So you just installed a swimming pool. Are you ready for summers of fun in the sun, tanned skin, the sweet smell of coconut sunscreen lingering around your backyard? Not so fast. Pools aren’t all fun and games. Okay, fine. They’re mostly fun and games – especially with the right pool maintenance skills. While some new pool owners take it upon themselves to be the Pool Maintenance Professional of the house, others opt for a top-rated pool cleaning service to manage their West Valley pools.

So, here we go. Whether you want to call this guide “Pool Care For Dummies,” or, “The New Pool Owners Guide,” or “The ‘I Told My Wife I’d Maintain Our Pool And Now We Have A Pool And I Don’t Know What To Do, Please Help Me’ Guide” Universal Pool Service has you covered.

We’ll break this down into what is often called the Three C’s of Pool Maintenance: Cleaning, Chemistry, and Circulation.

Circulation

We want to start with this ‘C’ because this is the one that most often has pool owners confused. Circulation refers to running pool water through a filter using a pool pump. This is by far the most important step. Stagnant water is a hotbed for bacteria, algae, and gross, green water that no one wants to swim in. The pump will suck water in through a skimmer. And this is not the kind of skimmer you’re thinking of with a net attached to a pole. These skimmers are often rectangular holes on the side of the pool that sucks water in. Once the water is sucked into the skimmer, it flows through the filter and is pushed back out into the pool.

Seems easy, right? Not really. Pumps do not need to run all day. In fact, this would be incredibly expensive for a home swimming pool. You should run your pool pump long enough to cycle through all of the water once per day. Usually, this is about 8 hours, but can be more or less depending on the size of your pool, and the gallons per minute that your pump can filter. (In other words, Universal Pool Service will be more than happy to help you figure this out).

Chemistry

Balancing your pool’s pH level is incredibly important for comfortable swimming conditions, especially if young children or elderly individuals use the pool. You can use pH strips to test the acidity of your pool, which should be about 7.4. Pool chemicals (including a pH increaser, a pH reducer, and an alkalinity increaser) are all important to keep on hand – and to know how to use them. You’ll also need chemicals to sanitize your pool, such as chlorine or bromine.

Cleaning

Cleaning your pool can involve several steps. Using a skimmer net to get rid of debris is a great place to start. However, you should also vacuum your pool on a regular basis, scrub the tiles with a pool brush, and clean the pool filter. Pool filters should be cleaned when the pressure gauge on the pump reaches 8 psi above normal. We could write a whole guide on simply how to clean your pool filter (in fact, we probably will).

A Year Of Pool Maintenence 

Check out this infographic to help you get an idea of how often each pool cleaning task needs to be done.

This is only the shallow end (get it?) of pool cleaning maintenance. We’ll continue to go more in-depth about the three C’s and really dive into the deep end. In the meantime, be sure to choose the West Valley pool service experts at Universal Pool Service to help you out.