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Thread: Drained Pool...Any Worries?

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    Join Date
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    Drained Pool...Any Worries?

    Short story: I've drained my pool (reason listed below). My wife called me in a panic yesterday because two different co-workers warned that you "have to drain the pool correctly" and there is a valve or something you have to pay attention to or the pool can pop out. I'm assuming they are talking about the hydrostatic values. Not finding any posts that satisfied my curiosity/concern I thought I'd ask for help. I have three pictures below that show something on the bottom of the shallow end, the same thing in the deep end, near the main drain, and what appears to be some sort of extra plug that is in both the shallow and deep end skimmers:

    Shallow End.jpg

    Deep End.jpg

    Skimmer.jpg

    My questions are two fold:

    1) What in the world am I actually looking at?

    2) Is there anything I really need to be concerned with while the pool is drained?

    Now for the long story:

    We bought our house three years ago and it just happened to come with a pool (we weren't actually looking for a pool). The pool had been covered and not opened for at least 3-4 years. Checking the township records I was able to find that the pool was built in 1979. It is a nice looking big (irregular 20x40) pool in good shape and about 9 ft deep in the deep end. The first year we had an LPS open it for us and make sure everything we needed was there and in working order, which thankfully it was. After working with the LPS for a few months and dutifully taking water samples to them every week, I stumbled upon TFP and haven't looked back. I've since done everything myself, checking water quality daily, using the recommended chemicals and eschewing the LPS, and opening and closing the pool on my own. Even replacing my filter pump and main filter valve. Keeping an eye on the water quality each day, I've been able to keep the levels exactly where I've wanted them.

    The issue that we've had since opening the pool three years ago is scale, which wasn't surprising to me since it had been closed for so long. By the end of last year, the scale was so bad that you could not approach the side of the pool without actually cutting yourself, pretty much over the entire length and height of all sides. Over the last two seasons, I've done everything recommended here for dealing with the scale with the exception of using Jack's Magic Stuff. I talked to the LPS about my situation and inquired about an acid wash. They said they wouldn't even touch it because with the age of the pool, they didn't want the liability if they damaged the plaster. My plan was to open the pool this year and try Jack's Magic. By the middle of winter I decided I didn't want to take what was obviously going to be a lengthy time to try Jack's Magic and not have it solve my problem. So instead, I decided to open the pool early, drain it and actually sand off the scale.

    I get this is the REALLY hard way to attack this problem, but I have to say it's actually going along faster and better than I expected. Sanding at 2 hour stretches at a time and refilling without a water truck, I'm still on pace to hopefully have the pool open for business by mid-June, only two weeks later than usual. So that's my whole story. Thanks for sticking through to the end of it. Any thoughts on the two questions I posed above in the short version of the story?

    Thanks!

    Tom
    ~23,000 gal IG plaster, 1 HP Hayward Super Pump, DE Filter

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    Mod Squad YippeeSkippy's Avatar
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    Re: Drained Pool...Any Worries?

    How high is your water table? If you dig a hole down in the ground, how many feet until you start hitting water? If your water table is high, you definitely have the makings for potential disaster. The hydrostatic valves are meant to relieve this, but I can't tell you how to make them open.
    My Amazon Smile for November12K Fiberglass IG, Infinity 4000 automatic cover, SWCG, Hayward Sand Filter, Hayward 1.5 Pump, Doheny Discovery Robot, Savi Melody LED pool lights, outdoor speakers and other assorted doo-dads. Sundance Altamar Hot Tub.
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    Divin Dave's Avatar
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    Re: Drained Pool...Any Worries?

    Hi Tom,
    From the pics, I really cannot tell if they are hydrostatic valves or not.
    if indeed those are hydrostatic valves, you should be able to open them. Similar to a PVC plug, they just screw in. Some of them require some sort of special tool though. There are serveral designs of the things and they are not common in my part of the country. So, what I know about them is only what Ive read and learned here.
    Divin Dave,
    IG Vinyl, 15' x 30', 3 1/2' - 6' deep, Oval, ~15K gal, Intelliclor IC40, Intelliflo VS pump, Clean and Clear 420 Filter, auto-fill-disabled, Retrofit LED Color Light, Dolphin Nautilus Robot, TF100 Test Kit, Taylor K1766 Salt Test Kit, Tftestkit Pressure Gauge.
    www.tftestkits.net Experience- it's what's learned just after you needed it most !!

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    Re: Drained Pool...Any Worries?

    So Dave, if I'm following you correctly, if my water table turns out to be high (which I doubt since I live 300 ft above the Delaware river that is 1 mile away, read: fairly steep incline) as long as I've opened the valves any push of the water from below the pool should then enter the pool through the valve, thus relieving the pressure?
    ~23,000 gal IG plaster, 1 HP Hayward Super Pump, DE Filter

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    Re: Drained Pool...Any Worries?

    Ok, so I just went out and looked at these valves again. While the covers were fairly loose I was able to just take them off. The picture below is one of the covers and where it was removed from.

    Valve.jpg

    Both had water up to the top so I guess my water table is higher than I thought. So my question in the reply I just sent to Dave still stands: Now that I've removed these covers am I good to go?
    ~23,000 gal IG plaster, 1 HP Hayward Super Pump, DE Filter

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    Divin Dave's Avatar
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    Re: Drained Pool...Any Worries?

    Yes, thats right.

    One other thought is if you have been having heavy rains and the ground becomes saturated, that also can cause more hydrostatic pressure than you realize.


    Quote Originally Posted by taglover View Post
    So Dave, if I'm following you correctly, if my water table turns out to be high (which I doubt since I live 300 ft above the Delaware river that is 1 mile away, read: fairly steep incline) as long as I've opened the valves any push of the water from below the pool should then enter the pool through the valve, thus relieving the pressure?
    - - - Updated - - -

    Yes, I think so!

    Quote Originally Posted by taglover View Post
    Ok, so I just went out and looked at these valves again. While the covers were fairly loose I was able to just take them off. The picture below is one of the covers and where it was removed from.

    Valve.jpg

    Both had water up to the top so I guess my water table is higher than I thought. So my question in the reply I just sent to Dave still stands: Now that I've removed these covers am I good to go?
    Divin Dave,
    IG Vinyl, 15' x 30', 3 1/2' - 6' deep, Oval, ~15K gal, Intelliclor IC40, Intelliflo VS pump, Clean and Clear 420 Filter, auto-fill-disabled, Retrofit LED Color Light, Dolphin Nautilus Robot, TF100 Test Kit, Taylor K1766 Salt Test Kit, Tftestkit Pressure Gauge.
    www.tftestkits.net Experience- it's what's learned just after you needed it most !!

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