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Get your pool ready for the swimming season

We are not that far into summer but hot weather is right around the corner. If you haven’t done so, now is the time to get that pool opened. Here are five basic, but essential steps to get your pool ready for the first cannon-ball of the season.

Remove, clean and store your pool cover.

Your pool cover has been working hard all winter to keep out debris, minimize evaporation and prevent damage. Treat it right by giving it a thorough cleaning and tucking it away in a safe, dry storage location for the swimming season. If bacteria or mould are allowed to form on the cover, it will cause trouble every time it comes in contact with the water. The better care and maintenance you provide for your pool cover this spring, the better equipped it will be to protect your pool next winter.

Restore equipment to their proper seasonal place.

Winter plugs are to be removed and stored. Ensure your summer equipment is in good shape, such as the baskets for your pump and skimmer and the pressure gauge of your filter. This is also a good time to check the steps, ladder treads and diving boards for any cracks. Even a hairline crack can cause issues, replace any parts that appear to be damaged.

The water level after the winter may not be high enough to turn the pool on.

Be sure to refill the pool, if needed, prior to turning on your equipment and adding chemicals but after you have hooked up all the plumbing. Now we’re getting there. Start the pool up to begin water circulation and filtration. You’ll want to run the pump for at least 48 consecutive hours prior to a water test especially if you are adding an opening kit first.

Now is the time for the pool to be vacuumed and brushed.

You want the pool to be squeaky clean for its first visitors. Pay special attention to ladders, stairs or any corners and crevasses where contaminants may be hiding.

Test pool chemistry and make needed adjustments.

Test the chemical balance of the water once the pump had a chance to get all the water moving (we recommend waiting at least 48 hours before testing the balancers). Add the required chemicals to the pool. Chemical treatment is important. The water must be balanced for sanitizers to work effectively and to remove unwanted waste and contaminants. Your local pool professional will happily help you through this process or even take care of it for you.

Before you know it, your pool will be ready for the first swim of the season.

Kara Redden is a swimming pool enthusiast who is passionate about educating others to spend less time on their pool and more time with their family. Kara is a Partner at R&R Pools in Halifax and is the Atlantic Chapter president of the Pool and Hot Tub Council of Canada

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