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Can I Drain My Pool Into My Yard

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Next Steps: Fixing Your Drainage System


The first thing to consider is whether the drainage system you have is malfunctioning or simply not adequate. A good drainage system using piping that is clogged up should be flushed, using a pump if necessary to create the needed water pressure. A drainage system that consists only of providing a way for water to run off into the landscaping may require the addition of more formal drainage equipment in order to deal with the water flow.

In some cases, piped drainage systems may become clogged with something that cannot be washed out, such as concrete. If your drainage system is sluggish and cannot be flushed clean, consider this as a potential issue. Broken equipment can also cause drainage problems, so it may be necessary to inspect the entire system for issues if it cannot be properly flushed.

If you have water going where you do not want it to, you might need to install additional drains in your system. Putting another drain between the source of the water and the location where it is currently ending up should solve this problem. However, if an existing piped drainage system is in place, this may require some construction work.

Where Does Backwash Pool Water Go Best Ways To Dump It

When you backwash a pool filter, or when you vacuum a pool to waste, the water that is pumped from the pool does not return to the pool. So where does it go?

When you backwash the pool water exits the pool and in general either goes directly into the sewer system or to somewhere in your yard, such as on a lawn, a flower bed, under trees or wherever you direct it by laying out a backwash hose.

Regulations differ about where you can discharge pool water in different areas of the US and in other countries. You should check with your local authority to find out what you ca do in your particular area.

What Is A French Drain And How Does It Work

If youve been looking up ways to deal with standing water in your yard, youve probably run across the term French drain. Sounds intimidating, right? Wondering what the heck it is? And what exactly it does?

This is one of those situations where the name makes it sound like a much bigger deal than it really is. The simplest way to describe a French drain is that its a flexible plastic drain pipe that you can place under your lawn to help channel water away.

Still sound complicated? Heres how to put in a French drain if you are experiencing drainage issues:

  • Identify where you have standing water in your yard.
  • Use a shovel to dig a trench in that area that leads to a place where the water can more easily drain.
  • Line the trench with pea gravel.
  • Purchase a French drain pipe or simply get a plastic, flexible landscape pipe. If you use a general landscape pipe, perforate it with holes and cover it with landscape fabric, leaving both ends of the pipe open to encourage drainage.
  • Place the pipe in the dug-out trench, making sure that the trench is deep enough that the top of the pipe does not reach ground level.
  • Cover the pipe with dirt and additional pea gravel so it blends in with the rest of your lawn.
  • Now you have a French drain! Its a simple way to add very basic plumbing to your lawn and alleviate drainage issues in specific areas.

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    When Does Pool Water Hurt My Yard

    Draining pool water allows the water to infiltrate your soil. If you are going to drain your pool at all, you should lower the chlorine concentration to 0.1 parts per million. Too much chlorine is definitely going to have a negative result if it seeps into your soil.

    While many places will allow you to drain your salt water pool on your own property, it can be challenging to even the salt out so it doesnt gather in one area and hurt the soil. The popular draining method is to drain into a sanitary sewer or clean out line.

    If you have any more questions or concerns regarding pool and lawn health, please dont hesitate to ask your pool professionals.

    How To Drain A Pool: Draining An Inground Pool

    Sump Pump Drains Into Yard
    • |February 24, 2021

    Swimming pools should always be clean bodies of water that are ready for swimming at the drop of a hat.

    But at times, issues with the water or even the pool itself can creep up, requiring you to empty out the entire structure.

    Draining an inground pool can be well, draining. Its a big job to remove all of the water , so lets take it from the top.

    Skip to:

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    Start Draining The Water

    To start draining the water with a hose:

  • Connect one end of the hose to your faucet
  • Put the other end in your swimming pool
  • Turn on the water so it flows into the pool
  • Detach the end of hose from the faucet and immediately lower it to the ground
  • Watch as the water flow reverses and starts draining the pool
  • To start draining with an electric pump:

    Well, since all pumps have their operational manual theres no need to cover the specific steps here. Its simply a case of following the instructions that come with the device and youre good to go.

    Again, this can be used in combination with a garden hose drain, or right from the start if youre in a hurry to get things done and money isnt an issue.

    Pumping To The Storm Drain:

    For many areas, a green pool cannot be pumped into the street or into the storm drains. Most cities restrict this practice to clean and clear pool water only. Some cities such as Phoenix require you to pump into the sewer cleanout of your home.

    In Los Angeles, water sent to the storm drain or sanitary sewer must be clean and clear, de-chlorinated and pH balanced. The water cannot contain any dyes or copper-based algaecides. In addition, to prevent the overload of the LA sewer system, pool water may not be discharged to the sanitary sewer within one to two days after the cessation of a rain event.

