Despite the luxuries of owning a pool and portable hot tub, caring for them can seem like a daunting and exhausting prospect for those who have never taken care of one. In fact, many pool and spa owners would love to delegate all of their maintenance to a professional pool company or technician. Aside from being prohibitively expensive, it can be impractical to have someone handle every aspect of keeping your pool sparkling and ready to use. If you are ready to be a little more self reliant, here are five tips your pool guy won’t tell you.
Save on Chemicals
Since direct sunlight dissipates chlorine, add chemicals to water at night to maximize effectiveness. Use hot tub and pool covers, which prevent excessive dissipation during sunny days and have the added benefit of holding heat overnight. Covering your pool will prevent debris from contaminating the water, meaning less maintenance for you.
Keep it Balanced
Before you dump loads of expensive chemicals into the pool, make sure the ones you’ve already put in have had a chance to do their job. If your pool filter doesn’t run long enough, the chemicals won’t be fully integrated into the water. Pool size, equipment and setup play large roles in how long you’ll need to run your filter. Consult your pool technician on his next visit if you aren’t sure.
Running the filter alone won’t do the trick. Check the inlet jets to keep the water moving in a circular direction and avoid dead zones. Kids love to play with inlet jets, so make this a regular practice.
Skimming the pool is essential to keep it clean and reduce strain on the pool and hot tub filter system. Remove debris after storms and high winds. Skimmers tend to take a beating, but instead of rushing out to replace yours when it gets a hole, there is a temporary solution. Stockings, or nylons, can be stretched over the frame and tied off and voila! You’re ready to rock.
Sporting Good Tricks
No one likes seeing a slick, oily sheen on the surface of the water they are about to jump into. Sunscreen, tanning oil and natural body oils end up in the swimming pool and can’t be effectively skimmed without draining the pool. Leave a tennis ball or three in the pool, which is an unobtrusive way to collect those oils, which will attach themselves to the felted balls.
If you live in a cold climate, place a soccer ball or volleyball under your pool cover as an added precaution to prevent the water from freezing during the winter season.
Algae and other build-ups can calcify at the water line on the tile or sides of the pool. When the build up hardens, it’s too late to do a quick clean up. Most pool owners are already cleaning regularly with a manual or robotic vacuum. Robotic vacuums are standard in new pools, and while the vacuums can clean pool walls, most pool owners are skipping an important step. Brush down the tile and pool walls weekly to prevent significant build up from occurring, thereby saving you from a major cleaning product, over-relying on chemicals or having to bring in a professional to remedy the situation.
Maintaining your pool doesn’t have to be difficult. By following these five cleaning and prevention tips, you’ll be able to enjoy your pool without the hassle.
Contentment is lounging poolside on a cruise ship, piña colada in hand. Michelle strives for contentment, and she loves helping her readers to do the same.