Covered and unattended pool for three years. What are my first two steps?

Syrr

Well-known member
Jan 27, 2021
54
Germantown, TN
The water level appears down 1/3 but I've yet to uncover the pool. Suspect the cover will have to be replaced for next use and winter debris is still blowing around. Have no idea of what to do first, equipment, gallons or really anything else. Purchased home as is, at a significant discount.

Do I first bring the water level back up or uncover the pool sooner rather than later?
 

ajw22

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TFP Guide
Jul 21, 2013
23,986
Northern NJ
Pool Size
35000
Surface
Plaster
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
Pentair Intellichlor IC-60
Uncover the pool and see what you got. I don't know the weather around you if you should uncover it now or be patient and wait a few weeks.

What type of pool is it? Gunite? Vinyl liner? Fiberglass?

If you don't know then post a lot of pics and we will help you figure out what you now own.
 
Last edited:

SchubeyDew

Well-known member
Jan 24, 2021
74
Florida
Pool Size
19910
Surface
Plaster
Chlorine
Liquid Chlorine
I was in the same exact boat 15yrs ago. Bought the house foreclosed on (In TN even!) and the pool was stagnant for probably two years prior. The only difference was mine was not covered. It was a blackish green and you couldn’t see a few inches down. It was so bad I thought I would have to drain it. I started by skimming as much gunk off of the top as I could and then brushed to stir up more and skim more. Eventually I got to a point where I could vacuum it but I needed to repair the broken plumbing by the pool pump and filter. In the process I decided to change to a sand filter so I was able to put the valve to waste so I didn’t clog up my filter while I got the gunk off the surface of the pool. If you don’t have the option to bypass the filter for vacuuming, you’ll clog the filter up very quickly and will have to keep taking it out and cleaning it off. Once you’ve got all that done, you can do your choice of dumping loads of shock into the pool (I think I started with eight 1lb bags) or take a water sample to the pool store. Let them know the circumstances. Despite how terrible my pool looked initially, I had it crystal clearly shortly after. One other thing to remember; algae eats up chlorine quick! The more of the algae you can clean up, the less you will have to spend on shock to try and bring to water to some kind of base chlorine level. Good luck and keep us posted!
 
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AndyTN

Bronze Supporter
Mar 27, 2019
365
Memphis
Pool Size
26000
Surface
Vinyl
Syrr, I am in Germantown too and should be 5 minutes away. Let me know when you plan to open Pandora's Box and I will swing by to check it out. :) Whatever your pool water looks like, there have always been worse examples. I even saw pictures of someone's abandoned pool with cattails growing on top of the winter cover. As long as it is structurely sound, it can be brought back to life in a month or so.

Go ahead and stock up on bleach (liquid chlorine) since you are going to need a lot of it. I get mine at Home Depot and I would probably get 15-20 jugs.
 

Syrr

Well-known member
Jan 27, 2021
54
Germantown, TN
Recent weather has forced the pool issue closer to the top of my oh so long list of headaches. Attached photos should help tell the story.

So, my first question is how am I to get the now shredded pool cover out without spilling all the debris it had blocked into the pool? I will entertain any suggestions.

Note: Also learned that the pool when it was in use was not a chlorine pool.
 

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Syrr

Well-known member
Jan 27, 2021
54
Germantown, TN
My pool equipment here.
Syrr, I am in Germantown too and should be 5 minutes away. Let me know when you plan to open Pandora's Box and I will swing by to check it out. :) Whatever your pool water looks like, there have always been worse examples. I even saw pictures of someone's abandoned pool with cattails growing on top of the winter cover. As long as it is structurely sound, it can be brought back to life in a month or so.

Go ahead and stock up on bleach (liquid chlorine) since you are going to need a lot of it. I get mine at Home Depot and I would probably get 15-20 jugs.
 

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Newdude

Gold Supporter
TFP Guide
Jun 16, 2019
6,451
NY
So, my first question is how am I to get the now shredded pool cover out without spilling all the debris it had blocked into the pool? I will entertain any suggestions
Use your pool bush and extender pole thingie to gently pull the leaves out like a rake. If you dont own one already, small 1/2 HP sump pumps can be had for around $100 at HD/lowes/amazon. You can pump off alot of the real yucky stuff. Not all, but still. Whatever else is left you can feel good that *only* that much fell into the pool.

The sump pump will come in handy again. Its kinda like a shop vac. You don't really need it until you need it, but when you do it is worth its weight in gold.
 
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kellyfair

Gold Supporter
Bronze Supporter
Jun 29, 2016
3,796
Tampa, FL
Pool Size
7000
Surface
Vinyl
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
Intex Krystal Clear
It’s been a long time since we‘ve seen a true pea soup pool! Make sure you take a lot of photos... you won’t believe how great this pool is going to look when all is said and done!
 
