All articles and videos by David Van Brunt

David@Swimmingpoollearning.com

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This is the Gator Auto-Skim Surface Skimming System for your suction side automatic pool cleaner. The Gator Auto-skim will work with all suction side pool cleaners and will skim the surface debris while the automatic cleaner works on the bottom of the pool.

 

Note that the Gator is designed for a suction side pool cleaner which is the type that connects directly to your skimmer or side port/ vacuum port and runs off of your pool pump. Some popular brands are the Pentair Kreepy Krauly, the Hayward PoolCleaner, the Hayward Navigator, the Zodiac G2 and many more. The Gator will work with all of them.

 

It is a very effectively designed product and it works very well in my testing. There are some real benefits of this if your cleaner is connected to your skimmer. This will replace the regulator valve at the skimmer which over time will allow debris into your pump basket and clog it. The Gator moves the skimmer regulator valve out of the skimmer and into the Gator unit.

 

This means that once you replace your skimmer regulator valve with the hose connector, all of the debris will now go directly into the Gator. So if you have an inline canister like the Hayward W530 or the Zodiac Cyclonic Canister; all of the leaves and debris will be trapped by the canister and not go into your pump basket. So the skimmer is effectively bypassed by the Gator.

 

If you have a cleaner connected to the side port/ vacuum port of the pool, you can still benefit from the Gator. As the cleaner is moving in the pool the Gator will pick up debris on the surface that may not make it to the skimmer and fall to the bottom. The Gator will also skim the fine dust and bugs off of the pool surface leaving the surface spotless.

 

With that said, since the Gator's debris opening is the size of your skimmer regulator valve opening, it will not suck in very large leaves. They will remain in the Gator and you will need to empty them by hand. But for dust, bugs and small to medium leaves, the Gator will suck them right up.

 

The Gator is also highly adjustable so if you connect it to your skimmer and notice that the cleaner is moving too slow, you can turn the Gator over and adjust the tension plate of the regulator. A higher setting on the tension plate will increase the suction to the cleaner making it run faster and decrease the suction to the Gator. A low setting will conversely slow down the cleaner and speed up the Gator's skimming speed.

 

For the side port./ vacuum port installation simply adjusts the valve until the Gator is getting the proper surface skimming suction. Included with the Gator is a flow gauge and you should use this when setting up the Gator. A good suction reading for the Gator is an “A” or a “B” on the flow gauge. If you are getting a “D” reading, clean the filter, clean the pump basket and make sure all of the pool's suction is turned towards the skimmer (if that is where you have the Gator connected). Again for the side port, just adjust the valve by the equipment to achieve proper suction.

 

The Gator is a pretty innovative product and if your pool has a lot of surface debris and you have a suction side cleaner, I would recommend looking into this product for your pool. With the Gator properly adjusted, your cleaner will be able to clean the pool bottom while the Gator skims the surface.

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