There are four “Cs” to pool maintenance: Circulation, Cleaning, Chemistry, and Calendaring. Remembering these four pillars will ensure your pool stays healthy and safe for you and your guests to enjoy all season long.
Moving water is healthier and cleaner than stagnant water, which can cause cloudy water or be a breeding ground for algae and mosquitos. To keep your water circulating in your pool, you want to ensure that your pump is in working order.
In a perfect world, your pump should be running 24hrs a day while your pool is open. However, that isn’t always feasible for budgets or the equipment that you might have. If that’s the case, you should run the pump for at least 10-12 hours daily to turn the water at least a couple of times every 24hr period.
Another essential element to circulation is to make sure that you backwash your filter or reverse the water flow as it passes through the filter. This releases the impurities that could clog your filter, removing them from your pool.
If you aren’t 100% confident about what you need to do to keep your filter clean, you can brush up on your knowledge on how to clean your pool filter with this quick and easy tutorial.
Keeping your pool water circulating is the first C of essential pool maintenance.
Having proper circulation in your pool makes keeping it clean so much easier. While a strong pump that filters water helps, it is no substitute for some basic work that needs to happen to keep your pool clean.
Debris from trees, the random frog, and residue from lotions, sunscreen, and hair products can contaminate your pool which, if left untreated, can pose a health risk to your swimmers.
Basic level cleaning includes skimming, brushing, or vacuuming your pool weekly. This will keep foreign objects in the water at bay and keep the walls of your pool clean. Using baking soda is an easy and cost-effective way to scour your walls. This gentle cleanser won’t scratch the surface and will help keep mold and algae from taking over your pool.
Some use an automatic skimmer that will reduce the time you need to clean your pool; however, please note it is not a fixed solution. You will still need to make time for regular manual skimming and brushing to ensure that a proper job is done.
Photo Credits: Pool cleaning photo created by YuliiaKa – www.freepik.com
If you’re having flashbacks to high-school finals, don’t worry. While it might sound intimidating, maintaining your pool’s chemistry is easy and nothing to be afraid of.
The three most important parts of your pool’s chemistry are alkalinity, pH, and sanitizer levels.
Alkalinity works as a buffer to protect your pool from acidic or basic spikes. The ideal range is 100 to 150 parts per million (ppm). If your alkalinity needs a boost, using baking soda can help bolster your alkalinity level.
PH refers to how acidic or basic your pool water is. The ideal range for your pool is 7.4 to 7.6.
Finally, sanitizer levels refer to the amount of chlorine, bromine, etc., in your pool water. Proper levels vary depending on which type of sanitizer you choose.
Your testing strips are the most important tool for tending to your pool’s chemistry. There’s no way to eyeball the pH, so using testing strips will help you determine if the water is within the appropriate range.
The final C to basic pool maintenance is calendaring. It is crucial to calendar your maintenance schedule so that your pool is maintained on a predictable basis. A pool maintenance schedule makes it easy to stay organized and ensures essential tasks don’t slip through the cracks.
Keeping to your calendar will allow you to stay on top of your daily tasks. Still, it will help you budget your time and money for buying supplies to take care of advanced maintenance, such as closing your pool during the off-season or getting it ready to open for the year.
Remember, keeping your pool calendar simple will increase the likelihood that you will stick with your routine. So write it out and tape it to your refrigerator or enter it into your primary calendar on your phone so you can see the tasks that need to be completed at a glance.
Pool maintenance for beginners does not have to be intimidating. Remember the Four Cs; you will have the basic steps covered to ensure a healthy and safe environment to enjoy your pool!