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Thread: Best drain/refill options?

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    Join Date
    May 2013
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    Tempe, Arizona
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    Best drain/refill options?

    Well, I measured the chemical levels in my pool today after not measuring since October. Oh, boy. My CYA registered above 100 as high as the test went but I believe its probably in the 110-120 range. My CH was 350 not totally surprising since we have such hard water in Phoenix. Other measurements were normal, except for FC, which was sky high at 19 (finished successfully SLAMming my pool less than a week ago). I have the Taylor K-2006 test kit and even measured CYA twice.

    To lower the CYA, I understand I need to replace some water. According to the pool calculator, that figure is around 40 percent. I believe these are my options. I know there is some personal preference involved, but what has worked for you? Keep in mind I have a cartridge filter and hose spigot between my pump and filter, and no backwash option.

    1. Turn off the pool equipment and rent/buy a submersible pump and quickly drain the pool. One issue I have with this is that I cant send my water to the sewer (HOA forbids this) and Im not totally comfortable dumping roughly 5,000 gallons of water in my yard in an afternoon.

    2. Attach a garden hose to the spigot between the pump and filter, drop it in the yard and move it around every so often, using the water to irrigate grass, shrubs, plants and trees at a slower, more manageable rate. Am I correct to assume that I would need to keep my auto-refill on to avoid the water line going below my skimmer? And what RPM should my pool pump setting be for this? Currently, I have it at 1500rpm for pool/skimmer and run it up to 2800rpm for cleaner. The downside (a small one) is that it would take much longer and Id use more water since the auto-refill would be on.

    3. Use reverse osmosis to clean up the CYA and CH levels. I like the idea of not wasting water and Ive read the cost is about the same as refilling. Ive contacted a local company for a quote. I guess my decision on this will come down to price.

    Am I missing any other options?

    I confess, I used tri-chlor tabs in a floater during the winter. I had bought a tub of them at Costco last winter before I discovered this site in the spring and adopted the BBB method. I wanted to get my moneys worth, and now Im paying the price. I learned my lesson. The pucks are out of the pool and wont go back.
    16,000 gallon, inground plaster pool with raised spa; Pentair EasyTouch 8 automation; IntelliFlo VS pump; Clean & Clear Plus cartridge filter; Poolvergnuegen cleaner.

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    bobodaclown's Avatar
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    Re: Best drain/refill options?

    Hello,
    If possible use the reverse osmosis if it isn't cost prohibitive.

    If you're going to buy a small sump pump those work well. I purchased one when I got my pool I had a similar setup to you, but no spigot. I ended up plumbing a drain into the bottom of the cartridge filter canister. (See this link: http://www.troublefreepool.com/threa...n+valve+filter)

    Anyways, I digress. Using the sump pump if you have a manual vacuum hose you can connect that to the ouput and move it around the yard. I'd shut down the pump and the auto fill, till you drained about 1/3 to a 1/2 then, refill, and check your chem levels.

    Also remember on the reverse osmosis you won't have to filter the whole 16000 gallons, do 1/2 and check your chem levels. You don't want to pay twice, once for removing them, then adding them back in to maintain proper levels.
    17K Kidney Shaped Pool Concrete (Diamond Bright) Pool, 3/4 hp 2 speed 115V Sta-rite Duraglas PEA5D-180L/P2R5D-181L (Impeller C105-92PS Diffuser C1-216P), 1.5 piping, Pentair CC100 Filter , Heat Siphon 100K BTU Heat Pump Pool Heater, Flow meter Blue White Flowmeter Model No. F-30150P, Hayward Astrolight SP0581N, SWCG CalimarTitanium Edition TE45 , Dolphin Nautilus Plus with CleverClean, Lakeland Florida

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    duraleigh's Avatar
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    Re: Best drain/refill options?

    I’ve read the cost is about the same as refilling.
    R/O will be way more than drain and refill.
    Dave S.
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
    TFTestkits , PoolMath , Pool School

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    Mark R's Avatar
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    Re: Best drain/refill options?

