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Thread: How much power does a shop vac need for closing?

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    How much power does a shop vac need for closing?

    I thought I had seen some recommendations about shop vacs last fall, regarding how powerful the shop vac needed to be to blow out the lines when closing, but my searches aren't finding many details.

    In preparation for closing my AG pool (much later) this fall, I thought about watching for a sale & getting this 6.5 HP vac at Home Depot.

    At Costo today, I saw something they list as "SHOP VAC 12G 4.5HP WET/DRY VAC W / DETACHABLE BLOWER", but it isn't available online so I can't provide a link to details.

    I only have 1 skimmer & 1 return line, along with solar panels to blow out -- no drain other than the skimmer, though both lines are about 12" underground for about 10 feet.

    Are there any recommendations as to what power specs to look for? Thanks.
    Andy
    11K gal 15x30 AG; 1.5 Hp Hayward pump + XStream 150 sq ft cartridge filter; AquaCal SQ110 heat pump; solar cover; Pool Rover Jr cleaner

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    Mod Squad Bama Rambler's Avatar
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    Re: How much power does a shop vac need for closing?

    The spec you need to know isn't listed in any literature. Pressure developed is what you need to know and that isn't listed by any shop vacs/blowers.
    Dave J. TFP Moderator
    24' x 52" Round AGP. 2hp/¼hp SPL Power-Flo 2-speed pump. 200sqft Waterway Cartridge Filter. 45MHP2(3GPD) Stenner Peristaltic Pump
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    Heckpools's Avatar
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    Re: How much power does a shop vac need for closing?

    Id use a compresser if possible. The small pancake compressers sold at walmart will work just fine.
    You can thread the air fitting right into the spot for the drain plug on the pump.
    Throw the filter on REC.( if you have a sand filter,) and it will blow out your pump, skimmer, return and solar panels.

    Are the solar panels mounted on the roof of your house? Shop vac may not be strong enough.

    The Company i worked for before i went out on my own had an orange blower/liner vac made for winterizing pool plumbing and it couldnt even make the maindrains blow out 8ft down.
    [center:3gj9kdnn]Matt Heck
    "HECK OF A POOL SERVICE LLC"
    Serving Ocean co. NJ
    COMPANY INFO BELOW
    http://maps.google.com/maps/place?hl=en ... 2995187987[/center:3gj9kdnn]

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    h2ctpdjl's Avatar
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    Re: How much power does a shop vac need for closing?

    Quote Originally Posted by Opus4
    I thought I had seen some recommendations about shop vacs last fall, regarding how powerful the shop vac needed to be to blow out the lines when closing, but my searches aren't finding many details.

    In preparation for closing my AG pool (much later) this fall, I thought about watching for a sale & getting this 6.5 HP vac at Home Depot.

    At Costo today, I saw something they list as "SHOP VAC 12G 4.5HP WET/DRY VAC W / DETACHABLE BLOWER", but it isn't available online so I can't provide a link to details.

    I only have 1 skimmer & 1 return line, along with solar panels to blow out -- no drain other than the skimmer.

    Are there any recommendations as to what power specs to look for? Thanks.


    I bought the Rigid 5hp shop vac last year and it did a great job blowing out the lines for me.
    18,000 gal, 18x32 IGP, vinyl liner, 3 to 5.5ft depth. One inlet/skimmer (Aqua Genie), one main drain. Hayward Pro Series Sand Filter w/filtration rate of 20 GPM/FT, Two-Speed Pentair Whisperflo 1 HP pump, Natural Gas Hayward H200 pool heater, Aquabot T2 (200 Series) Robotic Pool Cleaner (my best friend), Automatic Electric Pool Cover (2nd best friend).

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    Re: How much power does a shop vac need for closing?

    Quote Originally Posted by Heckpools
    Id use a compresser if possible. The small pancake compressers sold at walmart will work just fine.
    You can thread the air fitting right into the spot for the drain plug on the pump.
    Throw the filter on REC.( if you have a sand filter,) and it will blow out your pump, skimmer, return and solar panels.

    .
    This is actually the best advice I've seen for blowing out lines if you have a sand filter that you can put on RECIRCULATE. Done this way, a compressor will work (normally they have a tough time since they dont move a lot of air). This method basically uses a closed system and runs the air thru the closed up pump. This way, all the lines, both suction and returns, will blow air. Theres really no need to lower the water below the returns. Just let it bubble and screw the plug in while it bubbles. Just thow the multiport to backwash when you plug the last pipe in the pool so you dont blow the filter. i saw this method used on a Youtube video. works great.
    14,000 gallon IG, Vinyl. Hayward 3/4 hp superpump, Penatair IC40 SWCG, Pentair automation, Hayward sand filter, Aqua Comfort heat pump, Hayward 400k Lo-Nox LP heater.

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    Re: How much power does a shop vac need for closing?

    I've edited my question in the first post to indicate that while I don't have a main drain, both the skimmer/return lines are about 12" underground for about 10 feet. Unless the compressor blows a lot of air, wouldn't it leave a fair amount of water in the underground lines?

    I've got a cartridge filter, btw.

    I had someone close it for me last year & they just had a small blower, but I didn't pay attention to what it was, unfortunately.
    Andy
    11K gal 15x30 AG; 1.5 Hp Hayward pump + XStream 150 sq ft cartridge filter; AquaCal SQ110 heat pump; solar cover; Pool Rover Jr cleaner

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    Re: How much power does a shop vac need for closing?

    The RINSE setting works better than B/W. Opening the filter's drain cap lets out even more.

