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Thread: Closing AG Pool with Main Drain

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    Join Date
    Oct 2016
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    Omaha, Nebraska
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    Closing AG Pool with Main Drain

    I'm a first time pool owner in Nebraska (hard freezes, frost line 3 feet). My wife and I just bought this house in July, and it came with a 20x40' doughboy above ground pool. The pool has a 'deep end' 6 feet deep, with a bottom drain. It's now about time to winterize, and I wanted to get some input on how to do this for this pool. Reading some other threads (including this one) about winterizing AGPs with bottom drains, I think this pool is a bit different, in that the bottom drain is not close to the pump. The bottom drain is in fact at the opposite end of the pool from the pump, It first comes up out from under the deep end, and up a U-trap a couple feet above the ground. at the top of this is a valve. Then it runs about 30 feet alongside the pool under the deck, then there is another valve, right before a Y connector where the skimmer joins (the skimmer has it's own valve, so you can operate just the skimmer, just the bottom drain, or both), and then the pump connects on the 'base' of the Y connector. Here's a couple pictures. The first one is looking toward the deep end wit hit's trap in the distance, and second photo is of that trap.
    Attachment 54945Attachment 54946
    I don't think I can raise the end of the Y connector high enough above the water to be able to just pour in antifreeze. Based on the U trap with valve at the deep end, I was thinking maybe the best solution would be to blow air into the line till bubbles come out the drain using an adapter like what Garrybunk posted above. Due to the U trap, this would mean that the pipe on the pool side of the trap is full of air entirely, until the very bottom below the drain, which is at least a couple feet below the dirt, not to mention below the pool itself. After filling the line with air, I'd close off the trap valve, trapping the air in that section. Then I'd simply gravity drain the line on the pump side so it would also be empty. I do have an air compressor that I regularly use at 120psi for air tools. Anyone have an idea if this is enough to force out 6 feet of water pressure?

    The other thought was to maybe get a piece of hose to extend from the Y connector high enough to be able to pour in the antifreeze. But my concern there is in order to get antifreeze all the way to the drain I have to overcome that U trap. This will take a lot of antifreeze. Then in the summer I'd be blasting all that stuff out on the lawn, and I'm on an acreage with a well, so I'm kind of sensitive to pouring chemicals on the ground. I've read that antifreeze can contaminate groundwater.

    The weird part about all this is that the U trap was not closed when I opened the pool in July. It was wide open. So the previous closing of the pool did not utilize the trap. When I first ran the bottom drain I ran it to waste, so I'm not sure if it was full of antifreeze or what. Due to my ignorance and the idiocy of a couple people from the pool store, the opening itself was a disaster that dumped all the winter leaf litter from the cover into the pool, so I could not see the bottom drain when I first ran it, to see if there was any antifreeze showing. A big thanks to everyone at TFP btw. These forums got me through a really disastrous pool opening, and very steep learning curve.

    So ya, right now I'm leaning towards the air method, but wanted to get some other input. Thanks for reading this rather long post, and I hope piggybacking on another thread of the same subject was ok.

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    Catanzaro's Avatar
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    Jul 2014
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    Re: Closing AG Pool with Main Drain

    Oceans2000:

    Welcome to TFP! Please add your signature. Your pictures were not uploaded. Please upload pictures again of equipment pad and skimmers, returns and possibly main drain. I will be glad to assist you in closing your pool. Also, please ask your questions only in a question format. Thanks!
    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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    Oct 2016
    Location
    Omaha, Nebraska
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    Re: Closing AG Pool with Main Drain

    Ok, here's pictures again:

    IMG_20161003_082737_784.jpgIMG_20161003_083942_593.jpg
    That first pic is looking from the pump end, toward the main drain end in the distance. Second picture is the raised 'trap' they set up down there with a valve. I'll try to get some pictures of the other equipment tomorrow (it's night as I write this). Sorry for delayed response, it's a busy week. I kind of feel like I understand the other stuff well enough. It's just mainly how to deal with this main drain that has me hesitating. I'm not sure what you mean by question format. You mean just ask questions, don't ramble on about other thoughts (as I sometimes do)?

    Apparently signatures aren't post-added. So in brief doughboy 22k gal, sand filter, surrounded by composite wood deck. I'll have to get more exact numbers on the pump and filter later. It has one skimmer and one return jet, both at the same end about 5' apart. Plus the main drain of course. As far as testing I've been using strips and a basic chemical kit from pool store. Bought the strips before I found TFP, but they've been helpful in general matters. I mainly use the chemical kit for ph testing as the strips are hard to differentiate the ph. I was planning on getting one of the fancy kits recommended here nearer the start of the 2017 season, so it could be fresh as possible.

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    Catanzaro's Avatar
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    Re: Closing AG Pool with Main Drain

    Probably the best thing to do is to disconnect everything considering you have an AG Pool. You could blow water out of the remaining lines with a shop vac, which should not be too hard.
    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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    PoolguyinCT's Avatar
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    Connecticut
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    Re: Closing AG Pool with Main Drain

    Get that junky valve out of there & replace with a reliable "positive seal" valve & you can airlock that drain..


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