How to Clean a Swimming Pool Main Drain

Lead Image for How to Clean a Swimming Pool Main Drain
  • 1-3 hours
  • Beginner
  • 20-60
What You'll Need
Clog Buster
Pool chemicals
Waste bag
Nets and other pool cleaning tools

The main pool drain serves as the primary site of all drainage for a swimming pool of any size. Maintaining a clean and unobstructed main pool drain is essential to the prevention of debris buildup and potentially harmful algae in your swimming pool. In addition to the maintenance of the pool's water and chlorine levels, be prepared to regularly clean and monitor the main drain in order to keep your pool in the best shape it can be. Follow these steps to safely and effectively clean your swimming pool's main drain.

Step 1 - Collect Your Materials

Before beginning the project of cleaning your pool's main drain, collect the necessary materials to maintain your pool. These include the following:

The materials necessary to clean the main drain are relatively minimal and can be purchased at any pool supply store. The waste bag is necessary to collect any debris or other items that you collect from your pool or the drain by hand.

Step 2 - Clean Large Debris by Hand

Locate the site of your pool's main drain and clean out any large pieces of debris that may have become caught in or around it. These may include branches, twigs, leaves, and other plant material, garbage and more. Place all debris of this type into your waste bag. This is the first step towards having a clean pool main drain, but in order to most effectively complete the job, you'll need to clear out debris that may have collected in the drain itself, which you can not access by hand.

Step 3 - Clean the Drain with a Clog Buster

A clog buster is a tool that attaches to one end of the pool drain and uses an automated mechanism to push debris out of the other side of the drain. This is an excellent way to clean drains of material that is too small to clean by hand or that is difficult to reach. Following the clog buster instructions, affix the device to your pool drain and activate it.

Repeat this process until the clog buster no longer picks up any debris from inside of the swimming pool main drain. Discard the collected debris into your waste bag.

Step 4 - Clean the Pool Itself and Adjust the Chemicals

While you're cleaning the drain, take the time to pick up any debris or floating objects that may have landed in the swimming pool itself. Using a net, clear out any excess debris from the pool and collect it in your waste bag. Having done that, take a chemical reading of the pool and adjust the pH levels and chlorine levels as necessary. Be careful not to swim in your pool until the water is safe to enter once again after making a chemical adjustment of this type.

The frequency with which you'll need to maintain your swimming pool's main drain depends upon the size of your pool, the amount of debris passing through the system, and the type of drain itself. Consult with a pool technician for further advice.