How to Vacuum Pool with Sand Filter: A Step-by-Step Guide

This guide helps you clean your inground above-ground or in-ground pool the right way with our super tips and explain what chemical products can help you keep your pool clean and healthy. While some may look at the title of this guide and question its usefulness, the truth is you can vacuum a pool with a sand filter. The right tools and a lot of work will help you vacuum your pool like a pro and get yourself back in the water in no time!

What is a vacuum head?

What Is A Vacuum Head?

A pool vacuum, or vac, is essentially a device that pulls up water from the bottom and transports it to the top. Here’s how it works: the pool vacuum runs along the pool’s perimeter, pulling water from the bottom and transporting it to the surface.

This also helps eliminate microbial growth and weeds, both of which can quickly clog up your pool and cause it to malfunction. What are vacuum hose connectors? The two black wires you see on either end of your vacuum hose are the connections for your pool vac.

What is a sand filter?

What is a sand filter?

A sand filter, or better known as a vacuum pump, works just like a standard vacuum pump. The difference is that sand filters work by vacuuming the water. It is very important that you ensure the filter is clean. If the filter looks like the photo below, it has a lot of dust and other impurities. Once it’s clean, your sand filter will remove a lot of debris from the pool water, allowing it to pass through the filter.

A Step-by-Step Guide Vacuum Pool with Sand Filter

Step 1 Clean your pool first

Before you vacuum, make sure to vacuum the filter and refill the pool with clean water. Water will become cloudy if you forget to clean it and vacuum it first! There are many ways to clean the filter. Check this website that lets you do the job the right way!

Clean your pool first

Vacuum the pool filter. What you will need:

  • A vacuum cleaner (preferably an electric one) Some form of a stick with a firm handle
  • A wide brush
  • Your pool shampoo

In the first step, you need to suck up the pool water and deposit it in the dust canister of the vacuum cleaner. To do so, you will need to use a vacuum cleaner with an attachment that sucks in the pool water. If you don’t have one of these vacuum cleaners, get a simple self-contained vacuum cleaner like the Oreck.

Step 2 Know the type of filter you have

Pool filters range from simple and cheap to luxury and ultra-expensive models. They are simple, but you still need to take care of them. I will go over your different options for cleaning your pool filter with chemicals in today’s post. To start with, you should know what kind of filter you have. For example, if you have a simple over-the-sink water filtration system, you can vacuum clean the filter with just water.

Step 3 Remove the vacuum head from the hose

Remove the vacuum head from the hose

The head you’re going to be using to clean the pool is a lot smaller than the vacuum you used to clean your home, so we recommend you remove it. Removing the head allows you to see inside your pool and see precisely where you should use your vacuum cleaner. To remove the hose and the vacuum, insert a safety pin into the hose and lift on the cover.

You’ll want to see the vacuum hose going into the pool when you are removing it. Remove the vacuum head from the pool and take it outside, where you can put it in a storage container and take it home with you. If your pool does not have a cover, you can use the cover to protect the unit from the sun while you vacuum.

Step 4 Vacuum the pool walls and floor

Vacuum the pool walls and floor

The purpose of vacuuming your pool walls and the floor is to ensure that nothing comes into contact with the chemicals you are using. We have all heard horror stories of chemicals entering a pool, causing damage to the wall, changing the color of the water, or something even worse. Fortunately, the chemicals used to clean pools, sanitize them, and maintain them are water-soluble.

As such, any liquids, solids, and sediment must be removed, allowing the chemicals to dry up, degrade, and release the healthy chemicals they contain. We are trying to remove all the “noise” coming from the pool and make sure that everything is in its place before we turn the pumps on. There are several ways to vacuum your pool with a sand filter.

Step 5 Rinse the vacuum head

Don’t just leave the vacuum head lying around inside the pool with dirty water inside the filter. Put it in a towel, put it inside the house for a day or two, then go outside and rinse it off. Let the vacuum head dry off completely, and then store it in a clean container, so it doesn’t go sour.

Prepare your tools now, turn your attention to getting everything you need for the cleaning job. Don’t forget to grab the extra-long cord for the vacuum or the “sticky pads” to clean the filter without causing water or chemical reactions inside.

Place the components. Now you’re ready to start the real fun! This step is important because, without the correct timing, the machine won’t move properly inside the pool.

Step 6 Vacuum the bottom of the pool

When you’ve taken the time to clean your pool (or completed the first part of this step), you can then vacuum the pool’s bottom. While this is often the easiest and least time-consuming step of the entire cleaning process, you should take your time in order to get it right. After you clean your pool’s surface, make sure you do not miss any areas or items that could build upon its bottom.

Therefore it’s important to take the time to vacuum the bottom of the pool, but don’t be afraid to do it quickly or take shortcuts along the way. Once you have your pool vacuumed, seal it back up by filling your pool with water. Start cleaning the pool to drain. You’ve successfully vacuumed the pool and now need to drain it.

Step 7 Vacuum the floor of the pool

For the first section of the vacuuming guide, we’re going to tackle the pool floor. This is the part of the pool that will most often remain neglected until it’s time to vacuum. At least with some essential maintenance, it’s easier to keep the pool clean and maintain it between pools, so the filter receives enough water.

