How To Clean Algae From Above Ground Pools
When you invest in a swimming pool, even an above ground swimming pool, many things need to be done on a daily, weekly, and monthly basis to keep the water clean and safe for your family and friends to use. From choosing the right chemicals to purchasing pool vacuums, nets, and other equipment to siphon away debris, it is crucial for those who own an above ground pool to keep it clean and ready to use. One common issue for above ground swimming pools is the accumulation of green algae over time.
Algae in Your Swimming Pool
Now only is green algae growing in your above ground swimming pool unsightly, it can be unsafe. Typically, the growth of algae in a swimming pool is triggered by the imbalance in the pool chemistry, meaning the chemicals that help maintain the water’s safety and cleanliness are not correctly balanced. Your pool’s pH levels should be between 7.2 and 7.6, and adjusting it within this range is a vital first step for getting rid of the algae that you find growing in your pool. However, if the water is maladjusted, algae will begin to grow, and if left to its own devices, it can become a serious infestation.
When it comes time to clean algae from above ground pools, you may need to shock it. Using a chlorine-based shock solution will add the right amount of chemicals to get rid of an active algae invasion. A chemical shock while the pump and filter run will help to get rid of algae currently plaguing your pool. If you find that your pool has a heavy algae infestation, you may have to double the recommended dosage for your pool’s size. As the water is shocked and the filter runs, vacuum the pool. Loosen the algae on the bottom and sides and let the chemicals sit for at least 12 hours. The process may have to be repeated multiple times, but it will depend on the severity of the algae infestation. You may need to ask a pool professional for the right solution if you aren’t sure.
Avoiding Algae Growth
The primary method in avoiding algae growth in your pool is to use the appropriate chemicals. Sanitation chemicals will help to balance your pool’s pH levels, and each kit comes with a test kit that can be used to test a sample of water from your pool. You may also bring your sample to a pool store, and they can help you test the water and purchase the appropriate chemicals. When the water is consistently and properly balanced, the chemicals will eliminate the algae spores when they come into contact with your pool. This, coupled with an operating filtration system, means that clean water continues to circulate. The water is continuously purified and remains clean and safe for your family’s use.
Maintaining a clean pool can be a full-time job, and takes daily, weekly, and annual cleaning and upkeep. Keep your family’s pool algae-free this summer by taking preventative steps with a filtration system and the appropriate chemicals. However, when you’ve invested in a beautiful pool that your family loves, you are inclined to believe it’s entirely worth it. Read more info on cleaning a green above ground pool here!
Building a Pool Deck For Above Ground Pools
An above-ground pool is an investment. A quality, well-taken care above ground pool can last a family upwards or 25 years. So, of course, you want to beautify and elongate this investment. When it comes to building an above ground pool deck for family comfort and fun, there are a few things to keep in mind as you prepare, design, and build a deck.
When your yard can already accommodate an above ground swimming pool, there isn’t much you need to do for the ground around the pool when building a pool deck. However, there is still quite a bit of planning that goes into the process. Typically, the pool deck will be built onto one side or all-around an above ground swimming, giving your family somewhere to rest when they are not actively using the pool. An above-ground swimming pool deck should come right up to the edge of, but not connect to, the pool itself. It should be safe, secure, and stand on its own alongside the pool.
Measure twice and cut once when you are deciding how much material you need to build a deck and keep in mind your pool’s size and the equipment around it necessary to keep the pool running. Make sure to plan for waterproof materials, and if you use wood in your design, keep in mind that the deck may need to be power-washed often.
Choosing a Design
Fortunately, for choosy homeowners, there are plenty of design options and plans to apply to your above ground pool deck. While there are standards for the average above ground swimming pool deck design, the colors and designs that you use depend on your preference, when your pool is open (year-round or seasonal in the spring and summer months), and the design of your home or the pool itself.
