How to Drain an Above Ground Pool (3 Methods)

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How to Drain an Above Ground Pool

It is not always a good idea to leave your above ground pool empty unless it is one of those small, inflatable types. Leaving it without water often leads to problems like the liner drying out and cracking.

However, there are some situations where it is inevitable to drain your above ground pool. Therefore, it is essential to know how to do it correctly without causing problems for your pool if you own one.

Here we look at a few easy methods you can use to drain your above ground pool, but first, we explain some reasons you might need to empty it in the first place.

Reasons to Drain an Above Ground Pool

1. Line Replacement: Even if you have the best quality pool liner pad, at some point, you might still have to replace it as the abrasion from the ground and weight of the pool will wear it out. You will need to empty your above ground pool to remove the old liner and install a new one.

2. Replace the Water with Fresh Water: There are some instances where you might need to empty all the water in your above ground and replace it with fresh water. An excellent example of this is when you are dealing with a persistent algae problem or pool chlorine lock that seems impossible to fix no matter what you try.

3. Storing the Pool: Although it is not good to drain and store your above ground pool even during winter, sometimes it is inevitable. In such instances, you can only take apart the pool after emptying all the water.

4. Get Rid of an Old Above Ground Pool: Sometimes, the only reason you will want to drain your pool is that it is old, and you want to get rid of it. You may want to install a new one, dig an inground pool or even use the space for other things.

How to Drain an Above Ground Pool

You can use different methods to drain your above ground swimming pool, but the following 3 the easiest, quickest, and most cost-effective.

Method 1 – Use an Electric Pump

Step 1: Submerge Pool

When using an electric pool pump, the first step should be to submerge its intake deep in the water. Here you will need to dip the pump’s intake hose as close to the center of the pool as possible.

Step 2: Place the Outlet in an Ideal Location

Next, you need to place the pump’s outlet in an ideal location where you will not cause any flooding. It will help if you put it in a place where it can direct the water to the sewerage line. Additionally, make sure you keep the outlet on a level surface to ensure easy draining without flooding.

Step 3: Turn on the Pump

Now you can switch on your pump to start draining the water. As the pump works, make sure the pool water is beginning to reduce before you leave the pump unattended. Even if you cannot see the level going down, check whether water is coming out of the pump’s outlet hose.

Step 4: Wait for a Few Hours and Keep Checking

The entire process of draining a pool with a pump will still take several hours, despite being faster than using a garden hose.

However, make sure you keep checking it as often as possible to be sure everything is working well and remember to check the outlet to ensure it is not flooding your backyard.

Step 5: Switch Off the Pump

A good pool pump that is powerful enough should drain your above ground pool down to just a few inches. But, like most other methods, it will not remove all the water.

Therefore, remember to switch off the pump once the water level is too low to drain to prevent damage to your pump.

Method 2 – Use a Garden Hose

Step 1: Submerge Garden Hose into the Pool

The first step should be to submerge the hose into the pool and get it as close to the bottom as possible. Also, if you want to drain the water fast, you can try to get several hoses as using one can take quite some time if you have a large above ground pool.

Step 2: Create Suction

Next, you need to create suction to force the water out of the pool through the hose. Different people have varying ways of creating suction, but the best way to do it is by simply taking one end of the hose out of the pool and placing it on level ground.

Also, make sure the other end remains fully submerged, and water will start rushing through immediately.

Step 3: Check Water Level Frequently

Keep an eye on the siphon and the water level to ensure it reduces at a good rate. But, you need to be patient because no matter how good your garden hose is, this method will still drain the water much slower than using a pump.

Step 4: Remove Hose

The last step is to remove the hose when the water level is 6 to 12 inches, as this method cannot drain water down to the bottom of the pool. However, what remains should now be easy to deal with as you can even scoop it out.

Method 3: Use the Drain Valve

Many above ground pools, more so for the soft-sides types, will include a drain valve cut out in them at the base of the pool. If yours has one, then you can use it to drain the water.

Using the drain valve makes the job quick and easy as there is nothing much you need to do besides opening the valve and allowing the water to flow out.

However, it is always a good idea to connect a hose to the drain valve so you can control where the water goes as it drains out.

You often do not need to buy any special tools or equipment when using this method. However, it still has several demerits. The water can wash away the pool base as it drains and expose things like rocks and debris that can damage your pool once you fill it again.

Also, as the water rushes out of the pool, it can damage plants in the yard, and the chlorine will also have a long-lasting effect on plant life.

Bottom Line

It is never a good idea to drain your above ground pool and leave it empty for long periods as this can cause damages and other problems. That said, sometimes it is inevitable when you want to replace the pad, deal with a chlorine lock or even replace the pool with a new one.

When it comes to draining your above ground pool, you need to make sure you do it correctly. Here you can use a regular garden hose, an electric water pump, or even just open the drain valve if your model has one.

Regardless of the method you choose, make sure you keep a close eye on the process and ensure you do not flood your backyard or damage your plants in the process.