Adding a Second Return

by Alan

I have an oval pool 33'x 18'. The problem I have is that my water doesn't fully circulate, I always have more dirt on the opposite end on the pool skimmer and jet and there is a big difference in temperature because the heat doesn't seem to be equally distributed inside the pool.

I have 1.5 hp pump with sand filter and gas heater. I was wondering if my solution should be to add another jet at the other end of the pool.

But will I lose water pressure and will I lose heat from having extended my outside plumbing by 33 feet making the heat escape in the plumbing. What is my best solution.

Hi Alan.

You are correct that you need to add a second return. A 1.5 HP pump needs two returns to get the best performance.

When installing the second return use a 3-way valve in the line so you can set the flow to each return. That way your first return can act as the main one with the second one being a helper and never getting the full flow, thus limiting any flow loss over the long distance.

Another consideration would be not putting the return all the way at the other end. Installing it ten to fifteen feet down from your first one would probably give you all the additional flow you need to completely circulate the pool.

Comments for Adding a Second Return

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Jun 19, 2010
How do you plumbthe 2nd return line?
by: Anonymous

Could you give a general diagram on how to plumb this 2nd line; where should the 3-way valve go? Should the 2nd return be at same height as the skimmer or low to the ground or mid-line?

I am thinking low, so as to always have it in the water when needed to prime the pump.

With the 2nd return, could a pool cleaner be hooked into in so the skimmer can still be in action?

Hi. The valve should be close to the filter, before the line splits off to the separate returns. The height of the return is completely up to you, I usually go about the same as the existing one. The skimmer line is what primes the pump so I don't think that would be a consideration.

For a cleaner you should add a third return. This one gets set below water level on the other side of the skimmer. Near the pump you add a three way and split the skimmer line, one line to the skimmer and the other to a return fitting to be used for the cleaner only. Be sure to get one with a cap, a spring loaded one is best. That much suction left open, when the cleaner is not being used, can be dangerous.

Jun 16, 2019
Metal wall 15' ABGP
by: Chett


Is is safe to add a secondary return on a metal wall pool?

Can I damage the integrity of the pool or not? If done correctly, although defining correctly is sometimes hard. I would literally have to get a round type but like they use for drilling lock holes. Any idea as to the standard size of the hole where getting fittings won't be a problem? Any help appreciated.

Hi A 2 1/2" hole saw will safely cut an opening for a standard Hayward return fitting.

Aug 19, 2019
Insulate the return lines to miniseries heat loss
by: Anonymous

Try insulating the return lines to minimize heat loss and a slight downward pitch woul help move the water through the return lines.

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