The materials used for above ground pool decks should coordinate with the materials and colors of the pool. If your pool matches the design of your home or yard, keep the pool deck along these lines. A consistent color scheme will help the pool deck look more cohesive rather than sticking out. The most popular building material used for above ground pool decks is wood, with redwood and cedar being quality choices, due to its durability and ease of use in DIY projects. However, the wood used for a pool deck should be correctly stained and sealed to prevent water damage. Other materials used for pool decks include composite or aluminum because these are tested and true waterproof materials that allow water to slide away, creating no hazardous puddle situations.
After a beautiful and vibrant pool design comes to mind, put into terms of safety. Make sure there is enough room to safely walk, with 3 feet being the appropriate standard, to maintain that your above ground pool deck is secure enough for your family to use freely. Install safety railings around your pool deck, and these should typically be at least 36 inches, or three feet above grade. The balusters must be 4 inches or less apart, and the deck should have a lockable gate to keep children and pets safe.
Designing a deck for your above ground swimming pool is a complicated process. From the initial design and choosing the best materials to maintain a safe deck for your family, there is plenty to consider from beginning to end.
How to Prolong the Life of Your Above Ground Pool
When it comes to purchasing a pool for your family, it is no small investment. However, not every backyard swimming pool has to be a customized in-ground swimming pool. These higher-end swimming pools increase the value of a property, but they are not feasible for everyone’s budget. If you want to purchase a swimming pool for your family with budget, size, and customization in mind at once look into purchasing and installing an above ground swimming pool in your backyard.
What is An Above Ground Pool?
An above ground swimming pool is a non-permanent swimming pool that can be set up in most backyards, coming in a variety of sizes. A homeowner can purchase an above ground pool for anything from $500 to over $20,000, depending on the size, features, and materials of the pool. Unlike the several weeks of construction that it may take to build an inground swimming pool, an above ground pool can be set up in just a few weeks and taken down at the end of the season if necessary. If you move, you can take an above ground pool with you to be set up on your new property.
How Long Should My Above Ground Pool Last?
One of the best factors about purchasing an inground swimming pool is that it can last “forever” with proper care, but in truth, an above ground pool can last just as long at less than half the price. The average lifespan for an above ground pool is between 10 and 20 years, although this can depend on the model you purchase. For some more expensive, higher-end models, you can see your well-maintained above ground pool lasting nearly 40 years. While this is not the norm, it is a possibility for those pool owners who do all they can to take care of their investment in an above ground swimming pool.
How Much Will My Above Ground Pool Cost?
As mentioned, the initial cost of an above ground swimming pool can vary based on the pool you choose for your yard. They do not often cost over $20,00, and the average cost of most models is between $7,000 and $8,000. Some homeowners also opt for the additional cost of a pool patio, pool deck, or other landscaping around an above ground swimming pool. However, despite how much the initial cost is, above ground swimming pools cost less for maintenance in the long term. They need about half the water of an in-ground pool, and so you will need to spend less on chlorine, other pool cleaning chemicals, and tools, and you will spend less time cleaning the pool itself. And, unlike an inground swimming pool, an above ground pool will not affect your home’s property taxes.
Is An Above Ground Pool For Me?
Above ground swimming pools, because of their versatility in size, material, and setup, are best for any homeowner who does not want a swimming pool to be permanent or affect their property taxes. Especially if you spend upwards of $20,000 on an above ground pool, you want to be able to take it with you if you move. Whether you choose an inground or above ground pool, remember to look at your budget, your lifestyle, and what is best for your family.
How to Keep Above Ground Pools Clean
It can seem like an impossible job to keep an above ground pool clean, but with proper care and attention you shouldn’t have any difficulties with keeping your new purchase in the same condition as when you first picked it up!
There are a number of different methods which you can use to keep your pool clean and hygienic, which can work alongside a water filtration unit. Some of the easiest and most efficient summertime solutions are listed below.
Every pool, from those found in commercial swimming centers to your above ground unit, should be sanitized before use to ensure that the water is free from harmful bacteria. The most common water sanitizer is chlorine, added to the water at an incredibly low concentration.
