Swimming pools provide a great way to relax, have fun, and enjoy endless summer days with friends and family. However, they also require a bit of work and maintenance. There are specific procedures to opening and closing your pool during the beginning and end of the summer season, general upkeep procedures, sanitizing the water, keeping the water balanced, and winterizing the pool for the colder months ahead. Follow some simple rules for above ground swimming pool care and enjoy your pool for years and years.
Opening Your Pool for the Summer Season
When the warm weather starts to approach, you'll be anxious to get your pool up and running to enjoy all season. Spring is also the time most people purchase above ground pools and you will want to start off on the right foot.
There are a few things that you'll have to prepare in order to get your water just right. Before you get started on the water preparation, you'll have to prepare the equipment first. Any debris or mildew on any part of the pool will need to be removed before filling the pool with water. The pump and filters will then need to be turned on, and allowed to run for at least 4 to 6 hours for the water to circulate before preparing the pool water. After this, the pool water readings will be tested and adjusted. You'll then want to shock treat the pool water, and add any desired algaecide and stabilizer.
Balancing Pool Water
One of the most important aspects of above ground swimming pool care is keeping the pool water in balance. Pool care is much easier if the water is in proper balance. The key factors in water balance are the pH, calcium and total alkalinity. These factors should be tested frequently to ensure they stay in balance. If any of the factors are off balance, it is important to add the necessary chemicals to bring that factor back within proper levels. The correct levels will ensure that bacteria will not build up, corrosion on the pool or pool parts does not develop, and skin or eye irritations are minimized or prevented.
Routine Pool Care and Upkeep
In addition to maintaining balance of pH, calcium and alkalinity, you will need to make sure their levels are within their ideal ranges. There are a few basic practices you should perform in order to keep the water clean and balanced, and to make sure the equipment is in good order. Your filtration system should be running between 8 to 12 hours per day during the summer while the pool is in use. You should also continue remove debris from the pool water, skimmers, baskets and filters to maintain cleanliness and proper functioning.
Keep the pool walls and floor clean by brushing them on a regular basis in order to prevent build-up of green algae. If necessary, top up the pool water level whenever the level starts to drop. If required, check the filter pressure and backwash as per the pool manufacturer's instructions.
Cleaning and Sanitizing Your Pool
Sanitizing and keeping the pool water clean is a vital part of above ground swimming pool care. The two most common methods of sanitizing a pool include the use of chlorine or bromine. Using such substances prevents swimmers from contracting illnesses or infections that can be passed on from one swimmer to another. Both are highly used and very effective substances to keep pool water clean and kill contaminants.
Closing and Winterizing Your Pool
When pool season is over, it is time to winterize and close the pool during the cold months. Some of these steps are similar to above ground swimming pool care steps when opening the pool for the warm months. The water should be balanced, and the entire pool should be vacuumed. Pool water should be shocked, and any remaining chemicals in the feeder should be removed. The filter should be thoroughly cleaned, after which the pool water should be drained so that the water level is below the skimmers. All the pool equipment will be winterized accordingly, and the pool should then be covered with a durable, properly fitting pool cover.
If you are just starting out, make sure you buy the best above ground pool with quality components that will last.