Having a swimming pool sounds like all fun and games until you have one. They require maintenance, and failure to keep up with yours comes at the cost of gallons of wasted water and significantly impacted durability. With a little planning, you can take control and enjoy your pool to the fullest.

Swimming Pool Anatomy 101

A pool is more than just a container of water. There are four primary components you need to be concerned with to devise a well-rounded maintenance plan. Whether your pool is above or below ground, they are as follows:

  • 1. Water- critical to keep clean to prevent dangerous contamination, mineral buildup and rust
  • 2. Liner- keeps water contained, making it necessary to keep free of algae and mold
  • 3. Filter- continually cleans water much like the liver cleans blood, your pool’s primary defense against cloudiness, dirt and contamination
  • 4. Skimmer and main drain- keeps water flowing to and from the filter, a must in keeping water clean and preventing cloudiness

The Four C’s of Maximum Pool Durability

To ensure the big four components of your pool are properly maintained, it’s important you’re familiar with the big four C’s and work them into your pool maintenance plan.

1. Chemical Balance

You don’t have to be a scientist to maintain the proper chemical balance in your pool, but you do need to get it right. There are four elements that must be included on your maintenance schedule:

  • Regular pH checks- maintain a level between 7.4-7.6.
  • Regular shock treatments- perform after sundown to avoid UV rays and with pump running to ensure proper circulation.
  • Regular alkalinity checks- maintain a level between 100-150 parts per million.
  • Regular chlorine checks- amounts vary depending on pool size.

2. Cleaning

At least once per week, set aside time to clean your pool. There are three main tasks that need your consistent attention.

  • Skimming debris like leaves- you can do it manually or purchase an automatic skimmer that does the work for you. Just make sure you empty it as instructed.
  • Brushing- this removes dirt and prevents the spread of algae. Don’t forget accessories like slides and ladders.
  • Vacuuming- once large debris is removed and surfaces are scrubbed of dirt and grime, vacuuming is the finishing touch that’ll leave it sparkling clean.

When you clean, employ these three steps on a regular basis. It shouldn’t take much more than an hour per week to adequately clean an average pool.

3. Circulation Maintenance

When your pool water sits, carbon dioxide slowly dissolves into it, throwing off the pH level. After several days, microbes make their way into your stagnate water which opens you up to algae and unpleasant smells. You might as well swim in a pond! To ensure regular circulation, you need to give your pump some love by following these two tips:

  • Keep pump running at least 10 hours per day.
  • Periodically reverse water flow through the filter to remove any buildup.

4. Consistency

Consistency is key in keeping your pool properly maintained. While there are several components involved, it’s not as intimidating as it may seem when you break it down into smaller tasks. The key is to create a schedule you can adhere to. For example, you could dedicate time on Monday evening to check chemicals, do you cleaning on Wednesdays and remove buildup in your pump Friday.

A pool is a place to stay cool, create memories and have fun with the ones you love the most. Make the most of yours by following these tips and sticking to it!