Installing a pool in your home is a huge milestone. We love pools, especially if you live in the south and the summer heat reaches upwards of 100 degrees Fahrenheit!
But as we all know… pools require maintenance.
Here’s a summary of basic pool maintenance:
- Balancing Chemicals
- Pool Cleaning (*automatic)
- Covering your pool
One of the most essential pool care responsibilities, balancing the chemicals within the water is the only way to keep the water clear.
Chemicals such as chlorine and minerals like calcium all need to stay at acceptable levels in order to kill bacteria, prevent algae from growing and maintain the water’s signature blue color.
It is also necessary to check and maintain the pool’s pH level.
All of these values can be tested using a pool water test kit. These kits cost a few bucks and are easy to use.
They work by taking a small sample of inground pool water and mixing it with a special dye.
After the chemical reaction is complete, the color of the water within the tester will reveal the current chemical levels. Users can raise or lower these levels by using readily available pool chemicals like chlorine tablets/liquid and pH balancer.
Automatic Pool Cleaning
All regular and semi inground pools are equipped with a pump that circulates water throughout the pool. The water is sucked into intake ports near the water line, transported to a filter, and placed back into the pool.
Such pumps have a long lifespan and can be set on a timer to operate every single day. Every so often the pump’s filter needs to be removed for cleaning.
Cartridge style filters can simply be washed out and replaced, and are the most effective filters available.
Filters that use sand and Diatomaceous Earth are also available.
Inground pools cannot be kept clean with a pump filter alone.
To clean dirt, sand, and leaves which accumulate on the pool floor, an automatic pool cleaner is needed. These cleaners get their suction power from the pool’s pump system and are easy to hook up.
Once in the water, the cleaner will scoot around the pool floor, walls and stairs to suck up dirt. Since they are directly connected with your pump, they will turn on according to the pump’s timer.
Covering Your Pool
In the summertime, inground pools have little need for a pool cover. However, these pools require protection in the fall and winter when the leaves fall.
Pool covers are available for all inground pool designs and are designed to keep debris out of the water when not in use. The act of covering your pool for the winter is known as “winterizing”.
Along with the addition of special chemicals, this process ensures that the pool will be in manageable shape when spring comes back around. Special types of covers known as “solar pool covers” are designed to keep heat in the pool overnight, reducing heating costs.
Other covers retract automatically.
- Learn about salt water pools.