Skimmer Butterfly Gaskets

by Frank

I'm replacing my 24ft above ground pool liner and the old style skimmer. Now the old skimmer had a gasket on the outside wall and then on the inside was the liner then another gasket then the face plate. On the new skimmer their using a one piece butterfly gasket if I'm looking at it right shows the gasket putting in the metal wall opening and the gasket sits on the outside next to skimmer and on the inside wall and the liner stays on the outside then the face plate over the liner so trying to say faceplate, liner, gasket, gasket on outside wall then skimmer, hope I didn't confuse you. Thanks

Hi Frank.

Yes, that is correct. I install the butterfly gasket directly over the wall. This type of gasket was designed to protect the wall from rust around the skimmer area. I have seen instructions that call for you to carefully cut the liner first and then fit the inside of the gasket over the liner. I have never tried that because it looked nearly impossible. I saw another instruction book say to cut the liner from corner to corner twice. This would leave four triangle pieces of vinyl that could be wrapped around the wall and taped in place on the outside. The gasket could then be installed over the liner in that way. I have never tried that method either.

As long as the gasket is properly set you should not have a problem with leaks.

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Butterfly Gasket

by Chuck
(Pittsburgh PA)

Installing a new liner and will be using a butterfly gasket instead of the traditional two gasket approach. My question is, the butterfly goes over the pool wall..., are additional gaskets (i.e., the old two gasket method) still used on the faceplate and skimmer?

Hi Chuck.

No, you don't use any additional gaskets. The way I use a butterfly gasket is to put it directly over the wall. So on the inside of the pool you would have wall, gasket, liner and then faceplate. On the outside would be wall, gasket and skimmer.

This page about skimmer installation might help also.

Above Ground Pool Skimmer Installation

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Skimmer Gasket Placement

by Paul Walker
(Omaha Ne)

I am replacing the gasket on the skimmer and want to know if the gasket goes behind the faceplate, inside the pool, or does it go on the outside of the pool, between the basket and outside wall.

On the floor of the above ground pool small indentations (like little potholes) developed from one end of the pool to the other. The company that installed the pool came out once and smoothed out the sand but a month later the potholes redeveloped. Now they are telling me that if they pull out the liner and smooth out the sand again I would need a new liner and put a foam pad above the sand. The pool is an 18x33 above ground pool that is in its third season. I don't know what to do and the place I bought the pool can't help me. Do you have any suggestions?

Hi Paul.

If the gasket is a one piece, butterfly type gasket, I place it directly over the sidewall. This leaves a gasket on the inside of the pool and one on the outside. On the outside of the pool the skimmer goes against the gasket, on the inside you have the liner then the faceplate. If you have two gaskets one goes between the liner and the faceplate and the other goes between the wall and the skimmer.

As for the bumpy bottom, I would believe the pool store when they say the liner should not be removed. After the first couple of seasons the liner will have lost most of it's elasticity and there is a very good chance you will not be able to reinstall it. I would live with the problem until you are prepared to buy a new liner and do the repairs at that time. It is probably also good advice to lay foam over top of the sand to keep these divots from returning.

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How Do You Install a Double Gasket

by Joe
(Melbourne, Australia)

I've had trouble with my pool install, on the gasket install - my supplier has given me instructions for a single gasket and wasn't able to explain to me how to install the double gasket clearly. I read the zodiac instructions (not my pool though) and I think they suggest this:

Skimmer box - Pool wall (with double gasket on each side) - Liner over gasket - faceplate

I think it may be hard to see the gasket screw holes doing it this way.

Please can you let me know if this is correct. If not what is the correct method?

As a second part - I know that I have to put silicone between the gasket and wall (I guess to stop the gasket getting cut and water getting onto the pool wall causing rust). I've also read suggestions to use duct tape to stop the gasket getting cut - but my pool wall already has fish oil on it that will stop the duct tape sticking. Is duct tape necessary or worth it as I will have to wipe off the fish oil?

Thank you very much.

Hi Joe.

You should not use silicone or duct tape, they are not needed.

From inside out you should be faceplate, gasket, liner, wall, gasket and then skimmer.

You start by poking your top corner screw holes with a small screw driver. You will be just poking starter holes in the liner.

Take your faceplate and gasket and insert screws in the top corner holes, push the screws through the liner and the wall. The faceplate should now hang on it's own.

Take the outside gasket and hang it over the top corner screws. It should now hang by itself so you can hold the skimmer into place.

I use a screwdriver in my right hand and the skimmer in my left. I hold the skimmer up and start the two top screws. I then start the two bottom corner screws. I check the gasket alignment and proceed to start all the rest of the screws. I once again check alignment and then tighten all the screws.

When the skimmer is installed the last thing I do is cut the liner. At this point you could coat the exposed sidewall metal with fingernail polish as a little rust preventative. Not many people do this, but it is an option.

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