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Thread: Closing Pool Questions

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    Closing Pool Questions

    We will be closing our pool ourselves this year, for the first time, so I have a few questions about it.

    1. We have a main drain in the center on the floor of the pool. What is the proper procedure for closing the main drain line? Can a shop vac be used to do this?

    2. Do we need to drain water to 6 inches below the skimmer? Filling the pool in the Spring with a well takes a good amount of time.

    3. Do the pillows below the cover really work? I have heard mixed reviews on whether people use the pillows, or not. I would appreciate some more thoughts on them.

    Thanks
    Chuck
    - Chuck - My pool: Fiberglass (Aug 2014); 19,324 gallons, 1.5-hp pump; Hayward Sand Filter


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    Catanzaro's Avatar
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    Re: Closing Pool Questions

    1. We have a main drain in the center on the floor of the pool. What is the proper procedure for closing the main drain line? Can a shop vac be used to do this?
    You must blow air through the main drain and create an "air lock" at the valve. Shop vac can be used but may not have enough volume. If you use a shop vac and you see the main drain bubbling (a lot of bubbles) for 45-60 seconds, then that is fine.

    2. Do we need to drain water to 6 inches below the skimmer? Filling the pool in the Spring with a well takes a good amount of time.
    I only drained a few inches below the skimmer just to remove the water and plug with Gizmo's. If you have enough rainfall (depending on cover) and snow, the pool will fill itself back up pretty quickly. Well water may also container iron, etc. Can you use house water? Is well your only option?

    3. Do the pillows below the cover really work? I have heard mixed reviews on whether people use the pillows, or not. I would appreciate some more thoughts on them.
    I do not use pillows, but have heard good things about them.

    Can you please describe how you will be closing your pool? Where you will be pushing air through? What steps you will be taking for skimmers, returns, etc.?
    14,700 gallons IG Pool Vinyl Liner - Octal Circulation System
    Hayward Pro-Series 350 LB. Sand Filter Model # S270T - 2" Plumping
    Hayward CL2002 Chlorinator - Hayward Super Pump 2 HP Model # k48m2n111
    Hayward AQR9 SWG 25K Salt Cell & TF-100 Test Kit + Speed Stir
    Gulfstream HE125RA - 117K BTU Heat Pump - Date of Build is 11-2013

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    Canned Heat's Avatar
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    Re: Closing Pool Questions

    "Do we need to drain water to 6 inches below the skimmer? Filling the pool in the Spring with a well takes a good amount of time."

    I only drained a few inches below the skimmer just to remove the water and plug with Gizmo's. If you have enough rainfall (depending on cover) and snow, the pool will fill itself back up pretty quickly. Well water may also container iron, etc. Can you use house water? Is well your only option?

    I have the same predicament regarding well water, and I use my well water ran thru the Iron Curtain system or I'd have a monster iron issue. I live in a fairly remote area and my neighbor has purchased water delivered in a tanker the last few years. I always thought this was crazy, but may actually look into it this next spring. If you run your well directly or indirectly, you need to do it in increments like every other day or you risk burning up pump and a handful of other water quality issues with your house. I run my water 4-5 inches below edge of skimmer.



    "Do the pillows below the cover really work? I have heard mixed reviews on whether people use the pillows, or not. I would appreciate some more thoughts on them"

    I do not use pillows, but have heard good things about them.

    I have always been told up here in WI that the pillows are a necessity...yet I know some people that don't bother with them. We use two tethered together about 18 inches apart and then a line running to each side and tied to my solar cover reel bases. Keeps them centered and from shifting to one side or the other. (Pillows are supposed to take up the expansion and keep pool from burst or bulge from water to ice expansion.) Then I weigh down with filled bottles on inside edge of the cover and run some water from hose getting two sides with a pocket of water to keep the wind from wreaking havoc. Had 45 mph winds last 3 days....no probs at all.
    AG 52" x 28' round Doughboy Tuscany 22,000 gallons / Hayward Pro-Series S180T Sand Filter / Hayward Power-Flo LX 1.5 hp - all hard piped

    Assumption is the mother of all screw-ups....

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    Re: Closing Pool Questions

    How big the shop vac has to be to blow the sair out of the main drain?
    19K gal AG. 200 Swimpro Element Filter. 2HP, Dual Speed Voyager. TF-100.

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    Re: Closing Pool Questions

    Quote Originally Posted by puchasr View Post
    How big the shop vac has to be to blow the sair out of the main drain?
    This is a hard question to answer. There are many variables, which include length of piping, size of piping, etc. The biggest issue that people face with a shop vacuum is removing enough water out of the main drain. Outside of this, they seem to be pretty successful with the skimmers and returns. If you find that a shop vacuum is not the answer, you can move on to a compressor. I use the Cyclone, which is designed for pools.

    To gather more information, I recommend readings the main posts in this section from September to December of each year, as you will receive a wealth of information.
    14,700 gallons IG Pool Vinyl Liner - Octal Circulation System
    Hayward Pro-Series 350 LB. Sand Filter Model # S270T - 2" Plumping
    Hayward CL2002 Chlorinator - Hayward Super Pump 2 HP Model # k48m2n111
    Hayward AQR9 SWG 25K Salt Cell & TF-100 Test Kit + Speed Stir
    Gulfstream HE125RA - 117K BTU Heat Pump - Date of Build is 11-2013

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    Re: Closing Pool Questions

    Quote Originally Posted by Catanzaro View Post
    This is a hard question to answer. There are many variables, which include length of piping, size of piping, etc. The biggest issue that people face with a shop vacuum is removing enough water out of the main drain. Outside of this, they seem to be pretty successful with the skimmers and returns. If you find that a shop vacuum is not the answer, you can move on to a compressor. I use the Cyclone, which is designed for pools.

