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Thread: How I blow the lines with a small compressor.

  1. Back To Top    #1

    Join Date
    May 2013
    Long Island NY

    How I blow the lines with a small compressor.

    This is what I have always done and it works fine. It's easy and one person can do this in 20min. or less.

    When the water gets to 50 degrees I shock the pool the night before closing and let it mix well.

    Next day I lower the water just below the returns.

    I hook up my pancake compressor to an air fitting that's screwed into the drain hole of my pump.

    Turn on the compressor and since the hose is attached to the air nipple in the pump it will start pumping air into the lines.

    The water will be pushed out of skimmer 1 first. When it bubbles and spits. Plug it.
    Next will be the 2nd skimmer. Just like above. Plug it.
    Next will be the 1st return. Plug it.
    Next will be the 2nd return. Plug it.

    Now all that's left is the main drain and the air is now pushing that water out as your walking back to the pump. When you see air bubbles come up from the main drain. Turn the main drain valve to off. And turn off the compressor. You just created an air lock on the MD.

    I then go back to the skimmers, remove the plug and pour a gallon of antifreeze in each skimmer and put the plug back in.

    I then pour 1/2 gal antifreeze in each skimmer box. Last , I put a half filled antifreeze jug in each skimmer box to prevent ice expansion from cracking the plastic boxes.

    I then take some wire and wire the main drain Handel so no one can turn it and break my air lock. Remove and store pump where it does not freeze.

    Does my little compressor blow out all the water? No But the water that's in there is way below frost line.

    Do I need a special blower that I only use once a year? No

    Also, I will keep an eye on my water level until freeze up. Due to rain and the water level rising my goal is to always keep it a few inches below the bottom of the skimmer opening.
    I will use the Garden hose siphon method to keep my water level in check.
    Hope this helps.
    19,000 gal - Vinyl IG - Sand filter -1.5hp. - Taylor k 2006 - Loop Loc cover

  2. Back To Top    #2
    Mod Squad Texas Splash's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2014
    South-Central Texas, Marion/San Antonio

    Re: How I blow the lines with a small compressor.

    Sounds like a well-orchestrated sequence of events. Should help some others. Thanks for sharing.
    Pat (a.k.a. Texas Splash) ~ My Pool: Viking Fiberglass; 17,888 Gal; Waterway Supreme 2-sp/2-hp pump; Hayward Ctg filter; TF-100 w/ Speed Stir
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  3. Back To Top    #3

    TFP Guide
    Catanzaro's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2014
    Howell, New Jersey

    Re: How I blow the lines with a small compressor.

    Very well orchestrated. I would plug the supply and return in the pump housing with plugs after done. Picture of plugs below. These are the correct size for the Hayward Super Pump. There are different sizes available.

    The only issue you may deal with is if your small air compressor may not be sufficient to blow out your main drain. You may want to close off everything but the main drain and give it a test run. You will see a lot of bubbles come up to the surface. Then you will know.

    You may also want to isolate each skimmer and returns so you have more air volume, etc. Please be careful not to build to much back pressure.


    14,700 gallons IG Pool Vinyl Liner - Octal Circulation System
    Hayward Pro-Series 350 LB. Sand Filter Model # S270T - 2" Plumping
    Frog Mineralizer System (EMPTY) - Hayward Super Pump 2 HP Model # k48m2n111
    Pool Company tests water (NO LONGER) TF-100 TEST KIT
    Date of Build is 11-2013

  4. Back To Top    #4
    appstategrad's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2014
    Hickory, NC

    Re: How I blow the lines with a small compressor.

    Samt, I did the same thing last year minus the antifreeze and wire, but you are in a much colder climate than I am in the winter. As a new pool owner I was very worried about my process, but it worked out great and I had planned to do the same again this year, even though I'm definitely not ready to let go of summer yet!!

    Sent using Tapatalk
    ~ 18.5' x 36.5' inground Grecian pool with vinyl liner
    ~ approximately 23,000 gallons
    ~ AquaRite Salt Water Generator cell size t-9
    ~ 1.5 HP Hayward Pump and Hayward Sand Filter
    ~ TF-100 test kit

  5. Back To Top    #5
    Mod Squad woodyp's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    East Texas

    Re: How I blow the lines with a small compressor.

    Doesn't removing the pump break your "airlock"?
    16x32x52" Steel Cornelius Miramar AGP Vinyl liner 13,100 gal. Buried 2 ft.
    2 Speed Hayward Power-Flo Matrix 85 g.p.m. 22" 250lb. sand filter hard plumbed
    Pool Rover Jr., Pool Blaster Max, Diver Dave TF100 Test Kit/Speed Stir
    Margaritaville Frozen Concoction Maker, Liqour Chiller, & Drink Mixer & Party Tub----Collect 'um all!

  6. Back To Top    #6
    zimm's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2013
    Northern Virginia

    Re: How I blow the lines with a small compressor.

    I tried this on my first closing. Thank goodness my pool pilot SWG has a clear section of pipe where the bypass valve is- it was still full of water. The air must have been flowing up and around the manifold through the cell. I called in the pool company and they brought in the big orange blower and that took care of everything with it's high volume of air flow. I've since purchased one myself since it was the same cost at a single closing. So while the air compressor might work for some setups, it doesn't for mine.

    Also on my setup, in order to blow from the skimmer, I have to remove the top of the check valve and turn the lid and flapper around so the air will flow into the returns and bottom drain.
    45'x12' 17k gal, IG plaster, Pool Pilot Nano+ SWG, 1/2hp Whisperflo pump, PAC-FAB TA-60D sand filter, Raypak 266 heater
    Pool School + Test Kit + Pool Math = Trouble Free Pool

  7. Back To Top    #7
    EVChargeGuy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2014
    Long Island, NY

    Re: How I blow the lines with a small compressor.

    Quote Originally Posted by woodyp View Post
    Doesn't removing the pump break your "airlock"?
    By turning the Valve(s) off, they hold the 'airlock'.
    You should also plug off or ducktape any open pipes and unions so that nothing climbs in over the winter and make a home out of your plumbing.
    I also put mothballs inside my heater to keep rodents away. Talk about something moving in!
    IG Tear Drop, Dark Gray Gunite , 27,000 gallons -Age 50+-years, very old Hayward Split Egg Sand Filter with side mount Multi-port- Hayward SP2600VSP Pump- Hayward chlorine feed (not used since finding TFP) - Laars 315K BTU Oil heater- LoopLoc Safety cover- AquaBot RAPIDS 4WD- TF-100 Test Kit w/ Speedstir

  8. Back To Top    #8

    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Central NJ

    Re: How I blow the lines with a small compressor.

    I tried closing my pool with my air compressor a few years ago and no matter what I did, I could not get rid of the all the water from my skimmer pipes. After some research (here and other places) I learned that:

    1) blowing water out of the pipes is about CFM, which most "house" compressors don't have enough of to blow out the pipes completely.
    2) antifreeze is lighter than water, so over time, it will rise to the top and the water, now separated from the antifreeze can freeze.
    23K gallon, IG, Vinyl, Hayward DE-3600 Filter, Raypak 406A Heater, Hayward 1.5HP SP2610X15 pump aka AO Smith UST1152, TF-100 Test Kit

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