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    How To Remedy Drainage Problems Caused By Pools

    For the sake of the cleanliness of the water, the deck should slope away from pool, roughly a quarter of an inch per foot. This might seem counter to what were trying to achieve, but its important to have a drainage system to balance this sloping. If youre setting up a deck around the pool, built-in drains can prevent puddling issues that can come from spillover. There are two types of deck drains:

    Strip or trench drains that are built right into the concrete or aluminum of the deck. These narrow grates collect the excess water and funnel it away from the where it can cause puddles.

    Spot drains are a series of smaller, single drains that are connected together by PVC pipe below ground. They are great for areas where trench drains just wouldnt fit.

    Your system should incorporate both of these options. They can direct the water towards a storm drain or in the natural direction of the slope of the lawn, letting gravity do its thing . Inground pools require a pretty hefty excavation, so when the pool is being installed, see if you can also have the yard regraded.

    If thats too large a task, a French drain can be installed around the perimeter of the pool itself to direct water away from where areas of the yard where it might collect. Installing berms, properly-drained patios, and other yard elements can also help remedy drainage issues that might be caused by pools.

    Never Use The Pool Pump To Drain The Pool

    Do I need to drain my pool to replace my pool light?

    You mightve seen advice here and there on the internet saying that to drain your pool, all you need to do is put your filter in backwash or waste mode, and use the pump to pull water out of the pool.

    We do not recommend this method.

    Your pump is connected to the pools skimmer. This is where water enters the filtration system, which is powered by the pump. And pool pump motors are water-cooled devices.

    If you use the pump to pull water from the pool, as soon as the water level falls below the skimmer, your pump will start pulling in air. Without water to keep it cool while it runs, it will eventually overheat, and possibly break beyond repair, which means youll have to buy a new pool pump.

    There are ways to avoid this, but frankly, the process is more complicated than it needs to be. When it comes to expensive pool equipment, we like to err on the side of caution and use simpler, safer methods.

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    Can You Backwash Into The Street Or Storm Drain

    Whether you can direct pool water into the street depends on where you live. It may be permitted in some areas but not in others.

    For example, the City of Phoenix states Do not drain water into the street, alleyway or other city of Phoenix right of way under City Code, Section 31-8 and Section 23-33. Instead, they state that the water should be discharged onto a lawn or other part of the landscaping unless it will be a substantial amount in which case it could go down the homes sewer clean-out and into the citys sewer line.

    The main reason for not being able to discharge into the street, storm drains, curbs, gutters, channels etc is that, without the water being treated first, they lead to creeks, rivers and lakes. Pool water contains chemicals such as chlorine which could severely impact the ecology of the waterways. Pool water that goes into the sewer system is treated before ending up in rivers, reservoirs etc so it will not impact negatively on the ecology of the waterways.

    Check your local areas regulations to see what they allow as fines for discharging water into the drainage system, where not permitted can carry hefty fines.

    Guidelines For Draining Your Pool Or Spa

    Whenever possible, please drain your pool, spa, filter backwash, and pool wastewater into the sanitary sewer cleanout or down a drain leading to the sanitary sewer. Water flow into the sanitary sewer should not exceed 20 gallons per minute and should be pumped during low flow times of midnight 5 a.m., or noon 5 p.m. This will not increase your utility bill.

    If it is not possible to drain the water into the sanitary sewer, you may drain the water ontograssy areas following these guidelines:

    • De-chlorinate the water by allowing it to stand untreated for 7 to 10 days before you drain the pool/spa.
    • Drain the water directly onto the grass in your yard. Be a good neighbor allow the water to only drain onto your property so that it does not cause erosion or flooding in your neighbors yard.
    • Drain the pool water slowly to allow it to be absorbed into the ground and to prevent erosion and ponding. Standing water can lead to mosquito problems in as little as 48 to 72 hours and may be a code violation.
    • Maintenance discharges from swimming pools, fountains, and spas such as filter backwash, acid wash, and plaster wastes shall never be discharged to the public right-of-way or storm drain system.

    When disposing of filter rinse water and backwash:

    Report illegal discharge to City of Pflugerville’s Stormwater Specialist at 512-990-6300.

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    How To Drain A Pool Connected To A Sewer

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    Draining your swimming pool onto the street, into storm drains and near waterways is illegal in many townships and municipalities across the country. You may be able to dechlorinate your pool water and use it to irrigate your lawn or garden, but you may only do so if it can be done without flooding your neighbors property or causing other problems, reports Chandler, Arizona. The best way to drain the pool is to empty it directly into the sanitary sewer line outside your home. The process is simple but can be time-consuming, depending on how fast you are able to pump the water.

    Have A Water Disposal Plan

    French Drain With Dry Well: 7 Steps (with Pictures)

    Know where youre going to direct all that pool water before you start pulling it out. Some municipalities prohibit draining pool water into streets or storm drains. And thousands of gallons of water is probably going to be too much for your yard to handle. You dont want all those chemicals in your grass or the groundwater, anyway.

