Get exclusive deals, discounts up to 40%, and hot tub & pool care advice.

Home Pools How To Get Sand Out Of Pool: Proven Methods Only

How To Get Sand Out Of Pool: Proven Methods Only

Sand in the pool is not a death sentence. Read the article to find out why it can appear and how to get it out of the pool faster.
How to get sand out of pool

You were going to enjoy a swim in the pool, but you stepped in it and felt the nasty sand under your feet. It sucks, yes. But don’t despair, there’s always a way out.

Yes, you’ll have to put off soaking for a while, but you’ll learn how to get sand out of the pool and why it gets there in the first place. Don’t worry — we won’t throw abstruse terms and technical details at you. Today’s article offers simple solutions in simple words.

Do you need a pool filter pump for an above-ground pool? Check our top five (sand ones included) to pick the best option for you.

Why Can You Get Sand In Your Pool?

You need to know where the sand in your pool came from, so you can successfully combat it and no longer face this problem. What are the possible causes?

  • Your sand filter

If you have a sand filter, it can break and cause sand at the bottom of your pool (read about how to fix it below). Its principle of operation is quite simple. It has a tank of sand, water runs through it, and large debris gets stuck in the sand, while clean water is returned to the pool through a hose at the bottom of the filter.

“But why my sand filter can break?” you’ll ask. Well, here are a few common reasons:

  1. Laterals

First, you can have cracked laterals. What are they? These are small sections of tubing at the bottom of the sand filter that traps sand and allows water to return to the pool. If one breaks, the sand will flow freely into the pool.

  1. Standpipe

The standpipe runs vertically through the center of the sand filter and connects the sides at the bottom of your sand filter and the valve at the top. This can also crack; if that happens, you will probably get sand at the bottom of your pool.

Sand filter construction
Sand filter construction
  • Brought in by the wind or people

Pretty obvious things — sand can be blown by the wind if you live in such an area, or it can be accidentally brought by people. If you have children who like to play in the sandbox, don’t forget what the consequences might be.

  • Are you sure it’s sand?

If the previous points don’t work for you, chances are it’s not the sand in your pool. What then? Well, it could be mustard algae. Not the nicest thing, but the good news is that below we’ll explain how to identify them and what to do in such a case.

How To Fix Your Sand Filter

The process of replacing broken parts of a sand filter is similar to the process of changing the sand in it. The only thing is that you additionally alter the desired part in the process. If you have ever changed any parts of devices, it will not be too difficult for you, especially with a YouTube video.

However, if you are not confident in your abilities, we advise you to invite a specialist who will fix it right. You can watch him, and if such a problem happens again, you can act independently.

Note: we advise keeping spare parts of the sand filter in the house in case of such breakdowns because if you order them after you find the sand in your pool, delivery can take some time.

Find out how to install or replace pool filter sand by yourself in our articles!
to get sand out of pool

Dangers Of Sand In The Pool

The sand in the pool itself won’t be dangerous for you — that’s good news. The bad news is that it will create discomfort for swimmers because walking on the bottom and feeling the rare fine grains of sand is not very fun. 

If it’s your sand filter broken, the effectiveness of your disinfectants will decrease until you fix/replace it. This is because it is the filter removes all contaminants from the pool, so you will have to act quickly to fix it.

4 Steps To Get Sand Out Of The Pool

Cleaning the pool of sand is unlikely to be your favorite thing in life, but at the same time, it is not as difficult as it seems. Firstly, stock up on everything you might need: a pool brush, a vacuum hose, a vacuum head, and a vacuum plate.

Brush It

First, it is better to gather all the sand in one (or several) places at the bottom of the pool. To do this, you will need (surprisingly) a brush. There are no special techniques or rules, do as you like.

Overfill The Pool

Not the most obvious step — we advise you to overfill your pool with water before taking the vacuum cleaner, as the latter will suck quite a lot of water out of the pool. You can also refill after cleaning, but usually, pool owners prefer to do it first (you can use a garden hose).

