Choosing Pool Vacuum Heads: What To Consider

Swimming pool vacuum heads are critical to the proper maintenance of a pool. For example, suppose you are responsible for cleaning a pool. In that case, a vacuum head is almost certainly one of the essential pieces of equipment you will use. 

Vacuum heads may seem identical at first sight. However, variations in their width, bearings, ports, and wheels influence how they operate and how long they survive.

Why Use a Pool Vacuum?

Vacuuming a swimming pool may not seem to be an essential task. However, it is an effective method of balancing the pool’s water, preventing or combating algae, and maintaining its appearance. 

Certain types of pool vacuum heads are designed specifically for in-ground or above-ground pools. Other versions, on the other hand, are intended for use with spas and hot tubs. Remove as much surface debris as possible from the pool before vacuuming it with a pool skimmer.

Which is the best pool vacuum for the job? It is determined by the kind of pool you have, the amount of time you want to devote to its maintenance, and your budget. Choosing a good swimming pool vacuum head is also an important factor.

pool being vacuumed

In-Ground and Above-Ground Pool Vacuums

Before you buy a vacuum, ensure that you know which kind is appropriate for your pool. The pool’s length and depth are some of the main factors to consider. In-ground vacuum pool cleaners can clean up to 8 feet.

On the other hand, above-ground pools usually have a depth of four to four and a half feet. Vacuums designed for in-ground pools can be too strong for above-ground pools and can cause harm. A manual pool vacuum cleaner is sufficient for the majority of above-ground pools. However, automated pool cleaners are also available.

Handheld Pool Vacuums

A portable pool vacuum has a suction head that connects to a telescopic pole connected to your pool’s skimming basket through a vacuum line. Additionally, a vacuum skimmer plate connects to the hose to provide a secure fit over the pool skimmer. Numerous vacuums include a vacuum head, pole, and hose as standard equipment.

While a handheld pool vacuum will do the task, it will need you to drag it about in the water to remove mulch, leaves, sand, algae, and other debris, making it more labor-intensive than an automated pool vacuum.


  • Efficient and cost-effective.
  • Excellent option if you need to clean a particular section of the pool.
  • Simple to use.
  • Available in both plug-in and battery-operated configurations.
  • Strong, often outperforms many automated pool vacuums.

Robotic Pool Vacuums

If you do not have enough time or cannot clean the pool physically, a robotic pool vacuum will take care of the job. Robotic pool vacuum cleaners are an effective method of cleaning your pool. They clean the pool floor, walls, and stairs automatically while purifying the water as it circulates.

Two independent motors are used in robotic pool vacuums. One draws water into the unit to collect filth, while the other allows the device to skim the pool’s surface.

robotic pool vacuum


  • Low-maintenance.
  • Quick and effective.
  • Powered by electricity, not by the pump or filter in your pool.
  • Plug-and-play, which simplifies setup.
  • Self-contained devices that gather dirt within an integrated filter that is simple to clean.
  • They circulate and filter the pool’s water, assisting in the reduction of chemical treatments.

To prolong the life of a robotic pool cleaner, remove it from the pool immediately after usage, thoroughly rinse it, and keep it in a cool, dry location.

Wand Pool Vacuums

Wand pool vacuums are ideal for cleaning dirt, sand, leaves, and other tiny particles of material from the pool. They help get minor tasks done fast.


  • Compact, hose-free, and maneuverable.
  • The majority of versions have an inbuilt telescopic handle.
  • Available with a battery-powered pump or a hand-powered type that works by drawing in insects, pebbles, and other trash through a pump action.
  • Intended for use with above-ground swimming pools, spas, and hot tubs.

Pressure Pool Vacuums

Similar to suction pool vacuums, pressure pool vacuums, often referred to as booster pump-powered cleaners, depending on the suction power generated by the pool’s filtration system. On the other hand, the pressure pool vacuum has a bag connected to the top of the device that gathers material. As a result, many pressure pool vacuums need a separate booster pump, which is a significant advantage if your pool was designed with pressure-side cleaner piping already installed.


