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Pool Maintenance Tips For Summer
Owning a pool is sometimes compared to owning a boat, it provides the two happiest days of your life...the day you buy it and the day you sell it! But it doesn't have to be that way, you don't really have to spend a whole day adding chemicals, skimming and vacuuming after a day of fun. Follow these simple tips on how to make your pool-owning life a little easier.
1. Have good habits
Keeping your pool sparkling clean can seem like such a chore and one that only experts know how to handle. A consistent routine can make it so much easier.
Pool experts agree, having a regular schedule to clean and maintain can make all the difference. Adjust the chemicals, brush the walls and empty the baskets and of course, clean the filter.
There are some variables of course, depending on your climate, size of the pool, whether you have a screened 'cage', if there are plants and trees depositing goodies into your pool can all affect the amount of work you have to put in. If you have a salt water system, it should be even easier! Of course, you can hire all this out for anywhere from $25-100 per cleaning.
2. Budget for breakdowns
Here are some more variables that can frustrate pool owners. Pools aren't the 'set it and forget' types. They demand some attention. Since most every part..moving or not is in constant contact with the summer heat and water, there are surely going to be some breakdowns. From pumps to baskets, heaters to handles, they are all prone to fail at some point.
There are also regular, reoccurring expenses like replacing the filter which could be several hundred dollars to more simple fixes like skimmers that just seems to fall apart on a regular basis.
Planning for these breakdowns is difficult, you may never experience a major issue, but that doesn't mean that you shouldn't be prepared. An issue with your pool could also cause your electric or water bill to skyrocket if not noticed.
3. To cover or not to cover
If you are in a part of the country that uses pool covers to help protect against rainy days messing with your chemical balance or even birds taking a bath in your pristine oasis. Many experts agree that this is not a good idea!
They say that the time it takes you to get the cover out, get it evenly covering the pool and then taking it off to store again...you could have just cleaned it! The covers usually cause the water to become cloudy and could lead to algae too. Not to mention what happens to all the debris that is on the cover while you are removing it, that could cause more issues than not having the cover at all.
4. Watch your water levels
In many areas, like mine, summertime means lots of rain. Too much rain can cause your pool to overflow and now you have more issues. Too little rain and your pool water may evaporate and lead to the pump burning out from having no water running thru it.
Generally, your water level should be in the middle of the skimmer. The skimmer is the large opening on the side of the pool that sucks in water, filters it and sends it back into the pool. Just make sure you know how to safely drain the pool (set a timer so you don't forget it's draining!) and also have a hose handy for filling for the times when there isn't much rain.
Getting a professional to show you how your pool drains, fills and filters is always a good idea. Most installers and service companies offer a 'pool school' to teach common maintenance tasks.
5. What happens to the sunscreen we use?
Although using sunscreen is virtually mandatory in most households, it will tend to cause some issues with your pool. DO NOT let that be an excuse not to use it while enjoying your pool!
Oils will need to be filtered out by your equipment and that will cause it to work less efficiently. You will also need to brush the tiles and clean the skimmer basket more often as well. Some pool pros suggest adding a small amount of nonchlorine shock every week, this will not only help keep the pool clean but help eliminate chloramines. (Often the source of a smell, it is likely caused by body oil buildup.)
6. Make a friend at the pool store
Having a good relationship with your local pool supply store can go a long way. Even if you are a DIY type, something will inevitably come up that is beyond your scope of knowledge or ability. They are generally very helpful in sharing advice, tips and tricks...keep their number handy for when things go South!
If you are looking to purchase a pool home in the Central Florida area, start your search here, they are plentiful. I am always happy to share experiences, opinions or advice on any aspect of homeownership. Feel free to reach out at anytime 321-439-4277 [email protected] or shawn.preferredrebrokers.com