand and use to sweep debris out of the pool – are great for surface debris or floating garbage, but they won’t be able to clean and filter the water itself.

You’re going to want to get a water pump vacuum and a specific pool vacuum head. Here are the things to consider when choosing a head for your pumping pool vacuum cleaner.

The width of the head

Poolmaster 27400 Air Relief

Poolmaster 27400 Air Relief

The width of the head used for vacuuming pools can vary immensely. On average, they come between  14 and 40 inches in width. Obviously, the wider the head is, the more you’ll be able to clean in a single sweep. However, that comes with some disadvantages, as well.

  • A wider head means you’ll be faced with much more ‘pull.’ This will make the vacuum much more difficult to move around the pool and will cause you to tire out faster. What you make up for in width, you have to pay for in your own elbow grease. For this reason, wider pool heads are only recommended for the physically strong.
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Some wider pool heads have additional ports that can be turned on or off for even more suction. Again, these require greater strength to use.

  • Smaller pool heads take longer to use, but will require less physical strength and won’t tire you out as fast.

If you have multiple people who will be cleaning the pool, it might be a good idea to invest in separate sized cleaning heads.

The hose

The hose is a very important thing to consider when buying a vacuum head, largely because it’s possible to buy a head that isn’t compatible with the hose you already have.

If you don’t already have a pool vacuum, then you’re in the clear. You can choose a pool vacuum that’s compatible with the type of head you think will be best for your pool.

Some heads come with a ‘swivel adapter.’ These are great additions for people who crave convenience, as they allow you to easily move the head around without having to fight against the water’s pressure.

Swimline Hydro Tools 8145

Swimline Hydro Tools 8145

The wheels

Hydro Tools 8131

Hydro Tools 8131

The wheels on the head of your pool vacuum are very important, but they’re also a consideration that a lot of people overlook. When you think of vacuuming a pool, you may not immediately consider the importance of vacuuming the bottom – instead of focusing on filtering the water.

It’s just as important to clean the bottom of your pool. Algae can thrive here, and dirt can easily build up without anyone recognizing it. For this reason, it’s good to get a vacuum head that has good wheels.

If you’re going to be cleaning a large pool, consider getting a head with ball bearings on the wheels. These allow you to use the head easier without as much risk of it failing on you. If you get a head without ball bearings on the wheels, it will be very hard to compete with the amount of strength you need to use to actually suck heavy amounts of water out of your big pool.

Ball bearings reduce friction and also help the pool head bear weight. This means that if you get a pool head with solid ball bearings, it will be significantly more durable than any of the alternatives.

The attachment itself

It’s important to recognize the stability of the actual place where the handle attaches to the telescopic pole. There are two main options for this.

  • Steel attachments are more durable and physically capable than plastic attachments. They will last longer and can endure more stress, but they will also be a bit more expensive. They’re not really necessary for people who will just be cleaning small pools.
Poolmaster 27412 DLX

Poolmaster 27412 DLX

  • Plastic attachments are more resistant to chemicals, they’re less likely to rust, and they won’t corrode as fast. However they’re more likely to break on you. They’re better for smaller pools, cheaper, but they might not hold up as well if you have to clean a larger pool.

So what are the best pool head attachments?

Best Pool Vacuum Head Reviews

1. Poolmaster 27412 DLX Review

This is a good example of how you can get a good quality pool vacuum head for a good price. This one is affordable, but doesn’t sacrifice the necessary features.

This unit, in particular, is best at cleaning vinyl pools. It’s a compact design that’s very thin, while managing to provide quite a decent width. This means that you’ll be able to clean your pool in a few wide sweeps, but you’ll still be able to access those tighter areas that you couldn’t reach with a thicker vacuum head.

The bottom side of this head presents you with polypropylene brush hairs that allow you to gently scrub the bottom of your pool to get dirt stains out. This also helps to free up resilient algae so you can eliminate it before it presents a problem.

This unit is easily attached to most pool vacuum hoses, so you shouldn’t have too much trouble finding a unit that it’s compatible with. Still, if you already have a vacuum, make sure it’s compatible with it first before buying it.