Step 8 Vacuum the steps

With the heavy-duty, 22v Honda vacuum pump plugged into your garden hose, begin by first attaching the brush to the neck of the hose. Take the vacuum attachment, remove the hose from the vacuum, and press it onto the back of the hose.

You will attach the vacuuming attachment to the same spot where you attached the brush to the hose, so align everything before you attach. Ensure that you press them tightly together and connect the hose to the pump before moving to the next step.

Wash out the interior pool and hose. Next, you’ll need to wash out the interior of your pool using the same method you discussed in our previous post.

Step 9 Vacuum the stairs

Start cleaning your pool by using a vacuum to clean the steps. You can find these right-size vacuum vacuums at the local home improvement store or online.

Step 10 Vacuum the deep end

When vacuuming, it’s important to vacate the top of your pool as well. In our article on pool cleaning methods, we learned that that’s the deepest part of the pool, and while not inherently dangerous, I would not recommend swimming in it.

This is because the filter has to be removed entirely before it can be scrubbed, and debris can be added to the filter’s screen, clog the filter, and cause issues like microbial growth that can quickly cause major problems. So, that’s what we’re going to do: vacuum the deep end to remove the filter. Here we will pull up any leaves and debris around the filter and get those out of the filter.


  • Get a 45 watt Coleman Select (Vacuum) Vacuum
  • Fill up the filter bag with the dirtiest water in your pool
  • Open up the charcoal filter and place it in the bottom of the bag
  • Make sure you are keeping the bag fully open
  • Assemble the swimming belt and connect it to the vacuum bag. Make sure the cords are at the bottom, so they are out of the way when you are vacuuming
  • Go back and clean the filter once the bag is full
  • Take the bag outside
  • You’re done Once you have finished, you can set up the filter bag in your pool, plug it in and power it up! The quickest and simplest way to maintain a clean swimming pool is to eliminate the harmful bacteria that builds up in its bottom.

Vacuuming pools with a cartridge filter

Vacuuming pools with a cartridge filter

That’s right. There is no need to have a professional or even hire a contractor to come over and vacuum a pool with a sand filter. You can do it yourself. It is so easy you will wonder why it is not the preferred way to vacuum a pool with a filter. It’s a relatively simple and quick process, and it’s the best way to vacuum your pool.

Vacuuming a pool with a sand filter is by far the easiest method to vacuum your pool. The first step is to open the pool cover and remove all water from the pool. Next, install a vacuum pump into the filter box (which comes with the pool filter). Place the pool cover back on and run your vacuum pump hose up to the filter box, directly on top of the filter (don’t use the hose to take the filter out).


Before starting a vacuum, you need to decide whether you want to use a manual vacuum cleaner or use an automatic vacuum. We say a manual vacuum because some manual vacuum cleaners will require a bit of skill to use. Professional pool cover installers have all the tools they need to vacuum well, but not every pool owner does. If you want to vacuum your pool by hand, here are some great tips to follow.

A manual vacuum cleaner is a great investment that will save you money on cleaning chemicals. The most important is to do it the right way. Begin by cleaning the pool’s grout, then cover it with a mat that is the same color as the grout. Next, gently mop the pool’s surface, then spread a layer of sand over the surface.



A pool vacuum is an ideal option for cleaning your pool, and it can do just that: vacuum! When choosing a vacuum, you want one that’s reasonably priced, easy to use, effective and safe to use. Pool vacuums are used to clean pools and keep dirt and particles from accumulating around the pool like so many people overlook. To get the best out of the pool vacuum, there are some essential things you need to know. Read on for all the details about cleaning your pool with a pool vacuum.


If you’ve ever sucked a pool into the vacuum with a garden hose, you know you can only do so much. Once you’ve sucked the water into your vacuum or plugged the vacuum into a power supply, you’ve effectively stopped the vacuuming process. However, because sand filters are filled with sand, they’re much more porous and can easily absorb water through the pores in their filter media.

Because of this, it is possible to vacuum the filter media and the water through the sand filter using a hose. The difference between vacuum systems and hose-based systems is that a hose has to be pressurized to produce a consistent vacuum. In contrast, a vacuum pump can power a hose to vacuum water over and over again.

Vacuuming pools with a DE filter

Vacuuming pools with a DE filter

The biggest challenge owners of above-ground pools often face getting them clean. In addition to vacuuming the pool cover every few days, many users run into problems cleaning the walls and filters. If the pool is large and contains particles inside it, the cleaning process can take a lot of time.

The chemical strength in the chemical boxes or chemical sealant is responsible for many water filtration systems not working effectively in the midst of a cleaning session. Because pools are usually at room temperature, the chemicals are often too cold and won’t have the right consistency when they reach the surface.


The first step is to make a plan for your pool cleaning. Next, pick the time of the year and the season. You want to schedule it to be ready for when the pool gets warm and when it gets cold. If you have an in-ground pool, you want to have a filter nearby in case you need to clean it, too. Another important factor is the right tools to use. Since vacuuming a pool with a sand filter can be tricky, know what you are in for. The main tools you will need are an air compressor and two hand vacuums.


We hope you can feel the excitement we have for you to vacuum your pool with a filter. We also hope you find this guide helpful, especially in the right set-up of your pool and knowing what chemicals to use when you work on your pool. Happy vacuuming!


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