The following is a checklist to help insure that you are doing all that is required for complete pool maintenance.
Maintain proper chemical balance - Test water 3 times per week and follow instructions for control of Total Alkalinity, pH, Chlorination, Superchlorination, and Water Hardness.
Maintain pump and skimmer - Clean out debris from skimmer basket and pump basket to maximize flow rate. To clean the pump basket, turn off pump, remove pump lid, take out basket and clean. After cleaning, put basket into pump. Lubricate O-ring under pump lid, if needed, before putting pump lid back on. After pump lid is in place, turn pump back on to be sure the pump picks up "prime". To pick up prime means that the pump begins to pump water. The filter will also gradually build up pressure. This should take under a minute or two. If pump does not prime, turn off pump, take off pump lid and fill pump up with a bucket of water. Turn pump back on after lid is secured in place. NEVER RUN THE PUMP IF IT DOES NOT PICK UP PRIME!!
Brush plaster - Brush plaster on walls, floors, steps and benches as required. Two times per week is usually enough under normal weather conditions.
Maintain filter - Clean or backwash filter as required to maintain proper filtration and water flow through the system. See the owner's manual supplied with the filter for proper procedure to take care of your filter.
Maintain water level - The water level should be kept half way up the skimmer. Most pools have an automatic water leveler to keep pool water from getting too low. If the water level should get too high, remove water from pool by hooking up a garden hose to supplied hose bib located somewhere in the piping at the equipment. Direct garden hose where you want water to drain to and while pump is running, open the hose bib and water will begin to drain out of the pool. The water level should NEVER be so high that it is touching the pool deck.
Maintain cleaning systems - Most cleaning systems require little or no maintenance. Consult the cleaning system's manual for more information.
Lubricate valves and O-rings - If any valves begin to get difficult to move, this means they need to be lubricated, do not force them. Most valves are taken apart and lubricated quite easily. We recommend using a silicone based lubricant for valves. Lubricate the pump lid O-ring with salad oil or something similar when it appears dry. This will keep a tight seal between the pump lid and the pump and prevent air leaks from occurring.
Time clocks and hour of operation - The most common type of time clock is the mechanical type that is located at the equipment. While looking at the clock, the time of day should be under the arrow that is pointing down. If it needs to be adjusted, take hold of the round clock, pull it toward you and turn it until the proper time is under the arrow and release. This should only need adjusting if there is power failure. To set hours of operation, move the "on" clip to the time of day you want the pump to turn on and the "off" clip at the time you want the pump to turn off. This shouldn't need to be adjusted very often. We recommend running the pump 6-8 hours in the cooler months and 10-12 hours in the hot summer months.
To be performed when pressure gets approx. 10lbs above starting pressure or every 3 months (whichever comes first).
- Turn off pump
- Lay out hose to where backwash water should be directed
- Put backwash valve into backwash position
- Turn pump on
- Let pump run approx. 30-45 seconds
- Turn pump off
- Put backwash valve back into filter position
- Turn pump back on and let run for 15-30 seconds while in filter position
- Repeat Steps 1-8. Do so 4-5 times.
- Turn pump on
- Add proper amount of DE to filter by feeding slurry through skimmer while filter is running
- Note #1 ratio for DE is 1 pound of DE for every 10 sq. ft of filter area
- Note #2 Filter should be completely disassembled every year to rid filter of accumulated dirt and DE which is not removed through normal backwash procedure
- Turn pool cleaner pump off (if so equipped)
- Turn filter pump off
- Press handle on backwash valve down folly, rotate to "backwash" and release
- Turn filter pump on
- When water in "sight glass" becomes clear, turn filter pump off
- Press handle on backwash valve down fully, rotate to "rinse" and release
- After a minute or so, turn filter pump off, press handle down, rotate to "filter"and release
- Turn pump on - if heater was turned off at step I, it may now be turned on
- If pool cleaner pump was turned off at step 2, it may now be turned off
Chemical Balance - There are 5 steps to balance pool and spa water.
Total Alkalinity - Test for total alkalinity weekly and adjust it into the proper range. To decrease alkalinity, poor acid in deepest part of pool at a rate of 1 quart per day until desired level is reached.
PH Control - Test for pH levels 2-3 times per week and adjust it into the proper range. (pH is much easier to maintain when total alkalinity is in balance.) To decrease pH, add acid gradually to pool while walking around pool perimeter.
Chlorination - Test for chlorine 2-3 times per week. Add chlorine or an appropriate sanitizer for sufficient disinfecting.
Water Hardness - Test water hardness monthly and periodically drain water from pool to keep water hardness at proper levels.
Maintaining proper chemical levels and following the preceding instructions cannot be stressed enough. Improper chemical balance is the #1 reason for plaster problems and can also lead to numerous other problems. It is so easy to neglect testing the pool and can cost so much to repair in the long run. Try to set up a schedule for someone in the house to take care of the pool. As long as the pool is maintained consistently, it shouldn't take more than 1/2 hour per week to do a good job. If you have any questions at all regarding chemical balance or if you just feel unsure about something, don't hesitate to contact us. A five minute phone call can save your pool from major damage.
Pool chemicals are very dangerous and can lead to serious problems if not handled properly. Here are some tips to safeguard against chemical accidents.
Always read and follow label directions.
NEVER mix pool chemicals. To do so is unsafe under any circumstances.
Identify the chemical you are using. All chlorine is not the same. Some chlorine products are incompatible. Don't mix products in the same container of feeder; fire and/or and explosion can result.
Always add chemicals separately to the pool water, and never add water to the chemicals.
Carefully seal chemicals containers after each use, and store them in a cool dry place out of the reach of children.
Never smoke when handling pool chemicals.
Keep chemicals away from your lawn, shrubs and trees.
Carefully dispose of ant spilled chemicals as directed on the label, and never try to clean chemicals with a vacuum.
If chemicals come in contact with your skin, immediately rinse in cold water for at least fifteen minutes; if irritation persists, seek medical attention.
If chemicals are accidentally swallowed, follow the directions on the product label and immediately call a doctor or your local poison control center.