After months of cold and clouds, it’s almost time to put on the patio heater covers and get some much needed R&R poolside. While you may be eager to take your first dip, there’s a number of steps that need to be taken before your backyard pool is ready for swimmers. These measures will ensure that your pool is safe, clean, and at its best shape to keep you and your family cool all season long.
Uncovered for Good
The first step in getting your pool ready for the season is simple enough: taking off the cover that’s been protecting your pool from the elements all winter long. But before you get to removing your pool cover, there are a few things you have to take care of.
It’s likely that debris and water have collected atop your pool cover over time, rendering it a bit of an eyesore. Clearing the cover of these nuisances will help to keep the cover in good condition and prepare it for storage while the pool is in use.
Once your pool tarp has been pulled off, give it the scrub down it deserves after serving your pool throughout the harsh winter months. Using your garden hose, a large sponge, and some soap, clean off all the dirt and grime before allowing it to air dry. As a final step, sprinkle on a generous amount of talcum powder to protect your cover from the possibility of mold buildup while in storage.
You may notice that your pool’s water level has gone down since you last saw it. There’s no need to panic- this is a completely normal occurrence after a period of hibernation. Simply top off your pool with however much water it requires to hit the proper level.
A Matter of Maintenance
Performing routine maintenance on your pool is essential for the safety and well-being of your swimmers. This is especially the case after it has been sitting dormant for a number of months without regular upkeep. Thankfully, getting your pool back into shape for warm weather is just a matter of a few simple steps.
- Inspecting your systems for damage and malfunctions far ahead of time gives you the chance to call in a maintenance specialist and get things in working order before pool season is in full swing.
- Note that the cost for a pool filter replacement ranges from $1770 to $2061 depending on the specific conditions surrounding your pool.
- Turn on the circulation and filtration systems. Perform a test run by letting it operate for a few minutes and keep an eye out for any hiccups or irregularities.
- Both systems need to be cleaned of any grime or debris that may have accumulated over the winter. Allowing them to run uninhibited for a couple of hours allows them to flush out the unwanted gunk without you having to lift a finger.
Another crucial aspect of pool preparation is ensuring that your pool’s chemicals are properly balanced in preparation for fun in the sun. PH balance, chlorine levels, and total alkaline levels should all be tested after the filtration system has been inspected, cleaned, and run through.
You should never be guesstimating when it comes to chemicals, especially when swimming is involved. Levels can vary, but pool experts recommend you aim for the following levels in your backyard pool:
- A total alkalinity between 80 to 120 ppm.
- A chlorine level between 2.0 to 4.0 ppm.
- A pH between 7.4 to 7.6.
- A calcium level anywhere between 200 to 400 ppm.
It’s important to get your alkaline levels under control first and foremost. If the total alkalinity of your pool is too high, you can add a dry acid to bring it to an equilibrium. If the pH level tests below a 7.4, add around 6 ounces of a sodium carbonate mixture to the water, allowing around two hours before testing again.
Be wary of the fact that trace amounts of metals including copper and iron may have concentrated in your pool’s waters, leading to unsightly stains. While this may seem unnerving, sequestrant solutions can be added to remove and prevent future stains from forming. Just be aware that these solutions require regular usage in order to work continuously.
Once these maintenance tasks have been taken care of, you can start tackling the process of fishing larger bits of debris that have gathered in the water using a netting rod. Sweeping the water to remove bugs and leaves is key to ensuring that the overall integrity and aesthetics of your pool is maintained, just like table covers and sectional covers keep your outdoor furniture in check.
This is also the perfect time to inspect every nook and cranny of your backyard pool. Give special attention to areas that tend to be overlooked, including the pool stairs, ladders, and lights. Perform any necessary repairs or replacements, and give them a good wipe down where needed using a dedicated pool brush.
The Finishing Touch
Prepping your backyard pool area wouldn’t be complete without the presence of your poolside furniture and accessories. After months of sitting dormant underneath sectional covers and hot tub covers, your pieces are ready for their moment in the sun. As you did with your pool and its cover, give these accessories a thorough cleaning to clear off any dust or dirt with a rag, soap, and warm water.
As you prepare to entertain friends and family poolside with warm weather parties (temp link change when published), consider the importance of how you arrange your pool deck. For larger groups, be sure to spread out your chairs and loungers for ample space. With more intimate gatherings, use an accessory such as dining pieces with table covers as a central focus point to keep everyone connected.