A Basic Guide to Swimming Pool Care
You may have recently got a contractor to build a new pool at your house or renovate it for one. But, to keep your pool clean, clear, and debris-free, it’s essential to maintain it thoroughly and frequently.
However, caring for the swimming pool isn’t as fun as just swimming. But really, it isn’t hard—we promise!
In fact, we’ll go through the basics with you. In this guide, we’ll discuss the common pool terms, the 3Cs, and how to upkeep your pool if you’re going out on a vacation.
Ready? Let’s go!
Knowing the Pool and its Parts
A swimming pool consists of many parts including its water, interior wall or liner, filtration system, and cover.
You have to first know them because these are precisely the things that you’ll have to care for or get to keep the pool in tiptop shape. Let’s now go over them one by one:
The pool’s water has to be maintained via water treatment or chemical balancing. This ensures that the water is ideal and doesn’t cause damage to the equipment like the lighting, heater, and pump.
Interior Wall or Liner
These give structure and design to the pool. Their most important function is to keep the water in by preventing it from leaking out.
Your pool wall could be made of solid walls or vinyl sheets. The way you should maintain your pool differs between both of them.
Both materials are durable and last long. Interior liners can last between ten and fifteen years, but their lifespan would depend on how well you take care of them.
The filtration system’s job is to skim out the harmful particles and chemicals from the water supply. If it isn’t well-maintained, then the pool water has a tendency to become dirty and toxic.
A pool cover is disregarded by most homeowners.
However, it performs very important tasks such as protecting the water’s chemicals, retaining heat, keeping leaves at bay, and protecting kids and pets from accidentally falling into the pool.
Thus, it can be worth it to invest in a pool cover and roller. Also, there are many types of pool cover differing in kind and features.
Here are the available pool covers you can find in stores:
- Indoor covers
- Safety covers
- Solar covers
- Winter covers
- Automatic covers
What are the Three C’s of Pool Maintenance?
Proper pool maintenance requires three things: circulation, cleaning, and chemicals.
For the best pool result, all three have to be done right and looked after well consistently. They are also interdependent wherein one’s effectiveness can fortify the other two while another’s failure can affect the rest.
Let’s delve into what these things are all about.
Your pool must have excellent circulation for it to be clean and healthy. The circulation system of your pool consists of the pump and filter.
They are the pulse of your swimming pool. Their function is to pull the water in from your water source, filter its dirt and debris, and pump back the water into the pool.
The balanced chemicals can be also be dispersed through the pool pump, which in turn, ensures that the water is refreshing and safe to swim in.
To maintain your pool pump, you should:
- Run the pool pump regularly – This should be done for ten hours if it’s being used and for a few hours if it’s not in use.
- Keep the filter clean – By doing so, you will prevent the pump system from becoming damaged and blocked.
- Clean the pool and balance its water chemicals – These two things will keep your pool pump and filter working efficiently.
Cleaning is another important element of pool care. By cleaning, you can keep your pool looking fantastic and relaxing.
Apart from that, it can stop bacteria and algae growth, prevent major issues in your pool, and extend its life.
To clean your pool, you should:
- Skim the leaves off of the pool’s surface
- Use a pool vacuum to brush the submerged floor and walls
- Backwash your filter regularly
Chemicals protect the entire pool system from damage and the swimmers’ health. The main chemicals used in a swimming pool are chlorine and bromine.
Also called sanitisers, they disinfect the pool to eliminate the spread of bacteria and diseases. Aside from that, they chemically destroy dirt particles and chloramine water disinfectant.
Other chemicals that your pool will require are:
- Shock Treatment – a more concentrated form of sanitiser to deep-clean the pool.
- Calcium Chloride – This is responsible for making the calcium hardness level of your pool right. In other words, it keeps the water hard or soft to suit the pool and the individual.
- pH increaser or decreaser – These adjust the pH levels of the swimming pool according to intention. They are crucial to achieving a sparkling clean pool and crucial for pump, filter, and heater maintenance.
- Chlorine stabiliser – This supports the chlorine level in the pool and maintains it under intense heat.
How to Maintain Your Pool When You’re Going Out
It’s pretty easy to upkeep your pool if you are going out for a few days or longer. Here are the simple steps on doing that:
1) Get a friend or neighbour who also owns a pool
The first step is to find a friend or neighbour to take care of your pool for you. This is the best way since chances are they already know how to maintain a pool.
Now, you have to tell him to check on your pool once every day. Give him a checklist to keep things simple and organised, which should include:
- Skimming the surface leaves on the pool
- Emptying the skimmer basket(s)
- Inspecting the filter pressure and backwashing if needed
- Conducting water testing
- Adding the necessary chemicals to your pool
2) Purchase a pool pump timer
As we said earlier, the pool pump should be left running for 10 hours each day—whether split or continuous. You can keep track of this if you already have a pool pump timer.
Otherwise, you can get one which would be a big help. This lets you run the pump for as long as needed to keep the pool water crystal clear.
3) Perform a final check of the water before you leave
Finally, take a sample of your pool water and get it professionally inspected at your local pool store before you leave. If there are any issues with your pool, correct them when you get back home (before your vacation).
Also, by doing it this way, your friend will have less work to do in taking care of your swimming pool.
Now, below are the ideal chemical levels for a swimming pool. Your pool water has to be within their ranges for a clean and healthy pool.
- pH level: 7.4 to 7.6
- Alkalinity: 100 – 150 ppm (parts per million); 125 ppm is the ideal balance, though
- Calcium Chloride: 175 – 225 ppm
- Concrete and plaster pools: 200 – 275 ppm
- Bromine pools: 3 – 5 ppm
- Chlorine pools: 1 – 3 ppm
- Saltwater pools: 0.5 ppm of chlorine
- Mineral or magnesium pools: 0.5 ppm of chlorine