Emptied Pool to Clean Liner

by Kate
(Horsham, pa)

Our pool cover fell in the pool over the winter so we decided to empty the pool to clean it good. I believe it is a beaded liner. After we cleaned it we started to fill the pool up and it only filled about 1/10 of the way when we heard a snap! Most of the liner came down.

Do we need to do something special to keep it up or just re-hook the liner? Also, do we need to remove the top rim of the wall to do this?

Thanks so much for helping us!

Hi Kate. Anytime a vinyl liner is drained it will shrink. Your liner shrank and then would not stretch back out as you refilled it. If the liner has any chance at all of being used again you need to fill it on a hot day in direct sunlight. Many times a liner older than about three years will not stretch back out, they loose their elasticity.

The only way to know is to give it a try. With the pool almost empty, and the sun high overhead, try pushing as much liner from the center area to the sides. This will smooth the bottom out and hopefully gain you a little liner on the sides. You can then start filling and fill only in direct sunlight, even if it takes a few days.

A beaded liner should go back into the bead without having to take the pool apart.

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Drained pool, Liner came off.

by David
(Tennessee)

We own a 16x28 Doughboy pool with a deep section and an expandable liner. We drained it to remove some roots that were growing under the liner. When we tried to refill it, it wrinkled and pulled the liner out from under the top seat in a 10 foot section. Is it possible to fix this or do we need to buy a new liner?



Hi David. You probably need a new liner. Vinyl liners should never be completely emptied. Liners that are only a year or two old can sometimes be drained and refilled. Pools with a deep end should never be drained into the deep area. The liner in the deep area has been stretched and will shrink as soon as the water is taken out.

The only way to know if the liner can be reused is to place your foot against the liner where the cove meets the wall. If you can hold your foot against the wall and still pull some liner over the top of the wall you should be OK. Be sure that any work you do is in full sunlight, the liner will cooperate much better.

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Cleaning Vinyl Pool Liner

by Alec
(Huntertown, IN)

Thanks for all this good advice.

I would appreciate if you could answer 1 question for me.

I was not able to open my 25,000 gallon, round, above ground pool last year and it sat uncovered last summer and all winter. It is nasty now of course and home to a family or two of frogs. I would like to drain it, power wash inside and out, and fill with fresh water. Is this ok? Any tips? Thanks in advance for your time.



Hi Alec. Draining the pool completely will probably ruin your liner. The liner will shrink as soon as you drain it and in most cases will not stretch back out.

The only way I would completely empty an above ground pool is during the first, or maybe the second, season. After that the liner looses it's elasticity and your chances of it refilling get slimmer every year.

If your liner is as bad as it sounds you may want to just consider replacing it as it will never clean up and look like new again. If you want to keep it, you could drain the pool down to about a foot of water. At this point you could scrub the walls with a soft brush and remove as much sludge and debris from the pool as possible. You could then fill it back up and shock it real good with either vinyl shock or liquid chlorine.

This process could be repeated a few times if needed. Ideally the shock treatment in conjunction with running the filter non stop for a week or so and plenty of vacuuming would clear the water up enough to make the pool usable.

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