Overfill the pool

Get Your Vacuum

Let’s get to the fun part. Get your vacuum cleaner out and let’s get it ready to go. First, switch the multiport valve to the “waste” setting. The thing is, if you vacuum at the value on the filter setting, all the sand will get stuck inside your vacuum cleaner and damage the filter. Not cool, yes.

Because of the “waste” setting, a lot of water and sand will get into the filter and won’t come back out (which is why we advised overfilling the pool with water first).

Now you’re ready to get started. Try to do everything fast enough to lose less water, but at the same time don’t rush too much. You can fill the pool with water again later anyway, and you’ll be fine. Safety is paramount.

If you don’t have a pool vacuum, it’s time to think about that purchase. Read our research on the best models on the market to make it easier to choose.

Back To Balance

Is your pool clean and free of sand now? That’s great! But it’s not over. After this kind of manipulation, the water in your pool can become unbalanced. So do not be lazy to go get a test kit and check the water chemistry, and if necessary, balance it. 

How To Remove Sand From A Pool Without A Vacuum

Don’t have a pool vacuum and don’t want to buy one? Well, that’s okay. After all, they haven’t always existed, and we still have ways to get sand out of the pool otherwise.

So, you’ll need a pool brush and a scoop. In addition, a little patience and caution will not be superfluous. Be warned right away: although the process will be similar to how it works with a vacuum cleaner, it will not be as easy in the end.

First, take a brush and rake the sand into one pile in the pool, little by little. Don’t forget the corners and any hard-to-reach places. This will take you some time, but don’t rush — it won’t help.

When all the sand is collected in one place, it’s just a matter of taking a dustpan and slowly shoveling it there. Yes, it won’t be as fast as you’d like either, plus you’ll have to dive underwater, but it’s manageable in the end. 

Well, do you have second thoughts about the pool vacuum?

What If It’s Not Sand But Mustard Algae?

Yes, sometimes your problem may not be sand, but mustard algae. They can appear in the pool for a variety of reasons: warm weather, different contaminated things (clothes, toys, etc.), or unbalanced water in the pool.

Mustard algae in pool
Mustard algae in pool

Sometimes you can easily tell the difference between algae and sand, but what if they look similar? There’s a way to tell what’s in your pool. First, you should know that sand from the filter often accumulates near the return jets. Second, you need to dust the sand (or not) up. If it starts to get murky, it’s algae. And that’s it — yes, pretty easy.

What’s not too easy is getting rid of mustard algae. Unfortunately, they can be a much bigger pain in the ass than sand. They are tenacious, upset the water balance, and don’t respond to chlorine. But they can be handled with another chemical.

If you do encounter an algae problem, you will need another solution to the problem. Take a look at our article on the best pool algaecides that fight different types of algae.


Sand in the pool is unpleasant and sometimes troublesome, but you can deal with it, especially with the instructions in our article. Now you know why it can appear there, what can be dangerous, how to deal with it, and even how to distinguish it from mustard algae. 

Of course, we advise you to use a vacuum cleaner for this, but even if you do not have it, you can still get sand out of the pool with the help of a brush and scoop. Most importantly, don’t forget to take care of the water chemistry balance and check the condition of your sand filter from time to time, if you have one.


🙌 How do I get sand out of my pool without a vacuum?

First, take a brush and rake the sand into one pile in the pool, little by little. When all the sand is collected in one place, it’s just a matter of taking a dustpan and slowly shoveling it there.

🤔 What happens if sand gets in your pool?

Your pool sand filter may be broken (if you have one). In this case, disinfectants become less effective, and you need to fix/replace it quickly.

💭 Can you vacuum up sand in a pool?

Yes, using a vacuum is the quickest and easiest way to get rid of sand in the pool.

🤯 How do you get sand from the bottom of an above-ground pool?

You can use a pool vacuum here, as in other cases. If you don’t like the vacuum option, a brush and scoop will also do the job, but not as quickly.

Did you like the article? Was it helpful?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Related Posts