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Thread: back washed pool water

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    back washed pool water

    I live in the country on 40 acres, inground 16X34 kidney bean gunite, Hayward pump. This is our first pool came with the house. My wife doesn't want to use the discharged water for plants and grass. My thoughts are, currently I discharge the water behind the shop, that is where the previous owners had it going. Anyway the grass back there is thick and green, thus requiring the grass to be cut twice a week. Can I catch this discharged water and use other places in the yard. I do understand it will take catching it and moving to where I want to use. I have a tractor and a trailer so I can go to the local Farm store and buy a tank. Any thoughts.

    thanks in advnace


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    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Cupertino, CA

    Re: back washed pool water

    Welcome to TFP!

    It's generally not a problem to use backwash or drained water for irrigation. I remember somebody who needed to drain a bunch of water to lower excessive CYA; she plumbed her lawn irrigation to draw from the pool, and used her city-water irrigation allowance to refill the pool. Didn't seem to cause any issues. And the evidence of the well-watered grass where it discharges now ought to help convince her.

    There are only two things I've seen people mention, that would be worth repeating.
    - If your pool contains any copper, that could be a problem. This is unlikely unless you use pool chems with added copper; HTH in particular seems to have started doing that.
    - If you have added 30ppm borates, then some more sensitive plants will not tolerate it. (Actually "burned" was what the guy reported...)

    BBB "Intermediate Swimmer"
    IG plaster pool 18.5K gal, Hayward Pro-Grid DE filter, 3/4 HP Hydramax II; Polaris 380, 3/4 HP booster
    AG spa 325 gal, probably Sundance of some kind
    Water testing instructions on one page

  3. Back To Top    #3

    Re: back washed pool water

    The copper should not be a problem as I have adopted the BBB taking care of the pool method, and usr the chemicals that most have described from the mega marts. And let me say I have spent less over the last month than the two previous. I just think I needed some reinforcement from the community.


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    poolgirl22's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Stephens City, VA

    Re: back washed pool water

    At first my lawn treatment guy was shocked (haha...punny!) that I discharged my waste/backwash into the yard. He asked where..I said, um, you're standing where it comes out. Thick, green, few weeds and the fastest growing spot in the yard.

    I did have some issues with my potted plants though using pool water...they got pretty dry and brittle. I wonder if over time the area just becomes adjusted to the soil contents. Who knows.
    Backyard pool-less, but used to be.....
    16,100 gallon, 18x38 3.5 ft deep oval AG, Vinyl, Sand, 1hp pump Liquidator TFT100 test kit

  5. Back To Top    #5

    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    North Central Texas

    Re: back washed pool water

    If you use salt and backwash frequently that could pose a problem for some plants with salt building up in the soil. I backwash to my woods and have never had any issues even when the water has been pretty heavy chlorinated. My usual is to let the chlorine get down to the bottom of the range (when I can) before backwashing then bring the chlorine back up to the top of the range, right after backwashing. I usually keep it at the top of the range.

    1981, 25K, IG, Blue Plaster 1996, somewhat oval, widens a bit at shallow end, 1.5" pipes, 2" at Pad, 1 separate main drain, 1 skimmer, 4 returns + dedicated cleaner return, 10 ft deep end with very fast decline from shallow, Pentair Quad 80 DE, Pentair Intelliflo VF, 3/4 HP Booster Pump (equipment pad about 8 ft below top of pool), Challanger 3/4 Trash/Emergency Pump 120v, Polaris 280 (pressure), iRobot Verro cleaner (robotic), Aquabot Turbo (robotic), Jacuzzi Tracker 4X (vacuum) Pool Blaster (Buster), Two (2) PoolSkims, Solar Breeze (solar powered top skimmer) (beta to ver. 2, release date 2010), ColorSplash LED replacement bulb. Aries 550 gal separate spa, 2002 (our 3rd and BEST spa) , BBB-Bromine

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    sonflower's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Fort Worth, TX

    Re: back washed pool water

    We have watered the yard with the backwash water for almost 5 yrs with no issues whatsoever to our yard.
    Pool: (2003) IG Plaster 14,209 gallon (Water Surface 421 sq. ft.) ~ Spa: 18" raised kidney
    Triple spillway (Waterfall) ~ With 6' slide ~ Hayward's Goldline Controls Aqua Rite Digital Electronic Chlorine Generator (Salt System) ~ 40K Salt Cell ~
    ~ AquaLink RS -4 ~ Purex Whisper Flow 2 HP~ Aquatech 60 sq. ft. DE Filter Normal Pressure 22 # ~ MiniMax NT (Propane) Heater 400,000 BTU ~ Jandy Valve Actuator ~Letro Legend Cleaner ~ K-2006 & K-1766 Test Kits

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