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Thread: Best solution for the main drain problem

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    Best solution for the main drain problem

    Is this product the best solution for the main drain problem?

    http://www.aamfg.com/avscDrain.php

    What other solutions are there?

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    Mod Squad Bama Rambler's Avatar
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    Re: Best solution for the main drain problem

    What main drain problem?

    Are you having a particular problem?
    Dave J. TFP Moderator
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    Re: Best solution for the main drain problem

    Quote Originally Posted by Bama Rambler
    What main drain problem?

    Are you having a particular problem?
    Sorry - I just assumed that "the main drain problem" would be enough.

    I was referring to the main drain problem where people get entrapped and drowned or eviscerated.

    I have read the theory that creating two main drains will solve the problem, but I am not convinced. It seems like it will significantly help the problem but not eliminate it completely.

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    No main drain in gunite or shotcrete pool

    Hello all,

    I have found this thread on TFP http://www.troublefreepool.com/main-...rain-t240.html, but it has been years since it was last updated and I am looking for more up to date information.

    Has there been any advancement on proving whether or not a main drain is actually required in a concrete pool?

    I have read this article http://www.apsp.org/DocumentFiles/35.pdf and it went to great lengths to prove that multiple main drains don't eliminate the problem completely. The only way to do that is to eliminate the main drain completely.

    I have read articles that suggest putting in multiple skimmers and then multiple returns low on the wall will create enough circulation to filter, treat, heat, etc... the water. Does anyone have more recent information or better yet has anyone built a concrete pool without a main drain?

    Thanks.

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    Re: No main drain in gunite or shotcrete pool

    I cannot speak to any code or legalities, but I will tell you that my 2 floor drains stay almost completely shut off in normal operation. I only open the floor valve all the way when I brush the pool.
    Otherwise it is 80%+ closed off.
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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: No main drain in gunite or shotcrete pool

    Certainly no drain is required for any practical reason, though it can be nice to have. Nor are there regulations requiring main drains anywhere that I know of, though I suppose there might be some jurisdiction somewhere that requires main drains in commercial pools, but there is nothing like that for residential pools. If there is a drain, it must meet safety regulations, which usually means a dual drain with anti-entrapment covers, though there are some other options.
    19K gal, vinyl, 1/2 HP WhisperFlo pump, 200 sqft cartridge filter, AutoPilot Digital SWG, Dolphin Dynamic cleaning robot
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    Re: No main drain in gunite or shotcrete pool

    Quote Originally Posted by JasonLion
    Certainly no drain is required for any practical reason, though it can be nice to have. Nor are there regulations requiring main drains anywhere that I know of, though I suppose there might be some jurisdiction somewhere that requires main drains in commercial pools, but there is nothing like that for residential pools. If there is a drain, it must meet safety regulations, which usually means a dual drain with anti-entrapment covers, though there are some other options.
    What are some of the nice to have features that a main drain provides? In other words what are some of the things I won't be able to do if I don't have a main drain?

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    Re: Best solution for the main drain problem

    There isn't anything that you "won't be able to do". A main drain improves circulation. Circulation can be fine without a main drain, it is just easier for it to be fine with. A main drain doesn't get clogged with leaves the way skimmers can, so it makes it less likely that the pump will run dry due to blocked skimmers. And a main drain also gives you somewhere to brush debris into, which you could vacuum up instead.
    19K gal, vinyl, 1/2 HP WhisperFlo pump, 200 sqft cartridge filter, AutoPilot Digital SWG, Dolphin Dynamic cleaning robot
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    Re: Best solution for the main drain problem

    OK - so would it be a viable install for me to install two main drains covered by an AVSC cover like the one in my first post. The two drains would be hooked up to one valve and the valve would open and close on a timer. I might run the timer so it is only open from 2:00am to 6:00am. That way I get the benefit of the main drain, have it open only when nobody would ever be swimming in it and remove the human element from the equation.

    If I put in 2 or 3 skimmers, I could reduce the likely hood of having them all get blocked and thereby burning out the pump.

