The summer season is nearing, and it is time for many people to get their pools in working order for a fun and healthy summer. It is prudent to take careful steps while preparing a pool for summer usage. Following these Steps to Preparing Your Residential Pool for Summer may prevent costly damage to your pool along with ensuring the greatest possible enjoyment for the season.
- Remove the cover and inspect for debris – the water should look clean – place the cover for storage. Add any additional water necessary to bring it to level, and remove freeze plugs.
- Leaves, sticks, and other large debris should be scooped out and removed. Algae and other smaller debris should be vacuumed out and removed.
- Check the filtration system including: the filter; the plumbing; and motor. This system may be pressurized with air so this will need to be released before checking the filter or other components; also, the pump needs to be primed before starting up the filter system. The filter should be cleaned or replaced as needed.
- As the water is being filtered through the system, the pool should be checked for leaks or other damage from the winter.
During this process, it is important to not drain the water completely out of your pool. It is best to avoid this because of the pool design. Without the weight of the water, the pool may be lifted out of the ground due to an excessive ground water table.
After the filtration system has been running and all the leaves and other debris have been removed it is time to check the water chemistry. Typically the pH, hardness, and chlorine are measured. Some common levels to take for consideration are:
- pH between 7.2 to 7.4 – use soda ash to raise the pH and muriatic acid or sodium bisulfate to lower pH;
- hardness should be between 150 and 250 parts per million (ppm) – calcium chloride will raise hardness;
- chlorine levels should be between 1 to 3 ppm – cyanuric acid tablets help to keep chlorine levels in check but a plastic chlorinator is recommended at the filter.
Once these levels are set, it is time to let the pool continue to filter through. This process may take a few days or until the water is completely clear and the filter is clean.
Following these steps will help the homeowner quickly and safely get their pool ready for the summer season.
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