Swimming Pool 101: The Skimmer

Whether you currently have a swimming pool or spa in your backyard living area, or you're simply considering installing one, it is vital for you to know how each part of your swimming pool works.  This is especially the case for proper maintenance of your swimming pool or spa.  So, we thought we'd cover a few basic questions about the "skimmer" of a swimming pool or spa below.


A skimmer is a part of the circulation system that removes debris from the surface of the water of your swimming pool or spa.  The purpose of the skimmer is to catch the debris before the items sink to the bottom of the swimming pool or spa.  Generally, this skimmer is hooked up to a suction line, which sucks water into the filter.  This creates a current on the surface of the water to catch the debris and collects it into a removable basket.


Debris is often made up of leaves, dirt particles, and/or other items that fall into your swimming pool or spa.  The skimmer acts as a continuous filter to remove floating pieces before they sink to the bottom of the swimming pool or spa.  Depending on where you live or what landscaping you have surrounding your swimming pool or spa, you may want to be aware of what leaves, branches, etc. might fall throughout each season.


Depending on whether you have an in ground or above ground swimming pool or spa, you might have a through-wall skimmer or an over-the-wall skimmer.  As we explained above, it's generally hooked up to a suction line which creates a current that sucks floating debris into the basket you or your swimming pool servicer can remove to clean out regularly.


Because the skimmer in your swimming pool or spa is constantly collecting floating debris from the surface of the water, it is vital that you (the homeowner) or whoever services your swimming pool or spa regularly cleans out the basket.  Anything collected in the basket can generally be dumped in your yard waste.  The experts here at California Pools recommend the basket gets cleaned out once or twice each week for ideal maintenance - or whenever you notice debris collected.


For more information on skimmers, or other swimming pool parts and terms, feel free to continue to browse our website.  You can also reach us at (800) 282-7665 if you have questions, or contact us anytime online!  Each of our local offices offer free in-home consultations, so you get our low-pressure, friendly treatment our own founder used over 65 years ago.  Happy Swimming!