It’s pool draining season: How to do it right

Make sure you follow the proper procedures to drain your pool or hot tub this fall.

  • Sep. 19, 2016 12:00 p.m.

Draining your hot tub or pool this season.

Summer is winding down which means pools and hot tubs are ready to be drained. Residents are reminded to follow proper procedures when draining water to help protect our water system.

When draining pools and hot tubs make sure:

• To drain to a dry area on your property over a long period of time

• Discharge the water at a low flow rate

• Make sure the water stays on your property

• Stop draining if it starts raining.

• To de-chlorinate the water before draining it into the storm sewer system

• Salt water pools are drained into the sanitary sewer system.

Improper discharge of contaminated water can result in a fine of up to $2,000 so it’s important to know what system you’re draining your water into.

The Sanitary Sewer Storm Drain Regulation Bylaw restricts the discharge of residential pool and hot tub water containing disinfectants such as chlorine, salt water and bromine. Water features such as ponds and fountains also need to follow draining procedures as they can contain sediments and other wastes.

Storm sewers are the catch basins or grates on the road, usually found by a sidewalk, that drain into the storm sewer system. As these systems connect directly into Okanagan Lake and local streams, the water flows into the lake untreated.

Sanitary systems can be identified by their circular pipe with lid or a square container that, when opened, contains a pipe (the container may be marked “sewer”). The sanitary sewer system is directed to the City’s Wastewater Treatment Facility and is treated before being released into the lake.

For further guidance, residents are encouraged to contact the City’s Water Quality department to ensure they are draining into the correct system.

For more information, visit

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