As you plan for your exciting new addition of an in-ground swimming pool, you’ll want to plan for more than the financial aspect of your home’s newest feature: you’ll also want to prepare for the necessary maintenance tasks related to owning a pool. While this list may seem a bit overwhelming at first, you’ll be surprised at how quickly and seamlessly these tasks can become parts of your family’s daily, weekly, and seasonal routines.
Daily Tasks: Skimming & Scrubbing
Skimming the pool on a daily basis is a simple way to prevent major problems. It doesn’t take long at all, and it’s really quite easy: just skim leaves and other types of visible debris off the surface of your pool water. Not only will this keep your pool water clean and clear, but it will also keep debris from getting caught in the filtration system. You can use a traditional skimmer basket, a used window screen, or old panty hose stretched over a frame (in order to remove finer particles).
In addition to skimming, scrubbing is a pool-maintenance task that should be performed on a daily or semi-daily basis. While a thorough scrubbing of your entire swimming pool should really take place every couple of weeks, daily spot scrubbing will help keep algae growth at bay. Like skimming, scrubbing is pretty simple: when you notice visible algae growth, use a scrub brush to remove it. (For stubborn spots, use an old sock soaked in chlorine, and let the soaked sock sit on the area for a few hours before scrubbing.) For bi-weekly thorough scrubbing, you may want to purchase a robot vacuum designed especially for pool floors.
Weekly Tasks: Filter Cleaning and Chemical Checking
One weekly task you’ll need to perform in order to keep your pool functioning well is to clean out your filter basket. The filter functions in a way similar to the way our kidneys function, removing impurities. In order to clean out your filter basket, you’ll need to turn the filter off, remove its cap, lift out the basket, and remove debris. (If you’ve been skimming regularly, there shouldn’t be too much debris there.)
In addition to cleaning your pool’s filter, another maintenance task you’ll want to perform each week is testing your pool’s chemicals. According to the CDC (Center for Disease Control), this weekly task is a major factor in the prevention of Recreational Water Illnesses (RWIs). All you have to do is have testing kits on hand and fill each portion of the kit with a water sample. Add the solution provided in the kit, close each vial, and wait a few seconds. The sample water in each vial will change color, allowing you to determine the levels of each chemical. You can then adjust pool chemical levels as needed, allowing you to regain the proper levels. When chemicals are in balance, the pool water should appear clear and be odorless, leaving little residue.
Continue reading with Part 2.
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