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Polaris 360 Swimming Pool Cleaner Install Guide

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When opening up your new Polaris 360, the initial reaction can be intimidation, but we’re here to make things easy. Below we have put together a few easy steps that will get your Polaris 360 up and running quickly.
Today we’re going to install the Polaris 360 Pool Cleaner; much like other Polaris cleaners, we can have the Polaris 360 up and running in just a few steps. First, check to see if your swimming pool has a dedicated return line with a 1-1/2” female fitting. If you don’t have a dedicated refer line, please refer to your manual on page 5. Second, flush out the return line by turning the pump on for a minute and then turn it off.
  The next step is to install the universal wall fitting (UWF) by disconnecting it from the quick connect and screw it on to the fitting.
Next, reattach the quick disconnect by inserting it into UWF, turn it clockwise and pull.
Note: At this point If you have multiple return lines, eyeball regulators need to be installed in the lines to ensure adequate line pressure. Please refer to your manual for help with installing eyeball regulators.
Now, we need to test and adjust the water pressure. To do so, we need to connect the hose at the quick disconnect fitting. Then turn the pump on and cover the large hole with your thumb and confirm that water is coming out the pressure release valve at the end connected to the wall. If water isn’t coming out of the relief valve, there isn’t adequate pressure and refer to your manual for further instructions.  
Next, we need to adjust the hose to fit the swimming pool. To do this, we need to connect the hose to the return line and hold the hose underwater then turn on the pump. Extend the hose to the farthest end of the swimming pool; the hose needs to be within 6” longer or shorter of the farthest point of the pool. If the hose is too long, cut the excess from the first section and reconnect it. If it is too short, extensions can be purchased here on our site. After the correct length is achieved, adjust the floats according to the diagram.  
Now we’re going to assemble the pool cleaner, first remove the pressure tester from the hose by unscrewing the hose nut and pull it off. Use this same nut to attach the hose to the pool cleaner body at the feed pipe. Next, pull the bag out of the cleaner body and attach bag tie collar to the feed hose. Then push the head float all the way in against the pool cleaner’s body. Now, place the Polaris 360 in the swimming pool and turn the filter pump on.
That’s it for assembly but we still need to check to make sure the wheels on the pool cleaner are spinning at the proper RPM. The manual states that the Polaris 360 Pool Cleaner needs to operate between 28 and 32 RPM. To check yours, mark one wheel tire then turn the pump on and count the revolutions for a minute. If your count is outside the 28 – 32 range, refer to your manual for further assistance and help.
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  • mark

    hen my cleaner gets to side of the pool the wheels stop turning and it just sits there. Do you think the belts that drive the wheels need to be replaced? It runs fine when it is running unobstructed across the pool floor. Thoughts??

    • PoolSupplyWorld

      Hi Mark, when your Polaris 360 stops moving as it gets to the side of your pool, there could be two things causing the problem: the hose floats may be positioned incorrectly, or your cleaner may not be operating at the proper revolutions per minute (28-32 RPM). The three hose floats should be positioned: one at the back-up valve, one four feet from the back-up valve and one seven feet from the back-up valve, as indicated by the diagram in the owner’s manual, which you can find attached to the Polaris 380 product page.

      Also per the owner’s manual, if your RPM count is below 28, check the filter screen in the quick disconnect for debris, clean the skimmer, filter and pump basket and check the hoses, connections and swivels for leaks. If your cleaner is connected to a dedicated return line, adjust the 3-way diverter to increase water flow.

      If after trying these troubleshooting tactics your Polaris 360 is still operating incorrectly, we would recommend contacting the manufacturer.

  • Jim L

    have a 360 that came with the pool when i bought the house in 2004. The hose has 2 swivels in it along with 3 hose floats, but still kinks up (loops on surface). The pool is kidney shaped (18X38) with the outlet 23 ft from shallow end. I just ordered new hose and swivels (4). Should i install the extra swivels and where should i install them in conjunction with floats? Thanks!

