bottom drain

JasonLion

TFP Expert
Platinum Supporter
LifeTime Supporter
May 7, 2007
37,880
Silver Spring, MD
Welcome to TFP!

No, you do not need a bottom drain, though having one is very nice. I recommend a bottom drain for plaster and fiberglass pools, but not for vinyl liner pools. With a vinyl liner, the risk of leaks around the drain becomes more significant than the advantages of having a drain.
 

Tbell

Well-known member
Jun 20, 2010
138
Tennessee
We have a bottom drain in our 30' Vinyl AG pool and I wouldn't have it any other way. It makes cleaning the pool much easier. Have had our pool for 10 years and have had no problem with leaks...keeping fingers crossed. If we had gotten a smaller pool we wouldn't have gotten the drain. But 30' is a lot harder to clean.
 

kenmar

LifeTime Supporter
Apr 13, 2009
288
Schnecksville, PA
"No, you do not need a bottom drain, though having one is very nice. I recommend a bottom drain for plaster and fiberglass pools, but not for vinyl liner pools. With a vinyl liner, the risk of leaks around the drain becomes more significant than the advantages of having a drain."
Hmm, this is the first time I recall seeing any mention of not recommending bottom drains for vinyl lined pools here.

How much greater is the risk of leakage with a vinyl liner pool?

-Ken-
 

bk406

Well-known member
Dec 3, 2009
2,690
Central Massachusetts
My vinyl pool doesnt have a bottom drain. The builder said he doesnt like them in a vinyl pool. Instead, he puts in a side wall suction. Acts the same, but doesnt pull water off the bottom. It still turns the water over just fine.
 

JasonLion

TFP Expert
Platinum Supporter
LifeTime Supporter
May 7, 2007
37,880
Silver Spring, MD
A bottom drain in a vinyl liner pool is likely to be just fine. However if the liner does tear around the drain you can lose all your water very quickly. It is a very rare problem, with a high cost when it does happen. I don't like that kind of risk, even if 99 out of 100 pools are going to be fine.
 

X-PertPool

TFP Expert
In The Industry
Jun 12, 2009
1,385
Exeter, PA
main drains are nice for the pool circulation but I don't think they keep the pool much cleaner, except in the case of round above ground pools. You direct the eyeball from the return to make a vortex in the pool and all the dirt ends up in the center where the main drain is, keeping the pool cleaner.
 

teapot

In The Industry
Jul 25, 2009
574
London and France
JasonLion said:
A bottom drain in a vinyl liner pool is likely to be just fine. However if the liner does tear around the drain you can lose all your water very quickly. It is a very rare problem, with a high cost when it does happen. I don't like that kind of risk, even if 99 out of 100 pools are going to be fine.
I agree with Jason, there is a considerable variation in liners and although a bottom drain is fine for re-inforced liners some of the thinner ones I would not want to fit one too.
 

Tbell

Well-known member
Jun 20, 2010
138
Tennessee
That is one of the things I like about it. My 30' pool is round and it draws everything to the center so it makes cleaning much easier.
 
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