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Southern Nevada Water Authority

How to Drain a Pool or Spa

How to Drain a Pool or Spa

Learn the correct way to drain your pool
or spa.

Monitor pool draining to assure the pump capacity does not exceed the sewer line capacity. Any equipment inserted into a sewer pipe, such as a garden hose, should be considered contaminated and used only for similar purposes in the future.

  1. Shut off the power to the filtration system at the circuit breaker and turn off the automatic water fill valve.
  2. Locate the clean-out port to access the sanitary sewer line. The port is usually located in the ground and close to the home in the front yard—it may be near a water spigot. The port should have a rubber or threaded cap with a square wrench fitting and should be 3 to 4 inches in diameter. If you can't locate the port, you may want to consider contacting a plumber. (Caution: Using a clean-out port in the wall creates greater potential for water to back up into the house.)
  3. Run a drainage hose from the sewer clean-out port to the pool, and connect it to a submersible pump. Lower the pump into the deepest part of the pool, near the drain. As you begin draining, monitor the water's flow into the clean-out port to ensure that the water doesn't back up. If the water begins to back up, stop draining and contact a professional plumber. The maximum recommended discharge rate is 12 gallons per minute. (Note: Any hoses or equipment inserted into the sewer line can become contaminated.)
  4. After draining your pool, refill it as soon as possible. Direct sunlight can damage the plaster in your pool if it's left exposed. It may take a few days for the fresh water to reach the proper chemical levels, so check the levels every day for a week and add chemicals as needed.
  5. If you're unsure about draining your pool, or you'd like assistance, you may want to consider contacting a professionally-licensed pool service company or plumber. By following these guidelines, you can ensure your drained pool water is properly treated and recycled. Also see our pool draining tips.

For further questions on pools and/or spas, please call the Southern Nevada Health District at (702) 759-0571.


Video: How to drain your pool


Make sure you know the proper methods and codes before draining your pool. Play

Photos: Pool Clean-Out Ports


View examples of pool clean-out ports to help you track yours down. See

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