If you go in the water to work on the drain while the pump is running, use
You can become trapped by the suction, people have been killed this way....
Have buddy there to look out for you and shut down the pump if you get
On Wed, 31 Aug 2011 11:52:49 -0700 (PDT), Evan wrote:
Wow. Twenty thousand gallons an hour! 300 gallons a minute. 5 gallons a
second. That's fast!
If I have to, I will drain the pool. But, I was hoping to try to figure out
what the problem is BEFORE draining it.
In fact, if it's drained, then I can't even run the pump anymore. So, how
does one TEST a pool drain which is now empty?
Yeah, apparently you have never seen the man-portable gasoline powered
pumps that are used to drain out basements after a serious flood...
If you really wanted to go thermonuclear on it, a fire pump (like the
in a fire truck) can provide 500 to 750 gallons per minute quite
So, let's review what you have revealed so far --
-- You hired a company to clean out 1" of dirt and mud from the bottom
of the pool...
-- You then filled the pool with water which took you somewhere on the
order of ~100 days according to various replies you have made thus
-- You never had the pool inspected by a proper pool company BEFORE
you filled it...
-- You have no idea whether or not the drain was functioning properly
BEFORE you filled the pool with water...
-- You are unemployed yet you got a house for nearly nothing, and yet
the maintenance of said home and its amenities costing any sort of
money to deal with is not optimal ?
There are so many issues there I will just leave them to you to
Especially from Evan, who has proven to be a bit
of a village idiot in the past. The questions SF is asking
seem reasonable to me. Also, I've seen plenty of
"expert" pool companies screw things up royally too.
How did you know!
BTW, I 'was' employed when I got the house (at a very good price). But I
was laid off a few months after that.
I'm living off my savings at the moment. Over 55 and over the hill.
It's not easy starting over (I was at the same company for decades).
Anyway, I thought the whole purpose of alt.home.repair is to ask advice and
I'm very glad you guys are volunteering the time to provide that advice.
My nntp news provider limits the number of messages a day so this is coming
a day after I posted it. Sorry about that.
I have a 3" 8HP pump that is rated at 385GPM, yes that's fast, and yes
you have to have a place you can discharge all that water that can
handle the flow rate.
I have no idea what a tanker of pool water costs, but renting some dive
gear - tank, reg, mask and weight belt - is probably cheaper and more
fun. No need for wetsuit, BC, snorkel or dive computer in a 9' pool. You
want to be over weighted anyway so you can work without moving yourself
You would leave a foot or two of water in the pool.
On Wed, 31 Aug 2011 17:08:46 -0500, Pete C. wrote:
Renting makes sense but I like to own my (used) equipment. The advantage of
owning the equipment is that, over time, you end up finding other uses for
the stuff that you never imagined. At least that's what happens to me! :)
I agree. The pool is warm (82 to 85 degrees F). And only 9 feet deep. I do
need weight though. But that's no big deal.
When I was less fat, a few decades ago, I was 12% body fat (weighted under
water in the chair) and, interestingly, in my entire scuba class at
college, not one other person had ZERO lead weight in the pool. Everyone
else (women and men included), needed a few pounds, fully laden with scuba
gear, to be neutral. BTW, this was in the days of the horse collar so we
didn't use BCs.
Even in the ocean, I only used 4 pounds of lead, which was way less than
anyone else. Now, I float like an iceberg! So, the one thing I 'do' need is
the lead weight! :)
Interesting. I wonder what happens to the sidewall safety drain. I guess
you have to plug it becuase it's only about 3 feet below the surface.
BTW, I said the drain cover is 18 inches but that's too wide. It's about a
foot (or so) in diameter.
replying to Evan, BR wrote:
He mentioned "cost" to refill from tanker, not "time". You reaching. Reaching
for something to lecture him about. Hear that? Your mom is calling. It's time
for bed. Move on!
On Wed, 31 Aug 2011 04:53:27 -0700 (PDT), jamesgangnc wrote:
I agree. But ... it's tedious and, since I don't know what I'm looking for
per se, it's time consuming. I would rather just stay on the bottom for a
while (plus, it would be fun to get back into scuba gear since I haven't
dived in over 30 years after being an advanced PADI open water diver as a
I hope not. The pool had an inch thick of mud in it when I bought the house
(forclosure) so it easily 'could' be clogged.
It's a looooong story. The short story is my skimmers don't work the way
most people's skimmers do.
1. I have a filtration system that has a single 18" suction port at the
deepest end of the pool (8 or 9 feet) (plus a safety port on the side
wall). That filtration system has nothing to do with the skimmers.
2. Then, there is a built-in vacuum-less cleaning system, which takes water
from the two skimmers and simply squirts it back into the pool, unfiltered
(other than baskets at the skimmers and pump) in order to push debris to
the deep end of the pool (which has a cliff-like dropoff in order to trap
the debris on the bottom of the pool).
So, the skimmers have nothing to do with the filtering, unfortunately.
Assuming the pool pipes are something like 2", bringing down a garden
hose with one of the basic jet nozzles on the end should allow you to
flush the mud out of the pipe as you push the hose further into the
drain. You will of course have zero visibility in short order, so first
hook a small guide rope from a drain screw up to the pool exit to make
exit and re-entry easier.
On Wed, 31 Aug 2011 17:12:06 -0500, Pete C. wrote:
This is a good warning!
Many a time I've done something, only to rue the lack of forethought when
something like a dust cloud occurs.
