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Thread: will a suction cleaner work for me?

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    will a suction cleaner work for me?

    So I have read a bunch of threads on here talking about the pros and cons of suction cleaners and I looked at the manual for the Zodiac G3. After looking at that I see a couple of issues that may give me problems because of how my pool is setup. My hope is that someone on here can tell me if it should still work under these conditions. I know no one can make any guarantees but your best guess would be greatly appreciated. Thanks.

    First of all my return does not have a way to make it directional and it usually above the water line. Does this pose a problem to how the cleaner will move around the pool?

    Secondly the edges of my pool are flat cement There is no lip at the top. Will the vacuum stop at the waterline or escape the pool?

    Thirdly, is there any way to tell if my current setup is putting enough suction power into the vacuum to make this thing work? I understand that there is a suction gauge that comes with the unit but by that time I have already spent the money. How much suction does it take to effectively move it around the pool?
    Thanks for the info.
    Tim Schandorff
    I have a 25K IG pool (concrete)
    I live in the Caribbean with poor infrastructure and lose power often.
    Hayward pump, Hayward clear star plus cartridge filter
    New to pool ownership

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    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: will a suction cleaner work for me?

    Wait, your vacuum suction port is above the water? That is not possible. And I am not sure what you mean about it being directional?

    None of the cleaners will climb out of the pool. They never reach the coping lip.
    Jason, TFP Moderator
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    Mod Squad zea3's Avatar
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    Re: will a suction cleaner work for me?

    Do you know what is the horse power of the pump?
    TFP Moderator
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    BobbyR's Avatar
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    Re: will a suction cleaner work for me?

    He said the return is above the water line, not the vacuum suction port. That said, I've never seen that either.
    Lagoon 40x22, Vinyl, 27,000 gal, 1HP WhisperFlo Pump, Pentair 60 gpm Sand filter, Hayward Brominator (used for chlorine pucks only when away), Rheem gas heater, Dolphin M4 Robot
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    Re: will a suction cleaner work for me?

    For a suction type of vacuum, the return lines do not matter.

    Do you have a dedicated suction port or will you have to connect the vacuum through the skimmer?

    What is the pump HP and your plumbing size?

    If you have enough suction dedicated to the vacuum it will climb to the waterline and then lose suction due to it sucking in air. I have a valve on my suction port that lets me adjust the suction so that it will not climb above the waterline.
    16k gal plaster with raised spa, Jandy DEV60 filter, 2 HP 2-speed SHPF Jandy Stealth pump
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    Re: will a suction cleaner work for me?

    thanks for the input. The pump is 1.5HP. I think I would probably attach the vacuum through the skimmer filter as the dedicated vacuum line does not work very well on this system. The system was not designed well and has a lot of idiosyncrasies. The skimmer intake seems to work really well so that is probably what I would use.

    I'm surprised to hear you say that the return lines do not matter. When I looked at the installation directions for the G3 it said that the return not being angled correctly could cause patterning. For those who mentioned how odd it is to have the return above waterline, I totally agree. Again it's not a well designed system. The return was put in higher than I would have done it if I were here at the time.

    Thanks again for the info.
    Tim
    I have a 25K IG pool (concrete)
    I live in the Caribbean with poor infrastructure and lose power often.
    Hayward pump, Hayward clear star plus cartridge filter
    New to pool ownership

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    linen's Avatar
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    Re: will a suction cleaner work for me?

    Can you post a pic? Having a return like that will likely cause a lot of aeration and subsequent ph rise. It might make sense to add an extension to get it under the water.
    TFP Expert who uses Pool School and my TF100 test kit along with PoolMath for my: Round 11K gallon AGP with deep end, 20" sand filter, Matrix 1hp 2spd, 6 2ftX20ft solar panels (and solar cover!), Intex SWCG (copper bars disconnected) and a Rubadub hot tub (chlorine). The SLAM process is not finished until: 1. CC < 0.5 ppm, 2. An OCLT < 1.0 ppm and, 3. The water is crystal clear.

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    Re: will a suction cleaner work for me?

    I will try and get a picture up tomorrow. Another question I just arrived at is regarding pipe diameter. I tried to use the skimmer intake to run my vacuum to see how much better the suction is and I found that I can't because the 1.5" end on the vacuum hose does not fit into the intake pipe of the exact same size. This might be kind of an obvious question but is that the reason for the valve cuff adapter that comes with the automatic cleaner? If this doesn't make sense maybe I can take a picture of this as well.
    Thanks again.
    Tim
    I have a 25K IG pool (concrete)
    I live in the Caribbean with poor infrastructure and lose power often.
    Hayward pump, Hayward clear star plus cartridge filter
    New to pool ownership

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    Re: will a suction cleaner work for me?

    Even when you get the suction connection solved, you are still asking quite a bit for a suction side cleaner to keep a 25k pool clean.

    Depending on many factors it just might, but you are pushing the limit of suction sides to clean that fairly large pool.

    A smaller robot would be a better fit unless your pool stays unusually clean on it's own.
    Dave S.
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
    TFTestkits , PoolMath , Pool School

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    Re: will a suction cleaner work for me?

    Interesting. I hadn't really heard that pool size was that much of a factor between one type and another but I guess that make sense. Can you give me a couple of examples of models that you would recommend. I'm not exactly sure what qualifies as a "smaller" robot.
    thanks.
    Tim
    I have a 25K IG pool (concrete)
    I live in the Caribbean with poor infrastructure and lose power often.
    Hayward pump, Hayward clear star plus cartridge filter
    New to pool ownership

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    Re: will a suction cleaner work for me?

    While they all suffer from less than perfect performance, Dolphin has a good line to look at. Blue Diamond gets good reviews here as well. For that size pool, $700-900 would seem a reasonable price range. Bells and whistles on robots seem mostly superfluous. A remote is often helpful but it is pointless to get a remote and stand by the pool all day "steering" it around to get your pool clean.

    Likewise, "wall climbing" certainly seems like a good deal, and it probably is on a masonry surface but it seems to me a lot easier to just manually brush the walls. Once a robot starts "wall-climbing" it invariably finds a place to snag itself.

    I know you will find the suction sides cheaper and, again, you may get one that does a good job for you but it depends on so many factors it is hard to predict. All in all, I'm not sure a suction side will deliver the cleaning power you want or need.

    If your pool was 10-15K, a decent suction side would likely be perfectly adequate.
    Dave S.
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
    TFTestkits , PoolMath , Pool School

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