5 Steps to a Proper Pool Opening
Yippy skippy! Hip-hip-hooray! Que bueno!
...Why all the celebration, you ask? Well, it's pool time! Before long, the sounds of children and family laughing, splashing, and playing in their pool will be heard in backyards across the country. But before we can swim, we must all open our pools properly. This article will discuss the correct steps to a proper pool opening.
Step 1: Cover Removal
Removing a pool's cover can sometimes be quite precarious, especially when the cover is made of a solid vinyl material that has let water or debris accumulate on top throughout the winter.
The best way to deal with solid covers is to drain the water off completely, and then attempt to remove the debris. Pool owners often attempt to take the cover off prematurely, without having removed any excess water and debris. This can lead to all of said debris falling into the pool water. Such an occurrence does not bode well for water clarity and can mean up to a week or more of filtering to get the pool back in shape.
Once you remove the cover, you should thoroughly clean it off, dry it, fold it, and finally store it for the season.
Step 2: Filter System/Plumbing
In this phase, you re-attach all necessary plugs to their filter system. Typically, most pool pumps have at least two plugs and most filter tanks have one plug. All unions should be re-attached at the filter system, including the salt chlorine generator when applicable.
Also at this time, you should remove the plugs from the pool's returns and install the eyeballs in their stead. You'll remove the skimmer's plug or gizmo as well.
During this phase, you should also make sure all electrical components are turned back on.
Step 3: Filter System On
During this phase, the pool's filter system is turned back on.
As the water goes through the system, check to make sure there are no leaks and that everything is running properly.
Step 4: Cleaning/Vacuuming
Pool water clarity varies quite a bit from pool to pool with each opening.
For pools where the bottom is visible, you should vacuum and brush the walls. For pools where the bottom is not visible, it is best to brush the walls and then let the pool filter for 24 hours before attempting to do more, as to attain better visibility for vacuuming.
Remember, this process usually requires consistent backwashing or cleaning of the filter as to assist with clarity.
Step 5: Chemicals
For pools where the bottom is not visible, extra pool shock is necessary to superchlorinate the pool. If there is a large amount of algae, you should add 3 bags of chlorine (for those using regular chlorine) shock per 10,000 gallons.
Shock can be added on consecutive days if the algae persists.
During this phase, add basic maintenance chemicals along with any necessary pool balancing chemicals (ie., pH, alkalinity, calcium). A salt generator should be turned on for those with a salt system.
For those using salt chlorine generators, it is a very good idea to clean your cell at the beginning of each season. This can easily be done by pouring a water/muriatic acid solution to the cell and letting it soak, which will in turn remove any unwanted scaling or build-up on the cell, which (if present) can prevent the system from generating chlorine properly.
For more info on how to keep your pool in tip-top shape, take a look at our complete guide to pool maintenance. Let us help you make the most of your pool!
River Pools manufactures and installs fiberglass pools in Virginia and Maryland. We also operate in other areas of the country through our network of nationwide dealers. Check out our pool designs, and get in touch with us if you’d like to learn more. We’re happy to hear from you!