Pros

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    Wide pool vacuum head allows you to wide-sweep clean your pool
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    Has polypropylene brushes on the underside to stir up algae
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    Good for cleaning vinyl pools
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    Very affordable unit

Cons

  • Can’t handle too much suction

2.  Swimline Hydro Tools 8145 Review

Even cheaper than the last unit, this pool vacuum head further stretches the definition of what you can afford for a budget price. This unit is barely over fifteen dollars, yet provides quality cleaning features that other units offer for a higher price.

This one is very much capable of handling large levels of suction in bigger pools. It’s a sturdy piece and its weight is evenly distributed. This allows you to move it around even with a high-powered vacuum without as much strain as other heads might cause you.

There are angular brushes on the bottom that can agitate algae or other things growing on the bottom of your pool so you can suck them up through the vacuum and filter them. The coolest thing about this head is that it has a universal snapping attachment that allows you to hook it up to many variants of hoses.

Pros

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    Extremely versatile; can be attached to many different hoses
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    Can handle different levels of suction
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    Has good agitation brushes
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    Very affordable price
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    Good for disturbing algae

Cons

  • Non-continuous bristle rim means you might need to do several sweeps

3. Hydro Tools 8131 Review

This unit uses a unique butterfly shape so you can clean a large amount of the bottom of your pool in a single sweep. This butterfly shape allows you to catch bits of the bottom that might have otherwise escaped.

Despite the size and weight, this is a very sturdy unit. It doesn’t try to float away or redirect you while you’re using it, instead offering you a great level of control.

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It’s a very user-friendly unit. It can be easily attached, and there’s not much of a learning curve associated with using it. It’s made to fit vacuum hoses between 1.25 and 1.5 inches which makes it ideal for the majority of pool vacuums made for commercial and residential use.

Keeping up with the ‘budget’ level of this list, this unit is even cheaper than the other two, but its function does not suffer as a result of its low price.

Pros

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    Very affordable
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    Fits on 1.25-1.5 inch hoses
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    Good for residential and commercial use
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    Unique butterfly shape ensures cleaning

Cons

  • Can be awkward to control due to its light weight

4. Poolmaster 27400 Air Relief Review

Now we are moving into higher quality pool vacuum heads. This unit is a bit more expensive than the previous models we’ve discussed, but it’s impressive function is a good representation of this.

It’s best made for cleaning vinyl pools. It has a good amount of weight to it which doesn’t interfere with vacuums that use powerful suction, allowing you to steadily sweep the bottom of your pool.

There’s an adjustable air-relief valve that you can use. This allows you to put some input into the level of air suction that comes through the vacuum head while you use it. This gives you more versatility when you’re using it.

This vacuum head is very easy to maintain and provides a stellar level of cleanliness.

Pros

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    Good weight allows you to use it accurately
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    Great for cleaning vinyl pools
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    Has an adjustable air relief valve
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    Easy to maintain, minimal upkeep

Cons

  • The brush may interfere with suction

5. PoolSupplyTown Heavy-Duty Professional-Grade Flexible Weighted Pool Vacuum Head Review

Now here’s a pool vacuum head that screams with quality. It may be the most expensive one on the list but it’s also the most durable. You won’t need to replace this for a long time.

It’s got a flexible design and makes good use of ball bearings in the wheels. The ball bearings ensure that you’ll maintain maximum control of this unit while not sacrificing any quality or durability.

The handle is chrome and doesn’t rust. The cleaning width is 14 inches, which is fairly impressive but doesn’t require too much manual strength.

This unit can be attached to vacuum hoses up to 1.5 inches in diameter, giving it a wide range of versatility.

Pros

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    High quality unit
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    Uses ball bearings in the wheel
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    Very durable and flexible
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    Has a wide leaning range
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    Doesn’t require much manual strength

Cons

  • Expensive

So which one’s the best pool vacuum cleaning head?

The  Pool Supply Town Professional Weighted Pool Vacuum head is the best. This one provides the most versatility, as well as the most durability. This is partially because of the strong ball bearings that hold the wheels together. They ensure you can use this unit to clean up the thickest messes without compromising its efficacy.

The unit is made to prevent rusting, while offering you a wide range for cleaning. Not only is this unit effective, it’s going to last you a long time. If you don’t mind the price, this is the best pool vacuum cleaner head you can buy.