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Thread: Oops! Drained Filter instead of Pool...now what?

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    Oops! Drained Filter instead of Pool...now what?

    We are new to pool ownership and need help! We can't reach anyone with info at the pool company who installed the pool last year.

    We are in NJ in Hurricane Irene's path. We thought it would be a good idea to drain the pool a few inches but have no idea how to do this. We found the word "drain" on the filter pump and opened it (we turned the filter off first) thinking this might drain the pool (yes, I know, not smart!) Apparently, (and hindsight being 20/20) this only drained the filter and once it was empty the water stopped pouring out. Now we still have a full pool and an empty filter.

    Now, I am concerned about restarting the filter without water in it. I'm thinking some kind of priming must be involved? Do we need to release the air valve? What steps should we take? Do we turn off the circuit breakers before doing anything else? I REALLY appreciate suggestions!

    Also, if anyone has answers to the question we had in the first place: "how to drain the pool" I welcome your answers!

    Thanks!!!

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    CUTiger78's Avatar
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    May 2009
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    Re: Oops! Drained Filter instead of Pool...now what?

    What kind of filter? Sand, cartridge, or DE?

    What kind of pool? In-ground or above-ground.

    Probably doesn't matter. I'd just put the filter in the filter mode, just like normal, and turn the pump back on.

    I've been through a number of hurricanes, tropical storms, etc. with my in-ground pool. Never drained it before hand, but sometimes vacuumed to waste after the storm to clean out debris and reduce the water level.

    Irene's rain started here (near DC) at 1030.

    Good luck!
    36K gallon 42X22 gunite/plaster kidney-shaped IG;
    1 hp Hayward Super Pump (new in 2012);
    Hayward S244T sand filter w/ Zeosand (both new in 2009);
    175K BTU LAARS Lite2 LG natural gas heater; Polaris 380;
    TF-100 test kit.

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    Join Date
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    Youngsville NC
    Posts
    395

    Re: Oops! Drained Filter instead of Pool...now what?

    Quote Originally Posted by CUTiger78
    What kind of filter? Sand, cartridge, or DE?

    What kind of pool? In-ground or above-ground.

    Probably doesn't matter. I'd just put the filter in the filter mode, just like normal, and turn the pump back on.

    I've been through a number of hurricanes, tropical storms, etc. with my in-ground pool. Never drained it before hand, but sometimes vacuumed to waste after the storm to clean out debris and reduce the water level.

    Irene's rain started here (near DC) at 1030.

    Good luck!
    +1 - I don't usually worry about draining before a storm, and then I usually drain through the backwash. I even set the timer to come on at 9PM (instead of 2AM) and removed the Off dog - I'll put them back to normal schedule tomorrow.
    16x32 IG 19,000 gallons, Pentair 1.5 hp Energy Efficient Superflo pump (348024),vinyl liner, Chlorine dispenser, Hayward S-244T sand filter

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    Re: Oops! Drained Filter instead of Pool...now what?

    If it is a cartridge filter, you ought to be able to simply start the pump as normal and bleed the air off the filter at the top as it fills up. That is what we do when we clean the cart. After it is reassembled it is empty and it simply refills as you blow the air off the top.

    If you know where the excess water will go maybe you don't need to drain any water off the pool. It looked like my IG pool was installed with some thought given to where overflow would go. One side is a tiny fraction of an inch lower than the other and that way flows down a path to the side yard. Unless you are concerned that the flow could head toward the house, it may not matter.
    23,000 gallon in ground pool with rock waterfall and spillover spa, Aqualink control system, Polaris 380 cleaner, Purex Triton Clean&Clear Plus cartridge filter. Located in The Woodlands, Texas.

    Pool owner since Nov 2008, Trouble Free since April 2009. Happy to help when I can.

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    Re: Oops! Drained Filter instead of Pool...now what?

    You simply turn off the pump, set the diverter to "drain" and turn the pump on.

    When the pool is drained, turn off the pump, set the diverter to "filter", and turn the pump on.

    I drained my pool a few times during the storm because I didn't need any additional water in the back yard.
    15,000 gallon unpainted plaster. Sand filter. Polaris 380.

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    Re: Oops! Drained Filter instead of Pool...now what?

    Thanks everyone for the advice. I really appreciate it. We were very fortunate because a couple of hours before the storm began, a representative from the pool company called us and actually stopped by to show us exactly what to do.

    I apologize that the detailed info about our pool that is contained in my "signature" did not appear on my initial post. Anyway, it is a 30,000 gallon inground pool but I have no idea the type of filter. It sits adjacent to a walkout basement so I was worried that an overflowing pool could mean a flooded basement. The yard is pitched to the back and the side but, still, I was concerned.

    The guy from the pool company instructed us to attach a hose to the side of the filter and open the valve. We put the other end of the hose in the corner of our lot where we have a grate that leads directly to the sewer. We drained the pool as it filled from the rain and it all worked out fine.

    Thanks again for the advice. This is a great site!

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