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Winterizing Swimming Pools
Maintaining swimming pool in Toronto can be a daunting task and we always advise to hire professionals to do it. Nevertheless, here are some tips are discussed below:
Skimming the pool’s surface with your hand is the easiest way to keep your pool clean. You can also use a net to remove floating debris, bugs and other unwanted items. This also lowers the chlorine demand for your pool. The pool should be vacuumed every week to keep the water clear and reduce the amount of added chemicals. You should also brush the walls and the tiles to minimize algae build up and calcium deposits. You should use a stiff brush for concrete pools and a softer brush for vinyl and fiberglass pools.
There are basically three kinds of pool filters: cartridge, sand and diatomaceous earth. Each requires a different maintenance procedure. Cleaning the filter more often can hinder the filtration process. A clean filter is less efficient than the one with an amount of dirt present because it can easily trap debris and other particles. However it is not advisable to keep the filter too dirty.
Out of all the pool equipment pool heaters require the least maintainence.Heaters can last for a very long time. But sometimes scales of calcium deposits take place inside the tubes of the heater preventing the water from reaching the desired temperature. During such a condition you should recruit a professional and do the needful.
A lot of water is wasted due to evaporation, swimming, splashing and while exiting the pool. You should check the water level on a weekly basis. Ensure that the water level does not fall below the level of the skimmer otherwise the pump could be damaged. You should also not keep the pool empty for too long. It is best to leave water inside the pool throughout winter to balance the weight of water against the forces of the ground from below.
Pool water should be tested regularly to ensure that it is clean and healthy. The pH reading should range between 7.2 and 7.8.This range is good for swimmers and sanitizers. The pools pH scale can be tested with a testing kit. There are many kits available in the market however many Toronto home owners prefer reagent kits or test strips. Reagent kits are not too difficult to use. A sample of pool water is taken and liquid tablets are added to it. The water changes its color showing the chemical balance. On the other hand test strips are submerged in the water inside the pool. These strips are made of dyes which immediately change color. When this color is matched up to a chart, it shows the pH level.
Organic compounds of ammonia and nitrogen build inside the pool over time. This can react with the pools chlorine content to form compounds. This basically leads to a harsh odor being emitted from the water of the pool. During this situation it is necessary to super chlorinate the pool or shock the pool water back to normal chlorine levels. Adding a large amount of chlorine can let the odor go away. Some pools require being shocked once a week while others can have a longer duration.
Sometimes it is difficult to detect whether low water levels are due to evaporation or leak. A simple bucket test can help you detect leaks in your swimming pool. Fill a plastic bucket three quarters full of water. Mark the water line inside the bucket. Then you place the bucket inside the pool and mark the water line from outside. Allow the bucket to float in this condition for two to three days. If the water level inside and outside the bucket has gone down by the same amount then it is due to evaporation. However if the pool water level is lower than the bucket then there is definitely a leak and you should call a professional to patch it up.