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Syrr

Well-known member
Jan 27, 2021
54
Germantown, TN
Use your pool bush and extender pole thingie to gently pull the leaves out like a rake. If you dont own one already, small 1/2 HP sump pumps can be had for around $100 at HD/lowes/amazon. You can pump off alot of the real yucky stuff. Not all, but still. Whatever else is left you can feel good that *only* that much fell into the pool.

The sump pump will come in handy again. Its kinda like a shop vac. You don't really need it until you need it, but when you do it is worth its weight in gold.
I have this long thing that looks like a leaf rake. I was thinking of trying to use the torn cover like a net to get out the leaves remaining in the cover, with a little help of course. However, not sure if the thing wont deteriorate more when pulling on it.
 

Syrr

Well-known member
Jan 27, 2021
54
Germantown, TN
Uncover the pool and see what you got. I don't know the weather around you if you should uncover it now or be patient and wait a few weeks.

What type of pool is it? Gunite? Vinyl liner? Fiberglass?

If you don't know then post a lot of pics and we will help you figure out what you now own.
Have not really figured out how conversation string work here yet, but posted photos of pool and equipment on this string. Advice is welcome!
 

Newdude

Gold Supporter
TFP Guide
Jun 16, 2019
6,451
NY
. I was thinking of trying to use the torn cover like a net
The cover has thousands of lbs of water on it and you can probably rip it easily by hand. Ive seen it tried 100 times in person and if you are successful getting it to one general area, you will watch in slow motion horror when it shifts and dumps all the crud in the pool. ‘NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO !!!’

the leaf rake might work but the softer the better. Go gentle whatever you use. (y)
 
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Mdragger88

Bronze Supporter
Jun 1, 2018
1,797
Hernando, Ms
Pool Size
26000
Surface
Vinyl
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
Intex Krystal Clear
Just caught up on this thread- so a belated welcome to tfp neighbor!
definitely get a wide mouth leaf net & scoop as much solid debris as u can off the cover - the water is definitely gonna mix when removing that tarp but thats ok . Once u get it off do the same in the pool - blind scooping is ok 👍🏻
The more organic material u can get out the better.
harbor freight sells mesh tarps - if you have help u may be able to finagle one under or over the existing cover to help catch the debris. If u get a large enough one you may be able to use it later as a leaf net.
You need to find out if it was a baquacil pool. Look around for leftover chemicals & report back. If it was a baqua pool there’s a specific procedure for converting to chlorine & in your case it may begin with a water exchange.
 

AndyTN

Bronze Supporter
Mar 27, 2019
365
Memphis
Pool Size
26000
Surface
Vinyl
I bought this one at Lowes and it is very sturdy for scooping out big chunks of leaves. You obviously need a pole to match it.

I was not kidding about swinging by to check out your situation in person to lend some help. Send me a PM if you would be up to it and it won't hurt my feelings if not. I promise I won't try to sell you magazine subscriptions or anything ;)

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Flying Tivo

Well-known member
Jan 24, 2017
1,991
Monterrey, NL, Mexico
Does not look that bad. Just pull the cover from one side and let the top water mix with the pool water. The equipment looks in good shape. Make sure you look inside the simmer and the returns to see if they are not plugged. It seams your Pressure gauge is broken you will need a new one. As said before try to scoop most of the large debris out. Make sure you order a proper Test Kits Compared, include the speedstir. Whenever its time to run the pump make sure the filter is in recirculate at first so you can check all the pluming is good, all the valves appear to be open so you are good to test after all mayor debris is out.
 
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Syrr

Well-known member
Jan 27, 2021
54
Germantown, TN
Just caught up on this thread- so a belated welcome to tfp neighbor!
definitely get a wide mouth leaf net & scoop as much solid debris as u can off the cover - the water is definitely gonna mix when removing that tarp but thats ok . Once u get it off do the same in the pool - blind scooping is ok 👍🏻
The more organic material u can get out the better.
harbor freight sells mesh tarps - if you have help u may be able to finagle one under or over the existing cover to help catch the debris. If u get a large enough one you may be able to use it later as a leaf net.
You need to find out if it was a baquacil pool. Look around for leftover chemicals & report back. If it was a baqua pool there’s a specific procedure for converting to chlorine & in your case it may begin with a water exchange.
A couple of family members are sensitive to chlorine so I'd like to make is chlorine free, if it is not too expensive to do so that is.
 

Syrr

Well-known member
Jan 27, 2021
54
Germantown, TN
I bought this one at Lowes and it is very sturdy for scooping out big chunks of leaves. You obviously need a pole to match it.

I was not kidding about swinging by to check out your situation in person to lend some help. Send me a PM if you would be up to it and it won't hurt my feelings if not. I promise I won't try to sell you magazine subscriptions or anything ;)

View attachment 176948
Thank you much for both the offer and the skimmer lead. Reluctant to waste anyone's time. That and I'm working with a very tight budget. I'm sure however, that leaving the Crud in there much longer is a bad thing and probably more costly as well. Not sure how to send a direct message on this site, but I'll learn and reach out soon. This site seems like a "god-send " so far.
 

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