    To gather more information, I recommend readings the man posts in this section from September to December of each year, as you will receive a wealth of information.

    The Cyclone's I've seen are 3hp. Is yours more than that? I have a 5hp shop vac that I want to try.
    Last edited by cedougl; 10-15-2015 at 11:15 AM. Reason: placement
    - Chuck - My pool: Fiberglass (Aug 2014); 19,324 gallons, 1.5-hp pump; Hayward Sand Filter


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    Re: Closing Pool Questions

    http://i238.photobucket.com/albums/f...%20640x360.jpg

    Pic has setup for our system. 27 ft pool.

    Main Drain intake is on the left side of T-joint. Going to shut skimmer intake off and do normal drain and shut off of that. Taking off all hoses from filter and pump, draining both, and storing pump inside. From there was thinking of using my 5hp shop vac to blow out the main drain and then shutting valve to create air lock.
    Have an air compressor as well but reading around it seems that could be "too much" for the lines. Thoughts?
    - Chuck - My pool: Fiberglass (Aug 2014); 19,324 gallons, 1.5-hp pump; Hayward Sand Filter


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    Re: Closing Pool Questions

    I believe it is the design of the unit, along with the CFM, which makes a difference. Once you try the shop vac, please tell us how it worked out. Here is what I have from the Cyclone.

    Cyclone Industrial Blower.jpg

    Here is the website:

    Air Supply Cyclone

    Has 125 CFM
    14,700 gallons IG Pool Vinyl Liner - Octal Circulation System
    Hayward Pro-Series 350 LB. Sand Filter Model # S270T - 2" Plumping
    Hayward CL2002 Chlorinator - Hayward Super Pump 2 HP Model # k48m2n111
    Hayward AQR9 SWG 25K Salt Cell & TF-100 Test Kit + Speed Stir
    Gulfstream HE125RA - 117K BTU Heat Pump - Date of Build is 11-2013

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    Re: Closing Pool Questions

    Update: Used a 6.5hp shop vac with 210mph blower to blow out main drain and it appears to have worked. "Appears" being that the there was a copious amount of bubbles out the main drain in the middle of the pool almost to fountain status. Counted to a slow 60 and then shut off valve/vac. True test will be Spring time and will post update then. Next time will get video.
    - Chuck - My pool: Fiberglass (Aug 2014); 19,324 gallons, 1.5-hp pump; Hayward Sand Filter


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    Re: Closing Pool Questions

    Quote Originally Posted by cedougl View Post
    Update: Used a 6.5hp shop vac with 210mph blower to blow out main drain and it appears to have worked. "Appears" being that the there was a copious amount of bubbles out the main drain in the middle of the pool almost to fountain status. Counted to a slow 60 and then shut off valve/vac. True test will be Spring time and will post update then. Next time will get video.
    Great work. Looks like you are done. You will not have issues. I also recommend plugging the suction side of the pump housing with a black rubber plug.

    My wet vacuum (Rigid) is 6.5 HP. Can not find the specs on the blower. Which blower has 210 mph? Just curious? My Red Maxx blower has this air speed, but not sure about wet vac.
    14,700 gallons IG Pool Vinyl Liner - Octal Circulation System
    Hayward Pro-Series 350 LB. Sand Filter Model # S270T - 2" Plumping
    Hayward CL2002 Chlorinator - Hayward Super Pump 2 HP Model # k48m2n111
    Hayward AQR9 SWG 25K Salt Cell & TF-100 Test Kit + Speed Stir
    Gulfstream HE125RA - 117K BTU Heat Pump - Date of Build is 11-2013

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    Re: Closing Pool Questions

    I used a 6.5 hp Shop Vac....I couldn't get air bubbles out of the main drain, but I could see that it was pushing the water several feet deep (I was blowing at the skimmer, which is where the main drain is routed through)....I then air locked it with a valve. I'm confident that the water was forced below the freeze line, so the remaining of the water in the main drain should not freeze.
    20000 gallon vinyl liner in ground pool
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    Re: Closing Pool Questions

    I have never blown out the main drain. Why? Because I have found that the weight of the antifreeze displaces the water in the main drain to the point where I can actually see blue antifreeze coming out of the main drain at the bottom of the pool after pouring some in, and it even empties the skimmer taking the water with it. Try it and see!
    25,000 Gallons Inground, Gunite
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    Re: Closing Pool Questions

    Quote Originally Posted by cedougl View Post
    Update: Used a 6.5hp shop vac with 210mph blower to blow out main drain and it appears to have worked.
    cedougl:

    Is the blower separate from the shop vac? 201 mph shop vac? Just curious as my Red Maxx blower runs at this speed, not my Rigid Wet Vac.
    14,700 gallons IG Pool Vinyl Liner - Octal Circulation System
    Hayward Pro-Series 350 LB. Sand Filter Model # S270T - 2" Plumping
    Hayward CL2002 Chlorinator - Hayward Super Pump 2 HP Model # k48m2n111
    Hayward AQR9 SWG 25K Salt Cell & TF-100 Test Kit + Speed Stir
    Gulfstream HE125RA - 117K BTU Heat Pump - Date of Build is 11-2013

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