Remove sand from water feature

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Old 02-08-20, 05:18 PM
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Remove sand from water feature

We live in the desert and have a water feature that accumulates sand. Today, I brush the sand to the drain so it gets trapped in the filter. I then have to remove the filter and hose it out.

Is is there some sort of vacuum attachment or other means to remove the sand from the bottom without emptying the water or brushing it to the filter?
 
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Old 02-09-20, 02:02 AM
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Google "battery powered spa vacuum"!

We have one that runs on 5 D batteries that is used to clean the spa which gets sand an leaves tracked into it,
 
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Old 02-09-20, 11:03 AM
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Thanks! I will take a look
 
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Old 02-13-20, 05:02 AM
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I am not sure of the volume of sand encountered, but could you position a shop vac nozzle over the sand, then turn it on, or have someone else turn it on, and in the short amount of time it would take to fill up the shop vac with sand/water, it would remove the sand?

Even if you did that a few times, it might work?

I am not sure I understand the problem enough to say this would work. I just always try to use what I got kicking around.
 
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Old 02-13-20, 06:42 AM
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Is is there some sort of vacuum attachment or other means to remove the sand from the bottom without emptying the water or brushing it to the filter?
First, get a flat-drain-to-vacuum-hose fitting.


Second get a sections of ribbed hose a few feet long- could be a shop vac hose, or segmented pool vacuum hose.


Third, add a shop vac / regular vacuum nozzle to the front.

Connect the fitting-hose-nozzle; then just vacuum up the sand, while keeping the hose FLAT.
The nozzle restricts the flow and and increases speed so the water can lift the sand, the water slows in the larger diameter ribbed hose and the sand drops out, the grooves trap the sand.

When you're finished vacuuming, lift both ENDS of the hose above the water (trapping the sand in the hose). The nozzle-end will have the most sand, find a place where you want to empty out the sand, remove the nozzle, hold the hose down with your foot, and then lift the fitting-end of the hose up above your head to wash out most of the sand. Once the hose is dry, hold it vertically and shake and the dry sand will fall out easily.
 
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Old 02-13-20, 07:46 AM
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Thanks for the suggestion. I’ll have to look for that attachment and give it a try.
 
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Old 02-13-20, 11:00 AM
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How big is "the water feature"?

To make opening my swimming pool easier, I have an optional "inline debris trap" that fits between the pump/suction and the vacuum head on the bottom of the pool. It is just a spare pool filter (basket and housing) bungee corded to the ladder; but this lets me clean out leaves without loosing the prime on the pump- just disconnect the suction line, weave it between the pool ladder rungs to keep it underwater.

Now, to vacuum leaves, the bottom connection goes to the pump/suction and the top connection goes to the pool-bottom-vacuum-head.
However, to vacuum out sand or grit, I reverse that- so the pool-suction draws from the top, and the bottom vacuum enters at the bottom - this means grit and sand drop out at the bottom, while the suction pulls clear water from the top.
 

Last edited by Hal_S; 02-13-20 at 11:16 AM.
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Old 02-13-20, 11:10 AM
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The water feature is about 8 ft by 5 ft. It’s installed like a pool. A pump and filter is located on the other side of the house. I have one of those basket filters for leaves and stones already. There is also a cylindrical paper filter which traps the sand when it circulates. As the filter traps sand it slows the water flow and I have to hose the sand out of it. It’s not terrible but I was looking for some easier options.
 
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Old 02-13-20, 11:48 AM
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I was looking for some easier options.
What I've done in your situation is make an inline-filter from a spare chlorine bucket, and window screen.

Take an empty chlorine bucket. Carefully remove the lid.
Cut a "to bottom vacuum" hole in one of the flat vertical sides of the bucket.
Cut a "to pump" hole in section of the top lid that generally stays locked to the bucket.
For the holes, you could use a screw together fitting, I just scribed a circle to match my hose diameter, and cut it out with a utility knife, and added a 1/8" slit so that I could "screw" the spiral pool hose into the hole.

Drape a scrap section of window screen in the bucket to create a pocket-. I found it helped to add a "spacer" to keep the screen / pocket from being sucked into the vacuum-top. an old filter basket or a salad spinner works nicely.)

Sink the bucket so that the air leaks out- hook up a "vacuum" side hose, and then hookup the inline filter to the pump. The pump pulls water through the bucket, in through the side, out through the top. (basically you've created a disposable "underwater shop vac" that uses the remote suction of the pump.

So, really crude sketch shows - red is inlet into a flat side, grey is the window-screen-pocket, blue is the outlet to the pump/suction.
 
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Last edited by Hal_S; 02-13-20 at 12:15 PM.
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Old 02-13-20, 11:54 AM
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Wow. That’s clever. Do you moonlight as McGuyver?
 
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Old 02-13-20, 02:23 PM
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Wow. That’s clever. Do you moonlight as McGuyver?
Well, that WAS a nickname in college.
I DID win a case of beer on a bet that I could start a muscle car with a "dead" battery using 2 paperclips, a penknife, and a dixie cup... (but that's another story entirely..)
 
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