    I'm shocked that you can't send your pool waste water to the city sewer system. That's the only way we can drain the pools here, send it to the street and you get fined. Most house have a special drain pipe in the yard that goes right to the city sewer pipes.
    12k gal Gunite/Hayward filter C5520BH with quad 33 inch filters. 2.5 hp motor. Pool is on south side, so full sun light. Spill over spa.
    Laar's heater LT250-Low NOx Gas Fired for pool/spa 250,000 BTU. Roof mount 6 panel solar system installed east/south. TF-100 test kit. May-September 100+ degrees out side.

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    Richard320's Avatar
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    Re: Best drain/refill options?

    Discharging the pool water into the storm drain is generally prohibited; but how are they going to know if you are dumping it down the sanitary sewer? Unless your HOA is on a septic tank or something.

    You have several options. Just to be thrifty, use what pool water you can on the yard first. Shut off the autofill and drain as much as you can using the hose spigot before the skimmer starts sucking air. Then top off with fresh. You can probably do that once a week for the next couple months and get the CYA down before summer.

    If you're in a hurry, buy a small submersible and stick the discharge hose in the drain cleanout or where the washing machine drain hose goes and adjust the pump speed so it doesn't overflow.

    Whenever you're pumping, keep the autofill off. You want to remove as much CYA-laden water as possible each time, so don't dilute it any more than you have to.
    16K freeform gunite with spa; Pentair 4000 DE filter; Century Whisperflow 1 HP; Pentair Minimax heater.
    Troublefree does not mean Maintenancefree. It's like brushing your teeth: You can spend a couple minutes a day and pennies a week or go to the dentist once a year and spend several thousand dollars.
    A pool is like a pet - you have to feed it every day, even the days you don't want to play with it!

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    May 2013
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    Tempe, Arizona
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    Re: Best drain/refill options?

    I checked my water rates. Then double-checked and called to confirm because I could not believe that 5,000 gallons of water would cost me $10. Ten dollars. For 5,000 gallons of water. In the desert. Totally off-topic, but we should be paying way more for water in Phoenix. Maybe some municipalities around here charge higher rates, but water is cheaper than dirt in Tempe and I'd know after landscaping the front yard last fall with a few tons of dirt and rock.

    So, with my inexpensive water, RO is out. I stopped by a pool store this morning to get some CYA testing reagent and found out they rent submersible pumps, including a hose of 100-150 feet, for $25 for 24 hours. Seems good to me, but I'm still leery about dumping all that water at once around my yard. To answer an earlier question, my HOA CCR's say pools must be drained on our property. Ridiculous. I've seen one person down the street drain into the gutter, though. The city allows it in the sewer system, but there's a flow rate it can't exceed. I don't think it's a major issue, because I see it all the time -- just not in my neighborhood.

    I think I'm going to go with my slow and steady option of using the hose spigot and give my trees, shrubs and backyard lawn a good, deep soak. I measured and I'm draining 3 gallons per minute from the pool. By my math, that's 180 gallons an hour and to exchange 5,000 gallons, that would take almost 28 hours. If I do it in 3-hour intervals once a day, that's nine days. Even if I don't do it every day, I figure I can get it done in a couple weeks, maybe a bit longer. If I get impatient, I can always rent the pump.

    Thanks for the suggestions and advice, guys. I really do appreciate it. When I use up my Taylor test kit, I'll order the TF100.
    16,000 gallon, inground plaster pool with raised spa; Pentair EasyTouch 8 automation; IntelliFlo VS pump; Clean & Clear Plus cartridge filter; Poolvergnuegen cleaner.

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    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: Best drain/refill options?

    That is a cheaper rental than I found at Home Depot
    Although there is nothing wrong using the hose and pool pump if you can isolate the floor suction.
    Jason, TFP Moderator
    18k IG pebblesheen pool, Hayward ProLogic P4 w/ T-15 SWG, Pentair 1HP 2-speed Superflo, Hayward 6020 DE filter
    500 sqft Heliocol solar panels, ThePoolCleaner, TF-100 test kit w/ SpeedStir
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