How to Open a Swimming Pool

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A pool service is the best way to open a swimming pool for the season. If you are up to the task, it is possible to open a swimming pool yourself. This will save you money that you can use to purchase new equipment.

One of the most important steps to get your swimming pool ready for season is cleaning up the surrounding area. Clean up any plant debris on your patio, pool deck, or nearby planting beds. Anything that could produce debris that could endanger your pool is best. Hedges and trees that have grown recently may hang over your pool in the future or now.

Tip

Many flowers that flower in summer can lose their blooms, which could end up in your swimming pool. You can reduce the mess and maintain your pool area by planting vines, trees, and shrubs that are easy to maintain.

What you’ll need

Equipment / Tools

  • Trimming tools for trees and shrubs
  • As needed, cover pump or submersible pumps
  • Use a pressure washer or broom (depending on the need)
  • Cover removal tool (or Allen wrench)
  • Tile brush
  • Pool brush
  • Pool vacuum
  • Pool testing kit

Materials

  • Baking soda or tile cleaner
  • Metal lubricant

Instructions

Make sure you clean the pool cover

Yuck! It’s like you’re doing some kind of science experiment with leaves and other “stuff” over the period of seven months since your pool was winterized. To remove any liquids that have accumulated on the pool cover, either rent a submersible or cover pump. This is usually for 24-hour periods.

If you find dried debris under your cover, consider yourself lucky. You can remove it by simply sweeping it and then using a pressure washer or hose to spray the area. This is especially important in drought-stricken areas. After you have removed the cover, the real cleaning begins.

Take off the pool cover

You should time the pool cover removal to allow someone else to help you. Each person should grab a corner at the shallow end to start the removal. There are several ways to get rid of it depending on what type of cover you have.

  • Fan-fold winter covers into 3- to 5-foot folds for solid protection
  • Use a tool or Allen wrench to remove anchor fasteners or springs from mesh covers. Fold the cover accordion-style loosely.

Keep the cover clean and dry

Remove the cover and place it in a driveway or other hardscaped location. Thoroughly clean and rinse off the cover. If the manufacturer recommends, use cleaner or treatment. Before storing, let it dry completely. Wrap the cover tightly with rope or strapping. The pool cover can be stored indoors or in a garage, away from moisture, rodents, insects and moisture.

As needed, inspect, remove, and replace

Check the following checklist to ensure you have all of the necessary items.

  • Plugs can be removed: Take out expansion or freeze plugs and remove them from wall returns and surface skimmers. If your pool has water tubes, drain them.
  • You should inspect the pump and filter for worn or damaged parts. Repairs or replacements are recommended.
  • Reinstall light: Underwater light fixtures can be removed from their housings with wires still attached to prevent cracking. Reattach the light fixture by tying the wire in the hole.
  • Look for cracks: Check a fiberglass or concrete swimming pool for cracks. Also check any tiles. You should also look out for cracks in the plaster, indentations in the deck or coping. You can make minor repairs to the pool opening job as DIY since it is DIY. You can also use a tile brush and a household cleaner to remove any calcium scale or stains. A pumice stone is recommended for tough stains.

Reinstall Equipment

All user equipment should be reset, including grab-, safety, and hand rails, ladders, slides, and diving boards, or safer, newer jump boards. Spraying metal bolts and other fasteners using a metal grease is a great idea. Make sure everything is tight and clean.

Tip

It is easiest to clean chrome pieces prior to installing.

Get it up

It’s the right time to put in a new heater, pump or filter if you bought it to replace an old one. It is possible to replace drain plugs, valves and pressure gauges which were damaged.

Look for information on the company’s website or the instructions provided by the manufacturer.

Add water to the pool and clean it

Use a garden hose to fill the pool up to the middle of the skimmer nozzles or the waterline tile. You can clean the pool’s bottom with a long-handled (telescoping), wall brush and a floor brush once it has reached the desired level. It’s time to dust off the pool vacuum and algae brush. Now you can scrub walls and surfaces to get rid of any trace of the dreaded algae in all forms and colors.

Get the pool going

Are the valves in their open position? In the hope of priming it correctly, did you fill the pump up with water? Did you drain the air from equipment and plumbing? If yes, you can now turn the power on.

While the circulation system is operating, inspect the pool to see if there are any leaks, cracks or split hoses. If there is any damage to the pool, turn off the power supply and call your local pool service.

Water should be tested and treated

To mix the old and the new water, run the filter for 12-24 hours before adding chemicals or testing. You will need a pool testing kit after that. Make sure you check the expiration dates on any testing strips or reagents, and make sure to replace any that are expired. Test four parameters.

  • pH level
  • Alkalinity
  • Calcium hardiness
  • Chlorine content

It’s now time to shock or super-chlorinate the pool with chlorine.

You might add additional treatments to your water at this stage, depending on your pool test results, your preferences and the advice of a pool professional. These could include a stabilizer or conditioner, as well as an algicide.

ABOUT AUTHOR

Dia is the Editorial Assistant at dialogoreligioso.org, covering Exterior, Kitchen, home Yard, Poolhouse, and more.

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