Summer is just around the corner and it’s time to start thinking about getting your pool ready to keep you cool when the temperatures rise. While some people think all you need to do is remove the pool cover, top off the chemicals and make sure the pool is filled, there are many things you must do to ensure your pool is ready for that first dip of the season. The following tips can ensure you are ready to take the plunge as soon as the temperatures are warm enough.
Don’t Take the Cover Off Too Soon
It’s tempting to just pull the pool cover off as one of your first steps for getting your pool ready, but this isn’t the best option. In fact, it’s typically best to leave the pool cover on for as long as possible, often being one of the last things you do. Before you remove the cover, it’s best to clean up the hedges, trees and other landscaping around the pool in case the leaves and other debris drop on the pool. If you were to remove the cover before this task is complete, you will be faced with the even bigger task of cleaning out the pool rather than simply sweeping off the cover.
Top Off the Water
Some pool owners drain some water for the winter months in order to prevent the development of ice that can place pressure on the edges of the pool, while others leave the pool completely filled for the winter. Regardless of which method you choose, it’s likely some water has evaporated over the time the pool wasn’t in use. This means you need to top off the pool to ensure it is properly filled. If you don’t need a lot of water, you may be able to do this with water from your own home. However, to avoid high water bills, you may want to call in a pool water delivery service to help, especially if you need a significant amount.
Prepare the Chemicals
Even though you haven’t emptied out the pool over the winter months, the chemicals have likely become imbalanced over the period you haven’t used your pool. This means you’ll need to refresh your pool chemicals and perform a few tasks to help achieve the balance you’re looking for. First, put together your filtration system with a fresh filter. Clean out any baskets and other components thoroughly. If you placed any plugs when closing down the pool for the winter, remove them. Once the system is ready to go, apply the right amount of chemicals and start the system. Be sure to monitor the water until chemicals reach the appropriate levels. The pH levels should be between 7.2 and 7.4 and alkalinity should fall between 80 and 120. Finally, chlorine should be between one and three ppm (parts per million), as well as calcium hardness between 150 and 250 ppm.
Replace Damaged Gear
While it’s important to properly store all your gear, there may be items that become damaged over the winter months. Be sure you check over all the equipment you use for the pool. Everything, from the filters to the skimmer to any other items you use on a regular basis, should be inspected and replaced if they are damaged. Pay close attention to the presence of cracks and other signs of wear and tear that require a new item.
Hire Someone to Test the Water
Many pool owners make the mistake of thinking if their water clears up, they have the chemical levels correct, and they can simply start using their pool. However, this isn’t always the case. In fact, it’s important to hire a professional to get your water tested prior to the swimming season so you can make adjustments to the chemical levels that won’t make you or others sick. This is an important step in the process, even if you have completed the testing on your own. The professionals can also help you by providing tips that will ensure your pool is ready for use as soon as the warm weather hits.
Get the Area Set Up
As soon as you have your pool ready to go, it’s time to start focusing on the area around the pool. Pull out those deck chairs and other furniture and arrange it carefully around the pool so you and your guests will be able to enjoy t he pool when the temperatures rise. Don’t forget to keep any safety equipment close at hand in case of an emergency. No matter how careful you may be, the risk of accidents is always present and it’s essential to be prepared in order to save a life.