Chlorine works by targeting and destroying the cell walls of bacteria, before proceeding to break down the cell’s structure and the enzymes that keep it running. This oxidizes the bacteria and leaves them incapable of harming us.
For chlorine to work, the pool’s pH must be monitored carefully to ensure it stays between pH7.0 and pH8.0, with pH7.4 being the ideal (this is the same level of alkalinity as tears).
Chlorine is far from being a wonder-compound, however. The same properties that allow it to attack bacteria also mean that it can attack our skin cells, which can leave certain people feeling itchy and irritated after a dip in chlorinated water. The smell of chlorine can also be an aggravation, and it will make you ill if swallowed, so always keep a close eye on young children (but this should be the case in any pool).
Some alternatives to chlorine have been developed however their efficacy is strongly debated among sanitation experts. Chlorine is also inexpensive and readily available in tablet, granule or stick form.
A shock treatment is when you dose the pool water with a very high, sudden concentration of chlorine. This will break down harmful chloramines as well as preventing algae from growing in your pool.
Washing the Pool By Hand
It is highly recommended that, during the hot summer months when your pool is in use most often, you scrub down the walls and floor at least once a week to prevent the buildup of grime. It is a simple but highly effective way to ensure that bacteria don’t stick around in your pool.
An above ground pool skimmer is also an essential bit of kit for any pool owner, allowing you to easily remove any debris or dirt which may have settled on the top of the water in your pool before it can begin to cause a buildup of bacteria. Don’t dismiss the simple things!
When the pool is packed away for winter, you should not put off keeping it clean. If left to fester, your pool will be a cesspit of sickness the next time that you open it up.
- Remove all pool equipment, including the ladder, and store it somewhere dry.
- Check that the pH, calcium concentration and alkalinity are all correct (pH7.0 to pH8.0, 250-400ppm and 80-120ppm respectively)
- Add a winter chemical kit and run the filters for one hour
- Lower the volume of the pool and cover with a winterized cover or inlet
- Drain the pool hoses and filter tank and discard the old cartridge filter. Store the cartridge holder in the dry with your other equipment
- Cover the pool and ensure that it is fully sealed
By taking care of your above-ground pool to the best of your ability, you can enjoy it for years to come.
Essential Backyard Prep for Your New Above Ground Pool
Even during the cold months, you can start saving and planning for summer. If you want to install a swimming pool in your backyard, you’ll have to plan – months ahead. While the installation process of an above ground pool may seem intimidating, taking it one step at a time and committing to the project is crucial to its success.
The base of a great above ground pool means a stable and level base. The pool’s size should be in proportion to the size of your yard. When you have chosen the right sized above ground pool for your property, the ground needs to be even before you can set up the pool. It is essential that the ground is compressed, evenly leveled, and horizontal. To level the ground, you can also use concrete or sifted sand to create this leveled base for your above ground pool.
For a deep end swimming pool, you’ll need a bit more preparation. A deep end oval pool, the most common, can be as deep as 6 to 7 feet. Deep above ground pools require a flexible pool liner, and a powerful pool cleaner or vacuum. With a deeper pool than usual, homeowners should consider such safety measures as a heavy-duty swimming pool cover or a deck around the pool.
Decks for wood swimming pools are a common structure for many families. Most often, wood is used to build a pool deck – whether an above ground pool or inground. Some woods can be expensive, but as the material can last for years when taken care of properly. As well, a wood deck or floor around your above ground pool can help to hide the water’s filter or purification system and other pool accessories and toys. Wood pool decks around any swimming pool are not only practical but attractive.
Several accessories are necessary for any above ground swimming pool. From filtration systems to pool kits that include everything you need to clean your swimming pool, preparation is much more than a level ground – although that it is crucial. Depending on your pool and your family’s needs, chemicals are often used to keep the water within your swimming pool safe and clean for your family to use. Alternatively, saltwater pools use a saltwater filtration system that is preferable for those who want to use as few chemicals as possible.
