Temporary return line above ground


New member
Jun 18, 2020
Hi! We open my in gorund pool this summer to find the plugs out of the jet and at the bottom of the pool...ugh. When the pump is not running we do not lose any water! When we turn the pump on after about 15 minutes we start seeing water bubbling out of a drainage grate on my pool patio a way away from the pool.. After some research it seems like there must be a crack in the return pipe somewhere. We can not run the filter because it quickly loses inches of water and cannot keep a prime so my pool is very green. All the leak detection companies say they can't do a full inspection on the lines and the main drain unless the water is clear. We got advice from someone to run a temporary return pipe above ground just to get the pool started and clean.

Any advice on how to do this would be great... all the pool companies are too busy to come help right now and we are really missing the pool. Im looking to do the new plumbing myself


Gold Supporter
TFP Guide
Jun 16, 2019
Hey ang !! I remember seeing one very similar last year. I searched briefly but couldn't find it. I believe they used black poly sprinkler line as the return and just laid it across the patio and into the pool. At the pool they hose clamped a 90 pointing down and added a foot or so of pipe to stop the water from splashing/aerating.
If you had a big pump you could do the same with PVC. Its pretty cheap.

Post pics of your equipment and the drain. The way it bubbles out it almost sounds like the MPV is broken or left to drain and you may get lucky without having to replace/build a temp return.

Also fill out your signature so folks know what you are working with. Otherwise we have to ask questions of your questions.

Also also...... welcome !!


Mod Squad
TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Jul 7, 2014
Bedford, TX

As the dude points out.. You may not have a broken pipe at all, you may just have a bad MVP that is letting pool water go to you backwash pipe all the time the pump is running..

Some MVPs have a clear glass window, or jar, where you can see movement of water going to waste.. That would be the first thing I would look at..

It should be no problem running an above ground pipe from your equipment pad back to your pool..

You will most likely have to cut some plumbing to do it. Show us some pics of your equipment pad.


Jim R.
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