I'm not sure what this means. Even if the pool turned black, I, personally,
would be safe as I'd just float upward.
So the guide rope must be for the hose?
Note: Sorry this is a day late. My nntp news provider limits posts to
something like 25 per day only and I've been answering everyone here (as a
courtesy and to respond and to appreciate their advice).
On Sun, 04 Sep 2011 03:36:05 -0500, Pete C. wrote:
I understand adding additional safety measures, and, I agree, a guide rope
is pretty trivial to hook up (so why not), but, still, I can't fathom an
'emergency' in a pool that has such a small deep end (the deep end is ONLY
there for the self-cleaning system to work).
By the way, if you haven't seen this type of pool, you'd have no idea how
STEEP the slope is at the deep end. It's nothing like a 'regular' pool.
It's about as steep as a steep ski slope. The whole point, apparently, is
to push debris toward the deep end where it can't get out.
I'd say it looks almost like, oh, about 30 degrees. Before I realized the
entire pool is designed around the cleaning system, I wondered who on earth
would make the 8 or 9 foot deep end so short (it's only about 4 feet wide
on the bottom of the deep end) and then have a slippery sloap that was
almost 45 degrees up to the shallow end.
It was too short for diving (you'd dive right past it) and the shallow
slope would kill anyone who tried as they'd it it head on, literally.
The whole pool made no sense (to me) until I talked to the company
(Lifetime Pools) that built it and to the company that designed the
cleaning system (http://www.paramountpoolproducts.com/products/pcc /).
Here they tout the pool is built to clean itself!
In that two-page PDF, you can see that two jets are dedicated to the filter
system to push debris directly to the drain. It's 'that' part of the system
that I'm trying to debug.
Are you saying that safety port is connected to the suction
line along with the bottom drain? That would be the way
I would think it should be because you don't want a single
suction point to prevent someone from getting sucked
onto the single suction point and drowning.
So, if that's the case, why would the pump run dry
because of the bottom drain being clogged? It
would have to be a clog affecting both the bottom
drain AND the side suction point, no?
As for proceeding, it sounds a lot easier to me to
do a test with water flowing from the pool pad via a garden
hose attachement or similar than it is to dive for
the bottom drain. You could also use compressed
air as long as you make sure you keep the pressure
low, eg 15psi or so.
he could get a plumber to run a camera down the line to see exactly
whats wrong. depending on what the line is made of it might be
possible to snake it.
some problems can be endlessely discussed where it takes less time to
just go exploring......
On Thu, 1 Sep 2011 22:57:10 -0700 (PDT), email@example.com wrote:
I think that's the way it's built.
Hmmm... that's a good point (which I had not thought of).
All I 'actually' know is that when I turn the compool electrical valve from
Spa or from Spa/Pool to just Pool, the pump loses its water in the pump
basket. It's sucking more air than water.
I 'thought' that meant the drain is clogged (especially since the two
squirters opposite it are not working).
But, maybe that just means there is a leak in the line?
Yikes. How would one find an air leak in when it's all buried underground
I found mine by plugging all of the pool
outlets on the line in question except for
one. I closed off the valve at the pool
pad on that line. On the remaining
pool side outlet, I screwed in a 2"
threaded PVC adaptor that transitioned
to an air chuck which I then connected
to my air compressor.
I suspected a leak and was actually
going to see if it would hold pressure.
But as I tried to pressurize it, while
I was still trying to stop air leaking
around the PVC adaptor, I heard
air and water boiling out of the ground
back near the pool pad.
If you do that, don't go over about
15 or 20psi. I'd also do it right after
the pump has been running for a
while. I think that way there is
probably going to be more water
around the leak area, so more
water to spot boiling out of the
I also see you mentioned sand
destroying the impeller. Where is
that coming from? Does a lot blow
into the pool from the environment?
If not, another sign of a leaking pipe
is sand, small pebbles, getting
sucked in. On mine, two main
symptoms of the suction side leak
A - Those pebbles and sand showing
up in the strainer basket
B- Some constant air bubbles in the
C - A brown cloud that went by some
number of seconds after the pump
started each time. I actually used that
to determine the approximate location
of the suspected leak before finding it
with air. I shut the pump off, then put
some blue food coloring in one of the
skimmers. I turned the pump on and
timed how long it took for the blue to
show up at the pump strainer. I then
timed how long it takes for the brown
cloud to show up, giving an idea of
where the leak is relative to the total
length of pipe.
On Sun, 4 Sep 2011 06:55:38 -0700 (PDT), firstname.lastname@example.org wrote:
I'll try that as I'm 'sure' there are leaks (I put in 500 gallons every few
days ... and my well output is only about 400 gallons in a 24-hour day).
When I bought the forclosure, I was told they emptied the pool, but,
rainwater filled it (that's a LOT of rain!) and then the vector control
guys threw mosquitoe fish into it to keep the mosquitoes down.
It was greenish brown when I got it, and the water level was about a foot
below the deck. The fish were happily swimming about, eating the algae. The
bottom had mud on it everywhere, which we had cleaned up by a work crew.
Normally, no sand spills into the pool (it gets wind borne debris, but, not
Interesting. I 'do' see tiny pebbles in the filter basket and wondered how
they got there ...
HomeOwnersHub.com is a website for homeowners and building and maintenance pros. It is not affiliated with any of the manufacturers or service providers discussed here.
All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.