water • purity • life 

Do I need a permit to drain my pool?
No, but there are some guidelines and rules about how to do it. These are outlined below. 

Where do I drain my pool water?
If you have a pool or spa on your own property, you’re legally required to drain it within your property – either down the sewer clean-out or elsewhere on your property (for example, on your landscaping). You cannot drain it into the street, alley, or other public right of way. Pipes that are "hard plumbed" to drain off-property (i.e., to the street) are considered a direct connection to the storm drain, and are prohibited.

Where should I drain the water when I backwash my pool?

When you backwash your pool as a part of your general maintenance routine, you’ll need to drain it within your own property, but you don’t need to use the sewer clean-out. 

Do I need to contact Johnson Utilities when I drain my pool?

No.


Do I need to contact Johnson Utilities when I refill my pool?

No, but keep in mind that you’ll see the increased volume in your water bill. If you’d like help estimating the cost, contact our customer service office at 480-987-9870.









​What is a sewer clean-out?
Sewer clean-outs are typically 3-to-4-inch-wide black pipes level with the landscaping, and located near the house. Newer homes may have two clean-outs, and some older homes have a clean-out in a wall. If you have two clean-outs, use the one closest to the house. It’s risky to use clean-outs located in walls for pool draining, as there’s a high possibility of water backing up into the house.


POOL DRAINING FAQS 


Summary 

  • Locate the clean-out. If there are two, use the one closest to the home.

  • Remove the cap and insert the drain hose a few inches into the pipe.

  • Secure the drain hose so it won't pop out.

  • Turn on the pump.

  • Immediately check to make sure no water is backing up into the house. Drains for showers and tubs are the first places to check.

  • If the water backs up, turn off the pump immediately. You may have a blockage, or the flow rate is too high.

  • Caution: Using a clean-out in the wall is risky, and the potential for water backing up into the home is great.

HOURS REQUIRED TO DRAIN A POOL

Flow Rate


Pool Volume (Gallons)
 

(gal/min)

(gal/hr)

10,000

11,000

12,000

13,000

14,000

15,000

6

360

28 hrs

31 hrs

33 hrs

36 hrs

39 hrs

42 hrs

7

420

24 hrs

26 hrs

29 hrs

31 hrs

33 hrs

36 hrs

8

480

21 hrs

23 hrs

25 hrs

27 hrs

29 hrs

31 hrs

9

540

19 hrs

20 hrs

22 hrs

24 hrs

26 hrs

28 hrs

10

600

17 hrs

18 hrs

20 hrs

22 hrs

23 hrs

25 hrs

11

660

15 hrs

17 hrs

18 hrs

20 hrs

21 hrs

23 hrs

12

720

14 hrs

15 hrs

17 hrs

18 hrs

19 hrs

21 hrs

Information courtesy of the City of Phoenix.


What flow rate should I use when I drain my pool?
In general, you shouldn’t drain your pool any faster than 12 gallons per minute (gpm). Some pools should be drained even more slowly to prevent backing up into the house or street. You can also learn more about the best flow rate for your own pool by talking to a plumber.

Can I keep the pool drain line installed permanently in my pool?
No. Doing so can cause water contamination when you refill your pool, and may violate health regulations or plumbing codes. 

If you have a pool or spa on your property, the following information will help you maintain it and meet existing rules and regulations.