Owning a swimming pool takes some work. But if you tackle the following three things on the regular, you’ll be able to maximize your enjoyment while minimizing hassle.

1. Check Chemical Levels Weekly

Often, balancing chemical levels is the most daunting task for new and veteran pool owners, but it doesn’t have to be.

A good rule of thumb is to test the water weekly. When it comes to maintaining a pool, the key levels you want to pay attention to are pH, alkalinity, calcium and chlorine.


An ideal pH level is 7.2 to 7.6.


Alkaline stabilizes and balances pH. Alkalinity should be between 80 to 120 ppm (parts per million).


Having too much calcium in your pool can cause hard water (just like with drinking water). And all that extra calcium can corrode pool equipment like pumps, liners and more. Calcium should be 180 to 220 ppm. Also, calcium hardness should be checked and adjusted last. It also can be tested less frequently – once per month is fine.


Chlorine should range from 1 to 3 ppm. To keep chlorine at this level, it’s a good idea to shock your pool weekly. Doing so will also prevent algae, viruses and bacteria from forming, and eliminate organic and inorganic waste.

For complete details on balancing your pool water, see our Pool Chemicals Cheat Sheet.

We carry test strips and the chemicals you need to get your pool water properly balanced. Visit any one of our 4 locations to grab what you need. Also, we offer free water testing, so don’t hesitate to bring in a sample of your pool water.

2. Clean Routinely

First of all, nobody wants to swim in a dirty pool. Also, pool cleaning takes a lot less time if you do it regularly. Here’s what to do and how often to do it.

  • Check the filter daily: This will prevent build up and suction problems with the pump.
  • Skim daily: Use a net to remove leaves, bugs, debris, etc. This will help the filter last longer, because it won’t have to work as hard removing extra gunk.
  • Brush twice a week: By brushing your pool walls and floor, you’ll remove algae so the sanitizer can kill it. It also gets debris that’s fallen to the bottom of the pool circulating, so you can skim it or it can be filtered.
  • Vacuum at least bi-weekly: Whether you vacuum your pool manually or use an automatic system, you’ll get any debris the filter or skimming can’t get. Aim for bi-weekly, but know that weekly vacuuming is better. Based on the amount of debris that enters your pool from swimmers and location of trees, you should be able to assess how frequently vacuuming is needed for your specific pool.

3. Maintain Good Water Circulation

Part of maintaining a pool is keeping the water circulating as much as possible. Circulation prevents bacteria growth and stagnation. To do this, follow these three easy steps:

  1. Keep the basket clean. The filter basket should be checked every day. Dump out any gunk, and if stuff is really stuck on it, spray it with a hose.
  2. Correct the filter pressure. Normal pressure is between 10-20 psi.
  3. Check the jets. Make sure the jets are working and moving the water in a circular motion.

This is a great overview on how to maintain your pool, but we know it’s not always this simple. If you have specific questions about caring for your pool, contact us – we’re happy to help. Also, if you’d rather have more time for fun in the sun, we offer weekly pool maintenance (in-ground pools only) – click the link and fill out the form or give our service department a call at (616) 896-1717 to get more details.