Plumbing, Heating and Pool Repair Guides

How To Hook Up An Above Ground Pool Filter System


There will be several things that you will need to connect to get your above ground swimming pool filter set up and running for the pool season. You will first need to locate all the parts that were put away when you closed your swimming pool.
How To Hook Up An Above Ground Pool Filter System

Connecting the skimmer:

In order to connect the skimmer to the pump you will need to take one of the pool hose and put a hose clamp on each end. You will need to take one end of your hose and connect it to the bottom of the skimmer that is on the pool wall. You will now want to take the other end of the pool hose and connect it to the front of the swimming pool pump. After you have connected both ends you will want to tighten the hose clamps thoroughly.

Connecting the pool return:

You will now want to get another pool hose just like the one that you used to hook up the pool pump to the skimmer and also put hose clamps on each end of this pool hose. You will want to take one end of the pool hose and connect it to the return fitting on the pool wall. You will now want to take the other end of the pool hose and connect it to the “return to pool” fitting which is usually at the top of the filter. Once you have connected both ends you will want to tighten the hose clamps.

Hooking Up The In-line Chlorine Feeder:

Many above ground pools have in line pool chlorine feeders like the one pictured above. The one thing that you need to know is the the Chlorinator has to be hooked up with the direction of flow in mind. Most chlorine feeders like the Hayward Chlorinator will have an arrow on the side that will tell you which way the flow of water should be. Your Chlorine feeder will either hook up with hoses or it can be also hard piped into the top of the pool filter. Make sure to tighten all hose clamps on the inlet and the outlet of the swimming pool Chlorine feeder as well.

Connecting the Pump discharge to the filter:

Most above ground swimming pool systems like Hayward pool products will use a union between the pump and the filter as you can see in the above picture. Some other brands will use a hose that will connect from the top of the pool pump (discharge) and then connect to a mutliport valve on the top of the pool filter. So if you have a union like the one that is pictured above you will want to tighten the union nut with a large pair of water pump pliers. If you do not have a Hayward filter system and your pool pump has a hose fitting on the top you will then want to connect one end of the hose to this fitting and the other end of the hose to the “pump in” on the filter. Make sure to use hose clamps on each end of this hose as well. Make sure to also tighten these hose clamps.


  1. I am wanting to hard plumb my hayward filter. I’m tired of having to replace hoses every year. Do you have any guidance or photos on to do that? I have a 24′ above ground pool.

  2. I need to move the filter system on my above ground pool……How long can the hose to the fliter and return water hose be? Does it matter as long as they are below water level?

    • Hi Greg,

      If your using a Hayward Powerflo pump you can go at least 50′ feet, You can also hard pipe it with PVC.

      Let me know if you have any other questions,


  3. Hi i am a first time pool owner and have a Hayward S-166T Sand filter, my question is this. We want to move the filter about 10-12′ away from our pool, for convience purposes, and was told that Flex PVC would be the best way to go, what else do i need besides the flex pvc itself and is this ok to do? Thanks

  4. I have the same problem with no pressure. Have an above ground pool with a Hayward pump and DE filter. We took the filter apart and cleaned it, the pressure was great for a few days, now nothing again. Took each hose connection apart and the water flows through with no problem, but there is no pressure when everything is connected again.

  5. Hi my husband has to move our filter to the other side of pool.He bought flexible pvc hose, but it isnt fitting properly our original filter hose was 1 1/2 and so is the flex pvc but it is bigger and doesnt fit well and he tried clamping it but still not tightning. Does he need special clamps or any other pieces to make this work. He got the 30 ft flex pvc instead of the gray filter hoses because he was told it was better instead of connecting a bunch of 8 ft hoses. please help!

    • Hi Melissa,

      Flexible PVC hose needs to be plumbed in, What he needs to to is to get ( 4 ) 1.5″ x slip male adapters and then what he will want to do is to remove the fittings from the pump and the skimmer / returns and then spin in the male adapters. Then he will glue the flexible PVC into the male adapters. So he needs to get some male adapters and some PVC Glue and primer.

      Let me know if you or him needs any more help,


      • hi again, how do you remove the fittings withour dmaging the pool? just want to make sure gets it done right.

        • Hi Melissa,

          You can use a large sized pair of channel locks, They sell them at home depot / lowes for around $27.00 , The LARGEST size you will need.

