Swimming pool and Spa water can contain chlorine, bromine, algaecides, biocides, water conditioners, stabilizers and other chemicals which are toxic to fish and other aquatic life. Diatomaceous earth (DE), cellulose fiber, and sand particles from backwash water can fill in spaces in the gravel of a stream bed, preventing oxygen from reaching fish eggs and young fish. DE and cellulose fiber can also clog fish gills. Large quantities of these chemicals can cause fish kills, destabilize fish populations which can affect the local wildlife food chain. These chemicals can also lead to higher water treatment costs for drinking water.

There are three options for draining your swimming pool or spa water however before draining your pool or spa you must de-chlorinate the water.

  • Allow the water to sit in the sun for 5 to 10 days without adding any chlorine or other chemicals
  • Use a chemical de-chlorination additive: Contact your local pool store for options
  • Use a simple chlorine test kit to verify water is de-chlorinated.

Drain pool water to your yard or landscape areas:

  • This allows the water to soak into your grassy areas and filter out any residual pollutants.
  • Don't cause flooding of your neighbor's property or any other adjacent property.
  • The land area is sufficient to prevent yard erosion and sediment runoff into a ditch, creek, or storm drain system.

Drain pool water to the sanitary sewer system:

  • Locate the sanitary sewer cleanout on your property or an indoor drain such as a sink or bathtub.
  • Using a hose, connect a siphon or sump pump that pumps no more than 50 gallons per minute.
  • Pump the water from the pool or spa to the cleanout or indoor drain.
  • Replace all cleanout covers when finished.

Swimming pool water may be discharged to the storm drain when the following conditions are met:

  • The pool or spa is completely de-chlorinated.
  • The pH of the water is between 6.5 and 9.
  • There is no discharge of acid cleaning wastes, filter media or other pool chemicals.
  • Discharge water will not pond in the street or flow to neighboring properties.
  • Drainage hoses must stay on your property and drain directly to the street.