Alternate pool returns for fountain? Any ideas what these are or what connects to them?


New member
Jul 15, 2020
Melbourne, FL
Hello all,
New to the forums here. My pool has a flower bed on the upper tier. When we moved in 2017, the previous owner had bushes and trees growing in it and I ripped it all and put in red rock. While doing this job, I found two of these PVC cylinders buried in the dirt that were angled toward the pool. I then also found a manual valve installed after the pool filter that switches the water to these PVC cylinders or tubes vs the normal in-pool return lines. I cannot seem to figure out what they are, but the outer diameter of the pipe receptacle is 2 3/4 in OD and around 2 3/8 in ID. It looks like there is plumbing glue around the pipe area. I have attempted to contact the previous owner but have not had any luck reaching him. I would like to modify these to trickle over the edge like a square style fountain, but fear I may need to dig them out and start over.

PS- I made the mistake of leaving these on overnight once. Due to the amount of pressure on these return lines, I had to slightly open the valve to divert water to them. The next day when the pump turned on for it's initial start, these fountain returns never picked up enough pressure and leaked water directly into the ground for 45 minutes. I only realized it because I was taking my dog outside and noticed the water level had dropped about 6 inches and the pump was not running so that was a lesson learned.


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Mod Squad
TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Jul 7, 2014
Bedford, TX

I am a little confused.. Are both pics from your pool? Is the 2nd pic what they look like when turned on?

If so, I don't fully understand what your question is...

Sorry for being so slow... :)

Jim R.


Gold Supporter
May 20, 2020
Katy TX
Pool Size
Liquid Chlorine
They do appear to be a fountain of some type. I wonder if the previous owner had them connected to statue or similar device to spurt water into the pool. It is interesting that one seems to be farther set back then the other. You could work with a fountain company and possible come up with a nice water feature. Do you have to have your valve 100% open or closed to operate or isolate these fountains? It seems that you would want direct flow through your outlets in the pool and some flow to these "fountains". Another option is to replumb and set up a dedicated pump to these. In my pool I have a dedicated suction, pump and output to my water feature. My pool pump and plumbing is a completely separate flow path.


New member
Jul 15, 2020
Melbourne, FL
Thanks for the responses. Yes both pictures are what the odd returns look like turned off and with the return valve maybe 10% open and both of them flowing. I would take a picture of the return valve near the pump but I'm out of town.

Yes, I thought it was a 2in slip also, but the OD should be 2 3/8in if that were true, not 2 9/12in or 2.75in.

I have heard that having a separate pump for a fountain, however my current alternate return setup is connected through our regular pool pump.

I believe I may need to dig these up to see if I can get more info on the cylinders and pipe sizes so I can plan to either remove them or adapt them to what I am looking for.

PS- My neighbor did tell me that the previous owner did have a fountain connected there about a year or two before he put the house up for sale. She said it looked like a flat, over the edge of the pool style fountain, but is not sure what happened to it. She is still friends with his ex-wife and said she would attempt to get his contact info for me. That was about two weeks ago, no luck yet.
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