How Long Does It Take to Acid Wash a Pool?

Is the water in your Sarasota pool so slimy that you can’t see the bottom? Well, this only means one thing – your pool has essentially transformed into a black lagoon. As such, it will need an acid pool washing by the Nelson Pool Company. Also known as ‘drain and clean,’ it’s the process of removing dirt buildup on the bottom and sides of the pool.

The duration of acid washing depends on how it’s done. Outside of draining the pool, the acid-washing process can last four to five hours. A no-drain acid wash, on the other hand, takes about three days.

If you’re thinking of having your pool acid washed, then here’s everything you need to know about it.

How Do You Acid Wash a New Pool?

There are two ways to acid wash a pool. One way is by taking a plaster and acid washing it. Here, you’ll learn more about the traditional process – one that involves draining the entire pool.

The Nelson Pool Company in Sarasota, FL, can complete the traditional acid wash process in about four to five hours. Please note that this does not include the time needed for draining the pool.

Before starting the process, you first need to check if your pool is acid-washable.

Generally, acid washing is safe for concrete and gunite pools. Those with glass beads, Quartz, or pebble-tec can only endure one to two rounds of acid washing.

As for vinyl-lined pools, they should only be cleaned with detergents and conditioners.

Next, you need to prepare the supplies. If you plan on doing this yourself, you need the following:

  • Muriatic acid

  • Submersible water pump

  • Long drainage hose

  • Extended garden hose

  • High-pressure spray nozzle

  • Washing soda

  • Water tester kit

  • Algae brush

  • Acid brush

Since you will be dealing with corrosive acid, you will need to observe safety precautions. Before you start cleaning, make sure you’re wearing protective gear. This includes acid-safe clothing, glasses, gloves, and boots before starting.

Now that you’re ready with the pre-wash processes, let’s proceed to the acid washing itself:

1. Drain Your Sarasota Pool

Start by affixing the pump to the drain hose. Make sure to put the other end near a sewer opening.

Now, place the pump in the deepest area of the pool and let it drain. The draining process can take anywhere from eight to 14 hours, so be patient.

Once the pool is fully drained, remove the debris left on the surface.

Tip: Don’t drain your inground pool if it’s raining hard. If you have a crack in your inground pool and would like to discover 5 efficient solutions, click here.

The difference between rain and pool water may cause the water’s surface to rise. The result? The excess water can damage the pool, essentially leading to a costly pool repair. Dive into the realm of pool leak detection costs – click here to unravel the pricing mysteries!

To find out if you can repair a swimming pool that is currently filled with water, click here. If you want to know more about how our skilled professionals remove the substrate or surface materials from a pool for repairs, visit in this.

Discover when you should repair or replace your pool liner by reading this article. #NelsonPoolCompany #BestPoolRepairInSarasotaFL #SarasotaPoolRenovations #PoolLeakRepairSarasota

— Nelson Pool Company (@NelsonCompany) February 10, 2021

[tcb-script async=”” src=”” charset=”utf-8″][/tcb-script]

How Often Should a Pool be Drained?

Our pool experts recommend draining pool water every three to five years. 

The best time to start is when your pool’s total dissolved solids reach 2,500 ppm. That’s because these solids make it harder to balance the water.

It’s also good to drain the pool once the Cyanuric acid levels increase. They can’t be removed with chemicals, so the only solution is to remove or dilute them.

Unveil the 7 unmistakable signs indicating it’s time for a pool renovation – check out this link now!

2. Scrub the Pool Surfaces

Use your hose or brush to remove the stains and algae. Keep the surface slightly wet, as this will help facilitate the scrubbing process.

Immerse yourself in the magic of pool renovation with Nelson Pool Company – witness the transformation unfold!

3. Prepare the Acid for Washing

Start with clean water and add the acid slowly. Make sure to follow the manufacturer’s instructions!

Don’t do it the other way around (acid first, then water) because this could result in a dangerous reaction.

Dive into the depths of pool water loss causes – discover the reasons behind it, click here!

4. Apply the Acid and Start Scrubbing

Treat the pool surfaces with your acid mixture. Wait for the acid to settle in for at least a minute before scrubbing the surface.

Again, make sure that the surface is slightly wet when you do so.

5. Rinse the Surface

Once you’re done with the scrubbing, rinse the surface thoroughly with water. It’s advisable to pour in some washing soda as this will keep the wastewater sewage safe.

As a rule of thumb, you need to use two pounds of washing soda for every gallon of acid.

6. Drain the Wastewater and Refill the Pool

After draining all the wastewater, it’s time to start refilling your pool. Don’t forget to add the chemicals needed to keep your Sarasota pool pH safe (

Click here to view our pool refilling process.

Can You Acid Wash a Pool Without Draining it?

You can acid wash a pool without draining it, although this process takes longer than the traditional route.

It also needs to be done in cool weather. That way, you don’t have to use a lot of chemicals to balance the pool pH.

Without draining, the acid washing process can take about three to five days.

Here’s how to do a no-drain acid wash:

1. Prep the Pool

A week before acid washing, over-sanitize and over-filter the pool. Use a brush or vacuum as needed.

2. Top or Drain the Pool

Fill the pool with water until it reaches the top trim. You can also drain some of the water until the level reaches the bottom edge of the trim.

3. Drop the Pool pH

Add a metal sequestrant following the formula of 16 oz per 10,000 gallons. Next, add the pH degreaser. Make sure to follow a concentration of 8 lb per 5,000 gallons.

4. Test the Water

Check to see if the alkalinity is at 0. If not, add more pH decreaser to the pool until you hit your goal.

5. Clean the Pool

For the next three days, clean your Sarasota pool daily with a steel brush. Test the water as needed to make sure that it remains acidic.

6. Reverse the pH Level

After steel brushing the surfaces, it’s time to reverse the water pH. Add pH increaser to the pool at a concentration of 8 lb per 5,000 gallons.

How Often Should You Acid Wash a New Pool?

As long as you maintain your pool regularly, it will only need acid washing every five to seven years.

Acid washing your Bradenton pool more frequently will only end up damaging it. Remember: acid will strip a plaster layer on the surface every single time. That’s why Quartz, bead, and pebble-tec surfaces can only withstand one to two rounds of acid washing.

If your pool is only slightly dirty, it’s best to scrub the area with an acid- or chlorine-free solution.

Please include attribution to with this graphic. How long does it take acid to was a pool Infographics


Can You Swim in Pool After an Acid Wash?

You can swim in the pool after an acid wash, but you need to wait for two hours after the acid washing process.

If you jump into the pool 10-15 minutes after cleaning it, you will probably suffer from acid burns.

Final Thoughts

Acid washing your pool is doable, but it involves dangerous materials.

More importantly, doing a drain/no-drain acid washing may cause leaks in the pool.

For this issue (among many others), you will need the Nelson Pool Company in Sarasota. They are the experts in leak detection and repair – they have been doing it since 2005!

Check out our blogs.

Get ready to experience the ultimate luxury and relaxation in your own backyard – contact Nelson Pool Company today to start creating your dream pool with their expert team and turn your outdoor space into a stunning oasis that will impress and delight for years to come!