Your Official Pool Opening Checklist
If you’re an above ground pool owner or any pool owner for that matter, no doubt Spring is both your favorite and least favorite time of the year. Sure, you can’t wait to get your backyard water park up and ready to go, but you also know that doing so is going to take time, effort, and money. You can also guarantee that a trip to the pool supply store is in order, especially if there are any chemical or equipment issues to be solved.
In order to make sure you’re properly prepared for whatever your pool throws at you, we’ve come up with this comprehensive pool opening checklist. With any luck, it will be a lifesaver for you this coming season.
Know What You Need
Before you go running off to the pool supply store, you need to take a detailed inventory of all your pool chemicals and other supplies. But this doesn’t just mean figuring out how much of each you have; you’ll also want to check the expiration dates to make sure none of the chemicals have gone bad.
And when we say make a list, we really recommend you make a list. You’d be shocked at how many people get to the store and can’t remember what they just came in to buy. After all, these chemicals can be confusing, and a lot of them are similarly named. If you take the time to write them all down, I guarantee you won’t regret it.
Alternatively, you can simply snap a picture with your cell phone. This won’t just ensure you don’t forget what you need, but it can guarantee you get the right brand as well.
Remove the Cover
You can’t pull your winter cover off like a band-aid – you need to take your time. Not only is it sure to be covered with rainwater, but also dirt, debris, bugs, and other things you’d much rather not have to dig out of your pool water. We suggest using a submersible cover pump to get rid of all that water that’s collected on top, then take some time to remove the debris with your skimmer.
Once your cover is clean and mostly dry, you and a partner can slowly remove it. But before storing it away, we suggest you take it to your driveway and give it a good hosing off. This will get any chemicals off of the material, which could damage it while it’s in storage. Once the cover is dry and clean, make sure you store it away somewhere where it will stay that way.
Replace Whatever You Need To
Depending on your mood and how much time you had last fall, it’s entirely possible you may have rushed the pool closing process. If so, it’s possible that some items may have gotten misplaced in the process.
So, as you start to reconnect all of your components, filter system, etc., take note of anything that’s either missing or damaged.
Common necessities that often go missing include valve clamp screws, strain lids, O-rings, drain plugs, etc.
This is also a great time to inspect any components that remain for cracks, mold, and wear. If you notice anything unusual, it’s best to take a photo of each item so you can show it to the pros at your local pool store. It never hurts to get a little peace of mind (and save money for later). If you purchased your pool through PoolsAboveGround.com, we have a record of every component you ordered so getting those replacements will be easy.
Start the “Summarization” Process
Now’s the time to remove all of the various winterization hardware you installed last fall. This includes skimmer cover plates, winterizing plugs, air pillows, ice compensators, and more. I know we are in located in Florida so much of this doesn’t apply to us but to some readers this will still be an important step. It’s also time to take a good hard look at that pool water. It will likely be low due to evaporation, so it’s a good idea to fill it up to the proper level before turning on any equipment.
You might also notice some mild or even severe algae growth has taken place over the winter. This isn’t unusual, but it’s something you need to take care of before your family takes a swim. You’ll need to shock the pool and re-introduce algaecide as soon as possible, then run the filter for a day or two to make sure you clear out all the microorganisms. Just be careful to allow plenty of time for re-balancing. You don’t want to schedule a pool party within a day or two of opening the pool. Trust me. Your guests will be pretty disappointed if you do.
Add the Finishing Touches
Part of ensuring a great summer is taking care to make your pool a presentable, safe, and enjoyable place to be. This means picking up any stray sticks and raking any stones that might hurt your bare feet. It also means sweeping and maybe re-sealing your deck if it’s looking worn. You should also take care to sanitize any tools that have been sitting in the garage all winter. You don’t want to put a moldy vacuum into your freshly-shocked pool, do you?
The other thing you want to at this point is closely monitor the water levels. This will help make sure that no leaks cropped up over the winter months. We always suggest using the “bucket test” for the first few weeks of the Spring. This involves nothing more than putting a filled bucket in a sunny spot next to the pool. After that, simply measure both it and the pool every day to ensure they’re both evaporating at the same rate.
Follow this checklist to the letter, and you can help ensure your summer will not just be full of fun, but free of unwanted trips to your local pool store. First, make sure you have what you need and then make sure that what you have is working properly. We promise, if you take these steps, both your pool and your family will thank you.
If you need a new above ground pool, above ground repair, installation advice, replacement parts or services just call or visit our website at http://lakelandabovegroundpools.com/