The warm weather is finally here and it’s time to get your pool ready for those long summer days. If you’re like most, you haven’t thought about your pool for months and getting it ready may seem overwhelming. No need to worry, you will have a sparkling pool finish in no time by following these 9 steps for opening your pool with ease. These tips will work for both vinyl pool liners and concrete pools.
- Start with the pool cover. First, remove any debris with a soft broom. Drain off any accumulating water, use a pool cover pump to make this easier. Now it’s time to remove the pool cover. Clean both sides with a pool cover cleanser and completely dry the cover before storing.
- Skim the pool. While there may not be much to remove, there is always a chance of some debris slipping under the cover. You will clean the pool liner more in-depth later, but larger items have the potential to clog the pump so removing them will save you the hassle of unclogging your filtration system.
- Add water. Grab the hose and fill your pool up to an appropriate level. Aim for halfway up the skimmer opening.
- Check all pool equipment. Turn on the pool pump and check the skimmer basket and filter to make sure everything works properly. Then run your filter for 24 hours.
- Test your water. To have a balanced pool, you will want to test the levels of pH, chlorine, total alkalinity, and calcium hardness. Bring a water sample to your local pool store for a free water test. If you are using an at-home test kit, aim for these ranges:
- pH: 7.2 to 7.4
- Chlorine: 2 to 4 ppm
- Total alkalinity: 80 to 120 ppm
- Calcium hardness: 150 to 250 ppm
- Balance your chemicals. Depending on the results of your water test, you will need to add chemicals to get your water within the right levels. Follow these guidelines for adjusting chemical levels:
- pH – To increase pH levels, use soda ash. Decrease pH levels with muriatic acid.
- Chlorine – Add chlorine tablets to your pool, and in some cases, you may need to use pool shock to quickly get your chlorine levels in line and kill any algae spores and bacteria.
- Total alkalinity – To increase alkalinity, use sodium bicarbonate. To decrease alkalinity, use muriatic acid.
- Calcium hardness – Depending on the hardness of your water, calcium is either absorbed from its environment or leeched out from the grout in your pool finish. Calcium chloride can be used to adjust levels of calcium hardness.
- Deep clean the pool. It’s time to get out the brush and vacuum. Scrub the pool liner or pool finish and vacuum the entire pool.
- Wait for clear water. Adding chemicals and deep cleaning your pool is likely to make your water a little cloudy. Run the filter continuously until the water is crystal clear. This can take anywhere from 24 hours up to a week.
- Set up a maintenance plan. To keep your pool sparkling all summer long, set up a routine maintenance plan. Keep the filter clean, skim and vacuum regularly, and test chemicals at least once a week.
Pools make the summer months more fun and offer a great retreat from the heat. You’re just 9 steps away from getting your pool ready for the season. If you are in the market to upgrade your vinyl pool liner to a pebble pool finish, Pebble Technology International® offers a unique, personalized pool experience designed to enhance your outdoor living space. Contact us to get started.