Spring Pool Opening Procedures
Following are step-by-step instructions to assist you in this annual task. Whether you are a seasoned pool owner or a new pool owner it is always wise to review the checklist, kind of like a pilot before he takes off.
- 1.Drain the pool cover, if you have installed a safety cover or a winter cover over the pool you need to drain as much water off the cover prior to removing it. This can be done with a submersible pump, wet vac with extension, or a siphon, if you have an above ground pool.
- 2.Remove the pool cover using two people at least. A little water and debris is sure to fall in the pool but don’t worry about that, it is okay.
- 3.Clean and store the pool cover after you have removed it. You will want to lay it out to dry and brush any remaining debris off the cover. Once the cover is dry you can sprinkle some talcum powder or Alkalinity Up to prevent mold and mildew. Fold the cover loosely and store in a cool, dry location.
- 4.Fill the pool to normal level use a hose to fill the water back to its normal level, which is about the middle of the skimmer opening or half way up the tile.
- 5.Reconnect your pool equipment, if you followed our instructions in closing up your pool for the winter then you removed plugs, etc. form the equipment. Replace all the plugs, reconnect any equipment that was disconnected i.e. filter, pump, heater, etc.
- 6.Clean out the antifreeze from the drain lines, if of course you used anti freeze it needs to be removed, properly discard the waste.
- 7.Remove winter plugs from the skimmer and return lines, this speaks for itself, however, wait until you have removed the antifreeze before removing these plugs.
- 8.Turn equipment back on by priming the pump and circulating the filtration system. Remember to open the air relief valve on the filter, if you have one, to release the air from the system.
- 9.Add Metal Free to prevent staining due to the possible build up of copper and iron in the pool. Follow the instructions on the bottle and allow water to circulate at least 2 hours.
- 10.Test the pool water chemistry after it has circulated for the several hours. You will want to test, Total Alkalinity, chlorine and pH with at good test kit or test strips. Be sure to check the expiration date on test strips that may have been stored for a long duration. Please see the following article regarding proper testing and proper levels: Testing Pool Water Chemistry. You will want the following readings: pH 7.2-7.6, Total Alkalinity 80-120ppm, Chlorine 2.0 – 4.0ppm
- 11.Adjust the pool chemistry by adjusting the Total Alkalinity (TA) first. Once the Alkalinity is adjusted it will be easier to control the proper pH and chlorine levels. If the Total Alkalinity is too high add Dry Acid, if it is too low ad Alkalinity Up, again follow directions on the container. These can be purchased from your local pool store.
- 12.Adjust pH once the TA is adjusted between 80-100ppm you can now adjust the pH. If pH is too high add small doses of Dry Acid or Muriatic Acid, wait 2 hours and retest adjusting as needed. If pH is too low then you will add Soda Ash, wait 4 hours and retest. Adjusting as needed.
- 13.Test Calcium Hardness and adjust as needed. Calcium Hardness (CA) should read above 150 ppm. If it is too low then add CA Plus or Hardness Plus.** Never use Hardness Plus the same day you use Soda Ash.
- 14. Brush and vacuum the pool completely. There is going to be debris in the pool so brush it and vacuum it being sure to get around the steps, adders, etc.
- 15.Allow pump to circulate water overnight…do not turn off the pump but allow it to run overnight to filter out dirt, bacteria, debris that is in the system.
- 16.FINALLY shock the pool to eliminate remaining contaminates and bacteria that are still in the water. Follow the mfg. instructions for shocking the swimming pool water effectively.
- 17.To maintain proper water chemistry and prevent algae during the summer you will want to test your water regularly, I recommend at least once a week! You will want to test your phosphates as well, please see article on Testing Phosphates. This is an easy procedure using the Phosphate Test Strips.
- 18. Above all BE SAFE! Please read this article on Swimming Pool Safety
- FILTER SAVERS or SKIMMER SOCKS are very beneficial during the spring when all the pollen and small buds are falling into the pool!
Happy and Safe Swimming~