Swimming Pool Cleaning In 3 Simple Steps

Swimming Pool CleaningAll swimming pool owners know that if you do not regularly maintain the water in your pool then you will end up with green water. The green water occurs when algae forms in the water and begins to stick to the swimming pool. As long as you stick to a schedule you can make sure that you stop algae from forming in your pool. You can then enjoy your pool with out the worry of contracting infections as a result of bacteria and germs living in the water. You can monitor the cleanliness of the water by using an inexpensive test kit and this will let you know the level of swimming pool chemicals to add to the water. This is something you should do regularly as different conditions that effect the water can cause swimming pool chemicals to break down at a faster rate.

Swimming Pool Cleaning

1. Rain Or Shine Will Effect Your Pool – Different types of weather conditions can have dramatic effects on the water in your pool. Large amounts of rain fall and winds will cause pool chemicals to react more quickly in the water. If you live somewhere where you have a hot and humid climate then the chemicals are likely to react at a faster rate. You can deal with these sorts of issues by regularly using pool shock treatments to keep the pool cleaning to a minimum.

2. Put In Some Elbow Grease – You can’t just put swimming pool chemicals in the water if you want a clean pool, you have to put some effort into cleaning it too. Brushing algae off of the swimming pool liner and around the pool will also help. You should also get a good vacuum to clean the bottom of the pool. Automatic robot vacuums are perfect for this as you can just leave them to clean the bottom of the pool when you aren’t using it. You will still want to skim the water with a net to remove any leaves or other debris that might clog up the vacuum or filter.

3. Take Care Of Your Filter – It is important to make sure you take care of your swimming pool filter. You want to check swimming pool filters on a regular basis as they can become clogged or damaged. If you have one that uses paper filters make sure you change them regularly. If you have a sand filter you need to regularly backwash it to keep it in good shape.  When it come to swimming pool cleaning keeping your filter clean mean everything.

Swimming Pool Cleaning

Most local swimming pool contractors offer swimming pool cleaning and repair…

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Salt Water Swimming Pools and Chlorine Generators

While swimming pools have traditionally been freshwater, the use of saltwater swimming pools is growing in popularity. There are many misconceptions about salt-water pools. One is that salt-water pools are chlorine free, but this is not true. Salt-water pools actually use chlorine generators. Having a good understanding of how salt-water pools work and what their benefits are is necessary when making the decision between a fresh or salt-water setup for your pool.

Why Choose Salt-Water?

The salt content in the ocean is roughly 35,000 parts per million (“ppm”). However, most humans can really only tolerate a salt content of about 3,500 ppm. Modern chlorine generators in swimming pools require the pool to have a salt content of between 2500 and 6000 ppm. Ideally, the generator being used should require less then 3500 ppm since this is what most people find comfortable.

Swimming in such a pool is comparable to showering using soft water. People using traditional fresh water pools find that the chlorine damages and dries their skin. However, upon exiting a salt-water pool, people find that their skin feels smooth, soft and hydrated.

How the Chlorine Generator Works.

The main purpose of the chlorine generator is to create chlorine for the pool, eliminating the need to purchase it, pour it in, and store the leftover chlorine. Most pool owners are attracted to this feature. When a chlorine generator is functioning properly, it will produce chlorine as long as the pump is running. Rather than the chlorine level rising and falling depending on maintenance, the chlorine level is kept constant and level. Bacteria and algae never have a chance to take over.

The key is the cell that makes up the generator. This must be made of precious metals so that is can be maintained and will continue creating chlorine. Using electrolysis, as water passes over the chlorine generator cell; chlorine is produced and immediately converted to Hypochlorous acid. All chlorine creates this same acid when added to water. Hypochlorous acid is the agent that actually acts as a sanitizer in any pool. Whether your pool is fresh or salt-water, and regardless of your choice of chlorine, it is the same end result. As with a fresh-water pool, the pH is vital to keeping the pool running smoothly and clean.

With a salt-water pool and chlorine generator, maintenance will still be required. However, the chlorine levels in the pool will be more consistent, making the pool cleaner. The water will leave your skin feeling soft and smooth rather than dry and brittle. Finally, the pool will cost less to run since there is no need to buy chlorine every week.