    Thoughts?

    Thanks.

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    Mod Squad Bama Rambler's Avatar
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    Re: Best solution for the main drain problem

    A lot of us don't have but one skimmer and you rarely ever read about burning out the pump because the skimmer clogged and ran the pump dry.
    Dave J. TFP Moderator
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    Re: Best solution for the main drain problem

    Quote Originally Posted by Bama Rambler
    A lot of us don't have but one skimmer and you rarely ever read about burning out the pump because the skimmer clogged and ran the pump dry.
    That's true, but most of you also probably run a main drain no?

    I'm sure the main drain provides enough water to the pump without the skimmer, but if the main drain were disabled and the skimmer got blocked, then the pump would almost certainly burn out right?

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    Re: Best solution for the main drain problem

    I find that the main drains are helpful in the fall and spring when the water level is below the skimmer. Without the main drains I wouldn't have any way to circulate the water when the water level is low. During normal operation I don't normally use them because I want to skim what is on the surface of the water. If I turn the main drains on then the skimmers don't pull in enough water to keep the surface of the water clear of bugs and other junk that lands on it. I'm also a little paranoid when using the main drains that a pipe will burst, and since I'm sucking from the bottom of the pool, completely suck it dry. At least if I'm running the skimmers, the worst I can do is suck it down to the skimmers and then run the pump dry. I would rather replace a $200 pump than buy a new liner and refill the whole pool.

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    Re: Best solution for the main drain problem

    I am curious how this translated to side drains for water features. I will have side drains for a slide pump and others fr waterfall pump. Waterfall could pull 150 gpm. Is two drains enough to keep the velocity in each low enough to not cause entrapment? I assume the same distance code applies to side drains... is it 3'?
    32K gal, gunite, French Gray DB, IntelliFlo VF, IntelliFlo, WhisperFlo, Quad DE 100 filter, IntelliTouch, IC-60 SWG, IntelliChem, Dolphin M5

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    Mod Squad Bama Rambler's Avatar
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    Re: Best solution for the main drain problem

    [quote=Garet Jax]
    Quote Originally Posted by "Bama Rambler":377159r0
    A lot of us don't have but one skimmer and you rarely ever read about burning out the pump because the skimmer clogged and ran the pump dry.
    That's true, but most of you also probably run a main drain no?[/quote:377159r0]Nope, I don't have a main drain at all. I live in a forest and have had to clear the basket several times a day but it's never clogged it completely enough to cause the pump to completely run dry.
    Dave J. TFP Moderator
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    Re: Best solution for the main drain problem

    I have 2 main drains with the anti entrapment covers, there is no way to get stuck to one even if the valve is set to 100% main drain. I've tried to feel the suction and there is "none" that will do anything.
    DONE, 20 x 40, inground gunite, 30" raised bond beam with 3 12" sheer descents, 8' diving board, pentair 420 cartridge filter, vs-3050 pump, intellechlor ic-40, auto cvr, Tahoe blue pebble tech, 6ea 4' x 12.5' & 2ea 1' x 12.5' helicol solar panels, legend robotic cleaner.

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    Re: Best solution for the main drain problem

    I put in my pool last year and was concerned about this, but the new vgba regs solved a lot of this. New drains require 2 drains each capable of taking the full flow, spaced a certain distance apart. They also require skid entrapment covers. I purchased something similar to this:

    http://www.amazon.com/Hayward-Drain-Vin ... main+drain

    I'm not too concerned, but do shut them off when the kids are in the pool. Check out the new laws and drains available.

    Drains are rated for flow, but I think the ones I have only rate at about 90gpm, so you would need 2 sets for that waterfall.

    Please don't consider this safety advise, but do take a look at the safety of current drains.
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    Re: Best solution for the main drain problem

    One thing to remember is vgb safety act at this timw does not apply to residential pools. IMO put double main drains with anti entrapment grates, put a valve on the line in front of the pump and run it at about 50 %.
    Over 30 years in the pool business
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