Owning a swimming pool is a luxury that can provide many hours of relief, relaxation, and comfort. But it also comes with the responsibility of keeping it clean. That’s why understanding the essential guide to pool maintenance is essential for any pool owner.
In this guide, we'll explore all aspects of pool maintenance, from cleaning to testing and more. This comprehensive resource will be your go-to source when you need an answer about caring for your pool to ensure the safety and comfort of your loved ones. Read on to learn more about how to maintain your swimming pool.
Understanding Your Pool
Before you can effectively care for or enjoy your pool, you'll need to refresh your memory on all of its components. These are the primary elements of your pool, to which we will refer throughout this article. Maintaining them properly and incorporating them into your regular pool maintenance schedule will allow you to spend more time swimming and less time cleaning.
Although it might seem obvious, the water in the swimming pool is essential for long-lasting pool enjoyment. Keeping it clear, clean, and well-balanced shields you and your loved ones from pollutants and contaminants. Additionally, it prolongs the lifespan of your entire pool and enables you to avoid expensive hardware repairs caused by mineral buildup or corrosion.
Interior of the Pool
Your pool liner's walls will constantly be in contact with the water and any contaminants that could find their way into the pool regularly. Your pool will remain safe and clean if these surfaces are kept in good condition and free of dirt, mold, algae, and any other debris.
This involves an electric-powered machine that circulates water via the filter and drains to maintain the water's purity and avoid stagnation.
Pool filters come in three different varieties: sand filters, DE filters, and cartridge filters. They all help to keep debris out of the pool's water. The process of "backwashing" involves running the filtering system in reverse to clean the filters.
The basket collects debris and materials before they reach the filter, preventing it from being blocked.
Pool Pole Skimmer Net and Brush
Despite being a different kind of skimmer, it works very similarly to the skimmer basket. To remove trash from the pool's surface, you can use a long pole featuring a flat mesh net or head. When using a pool brush, be sure to focus on the debris so that the swimming pool vacuum doesn't pick up debris from the inside walls and the bottom of the swimming pool.
Swimming Pool Vacuum
The debris that cannot be collected by the pool filter is taken out using a pool vacuum. You can select either an automatic or manual vacuum version, depending on the extent to which you prefer vacuuming the pool.
Testing kits are required if you'd like to maintain your swimming pool free of blooms of algae and calcium buildup, both of which can damage pool equipment. Additionally, it helps maintain chlorine levels. Nobody wants their loved ones or guests swimming in pools with out-of-balance chlorine levels that cause eye discomfort or perhaps discolored hair.
Always inspect your pool visually, particularly if it's an older pool. Look inside for any problems or cracks.
The Three Major Pool Care Steps
Ideal pool conditions are dependent on the three main fundamental pool care steps, that is circulation, chemistry, and cleaning.
Moving water in the pool keeps it clearer, cleaner, and safer. Healthy and secure swimming relies on proper circulation in the pool. Issues like murky water or an algal infestation are uncommon in pools that have good circulation. To ensure optimal circulation, ensure the pump and filter systems are running every day. Ideally, every day of the week, 24 hours a day.
However, given that not everybody has the means or the necessary supplies to do that, we advise operating your filter for a minimum of ten to twelve hours each day. This will rotate the water several times and maintain the pool's purity and safety.
Regular backwashing of the filter is another essential element for efficient pool circulation. Backwashing involves the process of reversing the water flow in the filter so that the contaminated water and accumulated toxins are carried to the waste port and removed from the pool.
It's crucial to understand and incorporate filter cleaning into your usual pool maintenance regimen if you are not already doing so.
Proper water circulation is one of the most important factors in reducing the amount of work required to maintain a clean pool. However, you will still need to put in a little hard work. You'll need the following basic tools:
- Net skimmer.
- Pool Vacuum.
- Pool brush.
Mold, leaves, the occasional frog or duck, and even residues from fragrances, shampoos, and hair products are just a few of the odd things that Mother Nature and pool users can leave in swimming pools. When you factor in the risks associated with bacteria contamination, cleaning the swimming pool becomes a crucial component of staying safe when swimming.
At the very least, brush, vacuum, and skim your swimming pool once every week. By doing this, you can keep particles out of the water and keep the walls spotless. When used as a basic scouring cleaner, baking soda paste does particularly well because it won't scratch fragile vinyl liners or tiles when brushed.
The time it takes to clean the swimming pool can be significantly reduced with an automatic pool cleaner. Although it won't completely do away with the necessity of routine brushing and skimming, it will make these tasks easier and give you more time to enjoy swimming in the pool rather than maintaining it.
A few unconventional pool modifications can make cleaning easier for you. You can use tennis balls to remove excess oil from the pool's surface by tossing them in the skimmer basket or dropping them directly into the water. Additionally, you can use pantyhose to cover the skimmer baskets to give them an extra-fine filter layer that will absorb more impurities than the skimmer alone.
If your pool is in-ground, the drains that are integrated into the deep end's bottom can help draw pool water into the filter system while making it easier to remove debris that has become loose during cleaning. Although above-ground pools lack these drains, a manual pool vacuum system can provide the same water-clearing function.
