Debris such as leaves and bugs can fall into your pool, and the easiest and most effective way to clean that up is with a pool skimmer.
There are dozens to choose from, so finding the best pool skimmer can take time. There are automatic swimming pool skimmers that go inside your pool, as well as handheld or leaf pool skimmers attached to long poles.
If you need help, take a look at our team’s reviews of seven of the top-selling swimming pool skimmers. To create and properly review our list, we took into consideration the reach, durability, quality of materials, and more.
Table of Contents
Why Do You Need a Pool Skimmer?
Although you have to put in some work if you have a manual pool skimmer, the product does make upkeep simpler. For those still on the fence about buying one, check out the three top benefits you can take advantage of from owning the best pool skimmer.
But First.. if you are totally unaware of what a pool skimmer is, enjoy this simple but helpful video on what a pool skimmer is by Mike Farley below.
Clear out Debris
The most evident benefit of having a pool skimmer is cleaning out anything that falls into your pool. Skimmers generally have a good enough length that it is easy enough to reach over and simply clear out the water.
Protect Your Filter
Of course, the purpose of a filter is to clear out impurities in the water. However, some things are simply too large. With a pool skimmer, you can free out large leaves, sticks, and anything else nature has to throw at your water before it can clog up and damage the filter.
Keep Chemicals Balanced
Bugs and anything else that finds its way in your water can consume your carefully balanced chemicals, throwing everything off. Using a pool skimmer to keep the water clean saves you on time and money from having to constantly check and maintain the chemicals.
7. Milliard Pool Leaf Skimmer
The Milliard Pool Leaf Skimmer Net advertises as being professional-grade. It has a heavy-duty aluminum rim, while the netting is nylon. The skimmer can be used by itself easily enough, but it attaches with no problem to standard extension poles.
For safety, the edges are round and flexible so that the skimmer won’t damage pool liners. It’s simple enough that it can be the best pool skimmer for first-time pool owners.
6. CJ Lifestyle Crystal Pool Rake
This pool skimmer features a user-friendly design to ease any pressure off of cleaning your swimming pool. It is light enough in weight so that you won’t feel fatigued using it. Additionally, the minimal weight grants it greater maneuverability.
To allow the skimmer to move even easier in the water, it features an easy glide rim design. This reduces the chance of resistance from the water. To empty it all, the net also has good flexibility so that it clears out with no problem.
5. Stargoods Pool Skimmer
Made from ABS plastic, the Stargoods Pool Skimmer has curved borders so it won’t damage your pool liners. The bag is deep, and the mesh is fine enough to scoop small insects as well as it can with large debris like floating garbage and sticks.
It’s designed with a universal holder for an easy fit on any pole, and it has a straightforward connect and disconnect mechanism. With its structural model, it works for inground and above-ground pools.
4. PoolSkim Pool Skimmer
The PoolSkim Pool Skimmer and Pool Cleaner is an award-winning automatic pool skimmer. It is constructed of polyurethane and PVC pipe connectors. To function, it uses the water’s own return power to pull in floating debris.
All of the debris that it suctions in from all corners of your pull falls into the sturdy nylon mesh bag. This can help ease the load off of your pool’s filtration system.
3. Triluca Pool Skimmer
This Triluca Pool Skimmer is the best pool skimmer for those who need to get fine particles such as pollen, pet hair, etc. out of the water. The ultra-fine mesh is easy to empty out as well. This attaches to most standard cleaning poles with no issues.
The 14″ opening of the pool skimmer is made using a triple-stitched nylon net. It’s attached to a frame designed to reduce bending so that it maneuvers better in the water.
2. Hayward SP1091LX Dyna-Skim
The Hayward Above-Ground Pool Skimmer uses a large debris collection basket to gather a good deal of items before you have to empty it out. You can gain access to the basket from the front or the top. Installation may take some time, but once it’s completed, the skimmer goes to work instantly.
For longevity’s sake, this pool skimmer is constructed from ABS that is UV resistant as to not wear down no matter how intense the sun.
1. ProTuff Pool Net Leaf Skimmer Rake
Many view the ProTuff Pool Net Leaf Skimmer Rake to be the best pool skimmer on the market today. The 18″ aluminum alloy frame doesn’t bend or twist, and the winged handle that secures it offers another layer of stability. Its double-stitched nylon bag is abrasion-resistant, and it resists mold and mildew for a longer shelf life.
The plastic rim is designed with safety in mind as it resists scratching the pool surface. If anything happens, this comes with a 100% lifetime guarantee.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Enjoy some of our team’s answers to frequently asked questions we get on a monthly basis related to pool skimmers below!
