Pool Maintenance 101
Here in the Southwest, 1 out of 3 homes has a swimming pool! That’s a LOT of water to keep clean! Although many homeowners hire a maintenance company to take care of their pool, why not save your money for some great pool area accessories and ‘do it yourself’? To get you started, here are a few basics every pool owner should know.
The Basic Statistics
You know the make and model of your car, right? You also know a few basics: sports car or SUV, gas or deisel, 4 wheel drive or standard…well you need to know some basics about your swimming pool too.
- Year built
- horsepower of your pump
- saltwater or chlorine
- filter: sand, D.E.(diatomaceous earth), and cartridge
Now that you have the stats down, there are some easy basic care steps to have under your belt as well. That sparkling water doesn’t ‘just happen’. Every crystal clear pool supports a balance of chemicals that keep bacteria from growing, and a consistant manual removal of debris. Here’s what to do!
Top 5 Maintenance Tips:
1- SKIM- Use the long-handled, net skimmer eve
ry few days, or daily if necessary to remove floating debris such as leaves and bugs. Clean out the skimmer basket as well, (located in the deck under a plastic cover) hosing with water if necessary.
2-SWEEP- Sweep the pool at least every-other-day in the summer months, or the day after a storm. This keeps algae from growing and helps rid the deep water of debris.
3-CLEAN THE FILTER- Every week or two in the summer, and once every-other-month durng the winter, or again, if there is a storm, the filter needs to be cleaned. This is usually a very simple procedure that you can do yourself and takes only 10-15 minutes. You can have a pool maintenance man show you how, or read your pump/filter manual. Once you have done it, this is really an easy part of maintenance.
4-MAINTAIN THE WATER LEVEL- The simplest thing on our list is keeping the water at the proper level, usually 6 inches below the edge of the pool. NEVER let your water go below the in-pool skimmer opening, as this can damage the pump. When you add water, use your garden hose and SET A TIMER in your kitchen so you don’t forget the running hose!
5-TEST THE WATER- Proper pH and chlorine levels are what keep your pool clean and sparkly. It’s easy to test your pool water. The easiest method is using test strips which are available at your local pool supply store. Place one in the pool for a few seconds, and the dye they contain will cause them to change color. Match the strip to a color chart included in the kit to determine the pool’s pH level. According to this information, you’ll decide the chemicals your pool needs.
Following these simple steps consistantly will keep your backyard pool in fabulous, resort quality condition!