7 Common Pool Maintenance Mistakes to Avoid for New Owners
Every year, around 116,000 Americans become new owners of inground pools. If you're one of them, congratulations! A pool is a unique recreational option sure to please the whole family.
Unfortunately, owning a pool isn't all fun and games. There are important maintenance considerations you'll have to keep in mind to ensure the safety of your pool-goers and the long-term health of your new investment. Both new owners, and seasoned veterans, can unfortunately fall victim to a variety of pool maintenance mistakes without even knowing it.
Protect your pool by learning the basics of pool maintenance. Here are 7 common pool maintenance mistakes that we see new owners make time and time again.
1. Not Purifying Your Pool After Heavy Use
A few guests aren't likely to throw off your pool's delicate chemical balance. But if it's loaded for a refreshing summer pool party, you'll want to do your due diligence.
Cleaning after parties isn't an option -- it's a necessity. Algae growth tends to be a serious complication following a party without proper cleanup. Do yourself a favor and test your pool chemistry after the party, or at least the next morning.
Even if the chemistry seems fine, it's a good idea to brush the pool if you have the time, or throw in a potent algaecide to minimize the threat.
2. Not Cleaning Up After Pets
It's no surprise that an entire party can be a significant burden on your pool's wellbeing. However, you should know that a single pet 🐕 can have a similar impact. Pets using pools may seem cute until their oils and fur accumulate, clogging drains and throwing off your pH.
With the help of water clarifiers, you can minimize the pH change. Be sure to clean your pool's filter the following morning, after the loose fur has had time to collect.
3. Not Testing Your Water Often
Speaking of chemical adjustments, there's a right and wrong time to make them. Most shocks aren't as effective during the hot daytime hours. As far as chlorine is concerned, that's because the daylight will turn some of the chlorine into gas.
But the heat is also a major factor, and not just for chlorine shocks. The additional heat increases your pool water's saturation point. You'll need more chlorine to compensate.
And remember: You get what you pay for. You'll end up using multiple inexpensive shocks compared to a potent, more expensive one. Don't cheap out on pool maintenance supplies.
5. Backwashing Your Filter All the Time
Obviously, your filter plays an important role in keeping your pool free of debris. And as a new pool owner, you want to show your pool extra love by backwashing the filter every single day.
Don't do that.
Some amount of accumulation in the filter actually improves its function. The accumulated debris adds additional filtering power by capturing other, smaller pollutants.
The optimal time to backwash your filter? When it's about 10 PSI above the average of its fresh clean. At that point, there's enough gunk in there that it's not doing you any more favors.
6. Not Following a Regular Cleaning Schedule
Even when the pool chemicals are in harmony, there's a chance that some resilient algae finds a place to nestle into. For that reason, maintaining the chemical balance alone isn't enough.
You'll want a decent pool cleaning kit. Once a week, use a pool brush on any trouble spots. These will include areas like steps, corners, and the waterline.
You can also make use of an automatic pool cleaner if you wish. As convenient as these are, keep in mind that most automatic cleaners can't capture algae. But they do an excellent job of eradicating other pollutants.
7. Shocking Your Pool Directly
Most pool shocks are chlorine-based. When chlorine reacts with water, it creates a powerful acid that can bleach just about anything white. While you can't completely control the fading of your new pool, there are plenty of ways to keep it pristine for as long as possible.
Your best option? Don't shock your pool directly. As in, don't take your chemicals and throw them in the pool as they are.
A large sum of chlorine granules won't mix into the water. Instead, they will fall to the bottom of the pool and remove all the color in the liner. If you do this enough, you can damage the liner, too.
Instead, prepare your shock in a bucket of pool water before pouring it in. And be careful! 4,500 Americans go to the emergency room for pool chemical burns every year.
Avoiding Pool Maintenance Mistakes
The better you treat your pool, the better it will treat you. With these 7 pool maintenance mistakes in mind, you'll help your pool live a longer, healthier life.
Do you have all the supplies and parts your pool needs to run its best? If not, visit our retail store in Southbridge, MA for the best products and service.