How should I care for my pool?
Many of us dream about having our own backyard pool. We imagine the countless afternoons spent swimming, lounging, and watching the kids frolic with their friends. What's missing in those sweet dreams of paradise is pool maintenance: cleaning, scrubbing, skimming, and maintaining the chemical balance of the water. Unfortunately, real life is not a dream, and pool maintenance is a reality you're going to have to face when you own a swimming pool.
There are four main categories of pool maintenance:
The pH is a measure of how acidic/alkaline your pool water is. The ideal pH is the same as your eyes, which is 7.2. A pH that is too low or too high can cause a host of problems, including damage to the surface of the pool, dark stains on the floor and walls, lower chlorine effectiveness, and a burning sensation in your eyes.
Chlorine works as a sanitizing agent, providing protection from bacteria. Some people prefer to use bromine to sanitize their pools, as it is less likely to cause irritation for people with sensitive skin. Its major drawback is its cost, which is higher than the cost of chlorine. Every two weeks, you should "shock" your pool. This process eliminates all leftover debris in the water, such as suntan lotion, sweat, cosmetics, skin cells, bird droppings, and other foreign matter. By clearing the pool of these external invaders, the chlorine is able to perform its normal sanitizing routine. Pool shock products are available at your local outdoor retailer.
To ensure that your pool water is being maintained properly, it's a good idea to take a sample of your pool water into a professional pool cleaner for testing every month.
Closing and Opening the Pool
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