    • PoolSupplyWorld

      Hi Jim, thanks for your excellent question regarding where to install the swivels on your Polaris 360 hose in relation to the hose floats. The hose floats should always be in the same spot on the hose, no matter how long the hose is; the first float should be right behind the back-up valve, the second should be 4’ away from the first and the last should be 7’ from the first (3’ from the second). The swivels are what connect the hose sections together, so their location will simply be between sections of hose.

      As for your hose kinking, once you have added your new hose lengths, make sure the hose is adjusted to a proper length to accommodate your pool size and shape, and be sure all swivels and hose connections can turn freely. Also, with your cleaner turned off, spin each of its wheels; all wheels should be able to turn together. If after installing your new hose and swivels and trying these troubleshooting tips you are still experiencing hose kinking, we would recommend contacting the manufacturer for further diagnosis. Please let us know if we can be of any further assistance.

  • Keith G

    ave water coming out of the pressure release valve if I turn down the water Polaris doesn’t move.

    • PoolSupplyWorld

      Hi Keith, thank you for your excellent question. As long as your Polaris 360 is working properly, water leaking from the pressure release valve should not be a problem.

  • Michele

    My Polaris 360 will not sit flat on the bottom of the pool and frequently runs on it’s side. It also takes awhile to sink to the bottom of the pool after backing up. I had the unit serviced recently by my local dealer and they claim everything (float head included) is fine. I did notice that I seem to have quite a bit of water coming from the quick release pressure valve. Is this normal and could this cause the problems I am experiencing? Thanks.

    • PoolSupplyWorld

      Hi Michele, thanks so much for your question. The problem with your cleaner may be caused by the floats on the actual hose, the head float is full of water or being introduced into the cleaner. We would suggest you take the bag off of your cleaner and try running it. If it runs fine with no problem without the bag then there is air getting into the cleaner. Please let us know if we can be of any further assistance.

    • PoolSupplyWorld

      Hi Barbara, thanks so much for your excellent question. The only possible way air can get into the bag is through the suction side of the pump. Once the water is pushed out from the pump and into the filter, it becomes the pressure side. If there was a small opening on the pressure side, it would push water out, not suck in air. We would recommend that you have a pool builder or service company come out to locate the air leak. It can be on the pump lid itself, or the piping from the pool to the pump which are the only possibilities. Please let us know if we can be of any further assistance.

    • Barbara Moore

      How do you troubleshoot air getting into the bag? I’m having the same issue and tried your suggestion of taking the bag off the cleaner – worked like a charm. So when the bag goes back on, it floats still. What next?

  • trisha Winters

    the eyeballs that came with my polaris are too big for the fittings i have on my pool. how can i order some the size i need?

  • Michael

    Exactly how far from the cleaner should the back up valve be?

    • PoolSupplyWorld

      Hey Michael, the back up valve should be within one hose length or less to the cleaner.

    • Paul

      Pardon? That’s like asking “how long’s a pier of string?” and being answers “yellow”. How far should the backup valve be from the cleaner? One foot? Two? Three? Otherwise, at least specify the length of the hose! Sheesh.

    • PoolSupplyWorld

      Hi Paul, you can find more detailed Polaris 360 back-up valve installation information by referring to the exploded parts diagram in the owner’s manual attached to the Resources sections of the Polaris 360 product page. The first length of hose after the cleaner is 1′ long. If you need further information for installing your back-up valve, please let us know. We’re always happy to help.

  • Rob

    I had a bad hose – the one from the back up valve to the body of my 360. It was cracked. I have extra hose. When I tried to get the hose out of the twist nut, the hose broke in it and I can not get the hose remains out of it – on both ends. What do I do now? Can you tell me how to remove the old hose still in it? Thanks. Rob

  • Angel

    My Polaris 360 seems to not want to work. it just lays in the corner of the pool until I move it, then it happens again and again. What can I do? Thanks

    • PoolSupplyWorld

      Hello Angel, This could be caused by many different things. The first issue you would want to check is the wheel revolutions per minute (RPM). The optimal RPM range is 28-32. If everything is in range, you can also check to make sure there is enough water pressure for the cleaner. Finally if both water pressure and wheel RPM’s are fine then you may want to check the cleaner’s backup valve. The backup valve can sometimes be clogged by small bits of debris. Try backwashing the backup valve. If that doesn’t work you may want to replace it. Thanks for the great question.

