The Polaris 280 Pool Cleaner is a one of the best in ground pool cleaners available on the market today. Even though it is an older model, it consistently outperforms the newer models of Polaris pool cleaners. It also requires less maintenance and is easier to troubleshoot and fix when problems do start happening. Like all pool cleaners, with age the cleaner will eventually start wearing down and working less efficiently. One common symptom that may show up is when the Polaris 280 simply stops moving and isn't doing any of the cleaning it normally does so well. The following troubleshooting tips will help identify why the cleaner has stopped moving.
Obstructed Cleaner Wheels – first things first, turn off all the pool equipment and remove the cleaner from the pool. Inspect the wheels and make sure they turn freely and that there isn't anything stopping the wheels from turning. It is real easy, and very common, for a pool toy, small branch, or other types of debris to get jammed in between the wheels stopping them from moving. When this happens, everything else could be working great, just the wheels can't turn. Once the toy or debris is removed, the Polaris 280 will be back on track to keep the pool clean again..
Is There Enough Water Pressure? – next, make sure there is enough water pressure being delivered to the cleaner. Since the Polaris 280 is a pressure side pool cleaner, it needs a sufficient amount of water pressure to function properly, and without the necessary pressure it will not move. Turn on the pool equipment and visually confirm that the pool has good circulation. If there isn't good water flow, following are the most common reasons.
1 – Main Pool Filter is Dirty – if the main pool filter has not been cleaned recently or the filter pressure gauge has a unusually high pressure reading, the main filter needs to be cleaned. After cleaning the filter, retest the pool cleaner to see if that solved the problem.
2 – Wall Filter Screen is Dirty – the Polaris 280 pool cleaner is equipped with a small filter located inside the wall fitting that can get clogged with debris. If this screen is clogged, there won't be enough water pressure getting to the pool cleaner.
3 – Booster Pump Malfunctioning – turn on all the pool equipment including the Polaris 280 booster pump. If the pump doesn't come on, obviously that is a problem. If it does come on, check the water pressure getting to the pool cleaner by slowly and carefully lifting the cleaner to the surface of the water and reaching in the water to feel the water pressure. Be sure to hold the cleaner under the water, and hold the tail so it doesn't squirt water in your face. It is a good idea to wear glasses or goggles when doing this test.
Pool Cleaner Wheels Need Repair – if the cleaner wheels are not obstructed, all the filters are clean, and there is good water pressure reaching the pool cleaner, the wheels may need repair. Three components to the wheels commonly wear down and need replacement over time.
1 – Wheels – the wheels have grooves that engage the drive shaft. Any of the three wheels that have worn or broken grooves will need to be replaced. The wheels can easily be visually inspected for bad grooves.
2 – Wheel Bearings – each wheel has two wheel bearings that will wear out over time. Indicators that the bearings need replacement are excessive horizontal play and/or wheels that don't turn freely. If it suspected that the bearings are bad, remove the wheels and it will be obvious.
3 – Tires – if the tires have excessive or uneven wear, or have stretched to where they don't fit tightly on the wheels, they need to be replaced.
After going through the problem solving tips above, if the Polaris 280 is still not moving, it may have a more complicated internal mechanical problem. Call a pool service professional or the local pool store for help.