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Thread: Blowing lines and antifreeze questions-also gas leaf blower?

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    zimm's Avatar
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    Blowing lines and antifreeze questions-also gas leaf blower?

    I'm going to close the pool myself this year (first year with the pool). I helped open it so I know there are plugs and drains and where they are. I've read for an hour but still have questions.

    I have a large shop vac, an air compressor, and a stihl gas powered leaf blower at my disposal.

    My pool set up: 1 main drain, 1 skimmer, 4 returns
    1 valve chooses skimmer or main drain
    1 return selector valve chooses between the 2 end returns and the 2 spa returns at the steps
    I have a boost pump and line going to a polaris 280 wall fitting- the boost pump is tied in just upstream of the return selector valve (can't isloate it).

    So.... I'm thinking I'm going to drain pool to 4" below the returns.

    I'm lost on how to blow out the lines. To get the main drain- I can turn off the returns, block off the polaris port, and then put the valve halfway between skimmer and main drain- and blow air into the skimmer. That should get air down there. Then turn off main drain.

    Then blow air in skimmer, and select step returns, then plug 'em. Then select wall returns and plug them. Then the polaris port should blow out.

    Am I missing anything?

    Where does the antifreeze go? Pour into skimmer?

    I'm thinking the leaf blower will supply waaaaay more air than the shop vac- anyone try that yet?
    45'x12' 17k gal, IG plaster, Pool Pilot Nano+ SWG, 1/2hp Whisperflo pump, PAC-FAB TA-60D sand filter, Raypak 266 heater
    Pool School + Test Kit + Pool Math = Trouble Free Pool

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    Re: Blowing lines and antifreeze questions-also gas leaf blo

    I always hook up my small air compressor to the Hayward pump with a 1/4 fitting. Turn the compressor on and start pumping air.

    My 1st skimmer will start blowing air and then I plug it.
    My 2nd skimmer will then bubble and then I plug it.
    Then my 1st return will bubble and then plug it.
    Then my 2nd return will bubble then plug it.
    Last is my main drain will bubble then use the valve to close that drain off and trap the air.

    Then I pour 2 gallons of antifreeze down each skimmer and fill the skimmer box 1/2 way with antifreeze.

    Then I take a container that's half full with antifreeze and put in each skimmer.
    19,000 gal - Vinyl IG - Sand filter -1.5hp. - Taylor k 2006 - Loop Loc cover

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    zimm's Avatar
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    Re: Blowing lines and antifreeze questions-also gas leaf blo

    Ah, that's an interesting idea. Do you use the 1/4" fitting into the drain plug of the basket pot? That method blows out the filter, heater, SWG, and return lines...
    45'x12' 17k gal, IG plaster, Pool Pilot Nano+ SWG, 1/2hp Whisperflo pump, PAC-FAB TA-60D sand filter, Raypak 266 heater
    Pool School + Test Kit + Pool Math = Trouble Free Pool

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    Re: Blowing lines and antifreeze questions-also gas leaf blo

    I think you will get more volume with the leaf blower and that is what you want , not pressure.

    I just use a little pancake air compressor and just let it run and as the lines fill up with air it pushes out the water.

    I also know doing in my way leaves a little water in the lines , but that same water ends up by gravity in my main drain pipe at the deep end of the pool at 7 ' deep, plus it gets 4 gals of antifreeze mixed with it from pouring in from the 2 skimmers.
    19,000 gal - Vinyl IG - Sand filter -1.5hp. - Taylor k 2006 - Loop Loc cover

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    Re: Blowing lines and antifreeze questions-also gas leaf blo

    Quote Originally Posted by zimm
    Ah, that's an interesting idea. Do you use the 1/4" fitting into the drain plug of the basket pot? That method blows out the filter, heater, SWG, and return lines...

    Yes that's we're I put the 1/4 fitting, works well.
    19,000 gal - Vinyl IG - Sand filter -1.5hp. - Taylor k 2006 - Loop Loc cover

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    Re: Blowing lines and antifreeze questions-also gas leaf blo

    Quote Originally Posted by samt
    I always hook up my small air compressor to the Hayward pump with a 1/4 fitting. Turn the compressor on and start pumping air.

    My 1st skimmer will start blowing air and then I plug it.
    My 2nd skimmer will then bubble and then I plug it.
    Then my 1st return will bubble and then plug it.
    Then my 2nd return will bubble then plug it.
    Last is my main drain will bubble then use the valve to close that drain off and trap the air.

    Then I pour 2 gallons of antifreeze down each skimmer and fill the skimmer box 1/2 way with antifreeze.

    Then I take a container that's half full with antifreeze and put in each skimmer.
    +1. This is what i do. Except for the antifreeze part. Never used it.

