Bags packed? Check. Lawn mowed? Check. Healthy snacks for kids in the car? Check. Dog dropped off at Aunt Linda’s? Check!

You’re almost ready to take that much-needed vacation, when it hits you…What about the pool?

Don’t worry, we have you covered! Here are some best practices for preparing your pool before you head out on the road or in the air.


Pre-Vacation Pool Care Checklist from Zagers Pool & Spa

Click to download a quick checklist


Pre-Vacation Pool Care Checklist

  1. Check the water level. Ensure that the water is at or slightly above adequate levels.
  2. Test your water. We recommend taking a water sample in to your local Zagers store and having it professionally tested so that sanitizer levels are correct and pH and alkalinity are properly balanced.
  3. Shock the water. Shocking the water means adding higher levels of chlorine or other chemical agents that can raise chlorine in a short amount of time. This will help your pool stay clean while you’re gone.
  4. Remove debris. Ensure that the skimmer baskets, filter, and pump are clean and free from debris before you leave. If your system has a backwash option, now would be the time to run it.
  5. Keep the pump and filter on while you are away. Most pumps come have an automatic timer that makes this very easy. Set it before you leave to ensure the pool filter system will run at least 8 to 12 hours per day.
  6. Ensure chlorinator is full and functioning. To prevent algae growth, continuous sanitization is essential.
  7. Have a friend or pool company look after your pool. This will be helpful with day-to-day upkeep. This trusted caretaker will also be able to keep an eye on water levels, the skimmer basket, and any problems that could occur. It will also add peace of mind for your vacation knowing that your pool is being taken care of while you are away.
  8. Put all safety measures in place. Safety is incredibly important when you are leaving your pool unattended. Make sure you have the proper safeguards in place to prevent an accident. This includes setting pool alarms, ensuring gate latches are securely locked, using a safety cover, and removing the solar cover to prevent small animals, pets, or children from getting trapped, should they accidentally fall into the pool.
  9. Winterize your pool. If you plan to be gone for more than a month, you may want to consider closing (winterizing) the pool—especially if you do not have someone to “pool-sit.”

Now go! Have fun! Check this one off your vacation prep list.

Have a swimming pool or hot tub related question?  Contact Zagers Pool & Spa by email or phone at 616.896.1717 today!


This piece on vacation pool care was originally published on July 17, 2015. We’ve updated it for easier reading and to add the checklist.