Pool Maintenance Checklist

By July 20, 2019 January 2nd, 2020 Cleaning & Maintenance
Cleaning filter basket

When you own a pool, you have a responsibility to make sure it is clean and safe. Routine swimming pool maintenance is a must. Whether you are a complete beginner, or you have had some experience in cleaning, Pool Troopers is here to help.

Our goal is to eliminate the hard work so you can accomplish your other responsibilities. Some pool owners may want to maintain their pool more frequently, without the help of a professional. Even if you are in this category, Pool Troopers can assist you.

We have devised a way so you need not forget a thing. This Pool Troopers maintenance checklist will help you cover everything you need to do, whether it is daily, weekly or monthly maintenance.

The Checklist

This list is designed to serve as your guide in caring for your pool. You can contact Pool Troopers to set up a schedule so our professionals can inspect your pool. We can provide you with services and care instructions that are specific to the requirements of your pool.

That said, here are our recommendations on how you can keep your pool in its best condition:

Daily Maintenance

1. Check the level of water.

The first step toward maintaining your pool is to make sure the water is at the optimal level. It should never be too high or too low. Water levels that are too high, may cause the skimmer to stop skimming. On the other hand, if the water is too low, the skimmers will also stop functioning because they will start sucking air in.

If it has been raining, you can lower the water in many ways:

• Locate the “Waste” setting on the multi-port valve and use it. This setting will divert water from your pool so that it goes directly to the backwash hose instead.

• Use a submersible pump. Follow the instructions that the equipment provides. You will usually have to connect a garden or sump hose first before you start using it. When lowering the water level of your pool using the pump, we recommend dropping it off the edge on the deeper end of the pool.

Another option is to start a siphon hose, which is a common way of draining the pool.

Note: Never leave the pool unattended when draining water as removing too much is worse than not draining it at all.  Halfway up the skimmer is the target.  When in doubt leave it too high its way better than too low. 

2. Check the filter and pump.

Examine the filter pressure gauge, which should be in normal pressure to indicate that water flows normally through the filter. If it is showing lower pressure than normal, something is wrong. Low water levels and closed valves could be causing this problem. It may also mean that your baskets are full.

Meanwhile, if the pressure is higher than normal, the problem is after the impeller. It is an indication that you may have a dirty filter or a valve may be partially closed.

Note, the pressure can fluctuate based on the position of the valve after the filter. For instance, if you run the return water using in-floor cleaners, it will create back-pressure; therefore, the filter pressure will increase. If the pump lid is clear, look inside to see if the water is flowing properly through the pump.

3. Inspect the pool cleaner.

Pressure cleaners can operate every day in a two to three-hour cycle. Simply check daily if the bag is full and empty it if needed.

If you have a suction or robotic cleaner, there is no need to run the cleaner every day. An exception would be if you have an existing pool circulation problem. Preferably, you should only run the cleaner a maximum of three times weekly to prevent excess wear and tear.

4. Check the baskets.

Pump baskets typically have a clear lid, so you can quickly see if they are full. Skimmer lids can also be clear, but they are quite uncommon. When the pool is clean, chances are you have clean skimmer baskets too. Whenever required, you should empty the skimmer baskets so the suction will remain strong and effective. Also, take the time to ensure the weir is in the right place and functioning.

Aside from these four maintenance tasks, here are things to accomplish daily:

• Remove leaves and debris using a leaf rake.

• If the water appears cloudy or “off”, check the filter and the chemistry. It may need some cleaning.

• Check the filtration system. Make sure the water circulates properly.

You may also want to inspect the pool area to see whether there is algae growing on the deck or other potential problems. It is essential to check the pool and deck to make sure there are no broken tiles or issues on the deck.

Weekly Maintenance

1. Check the chemical levels.

Some pool owners check the water pH and chlorine levels every day. It is not wrong but it is not required to be performed daily. You can check them two to three times weekly. The best thing that you can do is to make sure that water chemistry is always consistent. Chlorination peaks and valleys should be avoided, and pH should neither go too high nor too low. Keep the pH around 7.4 to 7.8, for a perfect pH of 7.5, while the chlorine level should be around two to four PPM. Free and total Chlorine readings should be identical. 

It may sound complicated, which is why you may want to give this job to Pool Troopers. Our chemical services will give you as much freedom as you want. We provide weekly and biweekly services. Plus, you can even use our saltwater pool system for free.

2. Check alkalinity.

This task can also fall into your chemical tests. The total alkalinity will help maintain the level of the water’s pH level. Make sure it does not get too high because adjusting it can become quite hard. Meanwhile, too low total alkalinity will make the pH level difficult to control.

You can use acid, which will lower the total alkalinity. If it needs increasing, you can use sodium bicarbonate. The optimal alkalinity level is around 80 to 150 PPM.

3. Add chemicals.

You can add Chemicals for sanitization, pH, and alkalinity.  Other chemicals can help prevent staining.

4. Clean the pool deck.

The easiest way to clean pool deck areas on your own is to run a blower. Some owners though are not keen on using leaf blowers. As alternatives, you can use buckets of pool water or a garden hose. Leaf litter can become a problem for some pool owners as well. You can begin trimming the plants in the pool area or replace overgrown ones with smaller varieties.

Other weekly tasks include:

• Shocking the pool (only when necessary)

• Scrubbing the tile line to remove scum

• Checking the filter

• Lubricating and Orings you accessed

If necessary, you may also have to shock the pool anytime the total chlorine is higher than the free chlorine it’s time to shock the pool.

Monthly Maintenance

1. Check calcium and CYA levels.

Most of the time, calcium, as well as Cyanuric Acid, tend to stay stable every month. However, you need to test it so you can make adjustments whenever necessary. Keep calcium hardness around 200 to 400 PPM. Meanwhile, Cyanuric Acid should be around 40 to 80 PPM.  If you use Tri-Chlor tablets as your sanitizer they already have CYA in them so don’t add more. 

2. Test Salt Levels.

If you have a saltwater pool, you should also test the salt levels. You can do it yourself or take a sample of the water and to a pool expert to have it analyzed. Have it tested for metals, total dissolved solids, Cyanuric Acid, and others. This way, you can adjust the levels accordingly.  Just make sure the place you have it tested isn’t motivated by selling your products. 

Yearly Maintenance

1. Clean slide surfaces.

Busy pools require cleaning more frequently. However, you typically only need to clean the diving board and slides once to twice a year. Use the right cleanser and make sure you do not get the chemical into the pool.

2. Tighten bolts.

Safety should be a pool owner’s top priority. Ensure the diving board bolts or the ladder tread bolts on the slides are not loose.

3. Disassemble and thoroughly clean the filter, replace cartridge elements.

DE filters need to be disassembled and cleaned internally at least once per year according to manufacturer’s guidelines.  Cartridge filters should have their elements replaced at least every 12-18 months. 

Annual tuning up of pool cleaners and lubricating the O-rings can also keep the pool running smoothly.

Pool Troopers offers all these tune-ups and yearly maintenance tasks as part of our spring special and we can do it year-round on your startup anniversary for you if you sign up. 

Aim to follow this pool maintenance checklist to make sure your pool stays clean, safe, and function all year round. Contact Pool Troopers for any additional tips on maintaining your swimming pool, today!