Swimming Pool Drainage


Tempe City Code allows residents to drain their 35,000 gallon or less swimming pool, under specified conditions, without the need to apply for a pool drainage permit.

The specified conditions are as follows:

  • The order of preference for the discharge is as follows:
    1. It is highly recommended that all discharge water be kept on your property and used for landscape irrigation. This may require discharging intermittently for several days if you have limited landscape area to prevent runoff onto the right-of-way or onto a neighbor’s property.
    2. Discharge of drainage from pools to the residential cleanout is allowed if the flow is constantly monitored and no chlorine has been added to the pool for at least three (3) days before discharge, and the owner is liable for any sewer backup or damage to their private system as a result of discharging pool water to the sewer cleanout on their property.
    3. Pool drainage water may be discharged to the right-of-way or street (not including alleys) when correctly de-chlorinated and pollutant free, discharged using a pump sized no more than 1.5 horsepower and drainage is monitored to ensure it does not create flooding or damage, create a traffic hazard or otherwise constitute a nuisance under §21-3(b)(18) of the City of Tempe Code. Maintenance backwash water can only be discharged to the owner's property.
  • If water is to be drained from a commercial swimming pool or a residential swimming pool of more than 35,000 gallons, the water must either be discharged upon the owner’s property or to the sanitary sewer system only if a permit is issued for the discharge by the Public Works Department under §27-10(B)(18) of the City of Tempe Code. Contact Environmental Compliance Inspectors at (480) 350-2678.