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Swimming Pool Maintenance Tips

Updated: Feb 12, 2020

To keep your swimming pool clean and avoid future issues with algae, corrosion, and buildup, it’s critical to test your water regularly. A good rule of thumb is to test your pool water two to three times a week during the summer, and once a week during the winter.

If you choose to test your pool water yourself, a good testing kit is essential. Look for easy-to-use strips that allow you to test the following:

pH – This is the measure of acid and base in the pool water, and it’s important to maintain just the right balance: If the pH of your swimming pool water drifts too far toward the acid side of the scale, corrosion of pool surfaces and equipment can occur. If your pH is too far toward the base side, your pool can be at risk for scaling, deposits, and cloudy water. Ideally, you want to maintain a pH of around 7.5. You can use a chemical increaser or decreaser to adjust your pool’s levels as needed. Be sure to follow the label directions for the proper amount of the products to add based on test results and pool size.

Calcium Hardness – This is the amount of dissolved calcium in the pool water. Low calcium hardness levels can cause plaster finish etching and shorten the life of vinyl liners. High calcium levels can result in calcium deposits on the pool surfaces as well as equipment. The proper range for calcium hardness in pool water is 200- 250 parts per million (ppm) for concrete pools and 175-225 ppm for vinyl pools. Your pool professional can advise you on the best method for treating your pool if you encounter high calcium hardness.

Total Alkalinity - To ensure that your swimming pool’s pH remains stable, you should maintain a total alkalinity of 120-150 ppm. Low total alkalinity can not only result in pH bounce and fluctuations but it can also encourage corrosion and staining. High total alkalinity also can cause the pH to fluctuate; it can also cause cloudy water and scaling. To lower total alkalinity, follow the directions from your pool professional. To raise total alkalinity, an alkalinity booster is recommended.

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