Practice Run - Blowing out pipes - can't seem to airlock main drain

6m71

New member
Sep 12, 2021
2
NY
Hi All!

Long time lurker and first time pool owner here (inherited a pool built in 2006 by the prior). Location is northeast. My first pool season has been pretty smooth, mainly thanks to the advice here and following the TFP method.

The weather in the north east is still a bit too warm to close but figured i'd do a dry run today and practice blowing out the pipes using a 6 gallon shop vac (did not lower water level - practice run only).

The issue i'm having is i cant seem to get the main drain to air lock... and maybe the shop vac is not powerful enough or am i doing it wrong? Attached in the picture of the equipment, i have inserted the shop vac blower into the pipe circled in green, then proceeded to closed the valve that goes to the filter side so that all air is being forced through the pump, skimmers, and main drain. I closed the skimmers one by one as bubbles started to come out of them but for some reason with only the main drain open and the vac running (for about 2 mins), air bubbles wont come out. The main drain 100% works as leaves always make their way to it.

Questions:
1. Am i not supposed to be blowing into the pipes via the green circle, and instead should i blow through a skimmer and plug the motor so that air doesn't run through it?
2. To blow out the return lines on my setup, where would you personally advise to insert the blower? Should i undo the union right after the chlorinator and stick the blower through there?

Equipment Setup: Pool Layout:
Many thanks in advance for your help!
 
  • Like
Reactions: Apsuhead

cowboycasey

Gold Supporter
LifeTime Supporter
TFP Guide
Jul 3, 2013
8,648
Southern OK
Pool Size
15000
Surface
Vinyl
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
CircuPool SJ-40
The shop vac does not have the ooomph to get it done.. but it is probably good enough.. you only need to get the water 2 feet below the ground or just below the frost line... What you do not know is how far you can push the water down below the ground...

You could try one of these connected to that part and use a compressor..
 

6m71

New member
Sep 12, 2021
2
NY
The shop vac does not have the ooomph to get it done.. but it is probably good enough.. you only need to get the water 2 feet below the ground or just below the frost line... What you do not know is how far you can push the water down below the ground...

You could try one of these connected to that part and use a compressor..

thank you and you are correct. The shop vac did not have enough omph. I used an air compressor today and was able to get bubbles to come out and verified air was being pushed out of every return and skimmer.

in terms of compressor - is there a rule on psi to stay below? I tried my best to keep the “tool pressure” regulator below 20 psi. Main drain did bubble but wasn’t as dramatic as some YouTube videos.

might need to bite the bullet and get a cyclone for the volume.
 

cowboycasey

Gold Supporter
LifeTime Supporter
TFP Guide
Jul 3, 2013
8,648
Southern OK
Pool Size
15000
Surface
Vinyl
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
CircuPool SJ-40
I think 20 psi or so is a good range, the lower the better to get the job done.. 2 inch PVC is good up to 280 psi, 1.5 inch is 330 psi.. :)
 
  • Like
Reactions: 6m71
Thread Status
Hello , This is an inactive thread. Any new postings here are unlikely to be seen or responded to by other members. You will get much more visibility by Starting A New Thread