Having a swimming pool on your property can be a great benefit in summer or any time the weather gets warm. In order to get the most out of your pool and be able to use it whenever you want, there are just a few ongoing care steps that you need to remember to keep your pool at its best.
Water Testing: Every few days, even during the winter, you need to check the chlorine and pH levels. The pH should be kept quite neutral, between 7.2 and 7.6. You can check this with testing strips. A more acidic (lower) pH can start to corrode the pool structure and equipment, while a pH that’s too basic can leave deposits. Besides that, water that drifts too far to either end can become unsafe to swim in, and can limit the effectiveness of chlorine in keeping the water clean.
Your pool dealer or another professional can help you also keep an eye on levels of calcium and certain metals, by either sending someone to your property or having you bring in a sample. They can give you instructions on fixing water that’s out of balance, as well as how to find and fix the problem’s source.
Chemical Balancing: The most important level to maintain besides pH is chlorine, which can be adjusted with tablets or with an automatic dispenser. You can also sanitise with a bromine compound, which is more commonly used in hot tubs.
Occasionally, you’ll need to clear out the chemical compounds that build naturally by superchlorinating, or shocking, your pool with high levels of chlorine. This can help reduce smell from the pool. The pool manufacturer will give you instructions on how often to do this.
Vacuuming: Any time the pool is filled, you’ll need to vacuum it every few days so that debris doesn’t start to collect. Using a skimmer on a daily basis will take care of larger floating branches and clumps of leaves, and brushing off the walls or tile will help prevent buildup. This is also important to help avoid the kind of algae and calcium growth that would need to be treated chemically. Make sure to clean the vacuum regularly.
Filters: You’ll need to clean and change the filter regularly, depending on what type of filter you have and how often the pool has been used. Check the manufacturer’s instructions, and don’t clean the filter too often, since a complete lack of dirt can lower efficiency. Two or three times a year should usually be plenty. Pair this chore with changing the air filters inside your house for an easy way to remember it.
Pumps: You’ll also need to watch the condition of the pool pump. Make sure the motor is clean and that the pressure gauge shows the appropriate range. Keeping the water level high enough, about one-third or half the level of the skimmer, is also important so that the motor doesn’t potentially burn out. Check and top off the surface level regularly.