          Let me know if you need more help,


  6. The blue flex hoses from the pool to the pump and from the filter back to the pool are have become sticky. WHy? and does this mean they need replaced? There is not holes or water leaking but every time I touch them I get sticky residue on my hands, also dirt is sticking to them.

  7. I’m having a problem of my filter gushing water out of the intake basket area when it’s turned off. I can hear a gurgling in the pump and then a huge gush of water that sends the debris basket flying. What could be causing this?

    • Hi Judy,

      From what you are describing it sounds like either you pump cover is loose, cracked or the pump strainer basket cover gasket is bad or just pinched inside the cover.

      Remove the cover from the pump strainer and check the o-ring to make sure its in place. Also make sure the cover is tight.

      What type of pump is this?

      Let me know and I can help you further if you need additional help.


  8. I was just given a sta-rite pump model #P2RA5D-180L. I have an above ground wal mart pool but I read that you are not supposed to use that pump on that type of pool if that is true can you explain why? It is a 3/4 hp pump but the cord was cut off for some reason and the fittings that screw in the pump itself are broke. I do not know about wiring but I have 2 wal mart pumps that are 110-120v, so can I use one of those wires to replace the cut one off of the sta rite pump? Plus I don’t know how to attach pipes to the pool or to the pump itself since the fittings are broke, it is just the pump I do not have a sand filter. Can you help me please?

    • Hi Jamie,

      You can use that pump, the only difference is the flow will be much stronger as well as the suction from the skimmer, so just make sure to keep everyone’s hands out of the skimmer when the filter is running.

      You will want to connect one hose to the bottom of the skimmer and then to the front of the pump, you will want to connect the second hose from the top of the pump and then connect the other side to the “pump in” on the filter valve. Next you will want to connect the third hose which goes from the “filter out” to the return fitting on the wall.

      You can attach the hoses to the “cone adapters” by sliding on the hose clamps onto the hose and then sliding the hose on to the cone adapter.

      You can buy new cone adapters at a local pool store if your are broken,

      Please let me know if you need any other help or have any additional questions,


        • Hi Jamie,

          I am not sure, but there is an amperage difference in those motors, SO the cord may work, I am not an electrician so I cannot say for sure.

          Sorry about that,


  9. Hey Joseph thank you for the response. I know how to hook all the hoses up but on the pump itself the part that I connect the hoses too are broken themselves. The fittings screw in but the screw in part is still there its the top part that is broken off and am unable to hook the hoses without 2 new fittings, I am just not sure what fittings to get to connect the hoses too. Can you tell me what they are called or what they look like. I will be out of town this weekend so cannot make it too a pool store to ask but next week I can. Thanks again.

  10. I bought a hayward 1.5 hp Power Flo-SL pump 1 year ago and have never had a clear pool since. I have had a pool for 20 years and had no problem keeping it crystal clear. Pool store says it is in balance but assures me it is not the pool pump or filter(both new). Can you shed any light on this dilema???

    • Hi Judy,

      What kind of filter “did” you have (make and model) and what type of filter do you have now?

      What are your TDS readings in your pool? (total dissolved solids )

      Let me know and I can help you further,


  11. Hi, I have a 24ft above ground pool. It has a Hayward 1hp pump. I want to move the pump away from the pool area due to noise. I have two questions if you don’t mind. I want to put the pump next to my garage. It’s about twenty feet away. Here’s the problem. The pool is about 10ft higher than the garage due to the lay of the land. Can the pump push it like that. Second questions is can I put it in my storage building or would it be to hot for the motor. Thanks ahead for any help you can give. Have a blessed day..

  12. Hi I have a Waterways 1.5 hp pump and sand filter system for a 20ft above ground pool. THe sand filter body has a crack at the top by the sand filter head. What would you recommend sealing this crack with, short of replacing the whole tank? Thank you Penny

  13. Bought home with above grand pool. It has a hayward power flo lx sp1510 pump but was not connected. Told it works but have no idea which hose goes wear and how to connect wires. Any suggestions, or help would be appreciated.

  14. We have an intex aboveground pool. We just purchased a new hayward z166t pump (sand). How far does it need to be away from the pool its self? The manuel states it should not get wet.

  15. Hi my name is Tanya,
    I have a hayward sand filter pump and I want to know how to hook up the pool cleaner to clean the bottom of my pool from leaves and debri.Thanks Much

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