Having a pool to enjoy the summer is awesome! But of course, you need to learn a few maintenance tricks to make sure it’s always in good condition for a refreshing summer dip.
Fortunately, it’s all quite simple - following these instructions, you’ll get everything ready in no time!
1. Make It a Habit!
The first and most important thing about pool care is making it a regular habit.
The kids will want to enjoy it as much as you do, so you need to be sure it’s always clean and safe for them, which involves constant inspection, cleaning, and maintenance.
Getting that one out of the way, let’s get into the practical stuff!
Before even starting with the pool, you may want to power wash the deck area to get rid of dirt build-up, thus making sure none of it contaminates the pool when you start refilling it.
2. Skimming and Scrubbing
The pool is finally open again and you can guess the first step is a good cleaning - we have to skim those leaves, bugs, and random dirt floating in the water.
Doing this manually won’t take you very long, but there are devices on the market that can do this for you.
You’ll also have to scrub the sides of the pool to prevent algae buildup - but this part isn’t required as often as skimming. It’s recommended you do these steps at least once a week for safety, but you should take action whenever you notice dirt any build-up.
If you don’t feel confident with DIY cleaning or don’t have time, you can always hire someone to clean it for you - most pros will offer a nice deal for recurring jobs!
3. Mind the Filters
You’ll want to clean your filter baskets at least once a week, to be sure there’s never too much dirt buildup. Neglecting this can seriously damage your filter, so be sure to keep an eye out for it.
And once a month, you should clean the pipes of your filter system by “backwashing.” Simply set your filter to backwash after cleaning the leaf basket and wait until you see only clear water being pumped out. Before you start though, be sure to check the instructions recommended by the manufacturer.
DE Filters are the best filters you can find for pools, but they require a little more attention because the system is more intricate, so be sure to read the full tutorial here!
4. Test for Chemicals
If you’re opening the pool for the summer after a few months of not being used, it’s especially important to test for chemicals before anyone enters.
The ideal chemical balance for pools is as follows (according to the Center for Disease Control)
- pH (acidity/alkalinity level): 68%
- total alkalinity (TA): 16%
- calcium hardness: 16%
To perform this test yourself, all you need is a testing kit you can purchase at a local pool store. You’ll get a set of vials you can use to test the water and it will reveal the chemical levels, usually from a color change.
This test should be performed preferably once a week, since frequent pool usage will change these levels often, and any excessive chemical levels can lead to skin conditions, damage to equipment, and erosion of the pool surface.
Chemicals can also be used in your favor: a technique called “shocking” involves temporarily increasing chlorine levels to kill bacterias. You should do this at least twice every season, or whenever too many people use the pool on the same day.
Long Story Short…
- Make pool caring a habit
- Frequently skim and scrub, at least once a week, but whenever necessary
- Make sure your filters are working, and remember to clean the filter basket every week
- Test your pool for chemicals once a week, making sure the levels are ideal for use
- If you have any problems you can’t solve yourself, hire a professional!
And voilá, your pool will be 100% ready for summer time!
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