An outdoor swimming pool is a fun and exciting addition to your home for outdoor activities in the warmer months of the year. Performing regular maintenance to keep the water clear, clean, and healthy is a crucial part of pool ownership. By following a regular schedule and using the proper chemical cleaning products, your pool can last for many years.
Skimming and Cleaning
Owners need a long poled, hand held skimmer to remove leaves, trash, and other debris that blows into the pool by the wind or fall from trees. Owners should skim the pool should before each use to prevent debris from entering the filter. Owners should also vacuum regularly and scrub the sides. Be sure to remove swimming pool inflatables before cleaning.
Filters and Pumps
The pool pump and filter are the cornerstones of good outdoor pool maintenance. The pump cleans debris from the pool water by circulating it through the attached filter. Keeping the water circulating helps to prevent bacteria from forming and multiplying. During periods of high usage, owners should run the pump according to the manufacturer's directions for optimal cleaning performance. Sand and diatomaceous earth swimming pool filters require backwashing regularly, and owners should change the filter cartridge when it gets dirty. Be sure the size of the filter is correct for proper maintenance of the pool; a too small filter cannot clean the pool properly.
Owners should also check the pH of the pool once a week and maintain it between 7.2 and 7.6. If the pool water is outside this range, then any pool chemicals you add will not be as effective as they should be. Daily swimming in the pool adds contaminants to the water from body oil, skin cells, and dirt. You can add pool shock, or chlorine, to oxidise the contaminants, which frees the chlorine in the pool to keep it clear. Shocking the pool kills algae as well. Chlorine should be in the range of 10 ppm. You can find test strips that measure the chlorine and alkaline. Check the manufacturer's directions for using the shock.
Each time you shock the pool you need to vacuum and run the filer for at least eight hours. If the water in your pool becomes cloudy, it is best to run the pump continuously until the water is once again clear. You can add algaecide once a week to be sure algae does not have an opportunity to grow. Weekly maintenance extends the life of the pool.
Covers and Heaters
A pool cover can help keep debris out of the pool and hamper evaporation. All types of pools, including framed pools, can benefit from a pool heater, which can extend the number of days you can enjoy the pool comfortably.