  • Debbie Lunsford

    The photo’s along with the instruction of how to Install the Polaris 360 was very helpful. My current Polaris was purchased and installed by the pool builder. I really never knew about adjusting the pressure. This polaris wheels do not turn. Do you have any sugestions to try before I have to buy a new Polaris?

    • PoolSupplyWorld

      Hello Debbie, Glad to hear that the install manual as well as the pictures were able to provide some helpful knowledge about the Polaris 360. The wheels not turning could be caused by many different factors. One of the more common factors is the drive belts stretching and slipping off of the pulley. When this happens all you have to do is open the top of the Polaris 360 and replace the belt. Polaris has a tune up and a rebuild kit just for these situations. These kits provide all the parts necessary to get your Polaris 360 up and running again. Thanks for the great question Debbie.

  • Dan

    The link for the Polaris 360 Manual does not work correctly. Add the four characters “.pdf” to the url, and the link will work correctly.

  • Jessica Wiegand

    My local pool supply company installed a polaris 360 over a year ago without using the dedicated line and put really small returns not much larger than an ink pen size hole on 3 of my 5 returns. My pool pump went out at only 2 years old and my installer says this was caused from 2 much back pressure from the vacuumm, could that be the case? I also have had a major algea problem since that time could this be cause of the problems I am having? I have a dedicated line and should it have been used?

    • PoolSupplyWorld

      Hi Jessica, your installer is correct: your pool pump going out after only two years could have been due to back pressure building up from your Polaris 360. In general, the size of your returns affects the back pressure to your pool pump. The manufacturer suggests using a dedicated return line for your Polaris 360 because having multiple return lines open will not provide the cleaner enough water pressure to properly operate, and operating it off a smaller return could increase the back pressure, which could be the case in your scenario.

      Your pressure issue could also be the cause of your algae problem, as you are likely not getting the proper water flow through your filtration system. A product such as Algaecide 50 NO MORE ZAPPER 1 qt should help alleviate your algae problem, and Natural Chemistry PHOSfree 2 L should help prevent it from returning. However, we would recommend addressing the overall setup of your pool system in order to thwart future complications and equipment issues. Please let us know if we can answer any further questions or help you find a replacement pool pump.

  • Conor

    I’ve had my Polaris 360 for about 3 years, and lately there have been a LOT of leaks in the feed line. It seems like all of the hose sections are wearing out at the same time. The Polaris and feed line stay in the pool some of the time, but I also take it out part of the time and coil it on the deck. Wondering what could be causing the damage, and if there’s an alternative that won’t wear out so quickly. It’s a chlorine pool with vinyl liner and I keep the water well balanced. Thanks!

    • Conor

      One additional note… I recently replaced my pool pump with an Intelliflo variable speed pump. I’m pretty sure it runs at lower pressure than the old single speed pump did though. I wonder if the increased pressure when it primes is blowing holes in the hose.

    • PoolSupplyWorld

      Hi Conor, the leaks you are seeing in your Polaris 360 hose could be due to chemical exposure and storage practices, and is less likely due to your recent installation of an IntelliFlo VS pump. Because a swimming pool is filled with harsh chemicals, leaving your cleaner and hose in the pool when it is not in use can weaken the equipment over time.

      We recommend removing your cleaner when not in use. Also, the manufacturer suggests storing your cleaner hose uncoiled and flat, if possible, as storing it coiled, especially tightly, could lead to problems, such as cracking and leaking, as you are experiencing.

      If you need replacement feed hose sections, the Polaris Pool Cleaner 6′ Feed Hose is the part you will need. The 360 Pool Cleaner Swivel Hose and Polaris Pool Cleaner Hose Nut are also available, if needed. Please let us know if we can be of any further assistance.

  • karen

    i can’t pull the pressure tester off the hose. how hard do I pull this thing to remove it?

  • Bill Breon

    how often should the back up valve come on?

    • PoolSupplyWorld

      Hi Bill, the back of valve of the Polaris 360 will open up every three to four minutes, before staying on for about a minute. Please let us know if we can be of any further assistance.

