How to Replace a Spider Gasket In 8 Easy Steps

Written by Michael Dean
March 4, 2024

spider gasket

A multiport valve is a piece of equipment that plays a vital role in directing the flow of water within your pool system and also aids in filtrating, cleaning, and circulating the water. An essential component of this valve is the spider gasket, which creates the watertight seal and ensures smooth operation. So when it doesn’t work perfectly, you may need to replace it as soon as possible.

In this article, I will go over how to replace a spider gasket, explain when it’s time to replace it, and more. Let’s get into it!

Main Takeaways

  • Replacing a spider gasket on a multiport valve is a relatively easy process that most pool owners can perform themselves.
  • Cracks, leaks, rusting, difficulty turning the valve, and unusual noises are all signs of a spider gasket that may need replacing.
  • To properly maintain your spider gasket, regularly inspect it, maintain proper water chemistry, and gently operate the valve. If necessary, you may need to lubricate or reglue the gasket.
  • A spider gasket can last up to 5 to 10 years with proper care and maintenance.

How to Replace a Spider Gasket on a Multiport Valve: Step-by-Step Process

Spider gaskets do not last forever, and there will inevitably come a time when you’ll need to replace the spider gasket on your multiport valve. Here’s my handy step-by-step process for replacing it when needed.

Supplies Checklist

  • Wrench or socket set
  • Flathead screwdriver 
  • Non-acetone nail polish remover
  • Replacement spider gasket (this must be compatible with the specific valve model)
  • Plumber’s tape
  • Valve sealant

Step One: Turn Off the Pool Pump

First, turn off the pool pump. Then, open the pressure relief valve to release any remaining pressure in the system.

Step Two: Turn to Winterize

Once all the pressure has been released, turn the multiport valve to the ‘winterize’ setting. This raises the internal plug, which makes it easier to access the gasket.

Step Three: Remove the Bolts

Remove the bolts securing the valve cover to the body with a socket set or a wrench. If the cover is stuck, pry it loose with a flathead screwdriver.

Step Four: Remove the Spider Gasket

Carefully extract the spider gasket from the groove within the valve cover. If it is glued in, you might need to use a flathead screwdriver to remove it.

Step Five: Clean the Gasket Groove

Once you remove the spider gasket, if the groove is grimy, clean it out thoroughly with a soft, damp cloth to remove dirt or debris. Use some non-acetone nail polish remover to help clean the grooves.

Step Six: Replace the Spider Gasket

Grab your replacement spider gasket, place it back into the cleaned groove, and firmly press it into the groove. Some gaskets might require a bit of adhesive for the valve. If this is needed, apply a thin layer of valve sealant at the bottom of the groove for proper adhesion. Check the manufacturer’s instructions to check if gluing is necessary or not.

Step Seven: Replace Everything Else

When repositioning the valve cover, ensure it properly aligns with the body. Tighten nuts or bolts all around to secure it (but avoid zealous overtightening). For additional protection against leaks, you can apply some plumber’s tape to the threads.

Step Eight: Finishing Touches

Now that the gasket is installed, depress the handle and return it to the standard position (e.g., ‘filter’ or ‘rinse’). And voila! You’ve successfully replaced a spider gasket! At this point, allow the gasket to cure for a couple of hours, at the very least.

If you’re confused about any steps at any point, consult the valve’s manual OR seek help from a professional who is familiar with the matter. If there are still leakages or odd or suspicious noises, you might have to replace the multiport valve entirely. But if you’re not sure, always get a second opinion or proper diagnosis before proceeding.

When Is It Time to Replace the Spider Gasket?

There are a few giveaway signs that make it clear it’s time to replace the spider gasket. Here’s a quick overview of what to look out for.

Visible Cracks or Tears

Over time, the material that comprises a spider gasket can become brittle. Some cracks or tears can appear—this occurs due to constant pressure and exposure to pool chemicals and can compromise the seal, leading to leaks.

Leakage Around Multiport Valve Handle

Are you noticing leakages around the base of the multiport valve handle? If yes, that’s a strong indicator that the spider gasket is unable to maintain a proper seal.

Difficulty Turning the Multiport Valve Handle

If the spider gasket is worn out, damaged, rusty, or ill-fitting, the valve handle can become stiff, making it difficult to turn and hindering the valve’s smooth operation.

Loss of Pressure

A failing spider gasket lets water seep or leak within the valve, creating a loss of pressure in the pool system. The result is weak water flow from the pool jets, which can impact pool circulation and filtration.

Unusual Noises Coming from the Multiport Valve

When operating the handle, do you hear unusual noises, such as grinding or squeaking, coming from the multiport valve? If yes, that may indicate a damaged spider gasket that cannot function properly.

If you notice any of these signs, it may be time to replace the spider gasket to ensure the smooth and efficient operation of your pool. If you’re not sure that it’s the spider gasket itself that is causing these issues, further inspect the multiport valve for the cause. Check out my multiport valve maintenance guide for more information. If you are still not confident, call a professional.

How to Maintain the Spider Gasket

Replacing the spider gasket is not the most complicated pool maintenance task in the world, but it can be annoying—especially since you have so many other aspects of the pool to look after! To ensure you don’t have to replace the spider gasket too often, the best thing to do is maintain it and look after it well. With proper care and maintenance, a spider gasket can last up to 5 to 10 years!

Here are some of my essential tips to extend the lifespan and functionality of your spider gasket.

Regular Inspection

At the start and end of every pool season, you should give all your equipment a close once-over. This includes the spider gasket. Inspect it for signs of wear and tear, which allows you to schedule replacement early on before it becomes a serious problem. If needed, you should clean the spider gasket and remove the dirt and grime around it.

Proper Pool Water Chemistry

A majority of pool issues rest on proper pool chemistry. Any imbalance in water chemistry accelerates the wear and tear of pool equipment, including your spider gasket. The solution is simple: keep your levels within the recommended ranges!

Gentle Operation

When operating the valve, be gentle. Do not push or slam it hard when switching positions, as it can place unnecessary stress on the gasket and shorten its lifespan.


Some manufacturers suggest periodically using a silicone-based lubricant on the spider gasket—this helps maintain the equipment’s smooth functioning. This is optional, however, but it is a useful step to add to your routine if you’re interested in improving the gasket’s longevity and effectiveness.

Reglue If Necessary

If your spider gasket is loose, you may need to reglue it to the grooves. Remember that not all spider gaskets need to be glued! If you have a spider gasket that is too loose but cannot be glued, it’s probably time for a replacement.

Get My Free Pool Care Checklist

Download my free, printable pool maintenance checklist to help you accomplish regular pool care tasks for any type of swimming pool.

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Frequently Asked Questions

Does a spider gasket need to be glued in?

No, this is not strictly necessary. It depends on the model, so consult your multiport valve’s manual to see whether your gasket needs to be glued.

How long does a spider gasket last?

With proper maintenance and care, a spider gasket can last around 5 to 10 years. However, you may need to replace it periodically and well within the expiry date to ensure the optimal functioning of your pool.

How do you remove a glued-in spider gasket?

Don’t worry; you can easily remove a glued-in spider gasket by carefully prying it with a tool (screwdriver/pliers). You may need to loosen the glue with a non-acetone nail polish remover.

Maintain the Multiport Valve’s Spider Gasket

Maintaining your multiport valve is fairly simple: keep your water chemistry balanced, regularly inspect it for issues, and keep your equipment clean. Gaskets are fairly easy to replace, too, so if you do run into any trouble, replace them as soon as you can before the multiport valve suffers further damage.

Do you have any further questions about multiport valves or spider gaskets? Send me a message; I’ll be happy to help out!

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