Pool Ready
Pool Ready 

Unless you enjoy the year-round warm temperatures of southern Florida, spring is the time of year in the United States when swimming pool owners begin thinking about the warm summer days on the horizon. And that means one thing—opening that treasured backyard oasis for yet another season of fun and excitement with family and friends.

But as you look out into the yard and see the covered pool or above ground pool pump, likely with plenty of winter debris resting on top, you realize there’s a lot of work that still needs to be done before you can jump in feet first and begin enjoying the crisp, calm waters of your personal swimming pool.

But throughout the weekend, you can get that pool ready for the season by following several annual spring-time steps recommended by pool industry experts like those at the National Swimming Pool Foundation.

Let’s take a look at a few things on the checklist:

  • Clean Off Your Pool Cover. Use a soft broom to remove dead leaves and other winter debris from the pool cover before then using a pump to remove any standing water. All of this needs to be done before you can move on, and time will vary depending on how powerful your pump is.
  • Remove the Pool Cover. Once the debris and water have been removed, you can easily remove the pool cover for the new season. It’s good to have some help for this step so you can carry it without dragging it over any rough spots that could damage your cover. Lay it somewhere smooth and thoroughly clean it before putting it away for the summer.
  • Remove Debris from the Pool. Using a skimmer, remove leaves and other debris accumulated in your pool, which could clog the filters once you turn them back on. You’ll likely need to do this process again later, but at least be sure you get out any more oversized items at this stage.
  • Replace Your Equipment. If you have a diving board or other extras like a slide, ladders, and more, this is the time you’ll want to reinstall them in preparation for the summer. Here's more info about them. You might also consider giving these items a quick checkup and greasing or lubricating parts that need extra attention.
  • Replace Water Levels. Chances are good that you lost a few inches of water over the winter, so grab a hose and begin filling your pool to the desired levels. You need to do this before adding chemicals, or else you’ll need to balance your water chemistry again later on.
  • Get Your Filter and Pump Running. Inspect your pump and filter and get both ready to go, at least for a test run. Prime your pump by having water flow through the system, and then wash your filter or replace it if necessary.
  • Balance the Water. It’s always a good idea to grab a water sample and take it to your local pool supply store for analysis. This will give you all the information you need to adjust and balance your water.
  • Vacuum the Pool. This will remove any sediment left on the pool floor and make the swimming experience much more enjoyable for everyone who uses the pool.
  • Give it a Shock. Pick up some pool shock at your local pool store and use it to kill spores and bacteria effectively, making your water look and feel sparkling clean. When opening your pool for the first time in the year, consider shocking it two times for extra safety.
  • Filter the Water. Before jumping in and enjoying your pool for the first time, leave the filtration system running for a full day to mix up the shock and filter any debris lingering in the water. By the next day, you should be ready to begin enjoying your swimming pool for yet another warm weather season.
Refill pool waterRefill pool water requires some planning and consideration to ensure it's done efficiently and safely. Here are the steps to refill your pool water:

1. Check Local Regulations

Before refilling your pool, check with local authorities or water providers for any restrictions or guidelines regarding water usage. Some areas may have specific rules, especially during drought conditions.

2. Prepare the Pool

  • Clean the Pool: Remove debris and clean the pool surface.
  • Check Equipment: Ensure all pool equipment, such as filters and pumps, are in good working condition.

3. Determine Water Source

Decide whether you will use a garden hose connected to your home’s water supply, a water delivery service, or another source such as well water.

4. Start Filling

Using a Garden Hose:

  • Attach the hose to a water tap.
  • Place the hose in the deepest part of the pool.
  • Turn on the water and monitor the filling process to prevent overflow.

Using a Water Delivery Service:

  • Contact a local water delivery service.
  • Schedule a delivery time and provide them access to your pool.

5. Monitor the Filling Process

  • Monitor the water level as the pool fills to ensure it reaches the desired level. This usually means filling to the middle of the skimmer opening.

6. Check for Leaks

  • Check for any leaks or issues with the pool structure and equipment as the pool fills.

7. Adjust Pool Chemistry

  • Test the Water: Once the pool is filled, test the water’s pH, alkalinity, and chlorine levels.
  • Balance the Chemicals: Add the necessary chemicals to balance the water. This may include chlorine, pH adjusters, and algaecides.

8. Run the Pool Pump and Filter

  • Turn on the pool pump and filter to circulate the water and ensure the even distribution of chemicals. Let it run for several hours.

9. Final Check
  • After filling the pool and adjusting the chemicals, perform a final check of the water clarity, chemical levels, and equipment functionality.

Tips for Efficient Pool Filling

  • Fill During Off-Peak Hours: If using your home’s water supply, fill the pool during off-peak hours to avoid putting strain on your water system and to potentially lower costs.
  • Use Multiple Hoses: If you have more than one hose, using multiple hoses can speed up the filling process.
Refilling your pool properly ensures a clean, safe swimming environment and helps maintain your pool's and equipment's longevity.