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Thread: What's the cheapest, most practical way to drain half of pool water?

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    What's the cheapest, most practical way to drain half of pool water?

    The CYA in my pool is something like 100.

    By the way how do you measure CYA when looking for that little black dot to disappear at the bottom of the tube? I mean, is it when it's cloudy, or totally not able to be seen? Because I'd guess from person to person - one might be able to still see the dot, while another can't, and the difference of a couple drops can be ~10 on the CYA markings.. Anyway..

    The high CYA is making keeping FC levels over 10 a real pain. And I'm having algae a bit and trying to SLAM the pool is insane trying to shock in the 30's - and I probably haven't got close to that, for some reason I'm scared to.

    So the PoolMath calculator says I need to drain about 50% of the pool, about 7,000 gals. I have the Hayward c1200, so down at the bottom I can rig up a hose to drain from, but once I get below the skimmer air starts to get pulled in, as I can't completely shut off the valve - it's really hard to turn.

    Is there a cheap sump pump at Home Depot or something someone can recommend? I'm overwhelmed by all the options online, and not familiar with pumps at all. What's a common method?

    Thanks TFP

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    Mod Squad tim5055's Avatar
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    Re: What's the cheapest, most practical way to drain half of pool water?

    Central,Florida'isma big are! But you should have a Harbor Freight in the area. They have some inexpensive pumps.
    TFP Moderator 39 X 18 23,000(ish) freeform gunite; built 2007ish; Pentair Triton II TR100 600lb Sand filter; 2 HP Pentair pump with 2.2 HP AO Smith single speed motor; 2 skimmers, 1 main drain, 4 returns w/waterfall, Stenner 45MHP2 3GPD running@ 60% - 15 gal Tank; heated by the sun CYA 200+ when I started - 50 now. Dolphin Supreme M5 Pool Cleaner. Hot Springs SX Spa, 285 gallon

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    Re: What's the cheapest, most practical way to drain half of pool water?

    I went to the pro counter at Home Depot and rented their utility pump. It was around $70 for a day, and it took about 2 hours to pump approx 9,000 gallons. Knowing what I knew now, I'd have rented it for 4 hours. The hoses typically are 50ft long, but if you need, ask for a few extra ones, they didn't charge more. I got 3 total, so I ran 150 feet of hose to the storm drain and let it rip. The pump needs to be primed with water first manually most likely, and make sure to keep the hose from kinking.
    Lee Mims - Orange, TX, 25400 gallon In-Ground Plaster Pool
    Hayward Cartridge Filter, Hayward Chlorine Feeder, Century 1081 2-Speed Pool & Spa Pump, Hayward H350FDN (350k BTU) Natural Gas Water Heater, Paramount O3 Ozone, Hayward Super II Pump for Waterfall, Aqualink RS System w/ Remote (Jandy), Taylor K-2006 Kit

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    Re: What's the cheapest, most practical way to drain half of pool water?

    Hi! I had a very similar problem.

    First, to check a CYA higher than 100 you can do a dilution test. Fill your tube up to the 7ml mark with pool water. Fill the tube up from 7ml to 14ml with tap water. Shake to mix. Empty tube back down to the 7ml mark. Now test as regular and multiply your results by 2.

    As far as draining economically, I've seen two methods. Where I am, using a company to drain and refill half of my pool would be around $800. I checked with my water company and found to use the same amount of water out of my tap, would cost me around $50.00

    Draining functionality, I have read that you can fill and drain at the same time. A quick search on the forums should pull up some results.

    As far as my advice goes, I'm sure a mod will chime in here soon and verify whether I am right.
    FL Resident
    IG 18,000 gal plaster
    Hayward Swim Clear Cartridge Filter
    Hayward Swimpure Extreme swcg
    A.O. 1HP motor

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    Re: What's the cheapest, most practical way to drain half of pool water?

    Thanks for your help everyone.

    Quote Originally Posted by tim5055 View Post
    Central,Florida'isma big are! But you should have a Harbor Freight in the area. They have some inexpensive pumps.

    Quote Originally Posted by fajitas21 View Post
    I went to the pro counter at Home Depot and rented their utility pump. It was around $70 for a day, and it took about 2 hours to pump approx 9,000 gallons. Knowing what I knew now, I'd have rented it for 4 hours. The hoses typically are 50ft long, but if you need, ask for a few extra ones, they didn't charge more. I got 3 total, so I ran 150 feet of hose to the storm drain and let it rip. The pump needs to be primed with water first manually most likely, and make sure to keep the hose from kinking.
    Never used or even seen a sump pump or utility pump, but I am seeing that as the best option now. There is a sump pump on eBay for $39.. What is the difference between a sump pump and utility pump? What type of hoses connect to it? A sump pump has a clamp type connection and a utility has a hose type connection? Is that it? I have enough garden hose to reach the street.


    Quote Originally Posted by Tonka Tuff View Post
    Hi! I had a very similar problem.

    First, to check a CYA higher than 100 you can do a dilution test. Fill your tube up to the 7ml mark with pool water. Fill the tube up from 7ml to 14ml with tap water. Shake to mix. Empty tube back down to the 7ml mark. Now test as regular and multiply your results by 2.


    Draining functionality, I have read that you can fill and drain at the same time. A quick search on the forums should pull up some results.
    Nice, I didn't know that about checking high CYA.
    Right I could drain and fill, but I just feel like that will take longer and would have to compensate for draining a lot of the new (low CYA) water out, due to it mixing, but no biggie.

