Drain through backwash?

jhever

Active member
Jul 28, 2011
33
Dallas, TX
If I plug my skimmer can I drain my pool on backwash? Wont it just drain from the main drain if I plug the skimmer? I don't have a valve on my pump to shut off the skimmer but will a plug do the same thing? I am only draining about 70% of the pool. I just didn't know if there were any drawbacks to this method since I can save $50 from renting a pump again. Thanks!
 

duraleigh

Admin
Mod Squad
TFP Expert
Platinum Supporter
LifeTime Supporter
In The Industry
Apr 1, 2007
34,437
Sebring, Florida
Yeah, I see no obstacle to doing it the way you are thinking. You may have to add back a little sand when you finish. You could also backwash for a few minutes to clean your sand and then go to the waste position and bypass the filter.
 

jhever

Active member
Jul 28, 2011
33
Dallas, TX
Good question. I have no idea. I just have a pull valve so when I backwash, I pull up valve and run pump. I attached a snap shot of my system. I just wanted to make sure if I drain this way it wouldn't cause problems. I only have one skimmer and one main drain. I've attached a pic if that helps. The previous owner left me no pool information.
 

Attachments

Bama Rambler

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
Bronze Supporter
LifeTime Supporter
Jun 22, 2009
24,168
SouthWest Alabama
You have two suction lines going to the pump so you may actually have separate skimmer and main drain lines. Unless the one with the valve is for the vacuum.
 

jhever

Active member
Jul 28, 2011
33
Dallas, TX
I believe the valve is for the main drain. I closed it and still had suction in the skimmer. Not sure why they didn't put a valve on both lines. If I plugged the skimmer is it safe to backwash to drain or does that cause too much extra strain on the pump? I rented a pump last weekend (drain wasn't enough to reduce CYA) and was poking around for an easier way since when I backwash it lowers the pool water so quickly. Seems faster than the pump. I was just worried for when water level goes below skimmer.

Thanks!
 

guamguy

LifeTime Supporter
Feb 26, 2010
388
Guam, USA
One word of caution: when you start draining, don't shut the pump off until you are done. Most pumps can't lift water over a few feet once prime is lost.
 

jhever

Active member
Jul 28, 2011
33
Dallas, TX
What should I use to plug my skimmer hole? I went to Leslie's and they were no help. Is there an airtight threaded cap I should use? I thought it would be a standard part at the pool store but maybe I need to check a hardware store?

Thanks everyone for the help!