    Matt, That blower was worn out. I have the same one and can blow out a 12' drain easily.

    Pancakes won't provide the volume needed for a long enough period. The ONLY time I use them is with Paramount floor systems and their special plugs.

    Scott
    Owner of - PoolGuyNJ LLC
    Expert Pool and Spa Repairs, Renovations, and Augmentation. Helping people decide what is the right gear for meeting their needs. Expectations Set, Expectations Met, No Surprises.

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    Re: How much power does a shop vac need for closing?

    Quote Originally Posted by bk406
    Quote Originally Posted by Heckpools
    Id use a compresser if possible. The small pancake compressers sold at walmart will work just fine.
    You can thread the air fitting right into the spot for the drain plug on the pump.
    Throw the filter on REC.( if you have a sand filter,) and it will blow out your pump, skimmer, return and solar panels.

    .
    This is actually the best advice I've seen for blowing out lines if you have a sand filter that you can put on RECIRCULATE. Done this way, a compressor will work (normally they have a tough time since they dont move a lot of air). This method basically uses a closed system and runs the air thru the closed up pump. This way, all the lines, both suction and returns, will blow air. Theres really no need to lower the water below the returns. Just let it bubble and screw the plug in while it bubbles. Just thow the multiport to backwash when you plug the last pipe in the pool so you dont blow the filter. i saw this method used on a Youtube video. works great.
    This is the way I have been closing mine since 2005. It is key to install a pressure regulator (or use the regulator on the unit) to reduce pressure to 15-20 psi. That is more than enough to blow the main drain, and shoot water in the skimmer 8 feet in the air, and allows the compressor to keep pace indefinitely. If you keep it at 90 psi., it empties the tank pretty quickly, and then the compressor can't keep up. My compressor, a 5hp 50gal. is actually in the basement, and, since I only have 100' of air hose and its 200' to the pool, I use good old garden hose at 20psi and attach it to a hose bibb I installed between the pump and the MPV. The hose bibb controls the air flow as I switch the valves around.
    Current: 28,000G 18'x36' I/G AnthonySylvan Plaster; Waterway 60 sq.ft. DE Filter; 1.0hp x 1.65 SF Two-Speed (B2982) WhisperFlo; 2004-Present
    Previous: 40,000G 20'x40' I/G Koven unlined WWII salvage 5/8" marine steel; Lomart Stainless Sand Filter; 3/4hp Hayward SuperPump; 1946-2003 (managed by me from about 1964)
    Ancient Taylor K-2000, upgraded with Taylor CH, TA, and FAS-DPD, and TFT CYA tests.

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    Re: How much power does a shop vac need for closing?

    A 50 gallon compressor has the volume needed. A 2 gallon pancake doesn't.

    Opus is quite correct the the pancake would likely leave plenty of water in the line. The compressor that fills the tank doesn't produce a large volume, it creates a lot of pressure, sort of like a Polaris booster pump.

    Scott
    Owner of - PoolGuyNJ LLC
    Expert Pool and Spa Repairs, Renovations, and Augmentation. Helping people decide what is the right gear for meeting their needs. Expectations Set, Expectations Met, No Surprises.

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    Re: How much power does a shop vac need for closing?

    I would just like to point out an electric leaf blower is likely to generator a lot more pressure and air flow than a wet/dry vac, and will likely be a lot cheaper algo.

    Ike
    Indoor 20x40 35,000 gallon vinyl pool with 1.5 HP 2 speed Jandy FloPro pump, Hayward EC75 Perflex DE filter, 11 4x12 Techno-Solis solar panels w/ Aquasolar controller, Aquabot Turbo T Robot Cleaner. Also LMI metering chlorine dispenser pump and HotSpring Jetsetter
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    Re: How much power does a shop vac need for closing?

    Hmmm ... well, I thought the answer would be more clear-cut than this.

    What I like about the shop vacs I'm looking at is that they have detachable blowers, so they would be similar to leaf blowers while also being useful as a vac, when needed. I have no other current use for an air compressor & the larger ones look to be a lot more expensive than what I want to spend, at least for something I would use once a year.

    I suppose I may just end up trying a vac/blower.
    Andy
    11K gal 15x30 AG; 1.5 Hp Hayward pump + XStream 150 sq ft cartridge filter; AquaCal SQ110 heat pump; solar cover; Pool Rover Jr cleaner

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    Heckpools's Avatar
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    Re: How much power does a shop vac need for closing?

    Scott, the orange blower was a 2hp, not the 3hp now sold at scp ect..

    My brother winterizes most of the sprinkler systems for my pool customers, and uses nothing but a pancake compressor. I have a 3hp blower vac, made for pool closings and liner installs that also blows maindrains 12ft deep with no problem, yet it wouldnt even pop up the closest sprinkler head when we tried using it for a sprinkler job.

    With the pankcake, he blows each zone twice... the first time gets out 90% of the water from each sprinkler head in that zone, then second round just spits some water and mist.

    Im pretty sure this pool we are talking about is an above ground pool, with solar.

    personally, id feel more comfortable with a compressor then a shopvac...

    OR, you can buy yourself the type of blower i use for about $350. Then you can blowout all your neighbors pools for 75$ and make some extra cash on the side

    i LOVE this little fella
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    [center:3gj9kdnn]Matt Heck
    "HECK OF A POOL SERVICE LLC"
    Serving Ocean co. NJ
    COMPANY INFO BELOW
    http://maps.google.com/maps/place?hl=en ... 2995187987[/center:3gj9kdnn]

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