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Thread: Vacuuming sludge from pool bottom

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    Jordy Verrill's Avatar
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    Vacuuming sludge from pool bottom

    I just opened my pool, and there is sludge from dead leafs on the bottom of the pool because I did a bad thing and closed last year with leafs in the pool. The leafs have disintegrated into a sludge that, when I vacuum, clogs up the basket filter in my pump to the point that the pump stops being able to properly pump water. It only takes about a minute of vacuuming before this happens. I am vacuuming to waste to keep the sludge out of my filter, but can I remove the pump's basket filter and just let all that sludge go through all the pipes and into the storm sewer? Or will that potentially screw anything up in my piping?
    16x32, In Ground, ~20,000 gallons, Vinyl
    1hp Hayward Pump, Hayward s200 Sand Filter, Raypack Heater (rarely used)
    Taylor K-2006 test kit

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    triptyx's Avatar
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    Re: Vacuuming sludge from pool bottom

    Personally, I'd be worried about the pump's impeller if it's solid enough to clog the pump basket.

    If it were me, my first step would be to use a flat leaf rake (net) to scoop out as much of the yuck as I could.
    8,500gal plaster in-ground with attached spa, two floor drains, one skimmer. Chlorine, City Water.
    Pentair WhisperFlo 1hp Pump, MagnaTek Midcentury EPlus motor, Pentair CleanNClear 200SF Cartridge filter, Purex Triton MiniMax 250 Gas Heater, Pentair SunLite, AutoFill.
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    Jordy Verrill's Avatar
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    Re: Vacuuming sludge from pool bottom

    Quote Originally Posted by triptyx View Post
    Personally, I'd be worried about the pump's impeller if it's solid enough to clog the pump basket.

    If it were me, my first step would be to use a flat leaf rake (net) to scoop out as much of the yuck as I could.
    The leaf rake is probably what I will end up doing. It's just tough because I can't even see the bottom of the pool yet, although the water is starting to clear up even with the gunk on the bottom.
    16x32, In Ground, ~20,000 gallons, Vinyl
    1hp Hayward Pump, Hayward s200 Sand Filter, Raypack Heater (rarely used)
    Taylor K-2006 test kit

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    duraleigh's Avatar
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    Re: Vacuuming sludge from pool bottom

    Don't send the leaves and junk through your pump. Get as much out as you can with a VERY GOOD leaf rake and then turn on the pump with filter in place.

    At that point I would start the SLAM procedure and your pool will become your pride and joy once again!!!

    EDIT: Your filter is a little small for that size pool so you will have to backwash pretty frequently at first.
    Dave S.
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
    TFTestkits , PoolMath , Pool School

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    Jordy Verrill's Avatar
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    Re: Vacuuming sludge from pool bottom

    Yeah I guess I didn't really think about that stuff going through the pump and impeller, I was just thinking of clogging pipes. So leaf rake it is. My leaf rake is pretty decent, so I will see how it goes today. It's just hard to tell how much progress I'm doing because I can barely see the bottom of the pool.

    Yeah I know my filter is on the small size for my pool... the home's previous owners are the ones who had it put in. It did a good job when the water was in swimming shape over the summer last year, but yeah I know I will be backwashing a lot while cleaning this mess. I had the same mess to deal with last spring, except I knew what I was doing even less then than I do now.
    16x32, In Ground, ~20,000 gallons, Vinyl
    1hp Hayward Pump, Hayward s200 Sand Filter, Raypack Heater (rarely used)
    Taylor K-2006 test kit

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