While pool maintenance is never the most enjoyable part of owning a pool, it is the most important. Today, we share our recommended pool maintenance schedule to keep your water clear and help you make the most of this swimming season.
Why Make A Pool Maintenance Schedule?
There are many advantages to having a good pool maintenance schedule. These include:
Nothing Gets Missed
Sticking to a schedule ensures that nothing accidentally gets missed. Missing important maintenance items like shocking your pool can quickly cause water quality issues that take time and money to fix while also preventing you from using your pool during the short Ottawa swimming season.
Less Time Spent Maintaining Your Pool
A consistent maintenance schedule means fewer water quality issues that you will have to deal with and less time spent maintaining your pool!
Increase Your Pool’s Lifespan
A good pool maintenance schedule means that you water will stay in much better balance, leading to an increased lifespan for key components of your pool such as the liner, heater and pump. It will also help you catch potential problems early so you can fix them before they become big problems.
Well maintained water requires fewer chemicals and leads to a longer lifespan for the various components of your pool, saving you money!
Brady’s Pool Maintenance Schedule
So how do you properly maintain your pool? Here is everything you need to do to keep your water clean, clear and ready to use all year long!
Weekly Pool Maintenance
Test The Water
The most important pool maintenance step is regular water testing. Using a basic home test kit, test your pool water 2-3 times per week, paying close attention to the chlorine level. Adjust the chlorine as needed to keep it within the recommended range of 1-3 ppm.
If your choline level falls below this recommended range you run the risk of the water turning cloudy or green. Chlorine levels above the normal range for extended periods of time can reduce the lifespan of key components like the pool liner and pump gaskets while also causing the water to have a “harsher” feel.
Add Your Weekly Maintenance Chemicals
Your weekly maintenance chemicals should include:
- Chlorine Pucks. Add a consistent amount of chlorine pucks to your skimmer or chlorinator every week. Note that the number of pucks might change over the course of the year as warmer water goes through more chlorine than colder water. If you notice that your chlorine level is always reading high or low, adjust the amount of pucks that you add on a weekly basis, or adjust the output of your chlorinator.
- Algaecide. Algaecide doesn’t actually kill algae on its own. It does, however, break down the slimy outer layer that algae uses to protect itself against chlorine. Without this layer, the chlorine can kill algae much more efficiently; leading to lower chlorine usage and less chance of the water turning cloudy or green.
- Shock. Shocking the pool every week is essential in preventing water quality issues. Shocking the pool both kills off any algae present in the water and improves the efficiency of the chlorine to prevent future algae growth.
Brush The Surface
Every pool has “dead spots” where there is poor water circulation. Without fresh water circulating through them, over time these spots will run out of chlorine and small pockets of algae will form. Brushing the surface of the pool breaks up these pockets of algae and moves them into other parts of the pool where chlorine can kill it.
Skim & Vacuum The Pool
Having leaves, dirt, and other organic matter in you pool doesn’t just look bad; it can also cause water quality issues. To keep your pool clean, clear and easy to maintain you’ll want to skim the surface of you pool and vacuum the bottom to remove as much organic material as you can. Once you’re done vacuuming and skimming the pool, it is also worth checking your skimmer basket and removing any leaves and other debris that has collected in it.
Check The Water Level
Maintaining the proper water level allows the filtration system to work at peak efficiency. Too low and the pump will begin sucking in air; reducing its lifespan. To high and the pumps won’t be able to provide enough suction for the skimmer to trap leaves and other floating debris.
Monthly Pool Maintenance
Get Your Water Professionally Tested
Along with regular home testing, you should also take a sample of your pool water in to be professionally tested at Brady’s Pool & Spa Care once per month. Our professional water tests are not only more accurate, they also test for additional items such as stabilizer, calcium hardness and the presence of metals in the water.
Check The Pool For Leaks
It is also a good idea to take a quick look over your pool once per month to check for leaks. If you notice any wet spots around the pump, filter or heater see if you can find the source. If you catch a leak early more often than not you simply need to replace a gasket or o-ring. If you wait the potential for more serious problems becomes greater and greater.
How Often Should You Backwash A Pool Filter?
One of the most common pool maintenance mistakes that we see is people backwashing their pool filter on a set schedule; most commonly every 1-2 weeks. While it might seem that keeping your pool filter clean is a good thing to do, you’re actually just creating more work for yourself.
Pool filters actually work better when they’re dirty. The more things that are trapped in the filter, the harder it is for water to move through them and the more easily they can trap smaller debris. More frequent backwashing also means that you have to fill the pool more often to replace the water lost from backwashing. This fresh water then needs to be treated and balanced; increasing your chemical costs.