Yes, you read that right! The more you maintain your pool, the more you save! But how is that possible? Using more chemicals, spending more time, doing more tasks would logically mean that we’re going to be using more money right? Well, read on to find out!
Before we go start, make sure to download our free printable pool maintenance checklist here so that you’ll have something to work with and tweak later when we do get into personalizing your home swimming pool maintenance routine.
The two words that send shivers down the spines of many novice and veteran pool owners are “pool maintenance” and for good reason. Every one of us has come across situations where we take one look at our pool and think if it’s even worth having a pool in the first place. What many people fail to realize is that if we actually divide our pool maintenance tasks into small and manageable tasks, we can prevent it from ever reaching that point.
Why is more pool maintenance better?
While some pool owners can get away with checking and fixing their water balance once a month, the sad reality is that the more you wait in-between checking and balancing, the more chemicals you’ll end up using. Sompe people will say, well, if you add up all of the chemicals you’ll be adding on a weekly basis then you’ll probably end up with the same amount of usage right? Wrong.
Small adjustments on a weekly basis prevent your pool chemicals from wildly fluctuating. On top of that, your chemical levels directly affect each other so the more one chemical level drops or rises for any reason, it pulls other levels along with it, causing a cascading effect that affects ALL your chemical levels.
Moral Lesson: Maintaining your chemical levels takes LESS chemicals and effort than correcting them.
For more information on the different pool chemicals and how they affect each other, load up our ultimate guide to pool chemicals (opens in new tab).
Constant pool maintenance prevents pool damage
Not maintaining your pool can also lead to damage. What sort of damage? Well, all sorts of damage! If your pool chemical levels swing to the corrosive level then your pool equipment (think pumps, heaters, surfaces) will be susceptible to corrosion. On the other edge of the spectrum if it gets into the scaling level then you’re looking at scale, water marks, staining, and other annoying little things that take the shine away from your pool!
Aside from chemical balance causing balance, not doing a regular pool maintenance routine will allow dirt and debris to accumulate on your pool surfaces (think staining) and will allow algae to take root. Not only that, leaves and other debris in your pool will eventually break down and release phosphates into your pool, and if you’ve been following our blogs, phosphates are algae food. More food equals more algae!
Make sense now?
So as we’ve seen, doing more maintenance actually uses LESS chemicals that if we were to do less maintenance because we’re not playing catch-up. Not only that, but doing more maintenance will actually prevent damage which means that you’ll be spending less for fixing stuff!
How to Make A Custom Maintenance Schedule for your Pool
For many people, the pool maintenance checklist that we’ve linked to earlier in this swimming pool maintenance blog post is more than enough to guide them with their pool maintenance. But for maximum savings and efficiency, it’s always best to create a personalized pool maintenance schedule. So here are some of the things we have to consider when creating our own personalized pool maintenance schedule.
Pool Usage Factors to Consider
There are two questions that we would need to answer when developing our personalized pool maintenance schedule. These questions are “Do you use the pool often?” and “How many people use the pool on average?”
Your pool maintenance tasks will directly be connected with your answer to the previous questions. The more you use your pool, the more pool maintenance tasks you should be doing. I mean, if you only casually use the pool once a week then it wouldn’t make sense to make a heavy maintenance schedule right? Conversely, if you utilize your pool a lot and the kids are using it on a daily basis then it makes a lot of sense to create a more intensive pool maintenance schedule.
Also take into account the free time you’ll have to allocate each week for pool maintenance. Using your free time as a basis, plot our your schedule for weekly and monthly maintenance so that you’ll be able to complete them as planned and without putting too much stress on your schedule.
Bonus Question: Will you have help in maintaining the pool? If you have help then you can tailor your pool maintenance schedule to utilize that. Remember, your customized pool maintenance schedule is only good if you stick to it! Start with something that you know you’ll be able to keep and scale up or down, depending on the need.
Building your customized pool maintenance schedule
The first thing you should do is to look for a blank calendar template online. A simple google search will show you endless options and all you need to do is to pick the design that you think looks good, and fill it out.
Pool Maintenance Items to consider adding to your schedule
- Brushing and Skimming your pool - depending on pool usage and your area when it comes to debris, set this task to be done at least once a week. If you live in an area with a lot of leaves and debris blowing into your pool then setting a brushing and skimming schedule at least twice a week. Include checking and emptying your skimmer baskets and pool pump baskets when brushing and skimming your pool.
- Vacuuming your pool - Vacuuming once a week should be enough for most pool owners. But if you were to ask us, it’s good practice to vacuum your pool after brushing and skimming your pool since you’re already there right? So if you need to brush and skim your pool twice a week, then vacuuming the pool twice a week is optimal as well.
- Testing and balancing your pool water - This will depend on your pool usage but for many pools, once a week is highly recommended. But if your swimming pool is constantly used then testing and balancing your pool water twice a week is the way to go. Here’s a link to our Ultimate Pool Testing guide to help you test your pool water more efficiently.
- Shocking your pool - even if you stick to your pool testing and balancing regimen religiously, it’s highly recommended to shock your pool at least once a week. We recommend doing this the day before you expect the pool to be empty (maybe Sunday night, but that depends on when you expect the pool to be empty the next day) to get rid of any extra contaminants. Tip: If you’re planning on hosting a pool party, add a shock schedule the day after the party to take care of the excess bather load!
- Pool Pump - If you don’t have a timer on your pool pump installed yet, make sure to schedule it down as something you have to do every day and keep it running for at least the required number of hours to fully filter your pool water. Check out our how long should I run my pool pump guide here for more information.
- Pool Equipment check - At least once a month, check the overall physical condition of your pool equipment. Check for leaks, physical damage and staining and deal with it. This includes your pool pump, your pool filter, your ladders, fixtures, walls, surfaces and everything else.
Before you jump out of the page and say, that’s too much! Remember the blank calendar that we had you prepare earlier. If you take that calendar, and fill out the blanks with the projected number of pool maintenance tasks then it you can see that it isn’t that much! Another thing to add or attach to the list is the maintenance checklist that we provided so you’ll have a record of levels and you’ll have a good idea of how your usage is affecting your pool chemical levels.
Place it in a prominent location
Once you’ve created your customized pool maintenance schedule, print it out and place it somewhere prominent! Out of sight is out of mind so you’ll want to see your schedule so that you’ll be forced to check / act on it! Don’t keep it on your computer or on your phone because chancer are is that you’ll never look at it or you’ll forget about it. Place it on the fridge or near the door leading to your pool so that you’ll see it at least once every day!
While more maintenance may sound like a lot of work, it's worth noting that the more maintenance you're going to do, the more money you'll be saving and you'll be preventinig even more expenses by preventing pool equipment damage. So our recommendation? Create your personalised pool maintenance schedule and stick to it!
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Happy swimming :)