Shark Cleaner

Hello we have one of the basic cleaners that uses the filtration system but it is not a real robot It seems to work great for 10 minutes and then gets caught in 1 corner and does not move around again It seems like the air flow is not great and there is no more suction Any ideas what to do We shut off the bottom drain and make sure there is no air in the system but still does not work

Thanks in advance Michael

Very interesting read ... will look at the thread ..

Michael backwash after cleaning to.

Doing it before just improves the flow by clearing the filter if performance is marginal.

The debris goes where ever the waste pipe goes, best to follow it. Technically it reverses the flow through the filter, lifting the sand bed and allowing trapped dirt to be flushed out of the filter.

Recirculate just uses the pump to push the water around the circuit and the pool but bypasses the filter bed.

The sand in the filter doesn't wear out but does get stuck together with body oils, sun creme bacterial bio film etc and it forms into clumps (mud balling) this produces channels in the filter that allow the free passage of water through the filter. Once a year, close off the valves and clean the sand with a surfactant cleaner, moving the sand around with a pole to break up any mud balls but be careful of the laterals in the bottom. Insert a hose and flush out all the gunk and cleaning agent, you'll be amazed at what comes out. Re assemble the filter cover and give it a good backwash again to flush any remaining cleaning agent before putting it back into filter.

Domestic filters are very bad at backwashing in general. Partly because a one speed pump is fitted so dirt is stuck down with the same force as you are trying to remove it. The sand bed needs to expand by at least 25% and be back washed for long enough to see the water running clear in the little sight glass on the valve (if fitted)

A soak in chlorine dioxide over night also does wonders for shifting gunk, Chlorine dioxide is available in tablet form so can be sent via the post.

Sand is OK as a filter medium but it is limited to around 20 microns at best, often 30-40 microns depending where the sand comes from. AFM glass is a big step forward in filtration filtering to 4 microns so the water takes on a brilliant look. The more impurities we remove from the water the longer the chlorine will last and AFM's surface unlike sand is self sterilising so bacteria cannot grow on the surface so it doesn't mud ball, or channel. Have a read on the thread I posted

Thanks John for this information

It was definetly Ireland the island and it was definetly sunny :-)

Yes we have sand filter not sure of the size I will have a look

Actually I re-tried after testing the water pressure and seems to work better

So I should backwash before the Clean ... I have been doing backwash after

A couple of things

-I don't understand Where does all the debris go when I backwash

-What does the reCirculate setting do ?

-What long-term maintenance do we need to do for the Sand

Thanks again


Hi Michael, do you mean you've been on a sunny island, surely you can't mean Ireland LoL.

So you have a flapper cleaner, It's a bijou pool, what size pump and filter do you have?

These flapper types need quite a good flow of water and therefore a freshly backwashed filter in the case of a sand filter.

Any leaks in the plastic body or hose joints can draw in air and spoil your fun. To make sure the hose is full of water before connection to the skimmer, put the pipe over the return jet and blast out any air, then with your hand over the pipe quickly transfer it to the skimmer fitting. See how you get on. If that doesn't seem to work, stop the pump and put the multiport valve on recirculate and test again, it won't be filtering but at least the flow will increase so you can see if it's a power issue.

Hi All

Sorry been away in Sunny Ireland !!

thanks for your replies ... the actual model is a Zodiac T3 (not sure where I got the Shark name from)

Yes we close the bottom drain off ... and we have only 1 skimmer.which we attach the cleaner to.. no we don't have a dedicated vacuum point ... its a very bijou pool

It starts off very well but then stops and seems to have no suction

Michael there are so many cleaner using the name shark in their title can you be more specific? It's a vacuum cleaner not like Jame's which works off the return so a pressure type cleaner.

You have a bottom drain which you close and how many skimmers? Do you connect this to a dedicated vacuum point or into a skimmer.

What type of pool do you have?

Sorry a lot of questions but I need to get a picture of what you have.

Our version has a tendency to do this at the beginning and end of the season when the water isn’t very warm. It’s great in midsummer!

I started using a brand new one of these yesterday, it does exactly the same thing. It gets stuck and needs a nudge to start up again. Actually it would seem that it doesn't do much vacuuming of the pool at all but its effectiveness comes from the exhaust jets blowing the crap from the bottom so it ends up in the skimmer.

I'm quite pleased with it in spite of it getting stuck now and again, I wonder if it's not due to the base of my pool not being perfectly flat. Which one do you have?

INTEX - Robot de piscine Nettoyeur automatique Aspirateur de fond - Pour filtration de 4.54 m3/h à 13.25 m3/h