How to Refill your School Indoor Pool and Prepare It for Use

In this guide, I will be walking you through the process of refilling and preparing your indoor pool for use. (Our pool at school had to be drained, while new LED lighting was installed) In this guide we will look at:

  • Making sure the pool surface is clean and surfaces are in a good working order
  • Pre-Checks in the Plant Room
  • Backwashing the Filters
  • Refilling the pool
  • Shocking the water with Chemicals and Checking the PH of your pool
  • Backwashing the Filter (Again)
  • Starting up the Heating

1. Making sure the pool surface is clean and in good working order

As we had workmen working on the lighting, the pool has to be checked to make sure that the surface is clean and to check the integrity of the tiles. Thankfully, I laid sheets down on the bottom of the pool, which caught most of the dust and objects, which dropped while the Electricians were working. I also checked the tiles, to make sure none had come loose or broken.

2. Pre-Checks in the Plant Room

I then went to the Plant Room, so that I could open the inspection hole on the top of the pump and allowed me to pour neat chlorine in, to make sure that if anything was growing got killed off right away.

3. Back Wash The Filters 

Backwashing the filter allows us to drain any remaining gunk out the filter. To do this, make sure the drain cock is still in the open position and the return valve is in the closed position. Using the inspection cover, put a hosepipe in and run at full pressure. Now turn the dial on the pump to Backwash and run for a few minutes. Once done, switch off the water, open the pool return cock and close the drain cock.  Finally, turn the pump to the off position.

4. Refilling The Pool

Usually refilling the pool takes ages, as most schools use a normal hose connected to the tap at mains pressure. Not us! I connected a large diameter hose to the “Wet Riser“, thus giving us a high pressure water supply. It takes me few days to fill the pool from the wet riser.

5. Shocking the water witch chemicals \ Checking the PH Levels

I use liquid chemicals to shock the pool. I use a machine that doses it through the filter. (Which does this through the inspection chamber on the pump) Once dosed, use your PH Kit to check the PH of the water. (It should be PH 7 – PH 7 and a half.) If your pool is too acidic, add Bicarbonate Of Soda mixed with water and test again)

Sam Says Safety First!

Always use cation when handling Chlorine. To protect yourself against accidental burns, wear Personal Protective Equipment. (Goggles, Thick Rubber Gloves, Protective Clothing, Thick Rubber Soled Shoes and a Face Mask) Always follow the instructions on the bottle and do not mix Chlorine with any other chemicals.

If you accidentally spill chlorine, use the hose to rinse it away make sure the area where the spillage has happened, is thoroughly rinsed. If you get chlorine on your skin, rinse under running water for 10 minutes and then attend Accident & Emergency at your nearest hospital. If you release a chlorine cloud by accident, evacuate the building, by sounding the fire alarm, then call 999 and ask for the Fire Brigade. State that there is a chlorine cloud and request assistance.

6. Backwashing the Filter (Again!)

You will need to backwash the filter again, just to make sure that anything in the pipework is flushed out. Close the pool return valve and open the drain cock. Run the filter in the “Backwash” position for 2 minutes. Now close the drain cock and open the pool return cock. You can now run the pump in it’s normal operating position.

7. Starting up the Heating

You now need to go and switch on the pool heating system. Ours is Gas, so I opened the gas valve, switched on the boiler isolation switch and watch to make sure the boiler ignites properly. For around a week, the pool will remain out of use, while I run the heating system constantly for a week. (To heat the water) I also put the pool skimmer baskets back and switched on the Air Handling Unit, giving our pool a bit of a tropical feel!

So that’s it, the pool has been drained, maintained and refilled! Swimming can resume by the end of next week.