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Preventative water care issues

Pool maintenance and water care eludes most novice pool owners for the simple fact that they mostly take reactive steps to maintaining their pool. For example, if they see algae, they add algaecide. If they smell the water, and it smells bad, they add chlorine. What most of these pool owners fail to realize is that pool maintenance is preventative. Preventative is the same as proactive. Preventative water care issues are those which are solved BEFORE the problem starts, not after it.

It is to be noted that pool chemicals are far cheaper when used in a preventative capacity. A little splash of algaecide, for example, goes a long way to keeping the pool clean as opposed to the gallon you might need during an algae bloom.

Preventative water care issues for the average pool owner must begin with pH. The pH of a pool is its acidity or alkalinity, and with a few exceptions, this needs to be within a narrow band of acceptable range – between 7.4 and 7.6. The reason for this is than no matter what sanitizer you use, it will work better within this range. A side benefit is water within this range also feels best on the body. Water hardness, also known as alkalinity, is the close cousin to pH – water’s hardness is the measure of minerals present in that water. By keeping the pH steady and the hardness in check, you start off by creating the ideal environment for a clean pool and an algae hostile climate.

Your next preventative water care issue will be sanitizer. Whether you use chlorine or bromine, you want to make sure you initially shock the water by raising the amount of chemical to kill the bacteria. Then you balance and adjust the chemical every few days until you gain a rhythm. From that point, once per week is just fine to take readings and add more sanitizer. Once again, little doses of chemical go a long way to keeping your pool clean and saving you money.

Algaecide is another important chemical in the preventative water care realm. Even though your pool’s pH is properly balanced and your alkalinity is in check and the sanitizer is adequate, you may still have a breakthrough algae bloom in extremely hot climates. Taking a one week vacation while you have a heat wave is an example of how an algae bloom can sneak up on you. Algae is an insidious and unwanted pool occupant and is difficult to remove from the pool once it has taken hold. Of all the things you want to prevent against, algae is perhaps number one on the list since it is so detrimental to the quality of the water as well as having an unsightly effect. Add algaecide weekly to prevent onset.

Preventative water care issues are exactly that – preventative. It goes without saying that in order to effect preventative maintenance on your pool that you will have to obtain and use a proper test kit, like test strips for example. Checking the readings on a pool once per week in hot climates, and up to once every two weeks in cold climates will go a long way to maintaining sparkling fresh water. A pool is easy to keep clean if you do small amounts of work frequently, and conversely, an absolute nightmare to maintain once it’s overgrown and choked with algae. The individual chemicals are also much more effective in small, frequent doses rather than in large amounts. Keep your pool maintenance preventative and enjoy a lifetime of sparkling pool water.

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