Simply connect the vacuum to the filter system, make sure that it's upside down, and put it in the center of the above-ground pool. When you switch it on, it will function as a primary drain to speed up the process of clearing cloudy water.
Although pool chemistry can seem intimidating and complex, you shouldn't be concerned. While it's a vital component of good pool maintenance and water treatment, basic swimming pool chemistry is fairly simple.
The most crucial item in your pool care toolbox is water testing equipment. When seasoning a stew, you would taste it first. Therefore, examine the pool water before adding any chemicals.
Check the Water and Chemical Balance
If you want to achieve the best outcomes, you should have the pool water tested every week. To make things simple, use a testing kit that's going to notify you if you want to add chemicals to keep the pool water balanced. You may test the pool's water for the main chemicals by purchasing simple-to-use testing kits or strips from the majority of pool supply firms and big-box merchants.
The following are the key ranges to take note of:
- pH levels—a measurement of how basic or acidic the water in the swimming pool is. High pH values are basic, while low pH values are acidic. Your pool should be between a pH of 7.4 and 7.6.
- Alkalinity—acts as a buffer for the pH and prevents sharp increases in acidity or basicity. The optimal range stands between 100 ppm and 150 ppm. Additionally, you could consider baking soda to raise the alkalinity of the swimming pool.
- Sanitizer levels—this involves the concentration of bromine, chlorine, etc. in the pool's water. The appropriate levels depend on the type of sanitizer used.
Once you are aware of the alkalinity, pH, and sanitizer concentrations, you can proceed to add the chemicals to adjust the water's balance. Before adding any chemicals, take some time to carefully read the instructions, and make sure you understand what each one does as well as how it will impact the pool water and the swimmers.
Shock the Swimming Pool
Every 1 to 2 weeks, you'll have to "shock" the pool. This simply entails adding a concentrated dosage of "pool shock" chemicals, which sanitize swimming pools. By doing this, you can ensure that the pool's water is as free of pollutants and micro debris as possible, thus rendering it safe for usage.
Consider referring to the swimming pool shock guide chart when deciding how much of the shock product you'll need. The quantity varies based on a variety of factors, such as:
- How often the swimming pool gets used.
- Whether there is an infestation of algae.
- If there's an accidental spill or another element that has contaminated the swimming pool water.
- Following a severe storm.
The checklist for pool chemistry includes:
- Pool water should be tested once or twice weekly.
- Maintain optimum levels of chemicals in your swimming pool.
- Shock the pool water every one to two weeks.
Pool Maintenance in the Winter
Even though you haven't used your pool all season, it still needs maintenance. To prepare the swimming pool for the upcoming stretch of warmer seasons, follow these measures over the winter:
- Keep the water level in the swimming pool below the tiles to avoid tile damage from standing water freezing.
- If you leave the cover on the pool pump plugged in all winter, ensure that it's turned "off" or try unplugging it to avoid it from getting frozen while it's in the "on" position.
- Ensure the pool covers are free of obstructions to avoid weighing them down and risking tears or pools of stagnant water.
Saltwater Pool Maintenance
Saltwater swimming pools are growing increasingly popular. This type of pool tends to be easier on swimmers' skin and eyes, and the swimming pool is less expensive to maintain. A saltwater swimming pool generates its chlorination. With the help of electrolysis, a natural process, you simply add salts to the chlorinator, and science takes care of the rest.
The pool water's circulation system, including the filter system, pumps, and skimmers, still needs to be cleaned and maintained. Additionally, you have to frequently examine the chemical in the pool. Every 3 months, inspect the saltwater cell to make sure it hasn't accumulated any deposits or scale. Before shutting, remove all debris and deposits. Saltwater pool conversion is simpler than you would imagine.
Maintenance of Pools Having Spas
Inground pools often come with built-in spas. For a safe and comfortable experience, spas also need to pay attention to the pool water's chemistry, cleanliness, and water circulation. It's advisable to stick to the same upkeep routine as a regular swimming pool.
Indoor Swimming Pool Maintenance
The process for maintaining an indoor swimming pool and an outdoor one is similar, but there are also a few things to take into account:
- An indoor swimming pool could contain less debris. However, since it's not exposed to direct sunlight, it's more likely to develop algae.
- You should have some type of ventilation when shocking the swimming pool to prevent harm from the chemicals used in the shock procedure and impurities that enter the air.
- It's recommended to drain your indoor swimming pool once every year to inspect both the swimming area and the pool gear.
Find a Pool Service Professional Near Me
If you apply these basic measures, you'll be comfortable on your way to retaining a clean swimming pool and preventing harmful algae growth. Setting up a routine and acting quickly if you detect discoloration, scaling, cloudy water, or any other warning signs is crucial. A pool service expert can also take care of the swimming pool for you if you often feel the duties are overwhelming.
Our pool professionals from Oak Wells Aquatics will visit your property on a weekly or biweekly basis to maintain your pool equipment. Our pool builders serve in the city of Jacksonville, Florida. We've successfully managed projects of all sizes and types, both residential and commercial, and we are ready to do the same thing for you. Contact us at 904-619-3281.