How To Drain an Above Ground Pool

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Unfortunately, summer has to end. So, if you are one of the millions of people who invest in an above ground pool annually, it is time to store the pool. Or, it might be time to empty the pool of all the gross water and refill it. However, all this requires draining your above ground pool of water.

How do you drain an above ground pool? There is plenty to remember if you are ready to put the pool away for the fall and winter months or if you want to refill it with fresh water. This process does not have to be time-consuming if you have the correct tips at your disposal.

Here are a few things to remember as you drain and disassemble your above ground pool.

Routine Above Ground Pool Maintenance

If you have an above ground pool, you know they require much more maintenance than an in-ground pool. After all, there is plenty more to do than just ensuring the water is healthy enough for swimming.

First, it is generally a wise idea to keep the area around the pool clean to prevent dirt and leaves from entering the clean water. You should also test your pool water regularly and add chemicals as needed to keep the water balanced. 

This process will help prevent algae growth and keep your pool water clean and clear. Keeping your pool filter clean as part of this maintenance level is also crucial. Make sure you are also brushing and vacuuming your pool regularly, too. Dirt, debris, and algae are no joke.

Weekly inspection of your pool liner regularly for holes or tears is encouraged. If you find any, repair them as soon as possible to prevent water leaks.

Following these maintenance tips can help keep your above ground pool clean and running smoothly all season.

Draining an Above Ground Pool

If you have done a stellar job of maintaining your pool all season, draining your pool should be a standard operation that takes minimal effort. Follow these steps, and your pool will be drained in only a few minutes.

Turn off the Pump and Any Other Devices That Are Running on Electricity

Your first step will be to turn off the pool pump and filtering system. This step is an effort to prevent any possible electrical issues. But, of course, no one wants to place “visit a nearby hospital” on this list due to an electrocution injury.

Place a Hose Into the Pool

Before draining, you need to find a place to drain the water. The best site is usually a lawn or other open area. You will also need a long enough hose to reach from the pool to the draining area.

Once you have found a suitable draining area and have your hose, you can begin draining the pool. Start by removing the cap from the drain at the bottom of the pool. Then, attach the hose to the drain.

Some pools, however, do not have a valve. You will need to merely place the hose in the pool and create suction using a plunger so the water will travel through the hose and into the ground.

You may need to adjust the position of the hose a few times to ensure that the water is draining correctly. 

Remove the Water

You may now begin the process of draining the pool once your hose is in place. 

If your pool has a valve to aid in this process, open it and allow the water to pour through it. If you lack the valve, use a plunger to create suction from the bottom of the pool to the end of the hose. This technique allows the water to pour out quickly. 

The size of your pool and hose will determine how long it takes for all the water to drain. It may take several minutes or upwards of several hours. 

Remove the Hose and Any Other Objects From the Pool

Once your pool is empty of water, remove the hose and hang it to allow it time to dry. Anything else left behind in the open pool should be removed as well. 

Inspect Your Pool for Any Damage

Inspect the pool for any damage that may have occurred during draining. This tip is vital if you drain the pool using a manual pump. Check the walls, liner, and other parts of the pool for cracks, leaks, or further damage. This portion will allow you to fix any issues that may have occurred during the draining process.

Clean the Pool Thoroughly

Once the pool is dry, you can scrub it with a pool brush. Be sure to clean the walls, floor, and other parts of the pool. You may also want to use a hose to rinse off the pool.

Refill the Pool if You Want To Keep It Going

If you want to keep the pool open, you can now refill the pool with fresh water. Once the pool is cleaned and repaired, you can start filling it with water. If you have a hose, you can hook it up to a water source and start filling up the pool. Otherwise, you may need a bucket to fill the pool.

Once refilled, be sure to test the water and ensure the pH levels are balanced and safe for swimming. 

Take the Pool Apart if Storing It

If you are draining the pool to store it for the cold months, you will need to take it apart. Start with the frame. Grab a wrench or screwdriver to loosen and remove the bolts or screws that keep it together. Be careful not to damage the frame as you’re taking it apart.

Remove the liner next, but be sure not to damage it in the process. 

Once you’ve taken everything apart, you’ll need to dispose of it properly or store it. 


Draining a pool to refill or store it for the colder months is not a tremendously complex process. All it takes is a clear afternoon and a few tools to make it happen!

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