Wednesday, September 08, 2021 - 9:00 AM

Properly Drain Swimming Pools

water in a pool reflecting light with the City of St. John's logo in the middle

Summer is nearly over and those with backyard swimming pools will drain the water from the pool and put it away for the winter. 

It’s easy enough to fill a pool with water, and draining it can be done properly when following a few simple steps.

Chemicals used to disinfect swimming pools and hot tubs are toxic to aquatic organisms and can be harmful to the natural environment, impacting the ecological balance and health of watersheds.

To properly drain above-ground swimming pools and hot tubs:

  1. Dechlorinate prior to draining. Avoid adding disinfection chemicals for 1-2 weeks prior to draining to allow the pool chemicals to naturally dissipate; adding a de-chlorination tablet can speed up the process.
  2. Use a pool test kit. If chemical levels remain high, delay draining the pool until the levels are non-detectable.
  3. Drain onto your lawn, the grass and soil acts as a natural filter. 

Pools should never be drained:

  • when chemicals remain present in the water
  • on a rainy day or when the lawn is already saturated with water.
  • into a catch basin storm sewer (grates near curbs on roadways) as it drains untreated into nearby streams and brooks that run into natural water courses.
  • onto a neighbouring property including into brooks, streams or undeveloped or forested areas. 

For more details, check our Swimming Pool Draining webpage.