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    Re: What's the cheapest, most practical way to drain half of pool water?

    I don't know how much of a hurry you are in to drain, but I drained a couple feet of water overnight one time with my pool cover pump.
    24k gal. In-ground, vinyl. 2005 build
    Hayward Pro-Series S244T sand filter system
    Hayward motor & pump (rpm 3450,model SP2607X10)
    Polaris 280 w/booster pump.Taylor K-2006 test kit

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    Major_in_MS's Avatar
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    Re: What's the cheapest, most practical way to drain half of pool water?

    Is your yard sloping away from the pool? In the past I've just used a couple of garden hoses. Tie a sock full of rocks to one end of the garden hose and sink it to the bottom of your pool, then feed the hose into the water so that it fills up with water and does not have any air pocket in it. When the hose is full cover the end with your hand to prevent any air from getting in and pull the hose out of the pool, careful to keep it full of water. Bring the end down into your yard so that it is lower than the surface of your water and remove your hand. Water should start flowing out of the garden hose and by siphon action drain your pool, at least until it looses it prime when the water level in the pool is lower than the end of the hose. Two or three garden hoses siphoning like this will lower the water level pretty quickly.
    24,200 gal., IG vinyl, 18' x 36' rectangular, average depth 5'. K-2006C
    Jandy SFTM22 sand filter, 1 HP Hayward Super Pump, Doheny's Discovery Robot.
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    One wife of 26 years (schoolteacher, first grade), four kids (ages 14,16,17, and 19).
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    Re: What's the cheapest, most practical way to drain half of pool water?

    Quote Originally Posted by Major_in_MS View Post
    Is your yard sloping away from the pool? .
    I live in Florida so not sure what you mean by this "slope" word

    But no, there is no place to put the end of the hose that would be lower than where I need it to be

    Thanks everybody for the input! I think a utility pump will be able to do the trick.

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    kellyfair's Avatar
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    Re: What's the cheapest, most practical way to drain half of pool water?

    Hi, fellow Floridian! I am in the same boat as you and will be pumping about 50% out, if I can get it done between rainstorms.

    I used to take the pool down in the winter (in Florida!) and I bought a small pump on Amazon:

    Easy and pretty quick, and inexpensive.
    Kelly, Tampa FL
    15' by 4' Intex above ground metal frame, about 5300 gallons
    Intex 120V Krystal Clear Sand Filter Pump & Saltwater System CG-28679 with E.C.O.
    TF100 Kit and Speedstir
    Intex Auto Cleaner - works great!

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    Re: What's the cheapest, most practical way to drain half of pool water?

    Quote Originally Posted by kellyfair View Post
    Hi, fellow Floridian! I am in the same boat as you and will be pumping about 50% out, if I can get it done between rainstorms.

    I used to take the pool down in the winter (in Florida!) and I bought a small pump on Amazon:

    Easy and pretty quick, and inexpensive.
    Bought it!

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    kellyfair's Avatar
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    Re: What's the cheapest, most practical way to drain half of pool water?

    Excellent! I'll be cranking mine up Saturday, if it isn't storming!
    Kelly, Tampa FL
    15' by 4' Intex above ground metal frame, about 5300 gallons
    Intex 120V Krystal Clear Sand Filter Pump & Saltwater System CG-28679 with E.C.O.
    TF100 Kit and Speedstir
    Intex Auto Cleaner - works great!

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    kellyfair's Avatar
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    Re: What's the cheapest, most practical way to drain half of pool water?

    How is it going, Doller? I started around 7am and water is down to the lower intake. Pool was extra full due to all the rain we've had in last week. I figure I'll be down to half or slightly under by noon. (Since this is second time I've had to do this, would rather drain too much than not enough!)
    Kelly, Tampa FL
    15' by 4' Intex above ground metal frame, about 5300 gallons
    Intex 120V Krystal Clear Sand Filter Pump & Saltwater System CG-28679 with E.C.O.
    TF100 Kit and Speedstir
    Intex Auto Cleaner - works great!

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    Re: What's the cheapest, most practical way to drain half of pool water?

    wouldn't it possible to just use your pool pump and discharge to waste? Hook up a vacuum hose to your skimmer and leave it at the bottom of the pool.
    Gunite Pool/Spa, CLI Caribbean blue crystal stone smooth, Pentair 3hp Intellifo VS, Pentair Quad DE Filter, Pentair 400k BTU Heater, KK Prowler 820, Pentair PSL4 controler with Screenlogic wifi, Inline Chlorinator, Pentair 1.5hp Spa Blower, TF-100 Test Kit w/ Speed Stir. My 2016 Pool Build

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    kellyfair's Avatar
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    Re: What's the cheapest, most practical way to drain half of pool water?

    Sure, in fact, that is how I did it last time. Since I only wanted to go just below the lower intake, that worked. It's messy for me though because I don't have enough of the proper sized hose to direct the waste water very far. Also, I have the over the side skimmer, not sure that part of your idea would work for me.

    But I'm draining well below the intake this time, and this little pump is surprisingly efficient. Just attach garden hose, put the other end of hose wherever you want water to go, sink pump, and plug in.
    Kelly, Tampa FL
    15' by 4' Intex above ground metal frame, about 5300 gallons
    Intex 120V Krystal Clear Sand Filter Pump & Saltwater System CG-28679 with E.C.O.
    TF100 Kit and Speedstir
    Intex Auto Cleaner - works great!

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