    I also put the mulitport valve on recirculate while blowing everything out. After everythings plugged, i put the filter on backwash and blow the water out of the filter, although it will eventually drain out the bottom (be sure and remove the drain plug).
    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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    zimm's Avatar
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    Re: Blowing lines and antifreeze questions-also gas leaf blo

    I reported this on another thread, but I want to close out this one too. The leaf blower didn't work. Not enough pressure to blow out the skimmer line. The a/c compressor worked on the returns, but a check valve blocked air from going to filter-heater-swg-skimmer. I tried turning check valve around, but still not enough air to blow it out. Ended up using the pool companies blower box through the skimmer and got it all done.
    45'x12' 17k gal, IG plaster, Pool Pilot Nano+ SWG, 1/2hp Whisperflo pump, PAC-FAB TA-60D sand filter, Raypak 266 heater
    Pool School + Test Kit + Pool Math = Trouble Free Pool

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    Re: Blowing lines and antifreeze questions-also gas leaf blo

    I have 2 skimmers and 4 returns. Also a main drain. I drained the water below the returns. I ran my pancake compressor on 5PSI and got water out of each skimmer and then some water drained from the returns. How will I know if the water is all out. I hear girgling, but nothing else is coming out. I also got bubbles out of the main drain and then closed the valve.

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    Re: Blowing lines and antifreeze questions-also gas leaf blo

    Quote Originally Posted by zimm View Post
    I reported this on another thread, but I want to close out this one too. The leaf blower didn't work. Not enough pressure to blow out the skimmer line. The a/c compressor worked on the returns, but a check valve blocked air from going to filter-heater-swg-skimmer. I tried turning check valve around, but still not enough air to blow it out. Ended up using the pool companies blower box through the skimmer and got it all done.
    Zimm:

    This is not making sense. If you cleared the return lines with an air compressor, air would have to travel to the filter first, then to the heater, and then the check valve should be after the heater. Unless you did something else. The skimmer is on the suction side, so if you closed the MPV, air would only travel one way. The MPV should be closed and now you are pushing air towards the skimmer and main drain (if you have a MD). I doubt there is a check valve on the suction side.

    Please describe the sequence of your set up. The MD and skimmers should be pulling water form the pump. Then through the pump and into your filter. Please explain from this point on.

    EDIT:

    Sorry, missed the point about using the pool companies blower box. Did the pool company lend you a pool blower? If so, which one? Just curious. Thanks!
    14,700 gallons IG Pool Vinyl Liner - Octal Circulation System
    Hayward Pro-Series 350 LB. Sand Filter Model # S270T - 2" Plumping
    Hayward CL2002 Chlorinator - Hayward Super Pump 2 HP Model # k48m2n111
    Hayward AQR9 SWG 25K Salt Cell & TF-100 Test Kit + Speed Stir
    Gulfstream HE125RA - 117K BTU Heat Pump - Date of Build is 11-2013

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    zimm's Avatar
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    Re: Blowing lines and antifreeze questions-also gas leaf blo

    This blower: Cyclone II Pool Line Blower Vac 3.0hp, 4128100

    It's pricey, but the same price as a professional "closing" for one winter.

    If blowing from the skimmer back through my filter and pump, the check valve prevented the air from going into the deep drain line. I would take the screws out of the top and turn the check valve around in order to blow the lines. In the spring for opening, I turn the check valve back around.
    45'x12' 17k gal, IG plaster, Pool Pilot Nano+ SWG, 1/2hp Whisperflo pump, PAC-FAB TA-60D sand filter, Raypak 266 heater
    Pool School + Test Kit + Pool Math = Trouble Free Pool

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    Re: Blowing lines and antifreeze questions-also gas leaf blower?

    I have a check valve after the heater and SWG system before it enters the returns only. In addition, there is a chlorinator before one of the returns. The Cyclone is what I use, but clear out the lines from the pump housing with a modified cover. You may want to look at this as there is less of a distance to travel. I can not imagine this monster loosing any flow even from the skimmer, which would be another 60' away.

    Modified Cover for Swimming Pools

    Modified Cover for Hayward Super Pump for Closing Swimming Pool
    14,700 gallons IG Pool Vinyl Liner - Octal Circulation System
    Hayward Pro-Series 350 LB. Sand Filter Model # S270T - 2" Plumping
    Hayward CL2002 Chlorinator - Hayward Super Pump 2 HP Model # k48m2n111
    Hayward AQR9 SWG 25K Salt Cell & TF-100 Test Kit + Speed Stir
    Gulfstream HE125RA - 117K BTU Heat Pump - Date of Build is 11-2013

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