I know the subject of cutting the liner and installing a hard plumbed skimmer has been broached in a few other posts. The question of the location of the skimmer has also been discussed and if I remember correctly crookm11 on his first 16' intex ultra pool kind of wished he hadn't installed the skimmer in the panel between the 2 factory ports since the horizontal distance between the return and the skimmer wasn't very great. In reading and rereading many posts and looking at all of the great pictures from crookm11 and jsf0656, to only name a few, i noticed something. To me it apprears that vertical elevation of the bottom of the skimmer and the bottom of the factory return (hole on the left) is virtually the same, specifically on crookm11's pictures here backyard-build-in-central-texas-pool-is-up-t28455.html Since summer is coming fast I was thinking of the upgrades I wanted to do before the season was in full swing and an contemplating installing a hayward standard skimmer and potentially a fountain like jsf065 has on the bottom of page 2 at this link second-return-and-fountain-for-intex-pool-t26479-20.html
I'm not a plumber but here's the questions I have. What are your thoughts of taking the left factory return hole and basically matching the invert of the skimmer at the invert of the existing hole, cutting the liner away and installing the skimmer there. It looks like a standard skimmer would work great but a wide mouth doesn't have the vertical depth and hence would not work as well since the water level would have to be lower than with a standard skimmer.
Then using the factory suction port (lower elevation hole on the right) and basically rerouting the piping to make that a return into the pool instead of a suction. That would keep the skimmer and return 2 panels apart instead of one panel. Is there a downfall to having the return water now at a lower elevation instead of closer to the surface? I was thinking of rigging a fountain like jsf065 has it in the above link at that location with the combo return eyeball and fountain.
A whole seperate question i have is has anyone installed a suction port near the bottom of the pool to help keep the bottom clean? My thought is hoping it would pull more dirt off the bottom and reduce the vacuuming needed.
Last season was my first time owning an intex ultra and you guys/gals made me jealous of all of the cool mods after joining this site. Looking forward to learning much more this year and doing my own mods once the pool goes up in a few months.
Thank you in advance for any thoughts, suggestions, recommendations.