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Thread: winterizing skim filter ?

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    winterizing skim filter ?

    My parents' new backyard pond (described in more detail in this post: startup for ornamental pond )

    has two below-ground skim filter units installed, like this picture (which I hope has attached successfully to my post).

    This is a Waterway product, apparently sold primarily for above ground pools. In this particular installation, there are two of these skim filters installed, below grade. The skimmers are along the edge of the pond, about 2 - 3 feet apart from one another, and both connected with a Tee to an underground pipe that runs to the pump.

    To winterize this, would one blow out the pipe (one unit at a time) from the pump side, and then reach down to put a plug into the connection at the bottom of the cylindrical chamber that normally holds the filter cartridge? And should the whole container, from the filter space up into the skimmer then be treated the way a skimmer normally is treated in an inground pool (i.e. using something like the weighted empty bottles, or pieces of pool noodles, that I've seen recommended to protect skimmers against freeze damage)? I expect the pond water will be drained down to below the skimmer openings initially, but that wouldn't keep new water out of the skimmer and the lower filter container over the course of the winter...

    Does anyone have any experience with a unit like this below ground? We have fairly cold winter climate here; I just looked up frost line, which is listed as 42" for CT. Normal water depth of the pond itself is ~20", in case that matters.
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    18' x 48" ring top pool (Summer Escapes); 5500 gallons; set up June - October, stored during winter; Intex 2500 gph pump (B size cartridge filter) Hayward 21" sand filter + 1.5 hp single speed Powerflo Matrix pump (upgrade October 2016) *** K-2006 test kit, refills from tftestkits

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    Re: winterizing skim filter ?

    I'll try a bump, to get this back on page 1 for a bit... my main question is really whether this should be treated just as a deeper version of a standard skimmer? Or is there some gotcha here that I'm missing, in terms of winterizing?

    I've heard of gizmos but have never seen one in real life (my own pool, see signature, disappears entirely for the winter), so I may be missing some obvious problem with this unusual skimmer shape/construction.
    18' x 48" ring top pool (Summer Escapes); 5500 gallons; set up June - October, stored during winter; Intex 2500 gph pump (B size cartridge filter) Hayward 21" sand filter + 1.5 hp single speed Powerflo Matrix pump (upgrade October 2016) *** K-2006 test kit, refills from tftestkits

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    Catanzaro's Avatar
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    Re: winterizing skim filter ?

    How far is the run from the pond to the pump? Inside, is it threaded or just a round hole? You may want to contact the manufacturer of these pond skimmers to see how other people have winterized them? Does the top come off? (hard to tell from the picture). Maybe a Gizmo can be installed.
    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

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    Re: winterizing skim filter ?

    Run from skimmer units to the pump is probably 25' or so. The round top comes off (just like standard skimmer lid), under that is the skimmer basket, under that is where the filter cartridge sits. I don't know if the lower connection is threaded, but could probably find out; do you mean threads on the inner surface of that bottom connector?

    Although it is being used in a pond, this is actually sold as a swimming pool product (for AG pools).
    18' x 48" ring top pool (Summer Escapes); 5500 gallons; set up June - October, stored during winter; Intex 2500 gph pump (B size cartridge filter) Hayward 21" sand filter + 1.5 hp single speed Powerflo Matrix pump (upgrade October 2016) *** K-2006 test kit, refills from tftestkits

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    Catanzaro's Avatar
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    Re: winterizing skim filter ?

    If you are planning on closing the pool, then remove the filter cartridge, blow out the lines and plug them with a black rubber plug. Add some Styrofoam and/or a bottle of pool anti-freeze for expansion. I would close the skimmers like a normal swimming pool!
    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

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    Re: winterizing skim filter ?

    Thanks! I guess that is what we will try. I assume the styrofoam (or pieces of pool noodles or similar buoyant stuff) should be trapped under something else, so they don't just float to the top of the container if water gets in? Is that why people use weighted bottles?

    The manufacturer does have winterizing instructions, but since the unit is intended for an AG pool, the instructions include disconnecting all hoses so water can drain out the bottom. In our installation we won't be able to do that.

    I guess this winter will be an experiment!
    18' x 48" ring top pool (Summer Escapes); 5500 gallons; set up June - October, stored during winter; Intex 2500 gph pump (B size cartridge filter) Hayward 21" sand filter + 1.5 hp single speed Powerflo Matrix pump (upgrade October 2016) *** K-2006 test kit, refills from tftestkits

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