  • mark wilson

    New Polaris 360, new filters all baskets clean and I have a 2.5hp pump. Hooked everyting up and the wheels on the 360 will not turn?

  • Sandra

    I am replacing my old Jandy Ray Vac with the Polaris 360. What else do I need to purchase such as an adapter for it to fit into the dedicated return line?

    • PoolSupplyWorld

      Hi Sandra, the Polaris 360 comes with everything needed for installation, including the Universal Wall Fitting for your dedicated return line. This pool cleaner does not require a booster pump. If you have any further questions, please feel free to contact us for immediate assistance.

    • Sandra

      Thank you for your reply; I wonder why our local pool store informs us that we do need it?

  • julie peabody

    i am interested in purchasing a polaris 360 but i need to know it will work with my pool..i have a large in ground pool with 2 return lines-1 in the shallow end and 1 in the deep end. these both blow water out at high pressure. i do not have a suction line as my skimmer line is cracked at the moment and plugged off. i have an after market device that hooks into one of the return lines to act as a skimmer..i was planning on removing that and connecting the polaris to that line…will that work? please email asap..thanks

  • Mark

    My 360 was working fine and now the backup valve just keeps shooting water out. It is installed correctly and was working great. There is a slight leak in one of the hose joints that I can not seem to get stopped, and the tail is not moving much.

  • Tom

    I must be doing something wrong because i cannot remove the pressure tester from the hose. I removed the hose nut but cannot get the damn pressure tester off. I have tried everything short of tearing the thing off and breaking the hose. what could i possibly be doing wrong? Any help would be much appreciated. In advance, Thanks

    • PoolSupplyWorld

      Hi Tom, pressure testers for Polaris pressure side cleaners generally slip on and off without any problem, so it may be possible that you installed your pressure side cleaner into a suction line or skimmer, and thus the cause for the tight fit. You may also be using a pressure tester that isn’t compatible with the Polaris 360. At this point, we advise giving Zodiac a call directly for more specific troubleshooting. They can be reached at (800) 822-7933. Please let us know if we can be of any further assistance.

  • Mat

    I am considering the 360 but am curious how well it will operate since I have variable speed pump. I typically run it at low speeds (about 65-75GPM) for energy and filtering. Will the 360 cleaner run at that low speed/pressure and clean effectively? If I can eliminate the booster pump, that equals further energy savings.

    • PoolSupplyWorld

      Hi Mat, we highly recommend the Polaris 360, and it will work very well with your variable speed pump. The beauty of the variable speed is that you can increase the speed, if necessary, to accommodate your cleaner or other water feature. The proper speed for the 360 will depend on your pool configuration, so we recommend playing with the speeds to find the one that best accommodates the cleaner. The 360 comes with a pressure tester to help you find the proper pressure for operation.

      If energy efficiency is what you’re looking for, the Polaris 360 is a great option to pair with your variable speed pump. Please note, running your variable speed pump at a lower speed for a longer amount of time will maximize energy savings. The general recommendation is to run your pump so that it turns over your entire pool in eight to 10 hours. Depending on the size of your pool, you may be able to lower the speed of your pump for general filtration. If you have any further questions, please don’t hesitate to ask.

  • Bridget

    Is there some kind of trick or easy way to attache the swivels to the Polaris 360 hose, ours has three or for swivel connectors and they ALWAYS leak Thansk

    • PoolSupplyWorld

      Hi Bridget, the simplest way to attach a swivel to the Polaris 360 is by using a nut for installation, which you’ll want to tighten as much as possible to reduce leaking. Please note, there will be a slight amount of leaking no matter the install, but this should not influence performance. If you have any further questions, please don’t hesitate to ask.

  • Bobby

    i have a booster motor on a dedicated line . can i hook a 360 to this motor?

    • PoolSupplyWorld

      Hi Bobby, the Polaris 360 cannot use a booster pump, as it will create too much pressure for the cleaner to operate. If you’re looking for a replacement cleaner that can utilize a booster pump, we would recommend either the Polaris 280 or Polaris 380. The main difference between the two is the 280 is powered by dual jets while the 380 is powered by triple jets. If you have any further questions, please don’t hesitate to ask.

