Pool Closing Tips 2017

Tips for Draining your Pool

As the swimming season ends, the Department of Public Works is providing tips for draining pools and spas that will help minimize impacts to your neighbors and the environment.


Most swimming pool chemicals have an impact on fish, plants and other aquatic life.  


  • Chlorine damages fish gills, which can cause fish to drown.
  • Bromine sanitizes swimming pools. In high doses it can also damage fish gills.
  • Copper is used to kill algae in the filter system. It is very toxic to fish.  
  • Pool water can be very warm compared to a river or stream and can stress aquatic life.      


Did you know that the storm drains on your street discharge to either a stream, pond or directly to the Charles River? What goes down these drains impacts the health of our waterbodies. That’s why we are providing these tips for draining your pool.


  1. Discontinue adding pool chemicals at least 1 week before draining your pool. This will allow the chemicals to evaporate before draining.    
  2. Test the chlorine and sanitizer levels in your pool before draining (there should be no residual chlorine or sanitizers).
  3. Drain the pool slowly to avoid runoff onto abutting properties. Consider draining some or all of the water to your yard, where your lawn and trees can benefit from deep fall watering and where it will be filtered naturally and recharge deep into the ground – overflow to the storm drains in the street is okay.  

Another option is to pump your pool water to a utility sink (if you have one, it’s in the basement). This option provides for treatment of the pool water by the regional wastewater treatment plant and is allowed only if you purchased the water to fill the pool from the City of Newton. If you have any questions, please contact customer service at 617-796-1000 and ask for the environmental engineer.  

back to top