Pentair Racer - Broken Drive Wheel at Frame

finethreads

Bronze Supporter
Feb 14, 2014
44
Santa Rosa Beach, FL
#1
Just wanted to share my experience with my Pentair Racer. I have been using it for two years now without any problems. Picks up all my oak tree debris as well as fine sand particles. The other day it started to get stuck at or on the stairs. When I pulled it from the pool I noticed that one of the drive wheels had broken off from the main plastic frame and the wheel was no longer engaging with the units' drive gear.

I called Pentair since it is under a 3 year warranty. They advised me to bring it into Pinch A Penny for warranty repair. I dropped it off at Pinch A Penny after which I received a call from their repair tech. He said he had three other Racers in for the very same repair. He explained that the Racer uses a cheaper plastic and that wheels would often break off within the first year of use. He further commented that it has been taking an inordinate amount of time to secure parts and warranty assistance from Pentair for this unit. He clarified that he does not have problems with repairing other Pentair cleaners.

He estimated two weeks to get parts and that I would have to pay a $25 labor fee even though it is being repaired under warranty. Lastly he said that Pentair has had so many problems with this cleaner that they are going to pull it off the market at year's end. He also said that he would not be able to assist with additional repairs of this unit should they be required.

A heads up to anyone looking for a new cleaner.
 

espejo

LifeTime Supporter
Nov 25, 2014
156
Kingwood Texas
#3
finethreads,

The exact same thing happened to my Pentair Racer (pictures attached). I was out by the pool and noticed that one of the front tires was "wobbling". I took the top cover off and used SuperGlue to reattach the broken part. It has held since then and is running fine. I contacted by pool builder and Pentair. Pentair is sending me a new chasis plate free of charge and letting me replace it. It does look involved but the Pentair rep said with the instructions in can be replaced in about 30 minutes. The part should arrive next week. Just last night my pool builder has agreed to "warranty" the cleaner and a brand new Racer (redesigned) is being delivered this morning. The tech on the phone said he has seen this before and the plastic is the problem. He also said the unit has been redesigned and it now has a thicker plate and bolts onto the chasis. Not sure exactly how but when it arrives I will take the cover off and take a picture. 20170401_103030.jpg 20170401_103038.jpg 20170401_103041.jpg 20170401_103047.jpg An added benefit is that it will also come with the redesigned rear wheels. I really like my Racer and I think it does a fantastic job and if I had to do it all over again I would probably get a new one or maybe a Polaris. My Polaris 280 at my old pool was a workhouse and never had any issues.
 

CountryBumkin

Bronze Supporter
Jan 9, 2017
124
Orlando/FL
#4
He estimated two weeks to get parts and that I would have to pay a $25 labor fee even though it is being repaired under warranty. Lastly he said that Pentair has had so many problems with this cleaner that they are going to pull it off the market at year's end. He also said that he would not be able to assist with additional repairs of this unit should they be required.

A heads up to anyone looking for a new cleaner.
Why should you have to pay for any labor? Are you sure your not being scammed by Pinch-A-Penny (sounds like their pinching you). I would call Pentair and find out about that charge.
 

rphpool

Well-known member
Mar 4, 2015
456
Sugar Land , TX
#5
I was in the same boat, broken wheel from frame. Pentair sent warranty guy out and replaced plate. I to have the 3 year warranty and I am sure by year 4 I will be purchasing something else when it breaks. Curious how the NEW DESIGN will hold up.
 

finethreads

Bronze Supporter
Feb 14, 2014
44
Santa Rosa Beach, FL
#6
Great news! Pinch A Penny contacted Pentair and my pool builder. After explaining the situation Pentair authorized my pool builder to drop off a new Racer at Pinch A Penny for me to pick up.