  • Ideal for cleaning extensive materials such as acorns, twigs, clumps of leaves.
  • Collecting debris in bags or containers prevents blockages.
  • Once filtered, the pump returns the pool’s water to its original state.
  • Simple to maintain and clean.
  • Very high life expectancy.

Suction Pool Vacuums

Suction pool vacuum cleaners work just as their name implies. It connects to the skimmer (pool’s) or a separate suction line. Then it collects garbage from the pool’s bottom using the intake pressure of the pool. Then the trash is drawn into the hose through the nozzle. After passing through the pool’s filtration system, the water is released into the skimmer basket.


  • Reliable and long-lasting.
  • Cost-effective pool vacuum.
  • Simple to use and maintain.
suctioned pool vacuum

If you have big leaves, tree branches, or other complex material to vacuum, consider investing in a leaf canister for collecting leaves and other debris and relieving pressure on the skimmer basket.

How to Choose the Best Pool Vacuum

Consider these five steps mentioned below to select the best pool vacuum.


Depending on the manufacturer, a commercial pool vacuum’s size may vary from 14 inches to more than 40 inches. The larger the head, the more the surface area is covered in a single pass. However, bear in mind that greater width results in higher drag; broader vacuums are more difficult to push and will give you a good workout.

If you have the physical power to utilize a larger vac head, you can clean your pool faster. 

Some bigger swimming pool vacuum heads have larger 2″ ports and numerous ports to increase suction. Although the smaller vacuum heads cover minimal area, they also drag less. Therefore, while deciding on a breadth, keep your physical capabilities in mind. For example, if storage space is a problem, choose a model with a narrower width.


Vacuum hoses are usually 1.5″ or 2″ in diameter. If you already have a hose, you will certainly want to locate a vacuum head compatible with it. Most of the vacuum heads are equipped with adapters that suit any size hose. 

These versions accept a 1.5-inch hose through a swivel adapter or a 2-inch hose straight onto the vacuum. The 1.5″ swivel adaptor has the benefit of allowing the hose to move freely without twisting.

However, the smaller adapter and hose will have less suction power than the two-inch hose and adapter. Certain bigger vacuum heads have two ports for increased suction.



The wheels are another factor to consider when selecting a business vacuum head. On the bottom of these vac heads, there are numerous wheels. 

The wheels on higher-end vac heads will feature ball bearings for better mobility. Because ball bearings roll, they decrease friction, enabling the wheels to glide more smoothly. This, in turn, facilitates the process of pushing the vacuum. 

Particularly, if you consider one of the larger vacuum heads, you will want to ensure that the wheels have these bearings, as they will alleviate some of the drag described before. According to experts, cheaper ones without any ball bearings are ineffective against the strong suction generated by pools. Without bearings, the wheels cling to the pool surface through suction, and the vacuum must be moved using just human effort.


Another benefit of ball-bearing wheels is that they last longer. Additionally, since the bearings decrease friction and support weight, the wheels experience less strain. This is particularly advantageous for pools, which usually have a high bather load and need regular cleaning. Polyurethane is also resistant to the elements and performs very well when exposed to oxygen, ozone, sunshine, and other weather conditions.

Telescopic Poles

Last but not least, commercial vacuum heads have telescopic poles attached to the handle. Depending on the model, the handles are made of stainless steel or plastic. Both have their benefits. Steel is stronger and will not fracture in the same way as a plastic handle. Plastic is more chemically and corrosively resistant. Stainless steel may develop pitting over time when exposed to salt, so keep this in mind if your pool is equipped with a salt chlorine system.

 To ensure the safety and cleanliness of your pool, it is essential to have the proper equipment on hand to do the task effectively. While automatic pool cleaners are the greatest choice, you may explore other available alternatives depending on your budget.

Conclusion on Pool Vacuum Heads

To ensure the safety and cleanliness of your pool, it is essential to have the proper equipment on hand to do the task effectively. While automatic pool cleaners are the greatest choice, you may explore other available alternatives depending on your budget.

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