Graduation time is here and this group of high school seniors will now prepares to enter the next chapter of their lives. Although I remember high school graduation and the mixed emotions that I had, I have nothing but great memories of the feeling of freedom that the last day of school would bring on an annual basis. There is nothing in adulthood that can compare with the feeling of freedom that kids experience when walking (or running!) out of school on the last day. Some consider summer beginning on Memorial Day weekend, while others believe that summer does not officially begin until summer solstice (Sunday, June 21st). But as for me, I have always considered summer beginning when the kids get out of school.
There are so many things that kids look forward to as summer begins—spending time with family and friends, summer camps, Six Flags, Texas Rangers baseball, summer vacations, not having to wake up as early…the list goes on and on. Another thing that many kids and adults look forward to in the summer is the enjoyment of spending time in and around a swimming pool. In a typical spring, many pool owners begin using their pool, but due to the mild weather and rain that we experienced in April and May, many of us are just now beginning to enjoy our pool.
One of the keys of having the time to enjoy a swimming pool is having a preventative maintenance plan in place that allows you to swim in clean, clear, safe water. Although many pool companies offer a pool cleaning service, some of us opt to care for our own pool. As with any type of maintenance, regularity is the key to success in pool care. Following is a list of recommended weekly tasks, to be used as a checklist that will assure that your pool stays in excellent shape this summer.
- Check the water level of the pool and add water as necessary.
- Test the water for chlorine, pH, and total alkalinity. Other tests are also done as needed such as calcium hardness, cyanuric acid, and salt levels and can be provided by pool supply companies.
- Skim leaves and debris with a leaf skimmer or leaf rake.
- Clean out the skimmer baskets.
- Clean the tile.
- Brush the walls, steps, & benches.
- Clean the pool using a vacuum or leaf bagger.
- Clean out the pump basket.
- Backwash or clean the filter.
- Add chemicals as necessary.
- Rinse off the coping and the deck.
- Visually inspect the pool equipment area for leaks.
In addition to these cleaning procedures, be sure to visually inspect and tighten bolts on the pool equipment—such as diving boards, pool ladders, and filtration equipment. It will also be necessary to lubricate o-rings periodically. This preventative maintenance tasks will help eliminate any potential problems before they become too serious.
Following a checklist such as this on a regular basis will assure that your pool will be a source of relaxation and enjoyment this summer and not a burden.
Enjoy your summer!