    The usual process is to direct all that water down one of your homes sewer cleanouts, but some areas may allow you to drain into the street. Your city may also have restrictions on when you can drain your pool. Always check with your local water authority to be sure.

    Having a water disposal plan in place before you begin the draining process can help you avoid fines and environmental damage.

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    The Moment Weve Been Waiting For: Start Draining

    Turn on the submersible pump and start draining. Youll want to stick around for this part, no matter how long it takes. Keep an eye on the cords and the hose to make sure that its all going smoothlyand keep a house flood from happening.

    One task you can do while your pool is drained is switch over to saltwater, so that your chlorine is operating at the lowest, safest, and most consistent levels possible. Make a smooth transition with the Salt Ways Eco Friendly Salt Chlorine Generator. Its ultra-reliable and comes with a lifetime warranty.

    Other Backyard Drainage Problems And Solutions

    If weve learned anything in the years that weve been helping people with their landscape issues, its that there are as many specific drainage problems and solutions as there are yards. However, most of them fall into the basic categories already detailed above.

    That being said, here are a few more issuesand solutionswe havent discussed:

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    Will Pool Water Kill Plants

    Different plants will react differently to pool water. Some will tolerate it completely and at the other end of the scale some plants may die. As a very general rule, plants with thick leaves will probably be able to cope with chlorine the best.

    Examples of those plants that can tolerate pool water are Oleander, Palms, Honeysuckle and some herbs such as Rosemary. Those that wont tolerate pool water include some fruit trees and roses.

    What Is The Best Way To Drain My Hot Tub

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    There are three ways to safely and effectively drain your hot tub without harming any plants in your backyard:

    • Use a hose spigot. A hose spigot is a great way to remove water from your spa. Most hot tubs have a draining hole, and some of them even have a threaded portion to add a spigot and a hose. You can hook up a ¾ spigot onto this drain, attach it to a hose, and let the water drain downhill through it.
    • Submersible pumps are another popular method for draining hot tubs. These pumps vary in price depending on the horsepower, brand, and energy-efficiency rating. Lower the submersible pump until the inlet is entirely underwater. Hook it up to a hose, turn it on, and watch the magic happen. A submersible pump is an excellent choice for people who have to drain their hot tub going uphill.
    • Using a backwash hose isnt as common, but its absolutely doable. This method will only work if you have a filter that can be back washed. Hook up the backwash hose, turn the valve to the appropriate setting , and let it flow out.

    The area in which you can legally drain your hot tub depends on your local regulations.

    Most cities recommend that you drain the hot tub at the closest sewer cleanout. To make sure youre following the rules, always call the city before draining your spa.

    Note: Certain hot tubs can only be used with one or two methods, so review the three options above to see which one best suits your model!

    My choice of the 3 methods is definitely the submersible pump.

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    How Does Pool Water Damage A Lawn

    Pool water can be damaging to lawns and gardens especially if the water contains chlorine. Chlorine can kill and damage plants in large amounts and for this reason, pool water should be dechlorinated before it is drained.

    For best practice, pool water should have a neutral pH before draining, as water that is too acidic or too alkaline can harm any nearby flora. Likewise, pools containing salt water can also prove to be harmful to grass and plants nearby.

    It should be noted, that small amounts of chlorine and salt should not impact nearby yard quality.

    To Do A Combination Of Tasks

    Are you draining the pool to make one repair on the floor? Why not acid wash the pool while youre at it? Or go ahead and repaint it so you dont have to drain it again in a year or two?

    Take advantage of the empty pool to get as much maintenance done as possible, and drain it as infrequently as possible.

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    What Should You Do If Neighbor Is Draining Pool Water Into Your Lawn

    1. Talk to Your Neighbors

    If you have an amicable relationship with your neighbors, it may be worth speaking to them directly about your concerns with their pool water drainage. They may not realize that the water is significantly entering your property.

    You can suggest that they drain the water from their pool with a hose towards road drainage systems and away from your property. If any damages have occurred, let them know about it.

    2. Contact Your City Bylaw Officials

    If you have already spoken to your neighbor or are not in the position to speak with them, you can contact your city bylaw officials about their pool water entering your property. Be sure to document your proof through pictures with date and time stamps.

    Most municipalities have regulations around pool water drainage not entering neighboring properties and how it can be properly drained. They may come and inspect the property and leave a written notice for your neighbor that they are infringing upon local regulations.

    3. Contact a Real Estate Attorney

    If the aforementioned methods have not worked and your property has sustained damage, you may need to hire a real estate attorney. Be sure to document your experience, including any pictures of the water entering your yard, the damage it has caused, and if you have spoken with the neighbor about this or not.

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