    • Brad

      Curious…how will know it doesn’t work? I mistakenly bought the 360 and have a booster pump. I hooked it up and it has worked fine for over a year. I do have the control value at the pool wall opened up 1/2 way but the pressure isn’t too much and the wheels turn at the appropriate rate. Will this do long term damage to the unit?…or am I just wasting electricity on running the booster pump?

    • PoolSupplyWorld

      Hi Brad, if your cleaner is working well with the booster pump, Zodiac has explained it won’t cause any harm or damage to it. The primary reason it is advised against is an unnecessary amount of water pressure, which can cause it to perform poorly. But if it is working adequately with your pump, it’s fine to keep it connected (although, again, isn’t required). Please let us know if we can be of any further assistance.

  • James

    I am considering purchasing a 360. When we built our pool we had the builder plumb a dedicated return line just in case we were ever to purchase a cleaner. It has not been hooked up to the system. Where do you hook it up?

  • Aquamom

    I have a pool about 30 years old – it is roughed in for a pool cleaner. I am in the middle of renovating the pool ~ new copping, tile, and plaster. The return line is located much much lower that the main return lines. Will this matter any ? My neighbor has indicated that a Polaris will not work if it is this far down. Thank you!

    • PoolSupplyWorld

      Hi Aquamom, we’ve contacted Zodiac on your behalf, and they have explained that the Polaris 360 will work fine with a lower return line. For convenience purposes, though, and to ensure the best performance, it’s definitely best to install the Polaris 360 on the middle return line. Please let us know if we can be of any further assistance.

  • Pat

    I have a 360 and have had to replace broken drive belts three times now this summer, it’s never been this bad in the past years. What is the proper tension that should be on the belts when I install the new one’s? Thanks,

    • PoolSupplyWorld

      Hi Pat, After you place the new belts on you want to adjust the axle block so that there is a little bit of play but not much. Similar tension to a bike chain. You don’t want them stretched extremely tight. Let me know if you have any other questions. Thanks! -Christian

  • Diane

    My 360 comes to a wall, backs up, and goes right back to the wall. What can I do?? Thanks

    • PoolSupplyWorld

      Hi Diane,
      The first thing to check is that all the belts are intact. All 3 wheels on the unit should be driving at the same time. Then you will want to check the thrust jet directly below the head and make sure it is at the 11 o’clock position. If those things are both properly working and angled then I would recommend contacting Polaris at (800) 822-7933 and seeing what they recommend. Most likely it will need to be looked at by a repair shop. Let me know if there is anything else I can do to help! -Christian

  • Sharon Williams Mills

    We just bought our 3rd Polaris 360 in 23 years. We really like the way they clean. On this newest one (2 weeks old), we have to clean out the little filter in the hose that fits into the wall jet several times a day. Today I had to clean it every 15 minutes for the hour I was in the pool. The Polaris stops moving; we clean the filter; it runs for another 15-20 minutes then stops again. This is pretty irritating. The pool is not that dirty, and we only had to clean our other ones about once a week or so. Would there be a problem if we took out the wall filter and let it just run without it?

    • Dylan (PoolSupplyWorld)

      You could certainly take out the filter screen and should not be an issue at all. The filter screen is just there to catch any debris before it goes through the hose and into the cleaner body. Have you cleaned your main pool filter yet? If there is an increase in debris then you might possibly have an issue with a crack or hole in your filter.

      • Sharon Williams Mills

        Thank you, Dylan. My son cleaned our filter again last night, and there seems to be less debris. We bought a new cartridge filter a few months ago, and my husband wasn’t given instructions on how to clean it. He tried, but he left out a few steps. I think you are right; the water from the filter was clogging the filter to the Polaris. It is good to know, though, that I could just take the filter out without harming the Polaris. Thanks.

        • Dylan (PoolSupplyWorld)

          You are very welcome, if any further questions come up then definitely give us a call at 800-772-0467. Enjoy the holiday!

