How do I drain my in ground pool?

AZLynn

LifeTime Supporter
Jul 4, 2012
45
Tucson, AZ
I think I know the answer to my question, but since I can't talk to the pool company guy until Monday, I figured I would ask you all to see if I understand. It will also help me when I talk to him. I have drained my pool twice in the past with a pump I put in the deep end of the pool. I had an above ground pool at my old house and had bought the pump to drain the pool for winter. The pump died and now I need to drain my in ground pool.

I have what looks like a faucet on the pool plumbing and based on what I saw online, I think I'm supposed to hook a hose to that faucet, turn a valve to close off the skimmer so the pump is pulling water just from the bottom drain and then open the faucet so the water drains from the bottom of the pool. Does that sound right? Is the pump on during this process? I would think it would be, but I'm not sure.

I vaguely remember the pool company guy telling me when I first bought the house that the faucet was my drain, but I didn't "get it" at the time. I remember thinking, but it's above the skimmer, how is that gonna work. I didn't understand I could shut the skimmer off since I had an above ground before. The valves didn't work and I didn't have them fixed at the time. I had the pump I could put in the pool so I didn't care as much then. Obviously I have to have the valves fixed before I can drain it, assuming I even understand the draining part. Speaking of which, how does he fix them? Does he have to cut the pipes or can he just dismantle them somehow? They look like your basic pvc ball valves, but that doesn't mean that's what they are. I do plan to ask him to help me get started on the drain so I know I'm doing it correctly. I sometimes think I "get it" and later realize I don't or forget parts of the instruction.
 

Richard320

TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Jan 6, 2010
22,054
San Dimas, CA (LA County)
If you have a dedicated line to the main drain, then you are absolutely correct. You draw from the drain and let it exit from the faucet.


With a big exception: your pump can draw more than a garden hose can eliminate, so you will likely still have some water going through the filter and back to the pool.
 

AZLynn

LifeTime Supporter
Jul 4, 2012
45
Tucson, AZ
okay thanks. I think that's what I have. I have lots of pipes and valves so I'm not 100% sure. They are all labeled, I just don't understand it all. He explained everything to me when I bought the house, but that was 5 years ago and while I thought I understood, there was a lot that didn't stick in my head. I understand a lot more now, but I'm still fuzzy on a few things.
 

mknauss

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
Bronze Supporter
May 3, 2014
20,547
Laughlin, NV
I would not recommend draining a plaster pool this time of year in Tucson. The sun and heat on dry plaster is not a good idea.

You can exchange the water if you like. You will need a separate sump pump to do that. In fact, I would not suggest using your very expensive pool pump to drain water in your pool. Losing prime for any reason and burning up your pump would be a poor outcome.
 
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AZLynn

LifeTime Supporter
Jul 4, 2012
45
Tucson, AZ
So just buy a new sump pump and not worry about fixing the valves right now? I have pebbletec so it wouldn’t be just plaster. I think I drained it in the summer the other times too but I could be wrong. I probably left the pebbletec out of my signature. I wouldn’t be able to drain it all at once through the little hose bib anyway I’m sure. It would take too long. I thought about using the vacuum hose in the skimmer since I can’t turn the valves. I figure that would be a way to keep the skimmer from sucking air. Still waiting for my pool guy to get back to me on that and rewiring the timer and salt cell.
 

AZLynn

LifeTime Supporter
Jul 4, 2012
45
Tucson, AZ
Ok so I’m looking at superior pump 91250 on amazon. Should I spend the extra $10 for 1/3 hp or is 1/4 hp enough. I can get either in 2 days. I could probably go down to Home Depot and get it earlier too but I won’t be able to use it until Thursday anyway so amazon sounds good. I like the water hose adapter too. I did not have that on my other pump but it was cheap anyway. It says the 1/4 drains 1800 gallons per hour and the 1/3 drains 2400 per hour. I know the output would be limited by whatever hose I attach too but if I used the suggested size the 1/3 would drain it that much faster. Here’s a question though since I have a swg pool and I already know the salt is high can I expect the pump to last? Or am I going to be buying a new one next year? If so it becomes an easier decision.
 

mknauss

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
Bronze Supporter
May 3, 2014
20,547
Laughlin, NV
I would suggest getting the 1/2 hp sump pump.

If you are using a normal water hose for the effluent you will get 7-8 gpm at most. The stated rates are with 0 backpressure.

The puimp is not bothered by saltwater. Just rinse if off when you done.
 

AZLynn

LifeTime Supporter
Jul 4, 2012
45
Tucson, AZ
The 1/2 hp is $30 more than the 1/3 and only goes to 3300 gpm so the 1/3 appears to be the better deal. Yes I know the water hose will reduce the flow. I would not use a water hose to drain the entire pool but it would work well for draining while filling if you know what I mean. Or for smaller drains where I don’t want to risk draining too much.