If you've got problems with your swimming pool, the first instruction is not to panic. Whether your pool has gone green, your grouting has gone black, or your inlet jets are gurgling, there's nearly always a simple reason, and a equally simple solution. Your first reaction after 'Help! What do I do?' will be to phone the pool service company. Do you really want to pay their hefty call-out fee for something you could fix yourself? Or you could search through that really heavy pool maintenance guide you once bought - isn't it in the spare room somewhere? No what you need is some straightforward, crystal clear advice. Such as this:
What can you do about cloudy water?
This is a very common problem. Here's how to keep it clear and sparkling. You need just enough sanitiser(chlorine or salt), enough water movement, the right pH balance, plus regular brushing and vacuuming. Is that all? First of all, if your level of chlorine or salt falls below the recommended levels for a few days, the water will go cloudy. Routine shock chlorination shoul get rid of any residual algae or bacteria. Then make sure your pump is running long enough on the timer - it should be three or four hours a day, increasing to six to eight hours in the hottest weather. Sometimes, even with all this correct, the water will be cloudy. Make sure your filter isn't clogged or dirty. If it is, backwash it. And rinse after the backwash or dirty water will return to the pool. If the water is still cloudy, maybe you need to add a flocculant sachet to your skimmer. This will clump the tiny particles together, and ensure they are trapped by the filter. This should clear your water if you filter overnight
What is algae?
Algae are the black or green or yellow spots found on the sides of pools or floating in the water. They are tiny plants brought into the pool by spores in the wind and are not normally a problem if you've enough chlorine in the water. If the chlorine is low, sprinkle chlorine granules round the edge of the pool. As they dissolve, they will rise up the pool and clear the algae. Do this at the end of the day with the pump off and no one in the pool. Or you can buy special algaecide to match your type of algae. Just use a small amount(a tablespoon for an 8 x 4 pool), and shock chlorinate at the same time.
Who can you rely on?
The pool man? The 'expert' neighbour? The pool constructor's handbook that's in a language you don't understand? I have done considerable research, and talked to many experts, about common pool problems.My biggest wish is to make this seemingly complicated subject straightforward and clear to every pool owner who feels out of his or her depth.