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As temperatures flirt with the hundred degree mark perhaps it is time to give that swimming pool some thought. Opening the backyard pool after a long winter requires more than just filling it up and jumping in. The first part of summer preparation for your swimming pool is rolling back the cover, cleaning out the roller shutter compartment if there is one, hosing down the roller, cleaning out the water line, and removing the leaves and debris that has accumulated during the winter.

Another crucial component is addressing pH balance and bacteria. A high pH levels can corrode metals, including your pool filter system and cleaning equipment. And, of course, bacteria can be unhealthy. Chlorine is key as it keeps bacteria growth in check but if the pH balance is incorrect the effectiveness of it will be blunted. Improper use of Chlorine can irritate the skin, and even alter the color of your hair and and fabrics. This is another reason to seek assistance from professionals when preparing your pool for summer, and for maintaining it.

When preparing your pool it is important to clean the walls and deck, and check for damage. Keeping these surfaces in good repair, and clear of algae, mold, and debris will ensure avoidance of costly repairs as well as make the summer pool time worry free. Decaying plant matter and even residue from shampoos, perfumes, sun screen and hair products can all contribute to a pools damage.

Key to a pools longevity without concern is the pump that keeps your water circulating  and the filter that clears dirt and other contaminants from your water. Both protect you and your pool because without a properly functioning pump and filter system, your pool will be transformed into a simmering a cloudy mess. Another crucial task is back washing your filter, something that should also be included in a schedule of regular maintenance. Depending on your setup, you might have a cartridge filter, a sand filter, a diatomaceous earth (D.E.) filter, or, if you have a salt water system, a salt water chlorinator that requires service as well as maintenance.

If your a bit of a do it yourselfer there are a few unorthodox tricks that can make future maintenance just a tad bit easier. As an example, did you know that tennis balls in your pool skimmer will absorb oils, suntan lotion residue, and similar materials? Here is another tip. Wrap the skimmer basket with pantyhose. This will serve as fine filter for smaller debris that often gets into the system.

Last but not least, create a pool maintenance schedule. Even better, he professionals at Baron Services are just a phone a call away and swimming pools are their specialty. They can quickly prepare your pool for summer, and will set up a maintenance schedule that works with your schedule.

Written by Jim Hinckley of Jim Hinckley’s America