by Dave Donovan
On a hot and humid August day, nothing feels better than a dip in the pool. But, if the pool is looking more like a tepid pond instead of an oasis of crystal clear water, nobody’s happy. Here are a few swimming pool maintenance tips to help you ensure that your pool is ready to quell the heat when you need it most.
- For the cleanest water, the pool filter should run 24 hours a day. But, some may not want to have that impact on their electric bill, so, at the very least; the filter should be run eight to ten hours per day, preferably during the daytime hours.
- If you have a skimmer basket, check it daily and remove any collected leaves or debris to keep it operating at peak performance.
- Chlorine should be added to the pool every day, whether through a chlorine floater or an automatic chlorinator.
- If you have a cover for your pool, try to keep it in a clean place when you remove it. Dirt and debris can easily adhere to the wet cover and when you place it back on after a day of swimming, all of that dirt will fall into the pool.
- For owners of in-ground pools, have a trash can nearby that you can place all of the skimmed debris. If you empty the net onto the ground, all of the debris will just be blown back into the pool once it dries.
- Adjust the water level every time you perform maintenance on your pool. This is the quickest and easiest way to add water, as it will only require about an inch or so of water. If you wait too long, it may take a while for the pool water to come up to the right level and you may ultimately walk away and forget to turn the water off!
- Be extra cautious when adding chemicals to your pool water. It is better to add less and build up rather than adding too much at once. Once an excess of chemicals are in the pool water, it is very difficult to get the levels back to normal.
Performing routine equipment checks will help prevent costly failures and replacements down the line. All checks should be performed only after the skimmers and strainers have been cleaned.
- Check the pressure of the filter. If the pressure is too high, the filter may be clogged or be in need of a cleaning.
- Check the heater for debris. Turn the heater on to make sure it is working properly. With the heater on, turn the pump off. The heater should turn off automatically as the pressure within the pump decreases.
- If you have a timer on your filtration system, check it for the proper time-of-day setting. This can be easy to forget after a power outage and it can alter your planned cleaning schedule.
- Clean the area around the equipment regularly and always be on the lookout for leaks.