Swimming pools provide a great way to cool down and work the whole body. They are also a fantastic way to increase the heart rate without stressing the body. A swimming pool can be dangerous if not maintained properly. Hence the need to make sure proper care and maintenance is provided to keep it healthy for all users.
Now, regardless of what you might think, swimming pool care isn’t as difficult as we all thought. For the most part, you don’t even have to be a guru to care for your pool.
This guide provides all the steps required for beginner swimming pool care.
Firstly, check out one of our recent posts on the swimming pool opening guide if you haven’t opened your pool yet this season.
The Basic Components of a Swimming Pool
Good swimming pool maintenance starts with a good knowledge of your swimming pool. Getting acquainted with the essential components of your pool and their functions will make it easier to resolve specific issues when they arise. It will help you run your pool effectively.
- The Pool Water
The pool water is the first component that needs attention after installation. It should be tested regularly to ensure its quality and safety. Testing the pH level ensures that the pool water has no harmful chemicals.
- The Pool Interior
A swimming pool interior comprises two parts: the deck and the walls. A well-maintained pool deck requires minimal cleaning. However, an unclean pool deck may cause algae growth, leading to cloudy or discoloured water problems. Cleaning the pool walls and the deck is significant because they are in close contact with everything that enters the pool.
- The Water Heater
Your swimming pool needs an adequate hot water supply to keep its temperature constant. Hot water is required to heat the pool during summertime and maintain the right swimming temperature throughout the year. You need to have a heater installed in your swimming pool to ensure that there’s enough hot water available all the time.
- The Filter
Your swimming pool requires a filter to remove impurities and debris from the water. Filters are usually placed near the pump, where they can quickly suck in dirty water. All filters must be regularly cleaned to prevent clogging and damage to the unit. To clean your filter, simply add some chlorine bleach to it. Once the bleach has been added, let it sit for about 30 minutes. Then, drain the water from the filter and replace it with fresh water. After replacing the water, start the filter again.
- The Pump
Pumps move water around in your swimming pool. Pumps are either manual or automatic. Automatic pumps do most of the work for you. Manual pumps are straightforward to operate, but they don’t move large amounts of water.
- The Skimmer
A skimmer is a device that removes floating debris such as leaves, sticks, and other small objects from the water’s surface. These items could cause blockages that would affect water flow through your pipes. Therefore, having a skimmer installed in your pool is essential.
The Three (3) Important Rules of Pool Maintenance
If you want to ensure that your pool is clean and healthy, you must make proper maintenance a considerable part of your routine. There are three (3) main rules of swimming pool maintenance. They are:
- Ensure there is good circulation of water in your pool
Good circulation means that your pool water moves smoothly throughout the entire system. The water will stagnate somewhere and form air pockets if this doesn’t happen. It causes the water to become contaminated and unhealthy.
To ensure that your pool circulates appropriately, you need to check if any leaks exist. Leaks occur when something breaks down and allows water to escape. When you find a leak, you should repair it immediately so that it does not continue to spread.
Another good measure to ensure proper pool water circulation is to backwash your filter. It refers to the reverse flow of water through your pool filter and removing the dirty water and built-up contaminants to the waste port. It is ideal for running your pool pump for at least 8 to 12 hours per day to help keep your pool safe and clean.
- Stick to a cleaning schedule
Cleaning schedules are used to ensure that you get rid of dirt and grime. Cleaning schedules also include the use of chemicals like chlorine and bromine.
When you follow a cleaning schedule, you won’t have to worry about getting into trouble because you know exactly what needs to be done.
When following a cleaning schedule, you should never forget to test the pH level of your pool water. You can do this by using a simple pH testing kit. You must maintain the correct pH level in your swimming pool. A high pH level makes your pool water acidic, leading to algae growth.
The essence of sticking to a cleaning schedule is to reduce the time spent maintaining your pool. So, ensure you skim, brush and vacuum your swimming at least once per week.
- Ensure you balance your water chemistry
Water chemistry refers to how much salt, alkalinity, calcium hardness, and pH levels are present in your pool. Water chemistry is essential to keeping your pool safe and clean, especially if you live in an area with hard water.
To balance your water chemistry, you need to add chemicals to your pool. The most common chemicals used are sodium chloride, calcium chloride, potassium hydroxide, and magnesium sulfate. And before you add chemicals, you need a water testing kit to know what’s in your pool water and what’s not before you balance it.
You should only add these chemicals when they are needed. Adding too many chemicals can cause your pool to become toxic or unsafe.
You should also regularly monitor the pH level of your swimming pool. You can do this using a pH testing kit.
A step by step guide to swimming pool care
Cleaning your pool is one of the easiest ways to maintain its health. However, before you begin cleaning your pool, you must first understand how to use the chemicals correctly.
You should read the instructions on the container before using them. Some containers may have labels that explain what chemicals are used. Others may list the name of the product. Reading the label will give you an idea of what you can expect.
You should avoid mixing different types of chemicals. Doing so can create a dangerous situation that can harm your pool. Instead, you should use the same kind of cleaner for all areas of your pool.
- Ensure you have the right supplies of everything you need before skimming and brushing your pool. It includes a telescopic pole, a skimmer net, and a pool brush.
- Remove the dirt and other floating debris on the pool water surface.
- Use the correct tools to skim the pool. You can either use a hand skimmer or a power skimmer. The latter is more effective because it has a motorised mechanism that helps remove large amounts of debris.
- Brush the sides of the pool with a pool brush.
- Clean the floor of the pool with a vacuum cleaner.
- Scrub the bottom of the pool with a scrubber.
- Rinse the pool thoroughly.
- Fill the pool with fresh water.
- Check the pH level of the pool water. The pH level should be between 7.0 and 7.8. A pH test kit is necessary to determine the acidity of the pool water.
- add chlorine to the pool water. Chlorine kills bacteria and algae.
Don’t forget to shock your pool.
As much as it is essential to maintain balanced water chemistry, it is just as important to shock your pool now and then. Shock means adding enough sanitiser to the pool water. It creates bubbles that kill any existing bacteria and algae in the pool.
Shocking your pool once a week is recommended. If you live in a hot climate, you might want to shock your pool twice a week. Make sure you check the temperature of the water before shocking the pool.
If you’re unsure whether your pool needs shocking, contact your local pool service provider. They’ll be able to tell you if your pool requires shocking.
Owning a swimming pool is a significant investment. But like anything else, proper maintenance is essential to keeping your pool healthy. By following the steps above, you can ensure that your pool stays clean and safe for years to come.
Maintaining a healthy pool is easy if you follow the steps above. Remember to keep track of the amount of time you spend doing maintenance work. It will help you know which tasks take longer than others.
You can also schedule when you do certain chores, as this will allow you to plan and save time.