This is Part 2 in a series of blog posts explaining the differences between Polaris Pool Cleaners. Part 1 - Polaris 360 Automatic Pool Cleaner Overview and Installation Instructions
The Polaris 280 automatic pool cleaner is a pressure side pool cleaner that runs off a separate pump known as the booster pump or automatic pool cleaner pump. Unlike the Polaris 360 that installs to your pool return line, the Polaris 280 installs into a dedicated pool cleaner line.
Reasons to purchase the Polaris 280 cleaner.
- You have an in-ground swimming pool that has a pool cleaner line installed.
- You previously owned a Polaris 180.
- You are willing to spend a little more to get a dedicated pool cleaning system (pool cleaner line and booster pump).
- You have large leaves, acorns and other large debris that get into the pool.
How does the Polaris 280 work?
It operates off your dedicated pool cleaner line and booster pump. This pool cleaner easily connects to your swimming pool return line with its 1-1/2” universal wall fitting connection (pools that have a different size return line while require the G-9 adapter or stub pipe connectors). The Polaris 280 has jets positioned in the cleaner that moves the cleaner, causes the sweep tail to sweep and creates the suction to vacuum debris into its own filter bag.
How is the Polaris 280 cleaner different?
The Polaris 280 runs off a separate booster pump and is installed into a dedicated pool cleaner line. When you look at a Polaris 280 cleaner compared to the Polaris 360 cleaner, 3 features should stand out immediately.
- The feed hose on the Polaris 280 is smaller in diameter and looks closer to a garden hose than a vacuum hose.
- The Polaris 280 has 3 wheels (2 large and one small) on one side and one wheel on the opposite side.
- The Polaris 280 has a larger vacuum tube/throat with 2 vacuum jets.
The Polaris 280 is not belt driven like the Polaris 360, but instead has a drive shaft assembly.
What is the installation process for the Polaris 280?
Just like the Polaris 360, similar installation and adjustments need to be made on the Polaris 280 to get the cleaner to operate properly and efficiently.
Step 1 – Install the Universal Wall Fitting – The cleaner includes a 1-1/2” universal wall fitting connection. Most pools have a 1-1/2” threaded dedicated pool cleaner line, but if you don’t, Polaris makes additional adapters/connectors as stated above. Use the blue restrictor disk first in the installation process. The red restrictor disk may be needed if you are getting too much pressure to the cleaner (discussed in Step 4).
Step 2 – Adjust Feed Hose – Most people will skip this step, but it is necessary to making sure your cleaner operates correctly in your swimming pool. Your Polaris 280 cleaner comes with two different hoses. The hose that is connected to the cleaner is the leader hose. The rest of the hose is the feed hose.
- Cut the leader hose from the end that attaches to the feed hose so the length is equal to the greatest depth of the pool. The leader hose is 10 ft. long.
- Attach the leader hose to the feed hose with the swivel and mender nuts, connect the feed hose to the universal wall fitting and connect into pool wall.
- Extend the hose to the farthest point of the pool. The leader hose end must be within 6” – longer or shorter – of the farthest point.
Note: The Polaris 280 comes with 2 feed hose sections that are 10 ft. each and 1 leader hose that is also 10 ft. If the hose is too long, separate the two feed hoses at the center swivel. Cut equal amounts of the overage from each 10 ft. feed hose section.
4. Adjust the floats on the hose. The floats should be spaced 2 to 3 ft. apart on the leader hose and 1.5 to 3 ft. apart on the feed hose.
Step 3 – Assemble the Cleaner – Assembling the rest of the cleaner is simple.
- Attach the leader hose to the cleaner feed pipe and secure with a mender nut.
- Attach the bag to the vacuum tube/throat and attach the bag collar to the leader hose.
- Position the float head ½ to 1 inch back from the feed pipe.
Step 4 – Check for Proper RPM - Check your Polaris 280 for proper wheel Revolutions Per Minute (RPM). For maximum efficiency the Polaris 280 should operate between 28 and 32 RPM.
- Mark the single wheel side tire (a piece of tape would work fine).
- Turn on pump and hold the cleaner below water level and count the wheel revolutions for 1 minute.
Note: If your count is less than 28 RPM you will want to clean out the filter screen, skimmer basket(s) and pump basket. Check the hoses and swivel connections for leaks. Remove the blue restrictor disk from the universal wall fitting.
If your count is greater than 32 RPM you will want to replace the blue restrictor disk with the red restrictor disk to reduce the pressure getting to the cleaner. If the flow is still too high, unscrew the pressure relief valve (the pressure relief valve should only be adjusted when a restrictor disk is installed) until the proper RPM is reached.