So you have your own swimming pool, and you are looking forward to utilizing it in summer.
Having the pool is one thing while preparing and maintaining it for use is another altogether.
It is always refreshing to swim in a clean and well-kept pool. With diligence, you can avoid expensive external repairs and maintenance. In this review, we highlight five easy steps to prepare any pool for use in summer.
Cleaning the Pool
During winter, most people find it difficult to keep their pools in good condition. As such, leaves, among other debris find their way into the pools, contaminating the water and making them unusable. With the exit of winter and advent of summer, a lot has to be done to restore the allure and glamour of your pool.
The first and most important step is cleaning the pool. However, before you do so, add some chemicals to it, the amount of which is dependent upon how regularly it's maintained, as well as your standards of cleanliness.
If it isn't very clean, you might have to use Super Shock with substantial quantities of Chlorine, after which you may need to add an algaecide and a stabilizer.
Having added chemicals, turn your focus on the cleaning process. At this juncture, you need such tools and materials as a leaf scooper, a pool brush, pool hose, pool vacuum, stabilizer, algaecide, pool testing kit, and super shock chlorine.
Using a scoop, remove all leafy debris from the pool. Just focus on anything that can easily clog the filter. Don't mind about the color of the water, whether slightly brown or tinged green. Follow it up by scrubbing the floor and the sides to remove dirt and prevent the growth of algae. This keeps the sides and the bottom clean and smooth. All the while, ensure that the pump is kept running, to push the debris into the filter for removal from the pool. When you finally, vacuum the pool, all remaining debris are also removed.
Ensure the Pool Pump is Working Well
For every other system to function properly, your pool pump, salt water chlorinator, and sand filter need to be in good working condition. Ensure that the pump is working properly, and that water flows freely through the filter. For the sand filter, ensure that the pressure is not higher than that of the pool jets. Should it be higher, back-washing may be inevitable. Check the chlorinator as well. If it is covered in white scales, clean it using a hydrochloric solution.
Balance Out Your Pool's Chemical Levels
It is always important to give the pool system and chlorine between 24 and 48 hours to perform their magic before testing the pool's chemical levels. Chemical testing is usually necessary to bring the pool to an acceptable level of chemical balance for swimming. A pool chemical test kit is very vital for this exercise. The acceptable chemical ranges for safe swimming are highlighted as follows:
- Chlorine should range between 1.0 and 3.0 ppm. When the levels fall below or rise above this range, increase or decrease the levels of chlorine accordingly. Don't forget that after a chlorine shock, your pool may record high levels of chlorine.
- The pH range should be from 7.4 to 7.6. To properly balance the pH, add sodium bicarbonate to raise the level of your pool's pH. Should it be high, use muriatic acid or sodium bisulfate to lower it.
- The quantity of calcium should range between 200 and 400. If your pool has high quantities of calcium, water in your pool becomes hard, while lower levels of calcium make it a soft water pool. If the levels of calcium are high, use a flocculant to bring them down. If the pool has soft water, raise the levels of calcium to the acceptable range by adding calcium chloride.
- Alkalinity should range between 80 and 140. It is necessary to keep the right balance of alkalinity since it stabilizes the pH level of your pool. If the alkalinity is high, bring it down by adding muriatic acid or sodium bisulfate. If it is low, increase it by adding sodium carbonate.
Having brought the pool chemical balance within the safety range, a safe swimming experience is all that awaits you.
Monitoring the Filter and Color of the Pool Water
Having done all the above, Keep a keen eye on the filter and the color of the water for several weeks. All this while, continue to remove any debris, leaves, and sticks that may still be a hindrance to the proper functioning of the filter. Water has to keep flowing freely through it.
The observation should continue until the color of the water becomes crystal clear and the chemical levels effectively balance out. This is how you are able to tell that indeed the initial steps have been effective and that your efforts are worthwhile.
Take Care of the Surroundings
Where is your pool situated? Is it surrounded by leafy trees that drop lots of leaves and twigs in the pool? Are there any overgrown grasses or flowery thickets around it? If this is the kind of environment in which your pool is situated, you have to do something about it. lest you go the extra mile in keeping your pool well maintained and in good shape for swimming. Cut any trees around, or their overgrown, leafy branches. Trim the flowery bushes in the garden around it and ensure the grasses are properly cared for. Any loose soil should be planted with green grass.
Taking care of your pool isn't as difficult as one may imagine. If you follow the above steps, you can easily do it yourself. Should it be difficult to do it yourself, get a professional to help you out. All having been said and done, regular maintenance is very necessary. It lowers the costs and keeps your pool in good swimming condition for the long term. Never worry about the cost though. It does not have to be very expensive. Just get your act together and you will realize that it is affordable.