Draining your pool/spa
Protect our waterways & the environment when draining your pool, hot tub or spa
Never drain water from pools, spas or hot tubs into your sump pump, the street, gutter or storm drain.
- The same levels of chemicals like chlorine and copper that are used to keep your pool safe for swimmers can be harmful to fish and wildlife.
- Contrary to popular belief, salt water pools are not environmentally friendly, salt water generates chlorine and produces the chemical byproduct bromoform, which is harmful to aquatic life.
How do I drain my pool or spa?
1. Prepare the water to be drained, test:
- Discontinue the addition of salt and chlorine.
- Test the water to ensure chlorine is below 1.1 mg/L and the pH is between 6.5 and 8.5 prior to draining.
- Three days of sunlight can reduce chlorine levels.
2. Drain your pool:
- Via the sanitary sewer*
- Drain your pool directly to the sanitary sewer via a drain in your home.
- Important note, most sump drains connect directly to the storm drain and our waterways, do not drain your pool through your sump pump.
*Preferred pool draining option for chlorine & only option for salt water pools.
- Via your lawn**
- Drain tested and properly ph balanced water over a 15 foot flat grassy or landscaped area (no paved surfaces).
- Keep the water flow low to prevent erosion of soil and vegetation.
**Secondary option for draining chlorine pools only. Never drain salt water into storm drain.
- How is chlorine toxic to fish and other aquatic life?
Chlorine burns the gills and fins of fish, destroys sensory organs, interferes with the ability of fish to find food and causes internal organ damage. If the receiving water contains decaying or organic matter (from decaying plants, algae and bacteria), chlorine can combine with the byproducts to form compounds called trihalomethanes, which are persistent in the aquatic environment and pose a health threat to living things for a long time.
- How does copper affect aquatic life?
Copper is found in pipes and used as an algaecide in swimming pools. It is a pollutant that directly threatens aquatic life. Excess copper in water causes the formation of acid pH levels, burns the gills of fish, interferes with respiration and causes internal organ damage.