The presence of swimming pools in the house is very welcoming, especially when the heat of the summer is becoming unbearable. However, before you can start enjoying the pool water, it is a must that all necessary care and cleaning have been made to make it safe, sanitary, and ready for use. Oftentimes, the maintenance that swimming pools require make homeowners say ‘no’ to having a swimming pool in the backyard. However, it is not as hard as it sounds like. With this in mind, here are some simple tips that you can follow to maintain your pool and make it summer-ready.
Cleaning Tip #1: Get Rid of Floating Debris
It is unavoidable to have floating debris in the swimming pool, especially if you have trees and bushes around your house. To keep floating debris to a minimum, it is recommended that you trim your trees and your bushes to keep the leaves from falling into your pool. You also have the option to replace your trees with a variety that does shed as much as the one that you have.
If you see floating debris all over your pool, skimming the surface of this debris is not that difficult. You only have to spend a minute or two to complete this process. After you have cleaned the surface of the pool, you can then check the skimmer basket and have it cleaned. Remove any debris that has been caught in the basket and dispose of them correctly to avoid having them back in the pool.
Cleaning Tip #2: Setting up the Vacuum
To properly vacuum your pool, you have to start with making the pool surface quiet and steady. This can be done by directing the head (nozzles) of the return jet downwards that it will stop making ripples on the pool. Once this is done, you can start with setting up your vacuum.
First, attach the vacuum head to a telescopic pole. A telescopic end of a pole will help you rotate the vacuum head with ease. However, if you don’t have this kind of pole, you can use a regular one. This will still do the job. The second thing that you need to do is attach the vacuum hose to the vacuum. The other end of the vacuum hose should be attached to where the water is entering the pool – filter skimmer. When doing this, make sure that your vacuum and vacuum hose are submerged in the pool water. Once the other end is connected to the intake nozzle, the water will start filling up the vacuum hose creating bubbles on the pool. When the vacuum hose is finally full, you can change then switch the switch the nozzle to suck water in (intake mode). This will create a suction. You can then guide the head of the vacuum on the swimming pool floor and start vacuuming.
Cleaning Tip #3: Vacuuming
Once all the set-up is done, you can start vacuuming the floor of the swimming pool. Vacuuming will take longer than getting rid of debris floating around the pool surface. On average, it will take about 30 minutes to vacuum an average pool size. When vacuuming, make sure that you are doing it on a parallel motion when overlapping lines. You can say that you are mowing your pool with a vacuum. Once the vacuuming is done, you can then clean the sides of the pool of any algae by brushing it.
Cleaning Tip #4: pH Level Adjustment
You should do this on a weekly basis. If the pH level of your pool is beyond 7.6, then you have to adjust it and correct it using a muriatic acid. On the other hand, if the pH level of your pool water is below 7.4, then you can treat it with soda ash.
The alkalinity level of your swimming pool water should not be less than 90 ppm (part per million). This is equivalent to 1 ppm of chlorine. If the pool alkalinity is below the recommended level, you can “shock” the pool water by tossing in a bucket of chlorine and let it dissolve in the water. You may want to opt and buy a lithium-based chlorine to do this as it dissolves faster than any type and it won’t affect the pH level of the pool.
Cleaning Tip #5: Backwashing The Filter
This can be done by turning the filter valve into the “backwash” mode. This will redirect the water flow into the filter and clean it as the water flows through it. The dirt that has been caught in the sand filter will be directed to a storm drain or directly to the ground. On the other hand, the dirt caught in the DE (diatomaceous earth) will be lead to a filter bag. The cartridge filter is removable, which you can hose off the clean and re-insert to work its magic again. If you still have a sand filter for your pool, you may want to consider changing it to DE or the cartridge system as they are easier to clean and more environment-friendly.
Cleaning Tip #6: Cleaning The Pump Filter
The next thing that you need to do is clean the pump filter. This is very easily done. You just have to unscrew the trap cover and remove the basket found inside. Empty the basket into the garbage can. You are done! The only thing you need to remember when doing this is to shut the system off and closing the skimmer valve to keep water in place.
Cleaning Tip #7: Adding Chlorine
You can introduce chlorine in the pool water by adding chlorine to the chlorinator. If you have this feature, then it is easy for you to do this. In the absence of a chlorinator, you also have the option to introduce chlorine with the use of a floating container. However, if you are doing this, it is recommended that you don’t let little children near it as it can pose danger to them.