Tips for Pools, Spas and Fountain Owners

The City of Los Angeles allows for the periodic draining of swimming pools, spas and decorative fountains into the gutter, storm drain system or sanitary sewer, provided that certain good housekeeping practices are followed:

  • De-chlorinate or de-brominate swimming pool, spa or decorative fountain water by allowing the water to sit for a few days without adding chlorine or adding a de-chlorinizing agent to the water prior to discharging it to the gutter or sanitary sewer system. Verify the pH is neutral (6-8) before discharging.
  • To prevent the overload of the sanitary sewer system, please do not discharge pool water until 48 hours after the end of a rainstorm.
  • Pool water containing copper-based algaecides may not be discharged to the storm drain or sanitary sewer system.
  • Pool water containing dyes may not be discharged to the storm drain system. Discharges of dyed water to the sanitary sewer system are conditional pursuant to LAMC 64.30.
  • Please do not drain water in such a manner that the water encroaches on an adjacent property or floods the public right-of-way.
  • Do not drain water into any private septic system.
  • Pool filter back wash may not be drained to the storm drain system or public right-of-way. Back wash may be drained to the sanitary sewer system provided the water passes through a separation tank prior to discharge, the connection is in compliance with plumbing regulations and there are no harmful chemicals present. Dry the Diatomaceous Earth filter waste and use it as a soil amendment in your garden or dispose of it in your City-issued black bin.
  • When discharging to a storm drain, examine the corner catch basin for cleanliness prior to releasing the water. Clogged catch basins may cause the discharged water to flood surface streets. Call (800) 974-9794 to report a clogged catch basin.
  • Discharges to the storm drain system are allowed between 8:00 p.m. and 8:00 a.m.
  • Educate your pool service personnel on these good housekeeping practices.

Photos courtesy of freefotouk and medallionpools via