DIY Swimming Pool Maintenance Tips


There’s nothing like a swimming pool in the summer. A pool turns a basic backyard into the ultimate staycation destination. To keep your swimming pool beautiful, clean, and healthy, you need to hire a pro or know how to care for it yourself.

Here Are the Basics of Proper Pool Maintenance for the DIYer

Pool Water Testing

To keep your swimming pool clean and avoid algae, corrosion, and buildup it’s critical to test your water often. Test your pool water 2-3 times each week during the summer season.

If you plan to test your pool water yourself, a good testing kit is essential. We recommend easy-to-use strips that allow you to check the following:

pH measures the acid and base in your pool water. Maintaining the right balance is essential. If the pH is too acid, corrosion of pool surfaces and equipment can occur. If your pH is too base, your pool can have scaling, deposits, and cloudy water issues. Maintain a pH of around 7.5. Use an increaser or decreaser to adjust your pool’s levels. Follow label instructions for the right amount of the products to add based on test results and pool size.

Calcium Hardness
Calcium Hardness is the amount of dissolved calcium in the pool water. Low calcium hardness levels cause plaster etching and may shorten the life of a vinyl liner. High calcium levels can also result in calcium deposits on the pool surface and equipment. The right range for calcium hardness in pool water is 200- 250 parts per million (ppm) for concrete pools. The correct level for vinyl pools is 175-225 ppm.

Total Alkalinity
Ensure that your swimming pool pH remains stable by maintaining total alkalinity of 120-150 ppm. Low total alkalinity can result in pH bounce and fluctuations. It can also encourage corrosion and staining. High total alkalinity can cause the pH to fluctuate and cause cloudy water and scaling.

Common types of metals in pool water are copper, iron, and manganese. Metals can stain pool surfaces and discolor pool water. When metals are present in a pool, use a stain and scale remover.

Maintaining Proper Chlorine Levels

Chlorine breaks down bacteria and sanitizes your pool water. Chlorine products are available in a variety of forms. These include tablets, skimmer sticks, and granules. A free chlorine level of 1-3 ppm should be maintained.

Shock Treatments

Shocking your swimming pool regularly is essential to keep your pool water clear and clean.


Preventing algae is essential. Algaecides are a backup to your regular sanitization program and prevent algae from growing in the pool. Algaecide should be added after every shock treatment.

Pool Pump Maintenance

An essential part of your swimming pool is the pump. The pump keeps your swimming pool water moving, pushing it through the filter to remove dirt, leaves, and debris

Pumps don’t require a lot of work. Turn it on and let it work! We recommend that you run your pump for one hour for every 10 degrees of temperature. This varies depending the size of your pool, the size of your pump, and how much you use your pool.

Pool Filters

Your pool filter removes undissolved dirt and debris from the pool water. Run your pool filter regularly to keep your water clean and clear. Using your filter regularly will help prevent labor-intensive maintenance later on. There are three types of swimming pool filters:

Sand Filters
Sand filters remove dirt and debris. This process is called backwashing. This means flipping a switch to reverse the water flow. Check your filter pressure gauge: if the gauge indicates a 7- to 10-pounds increase over normal operating pressure, it’s time to backwash. Don’t backwash more than necessary, as sand filters are more efficient when they are a bit dirty. Sand filters should be cleaned every season with a filter cleaner. Replace your filter sand every five years.

Cartridge Filters
Cartridge filters cost a bit more upfront than a sand filter, but many swimming pool owners feel that it’s worth the extra money. Cartridge filters remove more dirt and debris than sand filters. Cartridge filters also don’t require backwashing. Simply remove the cartridge when it’s dirty, and simply and hose it off. To get the most out of your cartridge filter deep clean twice a year. Depending on pool size and use, do it more often. To avoid 12 hours of filtration “downtime,” buy a second cartridge so you’ll have a spare when it’s time for cleaning.

Diatomaceous Earth (DE) Filters
DE filters are similar to sand filters. Like a sand filter, a DE filter requires backwashing when the pressure gauge rises. Unlike sand filters, DE filters need to be backwashed only a few times a year. DE filters are more expensive than sand and cartridge filters, but they also offer the best filtration. To remove buildup, deep-clean your DE filter at least once every season using a filter cleaner. Once a year, disassemble your DE filter for deep cleaning and inspection. Empty your skimmer baskets at least once a week.

Saltwater Pool Maintenance

Saltwater pools require a bit less maintenance than chlorinated pools. Even saltwater swimming pools require some basic care. Saltwater pools are equipped with salt chlorine generators, responsible for converting salt into chlorine. This process is called “salt chlorination.” Salt chlorine generators should be cleaned /inspected every few months. Test your saltwater pool regularly. If the water balance is off, adjust the settings.

Whew. That’s a lot, right? Not interested in doing this yourself? We get it! If you live in the Rockland County and Orange County areas of New York or in Bergen County New Jersey.

Our services include:

Skimming to remove debris and leaves
Brushing the walls and tiles
Chemically balancing the water.
Check and maintain the water level.
Check and adjust the pH balance.
Check and adjust the chlorination.

Complete spa cleaning and upkeep
Skimming to remove debris and leaves
Brushing the walls and tiles
Chemical balancing
Water level balancing
pH level testing and balancing
Chlorine testing and balancing
Cleaning filter cartridges
Replacing filter cartridges
Heater maintenance
Service for lights and jets

Call on CV 845-942-4700 for great maintenance service and service contracts to keep your swimming pool and spa beautiful, clean, and healthy!

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