Question about Hayward Navigator Pool Cleaner

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Hayward Navigator gets stuck at wall

My Hayward Navigator gets stuck every time it reaches the side of the pool. It works fine until it meets the wall head on, but then just sits there flapping the paddles but will not turn and head off again. If you hold the hose, with the cleaner hanging underneath it (in the water) then it rotates around fine. Pressure is fine (set to 7 for 7 sections of hose) and have tried running it at higher and lower pressure. Any ideas please?

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  • steve925 Jun 01, 2009

    Yes, the cleaner has been great - it is a few years old now and during that time I have replaced the wings and feet and regularly check the pod screws are tight with no excess play. In the past when it has had a problem, it has not moved (or moved very slowly), this is the first time I have known it to move quickly along the floor of the pool (and up the sloped sides) but then get stuck at the wall. I don’t think it has anything I would call a bumper - just the plastic molding at the front that is part of the base.

  • steve925 Jun 01, 2009

    Happy to take it apart - have done so a few times over the last couple of years. Sounds like good thing to check, it would explain why it rotates when I hold it, but does not seem to have enough power to turn at the wall. Will give it a try later tonight. thanks.

  • steve925 Jun 01, 2009

    Took it apart, but no obvious signs of blockage. However, good news as I discovered there was a problem with the "cone gear" not meshing properly with the intermediate / spindle gears - it was enough to rotate the cleaner on the hose, but only if there was no resistance. After taking it apart and putting it back together gain it is all working fine. I guess time will tell if there is some wear that causes this, but it is not obvious to me if that is the case.

    Thanks for your responses, Steve.

  • Samuel Charles Spriggs May 11, 2010

    Please let me know what you find.



  • Samuel Charles Spriggs May 11, 2010

    There is a gear which opens a port inside the unit to divert the water to the mechanism which causes the cleaner to rotate.

    This could be clogged (causing to little power to turn the cleaner) or otherwise malfunctioning.

    Are you up to taking the cleaner apart?

  • Samuel Charles Spriggs May 11, 2010

    Has the cleaner worked well up to now? Does it have a bumper/bar on the front?



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I have had the same Navigator for many, many years. I have replaced it's guts, pods, feet and gears whenever things wear out. I have a vinyl pool and it works great. I had a problem with it charging into the wall and just sit there beating it's feet ..... now this was my solution, and I'm surprised that Navigator has not altered the design to deal with getting stuck against a wall. This will sound CRAZY but it works great!! Take a plastic lid for a 5 gallon bucket and cut out a round-nose for the front of your navigator. The curved shape is prefect and you can notch the plastic lid and it will snug right into the Navigator body. This gives your Navigator a round-nose and it will never get stuck against a wall again.

Posted on Aug 27, 2009

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Great!! That would be my "or otherwise malfunctioning" speculation. Glad you found the symptom at least -- time will tell if it's the problem.


Posted on Jun 01, 2009


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