When putting in a pool, no one thinks of pool maintenance. Instead, you are thinking of hot summer days with your friends, going swimming in the backyard.
However, once you own a pool, you quickly realize all of the hard work that goes into it. There’s the vacuuming and the skimming and the scrubbing, etc., etc.
That can seem overwhelming and, especially when you are very busy, it can seem like something that you just do not have the time or expertise to do.
However, pool maintenance is something you NEED to do, even though it can be a real chore. It is absolutely necessary that you do it, and that you do it right.
You have paid good money for your pool and you want to protect that investment. Let’s look at what is included in pool maintenance, three benefits of doing it regularly, and how a pool cleaning service can benefit you.
What is Included in Pool Maintenance?
Before we talk about why you need to do pool maintenance, it would be helpful to know exactly what is involved.
Regular pool maintenance includes:
- skim your pool to remove any leaves and debris
- brush sediment from your pool walls and where grime may gather (at ladders, stairs, etc.)
- vacuum your pool
- clean your skimmer
- check your filter and backwash
- run your pump long enough to make sure the water is properly filtered
- test your water and adjust chemicals, as needed
That may sound like a lot of work and it is. However, the benefits are well worth any work required.
Three benefits to regular pool maintenance are:
- a good-looking pool
- it reduces safety risks
- it will save you money
Benefits of Regular Pool Maintenance
Benefit #1: A Good-Looking Pool
Let’s face it, we are visual creatures, and no one wants to swim in a pool that is anything less than crystal clear and shining!
Imagine the embarrassment of inviting friends over, only to have them avoid the pool because of how it looks. Instead, you want a clear blue pool that will entice people to use it.
Look at the pictures below. Which pool would you rather swim in?
Obviously, it is the nice, crystal clean pool!
Make sure that you are keeping a regular cleaning schedule. Getting ahead of dirt and grime means that it won’t have a chance to grow.
How to do it
The first thing you want to do is skim the leaves from the surface of your pool.
It is important to do this as frequently as possible. Leaves and other debris that land at the bottom of your pool will be harder to remove and may stain.
Vacuum your pool so that all dirt is removed from the bottom and sides of your pool as often as possible. You will also need to clean your filter regularly so that it can continue to remove dirt from your pool.
Brush the sides of your pools, using the right pool brush, to remove any grime on the walls. Pay attention to where dirt may gather, like near ladders and stairs.
Cleaning the skimmer on a weekly basis means that it will be more efficient and get rid of more debris.
Regular pool maintenance also includes the quality of your water. When is the last time you checked your water and checked its pH balance?
You may think that just because your pool looks clean means the water is clean. However, you will not be able to see the effects of the tiny, dangerous bacteria living in your pool until it is too late!
Make sure your pool is getting regularly treated with chemicals to keep your water clean and safe. Water that is cloudy, or sprouting algae, looks disgusting and not want you want to see in your backyard.
Benefit #2: It reduces safety risks
An unclean pool is more than just something unpleasant to look at. You love your family and friends and want them to be safe.
If you are not cleaning your pool, that dirt and grim can get worse quickly. You would be surprised how quickly your perfectly clean pool can start to look dingy.
Since that is only the dirt that you can see, imagine the tiny bacteria that you cannot see.
Swimming in unclean water can lead to sickness and is a safety risk. Neglecting your pool and allowing bacteria to multiply can lead to conditions, such as:
- skin irritation
- Swimmer’s Ear – an infection of the outer ear canal that causes irritation, redness and swelling in the ear
- respiratory infection, which includes accompanying muscle pain, chills, fever and headaches
- stomach cramps
A 2018 report from the CDC noted that 27,000 people have gotten sick from pools, hot tubs and splash pads. The best way to prevent that is regular pool maintenance.
“As long as the pH and chlorine levels in the pool are being maintained, the disinfectants will kill off most germs that could make you ill,” says one infectious disease consultant at Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota.
In light of the above, the importance of regular pool maintenance cannot be emphasized enough. This will protect against bacteria, whether they are brought in by people, pets, insects, foliage, weather conditions (such as heavy winds), or other natural conditions.
How to do it
Again, you want to make sure that you are regularly testing your pH balance and adding chemicals as needed. You will want to do this daily if your pool is seeing heavy use.
Your pH balance should be between 7.0 and 7.4. Your chlorine should be between 0.6 to 1.5 ppm.
You can use a digital meter or test strips to make sure your water is at the levels it should be.
Remember, clear water is healthy water. Cloudy water is unsafe water and needs to be addressed.
You also want to make sure you’re cleaning the area around the pool. This is so that dirt, bacteria and other things are not coming into your pool from the deck nearby.
Benefit #3 – Save Money
Your pool was a large investment and you want it to last. Pool maintenance, like all maintenance, means keeping things in as good a condition as possible so it will last longer.
While you are cleaning your pool and doing other maintenance, take the opportunity to check out your filter, pump and tiles or liner. An important part of pool maintenance is making sure your equipment is in good repair.
Keep an eye out for little rips and tears, equipment that doesn’t seem quite right or other issues. These are the issues that you want to address sooner rather than later.
Not cleaning your tiles or clearing out your filter means that over time, the dirt and bacteria will damage them. They will become weak, will fail and will need to be replaced.
Not clearing your skimmer or filter means that it will be clogged. When it can run efficiently, your equipment will last much longer.
Regular pool maintenance will make sure you are getting the most of your pool and that your investment will last for many years to come. Taking these small steps regularly means that you will extend the life of your pool and cut down on repair costs.
Making sure that you are keeping on top of these items frequently pays down the road. Regular pool maintenance means you can solve small problems before they become big (and expensive) problems.
Why Hire a Professional
Let’s be honest – we are all really busy. Between work, family and other commitments, we barely have time to enjoy our pools, let alone clean and maintain them!
Having a pool cleaning service in place means that pool maintenance will happen on schedule. You won’t have to stay on top of the dirt and grime in your pool – someone else will be doing it!
A professional will check your equipment to make sure it is running in tip top shape. While this is something you can do, a pool cleaner will have experience with your equipment and be able to catch small problems much earlier than you may be able to.
Testing and adjusting your water’s pH balance will be part of your pool maintenance contract and that can give you peace of mind. We talked about the dangers of unclean pool water and it can be nice to know a professional is taking care of that for you!
As we said at the beginning, having a pool is a lot of fun. It is something for you and your family to enjoy all summer long!
However, it is also a huge responsibility. There are many tasks involved with making sure you pool is running at peak performance.
However, we have seen that the benefits are priceless. By keeping up with regular pool maintenance, you and your family can swim with peace of mind.
You can know that your pool is safe, that it looks good and that you won’t be shelling out high repair costs that could have been avoided!
Take the time and effort to keep up with your pool maintenance or hire a professional to take care of it for you. You’ll see the benefits right before your eyes!