I've made a lot of mistakes in the past year or so in reference to owning and maintaining a pool. Currently in the process of rectifying those mistakes.
Step one.... I have a lot of dirt/sand at the bottom of my pool. I live in the desert and it's windier than a politician here. The stuff just gets blown in whenever the wind picks up above 15 mph. The problem I'm having is trying to get that dirt out. If I vacuum it up, it clogs the filter pretty quickly. If I try to get it out using the skimmer net, it clouds up the pool so that I can't see what I'm doing. I saw somewhere that I should vacuum it out to go to waste, not through the filter. Make sense to me, except I don't know how to do that.
Below is a diagram of my pool plumbing. The green circled valve is a shutoff valve that is currently inline with the pipe (open?). If I turn it perpendicular to the pipe, the pressure to my filter drops to zero. Is that the waste valve I'm looking for? It doesn't seem to make sense to me. Still waiting for that A-HA moment to kick in.
Any help you could provide would be greatly appreciated! Especially is I'm completely wrong in my thinking above.
pool plumbing diagram.jpg