Skimmer Leaking

by Ed
(Virginia Beach)

I have a 15x30 above ground pool and noticed I'm leaking water from the outside gasket around the skimmer.

Do I drain the water below the skimmer, unscrew screws, put a bead of silicone around the gaskets and line up gaskets and install screws? Will my liner drop if I take this apart?

Thanks for any help, Ed



Hi Ed. I would start by tightening all of the screws and see if that helps. The next step would be to replace the gaskets. It should be just fine to lower the water level to just below the skimmer. You could then remove the skimmer and replace the gaskets.

You could use silicone but I prefer using new gaskets instead. In some cases though, silicone is the only thing that works.

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Skimmer Leak Problem

I have replaced a leaking above ground pool skimmer but still have water leaking. Instructions requested.



Hi. Most of the time when a new above ground pool skimmer leaks it is because the gasket is not lined up properly. It could be many other things also, and not having any details as to what kind of skimmer it is, what kind of gaskets were used, where they were placed and how it was installed I can only guess on a fix.

If you look under the skimmer on the outside of the pool you should see a gasket hanging down below the skimmer, if not, this is your problem. You could probably loosen all of the skimmer screws and move the gasket into place. This works most of the time, but if the skimmer screws did not go through the pre-made holes in the gasket, it may not want to shift. The screws would then need to be completely removed before the gasket could be reset. When doing this it is OK to leave the top row of screws in to hold the skimmer in place, just loosen them and remove the rest.

If this is still giving you problems feel free to use the comments button and post more information. This page may help also.

Above Ground Pool Skimmer Installation

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Leaking New Skimmer

by James
(Long Island, NY)

We recently had a new liner installed in our 15 year old 18' x 33' oval pool. As we filled the new water approx 4 inches over where the skimmer was installed everything was fine until we turned on the pump. At that point the skimmer started to leak heavily at the bottom and on the right side.

I can see the rust on the outside of the pool. The liner installers say it is my responsibility to ensure the skimmer is installed and refuse to come out. What is the best way to ensure the skimmer doesn't leak and cause more damage to the aluminum wall.

I was going to remove the skimmer and place aluminum tape or duct tape all around the skimmer opening in the pool and then reline up the gaskets and then use clear caulking on the outside of the pool? Would this be ok or is there a better way to handle this situation?

Thanks in advance.



Hi James. It is very hard to say for sure without seeing it. It sounds like the gasket is not lined up properly.

My usual procedure for this situation, and yes, I do go back on skimmer leaks, is to tighten all of the screws until I am sure they are tight. I use a number three Phillips screwdriver bit, the type that would go in a drill. I clamp the bit into a small set of vice grips. This gives me just the right amount of torque on the screws.

If that does not work, I loosen all the skimmer screws and try to reset the gasket, or gaskets. The gasket should be visible all around the skimmer on the outside of the pool. Most of the time one of these two methods will solve the problem.

If you are using a butterfly gasket, one piece, the wall should be well protected from further rust. That is the reason for the invention of this type of gasket. They are, however, more difficult to set correctly and thus, more prone to leaking.

Sometimes, as a last resort, I use silicone, or marine sealer. This can be done without removing the skimmer. Where the faceplate meets the skimmer, on the inside of the pool, smear a bead of caulking around the entire skimmer opening. This will prevent any further rust, and make it impossible for the skimmer to leak.

This may help also.

Above Ground Pool Skimmer Installation

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