Swimming Pool Draining

State and Federal Regulations concerning illegal discharge of chlorinated swimming pool water :

The District’s Stormwater Permit issued by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) includes specific regulations concerning the discharge of chlorinated pool water and saltwater during swimming pool operation and maintenance activities. This type of water contains pollutants that can have a negative effect on the environment. It is illegal to discharge filter backwash water, chlorinated pool water or saltwater from saline pools into a storm drainage system or into a street that drains into a storm sewer inlet. Remember anything that enters a storm drain goes to creeks and lakes. Please follow the practices set forth below to ensure compliance with District and environmental regulations.

Chlorinated pool water disposal options:

To a vegetated area on the pool owners property:

  1. Area should be large enough to contain the discharge without any subsequent runoff or negatively effecting neighboring properties.
  2. Care should be taken not to create puddles of standing water, which could potentially provide breeding grounds for mosquitoes.
  3. It is suggested that the pool water be dechlorinated to avoid damage to vegetation. This can be done by letting it sit for a sufficient period of time before discharging it. It can also be dechlorinated by adding a chemical called sodium thiosulfate sold at pool stores. A home pool test kit purchased at pool supply stores (chlorine/pH) can help determine presence/absence of chlorine prior to discharge.

To the storm drainage system if the following conditions are met:

  1. The discharge meets the following requirements:
          • The chlorine residual is less than 0.01mg/L.
          • The pH is between 6.0 and 10.5.
          • The water is clear (no algae, sediments or other pollutants).
          • The pool is not a saltwater swimming pool.
  2. District is informed in advance to determine the drainage discharge is free of pollutants.
  3. Customer must prevent discharge of soil, sediment, rock, debris or other solid material.

Direct hose connection to the storm drain system is prohibited. 

Always remember that if you are refilling your pool using a water hose; never throw the hose into the pool.  This creates a cross connection and if the conditions are right pool water could be pulled back into your house plumbing and/or into the distribution system.  The best way to refill using a hose is to lay the hose on the side of the pool.  This will cause an air gap and  prevent a cross connection.

For more information contact Customer Service at 512-255-7871 option 1 or Email CustomerService@bcmud.org.