Maintenance plays a huge role in keeping your investment in good shape. Be it a car, a gadget, or a home, maintenance allows you to enjoy more out of the time, money, and effort you’ve put into your investment.
The same goes with swimming pools.
Swimming pool maintenance not only preserves its beauty and extends its longevity but it also helps in keeping your pool clean. Keeping your pool clean is important for various reasons. Here are a few.
- Helps keep pathogens away.
- Prevents algae development.
- Keeps pool structure in good condition.
- Keeps pool equipment in working state.
There are two ways to keep your swimming pool clean. One is by hiring professional pool contractors like us at Central OC Pools, or you can do the cleaning yourself. In this article we’ll talk about some of the most common ways pool owners and pool professionals ensure that the pools they work on are as clean as a whistle.
Before we begin, it’s good to point out that you’ll be needing a few cleaning tools if you plan to take on pool maintenance on your own. These cleaning materials range from brushes and telescopic poles to chemicals and other cleaning agents to help you achieve a better clean. On the other hand, you won’t have to worry buying or borrowing any of these cleaning materials if you’re having a pool professional clean your pool. They usually come with relatively professional-quality tools and equipment to help them get the job done faster.
Let’s start with the basics.
Skim The Water
You can start cleaning your swimming pool by skimming the water. This is usually done with a pool net attached to a telescopic tube. Lightly graze through the surface of the water to pick up floating twigs, dried leaves, as well as dead bugs. This will not only help keep the surface of the water clean but also prevent floating debris from sinking to the bottom of the pool floor from where it will be harder to get out of. Plus, dead bugs and dried leaves can decompose in the water and disrupt the chemical balance of the pool water.
Just make sure to empty the net from time to time as wet debris can be heavy and can cause your telescopic pole to bend or break.
Also, make sure that the pool deck or the immediate area surrounding the pool is clean as wind can blow light debris into the pool. You can sweep the area clean or just pick up any litter you’d find in the deck.
Brush the Walls
Once you’re done with collecting floating debris, you’d want to brush the walls and the floor of your pool. You can use the same telescopic pole, but this time, with a brush attached to it. Start by brushing the walls slowly and in one direction. While you’re at it, you can also brush the steps of the pool and make your way towards the floor. Like the walls, brush the pool floor slowly and in one direction, preferably in a motion pushing towards the middle of the pool. Doing so will prevent the water from rippling which can cause the dirt on the floor to scatter on the floor.
Skimming the water and brushing the walls and the floor will help dislodge any algae buildup and prevent any microorganisms and pathogens from developing on the pool interior. You can do away with scrubbing and skimming the pool once a week. Just make sure to thoroughly scrub parts of the interior where there are visible stains.
Use a Vacuum
Don’t get the wrong impression. There’s a specific vacuum designed and engineered specifically for swimming pools. Depending on what type of vacuum you have, you might need to use the same telescopic pole or just drop the vacuum in the pool. Manual pool vacuums require you to use a telescopic pole as you will need to guide the vacuum head through this process. Make sure to use slow strokes and move towards the deep end of the pool else you might just disturb the water and kick up the dirt which will take hours to settle. On the other hand, if you’re using an automatic vacuum, all you need is to just drop it in the pool water.
Clean the Basket
Your pool will most likely have what you’d call skimmers and pump baskets that sieve and strain the pool water of any floating debris you might have missed when you clean the surface. Apart from skimming and brushing, your skimmer and your basket are your first line of defense against dirt and debris.
Remove the basket and empty them of any dirt trapped in it. You might also want to use detergent soap and a brush to clean the basket. This will help remove bacteria and algae that might have attached and developed in the basket.
It’s important to clean the skimmer and the basket as it has the tendency to get clogged. When that happens, it can affect the circulation of the water, at which point, can damage the pool pump. When your pool pump stops working, nothing else works. Water becomes stagnant, pathogens and microorganisms like algae breeds and takes over the pool.
In some cases, your pool will also have a hair and lint pot. Like the skimmer and the pump basket, hair and lint pots work by filtering the pool water after it passes the skimmer basket and before it reaches the pool pump.
Now that we’ve got the basics out of the way, it’s time to talk about some of the more advanced pool maintenance practices if you want to know how to keep your pool clean.
Clean the Filter
As the name implies, the filter sifts the pool water thoroughly which is why it’s important to keep it clean. Depending on the type of filter you have, the method or the approach you’re going to take will vary. And for argument’s sake, let’s use the easiest (cartridge filter) as an example.
Pool filters are usually found inside the pump so to access the filter, you need to access the pump. Turn it off, remove the pump cover, and gently remove the filter. Depending on the make and model of your pool pump, you might need special tools. Nevertheless, the idea is to get the filter off the pump for cleaning. Use a filter cleaning solution and soak the filter in a large bucket, wait for an hour or so, and hose the filter down with water. Once cleaned, replace the filter on the pool pump. This will ensure that your pool filter is not congested or is choked with dirt and debris.
Keeping the Balance
There’s more to keeping your pool pristine than just cleaning the structural parts and physical components of your private piscina. That said, pool professionals pay as much attention to pool water as they do the pool’s deck, equipment, and interior. Keeping proper pool water chemistry is key to keeping your pool clean and is a must in every pool maintenance routine. While it may look and sound complicated, the basics of pool water chemistry is surprisingly straightforward.
Here are some of the few things you should look out for:
- Pool Water Sanitizer Level
Alkalinity and pH levels are linked closely but are two different things altogether. Nevertheless, too much of both can harm the equipment and the actual pool structure. Too low of a pH level can cause the pool water to be acidic and can corrode components of your pool equipment. On the other hand, too high an alkalinity can cause the pool water to be cloudy and damage to your pool’s plumbing. That said, keeping the pool water at a neutral level keeps the pool (and your wallet) safe.
Fortunately, there are many products on the market that allow you to measure and adjust the chemistry of your pool water. Two of the most popular are test kits and test strips. If you’re using test strips, all you need to do is to dip the strip in your pool. Wait for a couple of seconds (about 10 to 15) and keep an eye out on the colors on the strip. Grab the packaging and compare the strip to the chart that came with it. It will tell you the levels of various chemicals and so you can adjust accordingly. Don’t forget to repeat the process a few hours after you’ve added chemical solutions to check if you’ve met the ideal balance. If you’re using a test kit, what you need to do is to dip the plastic tester in your pool and scoop up a good amount of water. The kit will also come with several solutions that you can use to test the water. To know how much of the solution you need to add to the water in the kit check the packaging or ask the manufacturer for instructions. Like the strips, the kit will tell you how strong or how weak the chemicals are so adjust accordingly. Repeat the process to check if you’ve achieved the proper balance.
Pool maintenance can be fun and easy, just make sure you have enough time to clean your pool and do it routinely. Preferably, pool cleaning should be done on a weekly basis, but if you do not have the time, hiring a pool professional like us at Central OC Pools, can be a good option. We provide professional quality swimming pool solutions and our weekly cleaning service is one that does not disappoint.
Apart from skimming the water, cleaning the baskets, and brushing the pool, our weekly cleaning service is packaged with professional water chemical balance testing and adjustment. We also confirm your pool equipment’s proper operation as well as review the integrity of your pool’s overall structural integrity.
For pool cleaning that counts, contact us at Central OC Pools.
Your pool is our central priority.
You work hard. You deserve the best.
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