17 October 2019
Keep on top of Pool Maintenance
If you are new to pool ownership, it might not be the walk in the park you assumed. Private swimming pools are not one of those luxury purchases you can just forget about - they must be properly cared for all year round if you want to get the best out of them for many years to come. The best way to ensure the pool is always in the best condition is to have it serviced regularly by a professional pool engineer. Little and often servicing of the pool will provide maximum protection for your pool and your health!
Tip #1: Filter Away Impurities
There are different types of filters – glass, sand and cartridge. They all perform the same function, filtering out dirt or debris that may get into the pool thus ensuring the water is clear of such impurities and is healthy. As the filters capture dirt and debris, they must be cleaned regularly so they can continue to perform perfectly. Sand and glass filters typically should be backwashed weekly. If you have a cartridge filter, the cartridge element (which does the filtering) should be removed and cleaned. For more information on filters, see our article How Your Pool Works.
Tip #2: Don’t Turn off the Pump
The pump is the heart of a swimming pool’s circulatory system - it pulls water from the pool through the skimmer and main drain, pushes it through the filter, and returns it to the pool through the main returns. The pump should be left to run continuously, not turned on and off. It performs better when it is left to run constantly.
Tip #3. Avoid Algae Growth
Most pool owners dread the prospect of algae growth in their pool – algae are ‘food’ for bacteria growth that are harmful to human health. Algae growth can be caused by factors such as poor circulation, possibly as the result of a broken or elderly filter, or chemical imbalance. The best way to avoid this blight is to prevent the build-up of algae in the first place by keeping to a regular maintenance schedule. This will ensure that the pool water chemistry is correct, as well as general cleaning of the pool interior. For more information, read our article The Challenges of Algae for detailed advice.
Tip #4: Chemical Reaction
The right pool water chemistry is vital for the health and usability of your pool. For private pools, check the chemical balance at least twice a week in heavy use periods as leaving long gaps between testing could put the health of the water at risk and you will probably have to add more chlorine to the water (shocking the pool). If you are managing a commercial pool which has much higher bather load, chemical balance testing should be far more frequent – 2 to 4 times a day and remedial action taken if the balance is out.
Tip #5: Use Chemicals for Maximum Affect
For outdoor pools, chemicals should be added when the temperature is cool. In very warm weather, some of the chemicals can evaporate before they have a chance to affect the quality of the water. You should also add more chlorine to the pool and run the filter after a heavy use, as above-average use can throw the chemicals off-balance.
Tip #6: Direct Shock
The chlorine must always be diluted. Throwing it undissolved directly into the pool water can lead to problems. For example, undiluted chlorine could bleach a liner. With most chlorine coming in granular form, the granules can sink to the bottom of the pool and cause permanent staining. If you are treating the pool yourself, in between a professional servicing visit, add the chlorine to a bucket of water to dilute it which will allow it to disperse evenly throughout the pool water.
Tip #7: Topping up the Water
Whilst you can do everything right and make sure that your pool is squeaky clean and the chemicals are exactly how they should be, perhaps the most common mistake is neglecting to keep the water level of the pool topped up. This is problematic, if your pumps are left exposed, it can lead to serious problems.
Tip #8: Test the Water Balance Regularly
Without regular testing, small problems can balloon into significant ones that could result in unnecessary repair costs. To negate these potential problems, test the pool water at least once a week for calcium hardness, copper/iron, pH/alkalinity, and free chlorine levels. You can learn more about pool chemicals by reading our articles What the Chemicals in your Pool Does and The Importance of pH.
Tip #9: Keep the Pool Covered
An open pool looks unquestionably inviting, but if your pool is left uncovered when not in use, you’re not only leaving it open to all manner of pool contaminants, it will also suffer heat loss. Keeping the pool covered will keep the water cleaner, reduce heating costs and protect the overall health of the pool. If you don’t currently have a manual or automatic pool cover can easily be fitted.
If these tips sound like more than you want to handle, especially when you could be in the pool enjoying yourself, opt for regular professional servicing by experts such as ourselves. To find out more about London Swimming Pool Company's Servicing and Maintenance Programmes, please visit this page of our website.