It’s that time of year we all look forward to: it’s time to open your pool! Before you do that though, there are some things you’ll need to do in order to make sure things go as smoothly as possible so that you spend more time enjoying your pool rather than taking care of it.
Here are some tips to help you open your pool and ensure that it’s spic and span for the coming season of fun!
Remove and clean the pool cover
We usually recommend using a leaf blower on your pool cover before you remove it. This way, you get a lot of the excess debris off the cover and prevent it from making its way into the pool once you remove it.
Once that’s done and you’ve removed the cover, be sure to lay it flat on a large area and use a hose, broom and detergent to clean it off. Make sure it’s tightly bound, and put in a covered, dry place until you need it again.
Skim the surface of the water for debris
Even the best pool covers don’t keep everything out, so take your strainer and net and get everything you can that’s floating on the surface of the water. Save the stuff at the bottom for when you turn on the pool vacuums.
Check on the equipment and machinery
Many pool companies provide this service for you, so make sure you take advantage of it. In the event you don’t, this is something you’ll need to be sure to do. Make sure you clean off the components, and your equipment. That means disconnecting pumps and filters, etc. The pump should spike up to 30psi when you go to test it. If it doesn’t, something might be wrong.
Check the filters separately and clear them of debris. Check the fittings and pipes to make sure there aren’t any leaks or blockages. It’s also not a bad idea to check on the circuit to make sure for any burnt fuses or exposed wires.
Scrub a dub
Once you’ve cleaned the components, the cover and taken the wandering debris out of your pool, it’s time to scrub the walls and get that gross stuff at the bottom. Also before that, be sure to clean out the surrounding area of the pool, too. A lot of stuff flies around in the spring, and you’ll want to make sure none of it ends up in your pool. Clean out the area, scrub the walls and then vacuum the pool out.
Test the water balance
It’s pretty normal for the pH, calcium and alkalinity levels of your pool water to be off when you open your pool up. Do your tests and make the proper adjustments using a pool water test kit. While every pool is different, a general guideline is that alkalinity should be between 80-120 ppm, calcium between 180-220 ppm, and pH between 7.4 and 7.6.
Don’t get going on chlorine until after the pool pump has gone through one filtration cycle of treated pool water (that takes about 8 hours). If the pool is cloudy after 24 hours, the water balance might be off or the pump or filters aren’t functioning well.
Chlorine should kill most of the algae that has built up on the walls, but if it doesn’t, you might have to use an algaecide. Once your pool’s chlorine level drops to 3 ppm, then you’ll be ready to go!
Congratulations – your pool is open and it’s time to enjoy!