Owning a pool takes some time and energy, but keeping it clean both inside and out ensures the safety of your guests and the longevity of your investment. While pool care requires effort, it doesn't have to be painful. Follow these tips for regular upkeep so you can spend more time enjoying your pool than you do maintaining it:
Skim, brush, and vacuum:
Use a skimmer net to remove debris and bugs from the surface of your pool. These contaminants will eventually sink to the bottom of the pool and will be much harder to take care of. Skimming the pool daily is easy to do and prevents too much buildup. Brush the sides of your pool thoroughly about twice a week; use a small brush to scrub the waterline. Lastly, vacuum the bottom and sides of your pool, or use an automatic pool cleaner to do this part for you. This should be done about twice a week, or as needed.
Keep it balanced:
Check your pH and chlorine levels several times a week. pH is a measure of the water's acidity: anything too high or too low can cause irritation or sickness for those using the pool, and can also damage the pool itself. Your pH should stay between 7.2-7.6. Maintaining proper chlorine levels is also extremely important to prevent bacteria and algae. Depending on how frequently you use your pool in summertime, you may need to "shock" your pool as often as once a week. This means giving your pool a large dose of chlorine to restore the active chlorine (also known as "free chlorine" or FC) that is helping to keep your pool free of contaminants. Many things can cause your pool water chemistry to get out of whack, like a storm or simply having a whole bunch of people use the pool in one day.
Use a pool cover:
Some pool owners think covering a pool is a hassle, but there are many benefits. Covering your pool when it's not in use can conserve energy; keep the water at a more comfortable temperature; maintain chlorine levels (sun exposure makes chlorine less effective) and prevent leaves, debris and other unwanted items from getting into the pool especially if there's a storm. Plus, a cover provides an extra safety barrier for kids, pets and anyone who could get into the pool without supervision.
Clean the pool deck:
It's also important to maintain the pool deck and area around it. Keep walkways and surfaces around your pool clean and free from clutter, to prevent slips and falls. Clean the pool deck just as thoroughly and regularly as you clean your pool the water and chemicals can cause similar issues, like the growth of algae and bacteria. Most experts recommend using a special pool deck cleaner to get the job done right.
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