Soon spring will be here and it will be time to undergo the task of opening your above ground swimming pool. Planning will make your job a whole lot easier. There is nothing worse than realizing you’re short one bag of shock when you are in the middle of prepping the pool. So first, you need to make a list of chemicals that are needed.
The needs will vary depending upon the type of pool you own. Therefore, this article will talk about it in general. You should always refer to your pool and pump instructions for additional information. Things you will likely need are liquid or powder shock, bromine, chlorine powder or tablets, sanitizing cartridge for the cartridge filters, pH increase or decrease and a test kit to test the chemical levels.
Do not take off just yet and run to the local pool supply store for chemicals. Stop and take a few minutes to check out all of your hoses, skimmer baskets, clamps, gaskets and o-rings. If any of the parts look like they might need replaced, take them with you to the pool supply store. It is a lot easier to match replacement parts if you have the old part with you.
Now that you have the easy part finished, it is time to begin the fun. The first thing required taking the cover off. You will want to enlist help for this, because you want to avoid getting any top water into the pool water. In an above ground pool, you should siphon the water off with a hose.
To get a good siphon started, hook up the hose to the spigot and put the other end of the hose into the top water. Turn the hose on for a minute to fill it. Next crimp the hose a foot or two away from the faucet, and with your other hand, disconnect the hose from the spigot. Position the hose at a downspout drain to discharge then let go of the crimp. The water will reverse and start to drain.
Once you have the water cleared, use a leaf rake to remove as many leaves and twigs as possible. Next, remove your cover weights or springs. At this time a few people positioned around the pool will help to keep the cover out of the water. Try to fold your cover like a blanket keeping the crud in the middle then remove the cover. You need to scrub the cover thoroughly so it is dry for summer storage.
Now it is time to attach all the pump hoses. Remember to lube plugs, fittings, valves, and o-rings with petroleum jelly. Also, be sure to remove any freeze plugs that were used to cover the hose openings. You will most likely need to add water to the pool. It needs to be filled to the skimmer halfway point.
At this point you should start re-circulating the water and check for any leaks around the pump and hoses. Once your pool is leak and drip free, skim off as much floating debris as you can with your skimmer net. Open all your valves to flood the hoses and prime the pool pump. Most manufacturers recommend constant recirculation of the pool water for at least three days. Any crud and debris on the sides and bottom of the pool will need to be scrubbed off. Use the broom attachment of your pool vacuum for this.
After all debris has been removed and the pool has been scrubbed, check your filter for cleaning. Some pumps have removable filters; others are back-flushed, so clean as directed. Once the filter is cleaned, you can now super shock the water as per your manufacturer’s instructions. If you start with green water, you will need a lot more shock. It may take a few days of recirculation to clear the water. Once the water has cleared, test your water or take a sample to your pool supply store and have it analyzed. Adjust the water as required and keep the recirculation going. All that is now left to do now is to wait for the water to warm up so you can start enjoying your pool.
Ethan K. Roberts writes on a variety of topics not limited to above ground pools. Also available are more articles about inground pool liner and above ground pool decks.
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