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Thread: I'm a little nervous about my first close....

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    Join Date
    Jul 2012
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    Chicago, IL
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    I'm a little nervous about my first close....

    ...but I shouldn't be with this forum to help me, I know. Raise the chlorine to shock level, run for 24 hours, drain 1 foot, bring the filter, pump, etc indoors, cover on and done, what could go wrong?

    I guess I have two concerns:

    1) I ordered a truck tire inner tube and plan on using it as a pillow to buffer the cover against the expanding ice. What is the best way to center this? Tie it off?

    2) How long might it take to drain? I need to drop a foot so that is about 5,000 gallons. Syphoning with 3 garden hoses is my plan, they will need to run about 150 feet each to get to the street, and I have one small pump that I am hoping actually works (will test it tonight) that claims it will move about 350 gallon/hour. What are other's experiences in terms of time?
    Dedicated TFPer since 2012 with recommended test kit
    Above ground, 30 foot round pool, 21,000 gallons
    Hayward 150 sq foot cartridge filter, 1HP Waterway pump
    Raypak 400K BTU NG Heater!
    Installed in 2006? (just a guess, pool came with house I purchased in June 2012)

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    MikeInNH's Avatar
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    Sep 2007
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    Southern NH
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    Re: I'm a little nervous about my first close....

    I suggest you also plug your return and depending on how low you go with your water you may want to put a cover over the inside of the skimmer. This is because the weight of ice and snow may push the unfrozen water up high enough to get into the plastic pieces if not plugged. I use both and only drop my water a few inches, haven't had an issue as of yet and for the low cost of the plugs it's worth it.

    Your 2 concerns:
    1)I've never heard of anyone using a truck tube, maybe someone else would have opinions on that. I use a large pool pillow. I tie it off from the 4 corners of the pillow to the corners of my oval pool. With a tube and circular pool I would think 3 would do the job. This year I realized that it is easier to put the cover on while the water is high (we had a lot of rain lately) and I will drain the pool down after I have everything cinched down except for one corner. I also loosen the ropes a bit because they will be very taught at this point. I used string one year and the wind ended up blowing the pillow hard enough to break the string and push the pillow to one end.

    2)I find the easiest way to drain is by using my vac hose. I grab two sections, fill it with water by dunking it in the pool, cover one end with my hand then quickly pulling over the side to get a siphon going. Once going I can add as many sections as I want to the hose to aim it where I want. Getting 150' away makes it a bit tougher but 3 garden hoses will do it.
    Mike
    2007 1st full year with AG pool~15k gallons 18'x33' JW
    6/2010 added 2 button Intex SWG-painless except for when reset
    Switched to BBB from Baquacil (couldn't pay me to go back)

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    Re: I'm a little nervous about my first close....

    Thanks Mike, that is some useful advice. A couple of follow ups.

    Do I need to change out my skimmer face plate to be compatible with a skimmer cover or are they universal provided I match up the size? I assume the return plug is quite universal.

    Why is it easier to put the cover on at high water levels? Is it just because you can float it across the surface and avoid having to awkwardly reach down for it, etc.?

    I am hoping to create a siphon with garden hoses by dropping one end into the pool turning the faucet on to fill the hose, and then unscrewing at the faucet and dragging that side into the street. My guess would be that if my little pump moves 350 gal/hour then syphon pressure would be much less so I'll assume 200 gal/hr. 5000 gallons, 200 gallons/hour and 3 hoses is just over 8 hours. If anyone has experience that would suggest I am way off base on that, please chime in.
    Dedicated TFPer since 2012 with recommended test kit
    Above ground, 30 foot round pool, 21,000 gallons
    Hayward 150 sq foot cartridge filter, 1HP Waterway pump
    Raypak 400K BTU NG Heater!
    Installed in 2006? (just a guess, pool came with house I purchased in June 2012)

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    MikeInNH's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    Southern NH
    Posts
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    Re: I'm a little nervous about my first close....

    There seems to be a few kinds of skimmer covers depending on the skimmer you have. Mine is standard like this: http://www.namcopool.com/pool/winterizi ... -plug.html
    Here's some others: http://www.poolcenter.com/winter_pool_s ... r%20Covers

    Yes on the water level, the cover didn't fall under the pool edge as easily so was easier to deal with seeing it's large and has to go a certain way.

    The garden hose idea will work. Flow will depend on how low the end of the hose is. The lower it is from the pool level the quicker it will run.

    Good luck!
    Mike
    2007 1st full year with AG pool~15k gallons 18'x33' JW
    6/2010 added 2 button Intex SWG-painless except for when reset
    Switched to BBB from Baquacil (couldn't pay me to go back)

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    Location
    Chicago, IL
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    Re: I'm a little nervous about my first close....

    You've convinced me Mike. I was going to skip the skimmer cover and return plug, but I am seeing the benefit of only dropping a couple inches below the return/skimmer lines rather than a full 6 in terms of water savings and better cover support.

    With regard to the return plug, how exactly does that work? Does the assembly just unscrew on the inside of the pool (mine appears to also have a light which does not work) leaving a hole to pop the plug into?
    Dedicated TFPer since 2012 with recommended test kit
    Above ground, 30 foot round pool, 21,000 gallons
    Hayward 150 sq foot cartridge filter, 1HP Waterway pump
    Raypak 400K BTU NG Heater!
    Installed in 2006? (just a guess, pool came with house I purchased in June 2012)

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    MikeInNH's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    Southern NH
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    476

    Re: I'm a little nervous about my first close....

    The return plug is a rubber plug with a slight cone shape and a screw with wingnut on it. You push it into the return hole from the inside (a bit of o-ring lube helps) and then tighten the wing nut. Hopefully your type of light fixture will allow this, mine does after I remove the bulb assembly. Example of the plug is below.
    http://www.poolcenter.com/ff1008-08-Fre ... h-Pipe.jpg
    Mike
    2007 1st full year with AG pool~15k gallons 18'x33' JW
    6/2010 added 2 button Intex SWG-painless except for when reset
    Switched to BBB from Baquacil (couldn't pay me to go back)

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