I have it now and just dropped it back in my pool this afternoon and it's already hard at work picking up leaves and beach sand. The Pinch A Penny techs said that the new Racers utilize stronger plastic and that wheel breakage should no longer be a problem. If you do have a Racer it sounds like there is hope based on my post and some of the previous posts wherein Pentair is replacing the weaker plastic part.
 

Attachments

rphpool

Well-known member
Mar 4, 2015
456
Sugar Land , TX
#7
finethreads,

The exact same thing happened to my Pentair Racer (pictures attached). I was out by the pool and noticed that one of the front tires was "wobbling". I took the top cover off and used SuperGlue to reattach the broken part. It has held since then and is running fine. I contacted by pool builder and Pentair. Pentair is sending me a new chasis plate free of charge and letting me replace it. It does look involved but the Pentair rep said with the instructions in can be replaced in about 30 minutes. The part should arrive next week. Just last night my pool builder has agreed to "warranty" the cleaner and a brand new Racer (redesigned) is being delivered this morning. The tech on the phone said he has seen this before and the plastic is the problem. He also said the unit has been redesigned and it now has a thicker plate and bolts onto the chasis. Not sure exactly how but when it arrives I will take the cover off and take a picture. View attachment 58731 View attachment 58732 View attachment 58733 View attachment 58734 An added benefit is that it will also come with the redesigned rear wheels. I really like my Racer and I think it does a fantastic job and if I had to do it all over again I would probably get a new one or maybe a Polaris. My Polaris 280 at my old pool was a workhouse and never had any issues.
Did you get your new RACER yet? I was curious what the new part looks like. Mine has broke once and the wheel is acting like it is about to break again. I am going to have to try and get my PB to get me a new LS model.
 

rphpool

Well-known member
Mar 4, 2015
456
Sugar Land , TX
#8
UPDATE:
My PB got Pentair to warranty me a brand new Racer ( Should be the new LS model )!!! Pool guy should be here this afternoon!!

update: Came home that evening to find a new old style Racer. :(
Let's see how long this last
 

CoryP2003

New member
May 13, 2017
2
Houston
#9
Have you had good luck with your Racer since the replacement? I had my Racer replaced 4 times in 3 years. They finally upgraded me to the LS model. We'll see how it does in comparison.
 

rphpool

Well-known member
Mar 4, 2015
456
Sugar Land , TX
#10
So far so good! I was not happy though when the old model arrived since I was thinking they would replace with new model. What is the real difference between the 2 models since you have experienced both?
 
#11
Went outside tonight and noticed the Racer stuck at the bottom of the stairs, after a quick inspection noticed the exact same issue. So my neighbor had this same issue last year and Pentair replaced the Racer with a new one. I am contacting them tomorrow. I hope they will replace mine as well but I am four months out of warranty. I will keep everyone posted.
 

rphpool

Well-known member
Mar 4, 2015
456
Sugar Land , TX
#12
Since my last post I have had my Racer replaced twice. So I think now this is my 4th. I think the design of the front allows the nose of the Racer to contact wall head on and get stuck. With new gears it can manage to get off but as the gears grind away and get worn it just stays stuck. I will say when it is new it cleans 100%.
 
#13
Well good news on this end! Pentair replaced my Racer!!!! I called and described the issue at which piont they agreed they had a problem and sent me a new one. Not sure if this one will last or not but out of the woods for now.
 

dougl99

New member
May 13, 2018
1
Magnolia, Tx
#14
Same problem here. 1st racer made it 18 months. 2nd racer made it 21 months. Pentair said they had made improvements and agreed to send me a 3rd racer under warranty. I didn't open it up to see if anything had changed. There was a small sheet of paper in the box with part number 360434 Axle Repair Kit. No other info other than a small drawing of the part. Looks kinda like the old Steve Martin arrow through the head gag, with the axles protruding out either end..........for those that grew up in the late 70's and early 80's. I was able to locate the part online at only one supplier, but it was under $50, instead of the outrageous chassis cost. Hope this helps. I have kept my other two racers and may attempt a repair. Good luck.