  • Sharon Williams Mills

    Our Polaris 360 is now 5 weeks old. It has stopped moving. We are very frustrated because we think we have checked everything suggested. We have cleaned the pool filter, cleaned the other filter areas around the pump, emptied the skimmers, cleaned the small filter in the pool wall, took the top off the Polaris and checked belts and gears. It will clean if the backup drops it over debris; it just won’t move again until the backup pulls it away. We can’t check the rotation because the wheels aren’t moving. They will roll freely on land when it is pushed.
    One suggestion is to clean the openings in the Polaris. Where are they and how do we clean them? Any other suggestions before we take it to the shop?

    • Sharon Williams Mills

      We took it apart one more time and ran a pipe cleaner in the opening into the gears. It had a small rock. When that cleared out, it ran. Thanks.

      • http://www.poolsupplyworld.com/ Roy Steves (PoolSupplyWorld)

        Wow, you beat us to it! Glad to hear everything’s in order again. If it gives you any more trouble, let us know!

  • PoolSupplyWorld

    Hi Karen, you should not have to pull overly hard to get the pressure tester off your Polaris 360′s hose. There is a locking nut that goes around the pressure tester to hold it in place, and it needs to be unscrewed before the pressure tester will come out. If you have any further questions, please don’t hesitate to ask.

  • PoolSupplyWorld

    Hi Mark, there are a few troubleshooting steps you can try to verify your Polaris 360 is properly set up. First, ensure that you are connecting the Polaris 360′s hose to a return line (pressure line), which is located a few feet from the pool’s edge on the pool wall and should include an eyeball for hose attachment. Any other installation set up will not power the cleaner, as it is designed to be powered by the pressure side of your pool equipment.

    Is water coming out of the sweep tail? If so, this indicates that the cleaner is receiving water flow and that the problem does not lie within installation. You may need to increase the pressure until the wheels begin moving. Once they start moving, you can ensure adequate water pressure by counting the wheel rotations per minute (RPM). Ideally, wheel RPM should be between 28 and 32.

    Finally, is the back up valve working? If it is spraying water consistently without stopping, the back up valve is most likely installed backwards and is influencing the Polaris 360′s mobility.

    If these troubleshooting methods do not offer a solution, we highly recommend contacting the manufacturer, as your Polaris 360 may have a manufacturer defect. They can be reached at (800) 822-7933. Please let us know if we can be of any further assistance.

  • PoolSupplyWorld

    Hi Julie, it is crucial for the overall health of your pool and pool water that you have a suction line that feeds through a pool filter to properly circulate your pool water. The Polaris 360 is designed to install into a dedicated return line and comes with all the parts needed to do so. It will not attach to a suction line or skimmer, as it is a pressure-side pool cleaner, not a suction-side pool cleaner.

    If you can dedicate one of your returns to the 360, it is designed to work with any in-ground pool surface. Please note, it comes with 31′ of feed hose, so if you need additional hose length you will need the Polaris 360 In Ground Pressure Side Pool Cleaner 6′ Feed Hose, as well as a Polaris 360 Pool Cleaner Swivel Hose and two Polaris Pool Cleaner Hose Nuts per section of hose you add.

    If you are in the market for a suction-side cleaner, we would recommend the Baracuda G3, which comes with a 36′ hose. If you have further questions, please feel free to contact us for immediate assistance.

  • PoolSupplyWorld

    Hi Mark, if the water is shooting towards the cleaner it sounds like you may need a new back up valve. If the water is shooting away from the cleaner, then the valve is most likely installed backwards, and you’ll simply need to switch it around to modify your cleaner’s performance.

    It is likely that the tail will not move because the water required to power it is being diverted out of the back up valve. Once the leak is fixed, the Polaris 360′s tail will begin moving more rapidly. Please note that slight leaking in the hose swivels or joints is completely normal, and will not influence performance. We hope this offers a solution. If you have any further questions, please don’t hesitate to ask.

  • PoolSupplyWorld

    Hi James, the Polaris 360 hooks up to the return line that you mentioned, directly into the wall. Although it is a pressure side cleaner, you will not need a booster pump. The Polaris 360 includes everything that you’ll need for operation, including the hose and wall fitting. Please let us know if we can be of any further assistance.