What Is A Pool Skimmer?
Pool skimmer are either handheld or installed filters that capture floating debris before it can sink to the bottom of the pool. Most pool skimmers on in-ground pools are built into its upper sides, where the suction automatically draws in leaves, bugs, and other debris.
Non-automatic or Handheld pool skimmers are like a type of rake or pool with a net on the end that one can use to scoop up leaves and other debris and then lift out of the pool in order to remove them.
How Do You Increase Suction In A Pool Skimmer?
You can increase the suction on an automatic pool skimmer by simply exerting pressure in the pipe in the opposite direction of the suction. This can easily be done by connecting a hose or an air compressor, which will forcefully send water and air into the automatic pool skimmer. This is a great strategy to remove any clogs.
Also check the water level on your pool and ensure the water level reaches up at least half of the skimmer opening, if it does not, add more water to your pool, this will help improve your skimmer’s performance as well if needed. Lastly check the strainer basket and filter to make sure they are clean and not being blocked by a bunch of leaves or debris.
How Do You Install Butterfly Gasket On A Pool Skimmer?
If you have a butterfly gasket that you want to install on your automatic pool skimmer, it can be done in three simple steps. First, carefully mount the pool skimmer with the gasket inside out and then cut the pool liner. Turn off the skimmer with half inside the pool and half outside the pool. Lastly, add a waterproof adhesive or waterproof sealant at the back of the faceplate and make sure the swimming pool liner presses closely to the wall between the two parts of the gaskets and then install your skimmer.
How Do You Connect A Pool Vacuum To A Skimmer?
First, remove your pool skimmer lid and the skimmer basket (as well as the float valve if you have one). Second use your pool vacuum hose and feed it through the skimmer throat inside the pool. From there, attach your pool vacuum to the back port at the bottom of the skimmer (farthest away from the pool). Doing this will make everything sucked up from your pool vacuum be properly transported to your swimming pool filter before going back into the pool.
How To Fix A Pool Skimmer Leak?
When it comes to fixing a leak in your swimming pool skimmer, our experts recommend you turn off your pool pump and then apply a two-part moldable epoxy (or pool putty if not accessible).
You first press the repair material along the seam of the skimmer area where the leak is located. The two-part epoxy can be easily purchased on Amazon, Home Depot or Lowe’s if you do not have any on hand. After the skimmer leak repair thoroughly dries (we always recommend you read the packaging for the recommended drying time), turn back on your pool pump and replace the skimmer box cover.
How Do You Replace the Net on A Handheld Pool Skimmer?
Most pool skimmer nets can be simply unscrewed or unsecured from the pool it is attached to and then replaced with a new one. Many brands will offer replacement nets available for purchase online, and our #1 pick, the ProTuff Skimmer Rake, even offers unlimited free replacements! Once you have your new handheld pool skimmer net, as long as it is the same brand and model, it should be able to be easily reattached and secured.
Does An Above Ground Pool Need A Skimmer?
An above ground pool does not necessarily need a pool skimmer to function properly, however a automatic or handheld pool skimmer does help prevents debris from being sucked up into your pool water pipes, which may end up clogging them, causing damage or downtime for the pool. Due to this our team strongly recommends investing in some sort of pool skimmer even if you have an above ground swimming pool.
Where Do You Buy Pool Skimmers?
Both handheld leaf skimmers and automatic pool skimmers can usually be purchased at the Home Depot, Lowe’s and Walmart (as well as any local pool supply store near you). We prefer shopping online on Amazon, due to the high range of options, online reviews and convenience.
Our Team’s Conclusion
The best pool skimmer is one you can rely on to keep your swimming pool clean and clear. It shouldn’t be too hard on you to use whether it’s a manual one or an automatic one. Our team’s overall personal favorite is the hanheld pool leaf skimmer- the ProTuff Skimmer Rake, but if you prefer an automatic one and have an above ground swimming pool then Hayward Dyna-Skim Above-Ground Pool Skimmer is a great option as well.
For a better maintenance of your swimming pool, our team recommends that you check out our swimming pool sand filters suggestions as well.
Do you have any thoughts about the pool skimmers in our top seven list?
Share your question or experiences with us in the comments!
Hi, I am Victor, co-owner of All About Pools and an expert on swimming pool equipment and machinery. I have a degree in Business Marketing from the University of Missouri-Kansas City and my hobbies include lacrosse, teaching swimming, graphic design, diving, traveling, and going on hikes with my two dogs.