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Getting to know Swimming Pool chemicals and learning the basics of water chemistry is tremendously important. One of the most crucial things I’ve found over the years is that for every action there truly is an equal or greater result. For example, when you add chlorine to your Swimming pool you’re also changing other chemical elements. This is not such a bad thing, but the important thing is that we always have to be conscious of “If I do this, what will be the end consequence and what else might be effected by this action?”  Let’s face it the only thing essential about a swimming pool is that the water be fresh and clean. Let’s face something else, too: Achieving this can involve more chemistry than you may have seen since junior year in high school. Here are all the essential concepts and terms you need to know to keep your swimming pool clean. Just be sure to follow all manufacturers’ instructions on the package of a chemical carefully.

Now are a few basic tips when it comes to pool chemicals and maintaining water “harmony”:

Some factors mentioned here are; pH, total alkalinity and calcium hardness; all affect one another, so it will take some trial and error to get all three in the proper range at once. Also note that before you add any chemical–especially an acid–to the water, you need to first turn on the pool’s equipment. Make sure the water is circulating when adding chemicals!

I suggest using a drip or reagent based water testing kit. Make sure that your  testing kit can test for several different things (i.E.; total chlorine, free chlorine, bromine, pH, calcium hardness, iron contaminants, stabilizer, etc). Drip testing kits are more accurate than test strips. You’ll save time because you don’t have to take your water to a pool retail store for testing and you’ll only spend about .10 cents per week using a few “drops” of reagent.

Basic Steps To Ensure Your Water Is Chemically Balanced:

Here are the items I would suggest testing right away and in this order. You’ll notice that if these items are in “harmony” and where they should be not only will your chemical consumption be dramatically reduced, but also you’ll be well on your way to maintaining your pool in less than 5 minutes per week and using less than $12.00 per month in chemicals.

Test for total and free chlorine.

Free chlorine should be between 2.0 and 4.0 PPM. You’ll test this using your water test kit that I referenced above. Follow instructions on the testing package.

Test total alkalinity

Determine the water’s total alkalinity. This figure should be in the range of 80 to 150 ppm; 100 to 120 ppm is best. Adjust the total alkalinity by adding sodium bicarbonate (baking soda) to raise it or sodium bisulfate (dry acid) to lower it. Test calcium hardness. This should be between 200-400 PPM. Following package instructions add calcium carbonate dehydrate to Increase calcium hardness; add sodium hexametaphosphate to decrease it. Carefully pour the chemical mixture into the pool at various spots a foot or two (about half a meter) away from the sides of the pool.

Test for pH. PH should be between 7.2 and 7.8.

If it’s lower that this you can cause equipment issues and also aggravate your skin. If it’s higher than this you will those nasty “rings” around the water line of your pool. To decrease the pH, add sodium bisulfate or liquid muriatic acid. To increase it, add soda ash (sodium carbonate).  Add more chemicals as considered necessary until the water is in balance.

Treating Water With Chlorine…

Put chlorine granules into water in a nonmetal container, following package directions. Always wear goggles and rubber gloves when handling chlorine, and always put the chlorine into the water–don’t pour the water over the chlorine. Mix for more or less 30 seconds, and leave for 30 minutes to settle. Turn on the filter. Getting as far into the middle of the pool as possible (perhaps by standing on a diving board), pour the chlorine into the pool. Discard any sediment left in the container.  Add chlorine three to four times a week for a swimming pool in heavy use. Always test your water before adding chlorine! Try and use liquid chlorine. It will penetrate the water quicker and will have an immediate impact!

Occasionally, no more than once a week you may need to super chlorinate (shock) the pool to burn any built up bacteria, algae and ammonia. Following chlorine package directions make a solution for super chlorination (it will be three to five times as strong as ordinary chlorine). Add the chlorine solution to the pool after sunset, if possible, as the sun’s ray’s break down chlorine. Before allowing someone to go in the pool, test the residual chlorine level to make sure it has deceased back down below 3.0 ppm.  Maintaining the water free of dirt and debris… Remove any leaves from the pool with a leaf net each time you go swimming. Clear out and rinse off the strainer basket of the skimmer once or twice a week, and as often as daily during falling-leaf season.

Make sure the deck clean by regularly sweeping and then rinsing it with a garden hose. Meticulously clean your pool filter at least monthly. Clean a sand filter by backwashing:  Reverse the flow of water through the filter for 2 to 3 minutes until the wastewater is clear.  For a cartridge filter, remove the filter cartridge and wash it with a hose with a high-pressure nozzle. Replace the cartridge.

Do not add harsh chemicals to the water through the pool skimmer, this could damage the equipment.
Take water samples for testing from at least a foot (30 cm) below the surface for a more accurate reading.  Chlorine also comes in a more expensive but handy liquid form, and in tablets and sticks that you place in dispensers to gradually dissolve.

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