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Thread: Vacuuming out sludge

  1. Back To Top    #1

    Join Date
    Jul 2014
    Orlando, FL

    Vacuuming out sludge

    Gunite, 9000g, cartridge filter, 2" piping

    I have what I think would be a not-too-uncommon problem, but my search doesn't yield any pertinent posts that address it. I'm inheriting a pool that has been abandoned for 1+ years. I'm going to SLAM it, but that only addresses the chemistry; my problem is the accumulated, for lack of a better term, sludge on the bottom.

    I can't see the pool bottom (about 5' deep), but the horizontal surfaces, steps and swim-out, are covered with a layer of black "something". There were a lot of live tadpoles, so one guess is that they are what is accumulated. Regardless, I need to get them out.

    I don't want to send it through the filter because it will clog after just a few seconds. I hate to even run them through the pump to waste for fear of damaging the pump impeller - justified concern? Between the vacuum head and pump, there is an inline basket and the pump basket: I think I need to remove those because they will instantly clog.

    Complicating things is that I don't have a 6-way valve (like I'm accustomed to), so I don't have an easy way to divert to "waste". It has a hose bib that will go to waste but I can't block the 2" pipe to the filter so, following the path of least resistance, most if the sludge will go through the filter (or empty filter container if I pull the cartridge).

    Ideas? Thank you.
    10,000 gal in-ground; 1hp single speed pump; Puck chlorination; Pebbletek; Hayward C1200 filter. Coming: solar, Intermatic PE953RC and Z-wave.

  2. Back To Top    #2
    ranger_ric's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2014
    Midland TX

    Re: Vacuuming out sludge

    Welcome to TFP. I had this same trouble when I opened this year.
    The Leaf Rake is your friend. Use it to scoop out as much of the stuff that is on the bottom as you can. Then rest for a bit and go back to scooping. What ever solids you leave in the pool have to be either filtered out or Oxidized out with Bleach. It will take a truckload of bleach to oxidize it so you have to scoop it. You are in for some work here but just keep thinking of that sparkling pool you are going to have in the near future.
    You will need a good FAS/DPD test kit. I use the TF-100XL with the speed stir (Be sure to get the XL because it comes with the extra FAS/DPD reagants you will need for your upcoming SLAM).
    I also recommend that as you are resting from scooping and waiting on test kit began reading some of the great material on here. First off read Pool School. Some others will be along to help you more with your pump questions.
    7200 Gal Above Ground, 1.5HP Dynamo Pump, 250# Pentair Sand filter with ZeoLite. Diver Dave Cleaner. TFP test kit w/SpeedStir, 3 Grandaughters swimming every week.

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