How to Maintain a Swimming Pool

The task of cleaning and maintaining a swimming pool should not be hard at all. There are various equipment, swimming pool chemicals and cleaning systems available to help even non-tech pool owners to speed up the process of creating crystal-clear-water swimming pools.

Steps in Cleaning a Swimming Pool

Skimming

It is highly recommended to clean the pool at least once a week.  The first thing to do is to skim the surface of the swimming pool for any debris and leaves, and emptying the skimmer baskets.  Some pools are located near flower beds, bushes and trees that shed not only leaves, but pollen and flowers as well. If such is the case, regular trimming of foliage is necessary. It is best to skim the pool surface using a cleaning net.

Vacuuming

Debris and dirt may be found at the bottom of a pool.  A pool vacuum cleaner will do the job efficiently. An average-sized pool would need to be vacuumed for about thirty minutes to clean. It is best to slowly vacuum the pool as in lawn mowing. If the swimming pool is quite wide, it is better to vacuum one half of the pool at a time.

If the vacuum hose floats, it can only mean two things. First, the hose has a hole that needs to be fixed. Second, the vacuum’s capacity has greatly decreased probably because the filter is full.

Cleaning the Pool Walls

Algae and waterline may have formed on the pool sides. Cleaning the pool walls with the appropriate cleaners will eliminate algae and waterline stains. A pool brush is used to apply the cleaner. Quickly scrubbing the walls at the waterline and below the water surface will keep the pool walls sparkling clean.  If algae is highly evident, adding algaecide is recommended.

Adjusting Pool Chemicals

It is recommended to keep the pool water’s pH level range between 7.4 to 7.6, and a chlorine level from 1.0 to 3.0 ppm (parts per million).  It is best to test pool water at least 4 hours after the last swimmer has left and at least 8 hours after a wind or rain storm. Pool testing trips are commercially available. Depending on the outcome of the test trips, products such as chlorine or bromine may be added. Metals removers may be added to prevent the water from turning green.

Pool water needs a level of calcium between 200 and 400 ppm. If the calcium level is too low, water is considered soft and corrosive.  If the calcium level is too high, water is considered hard and could scale not only the surface of the pool but equipment as well.

“Shocking” the Pool

To effectively eliminate contaminants, including persistent algae, shocking the pool water on a weekly basis will solve this problem.  “Shocking” entails adding quite a larger dose of chlorine to the pool water, and spiking the chlorine level to 10 ppm.  As this type of chlorine is not very stable, it will only stay in the water for a little over 24 hours.  A 12 to 24-hour wait is necessary before swimming in the pool.  If a non-chlorine shock is used, waiting time before swimming is permitted is 15 minutes. The pool pump and filter must run overnight after shocking a pool.

Backwashing the Filter

This is quite easy to do.  Just turning the filter valve to backwash will redirect the flow of water. There are three standard filters used in swimming pools – DE (diatomaceous) filter, cartridge, and sand filter.  DE filter are claylike residues of marine organism. The backwash redirects pool dirt into a filter bag that should be emptied at least once a week, and replaced every few years, or as needed.  A cartridge filter is a simple filter unit that can be removed, hosed off and re-inserted.  A sand filter blocks oil and dirt, with the backwash redirecting the dirty water to a storm or drain or waste line.  This type of filter is no longer used in modern pools. The cartridge filter and the DE filter are the most highly recommended for their efficiency and green qualities.

Cleaning the Pump Filter

The lint/hair trap in the pump must also be cleaned.  To do this, turn off the system first, then close the pump’s skimmer valve to keep the water in place. This step is to prevent the system from re-priming when it’s turned back on.  Now it is safe to unscrew the cover of the trap, remove the catcher or basket, and then empty it into a garbage bin.

When the pool is constantly in use, the filtration system is naturally turned on. This prevents the pool water from accumulating dust, dirt, oil, bacteria and other pollutants as the water is continuously moving.

At the end of the maintenance cycle, chlorine may be added either by using slow-dissolving sticks in a chlorinator, or by using a floating container.

If the pool water level is low and halfway below the skimmer’s well mouth, add water.

 

 

 

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