This is our second article in our series of articles designed to educate consumers. We will discuss the reason why dual main drains are installed in swimming pools.
The purpose of main drains in a swimming pool, other than to drain water from the pool, is to allow dirt and debris to exit the swimming pool. The debris flows through the cover of the main drain, where it is taken to the filter system to be cleaned and the water is then returned into the pool by the “return” line. Main drains are usually located in the lowest point of the swimming pool so that the entire pool surface slants towards them. A majority of the dirt and debris that falls to the pool floor, exits through these drains. For safety reasons these drain pipes are fitted with an anti vortex cover that protects peoples hair, clothing, jewelry, and limbs from being pulled into the drain.
Tragedy struck in June 2002 when a little girl, an avid swimmer, Virginia Graeme Baker, drown after being trapped underwater by the powerful suction of a hot tub main drain. In response, her family lobbied for legislation requiring anti-entrapment drain covers in all swimming pools and spas. The President signed the bill into law in December 2007. There are additional entrapment options discussed in the law as well. To read the full Virginia Graeme Baker Pool and Spa Safety Act, click here.
The purpose of two main drains per pool pump is to prevent entrapment in the event that one of the drains becomes blocked. The two drains are placed at least 3 feet apart, sharing the suction from the pump. This lessens the risk for entrapment. It is an additional layer of protection for those swimming in the pool or spa.
All residential swimming pools should be equipped with some type of anti-entrapment device as specified by VGBPSSA.
We hope that you found this article helpful. Check back for more educational articles.