Whether you choose one of many styles of saltwater above ground pools or deep end oval swimming pools, know that there is a lot of preparation necessary. While inground pools take much longer than above ground pools, choose which is best for your home and budget regarding voluntary investment.
5 Proper Pool Maintenance Steps for Saltwater Pool System
Are you performing the 4 most crucial proper saltwater pool system maintenance steps?
What Are Saltwater Pools?
Saltwater pools are not like the ocean but instead use a salt chlorine creator for decontamination.
Saltwater pool systems can benefit people who are allergic to chlorine since they do not use chlorine chemicals.
Also, because they do not use pool chemicals, they are less drying for your skin.
It does not mean that there is no chlorine in these pools, but it is a natural chemical process from a saltwater chlorinator or a salt water generator.
The chlorine generated by this electrolytic process is not as harsh as the traditional “tri-chlor” chlorine used for pools. It does not smell like bleach, is very gentle to skin, hair, and swimsuits which makes it a much better option for some. Also, the water feels softer.
4 Most Essential Steps In Maintenance For Saltwater Pool System
Maintenance for saltwater pool systems must be done regularly but here the 4 most important steps you need to follow.
1. Test your pool water weekly for chlorine and pH quantities. It can be done with strips or a test kit that you drop pool water into. Your chlorine should be between 1-3 ppm, and your pH should read be between 7.2-7.6. If your pH is high, it can be reduced using muriatic acid, but if it is low, you can raise the level by using soda ash or sodium bicarbonate (baking soda).
2. Test your water monthly for salt, pH, stabilizer, and calcium which can be done using a strip. Please check your owner’s manual for the manufacturers recommended levels.
3. Every three months you should open your salt chlorinator and examine the cell. You will be looking for buildup (scale) or debris; if there is none put it back in. If you find it accumulating, use a garden hose that has high pressure to wash it off; if it does not come off, use a plastic or wooden tool to scrape the deposits off (never use metal) gently.
4. Keep the sieve, impeller, and skimmer clean as if it is full of debris it will reduce water flow, and chlorinator will stop creating chlorine.
Winterizing Your Saltwater Pool
It is important that you winterize your pool chemical dispensers.
For swimming pool salt systems, most manufacturers advise that the stream switch and salt chamber be taken out of the system and kept inside where it is dry and warm.
You can purchase mock cells to put in the place of your real ones during the cold months.
If you live in a warmer climate and do not typically get below freezing, you must make sure to allow the pump stream continuously if it is going to be freezing or below.
So just because you have a saltwater pool does not mean you do not use any pool chemicals, you just do not need to you the harsher traditional “tri-chlor” chlorine.
Pool Maintenance Tips for Opening a Clean Pool This Spring
Is your pool ready for swimming when you open it in the spring?
Follow tips below if you want to have your swimming pool ready for spring and without shocking it or placing chemicals:
Swimming Pool Maintenance
Regular swimming pool maintenance helps keep your pool in right balance during the summer season but if you continue through the fall-winter months with a few things it could be ready to go as soon as the pools cover is taken off.
• Add midwinter algaecide if the fall season is mild and warm you may wish to add more chlorine and algaecide at the start of the cold season run the pump for 24 hours and then shut the pump off and winterize
• Make sure your cover is secure and stays secure during the winter season
• Add enzyme chemicals to break down contamination of non-living organic material
• Open the pool before the water starts getting too warm, many people wait until late spring to open the pool and find more algae or biofilm than they would have had they opened the pool earlier before the water got so warm to begin algae or biofilm growth
Pool Maintenance Supplies
You need the correct pool maintenance supplies when you clean your pool. These supplies include;
• Filter system (either sand or filter system)
It is best to do the instructions that were included in your pool. The manufacturer’s instructions on pool maintenance will tell you exactly what supplies you will need which you can purchase the same place you purchased your pool or here at Pools Above Ground.
Pool maintenance kits will usually contain everything you need to get started.
The economy kit above contains a skimmer, a vacuum brush, a vacuum head, a thermometer, and a duo test kit. Also, a sectional three piece 4-12’telepole, 1.25″ x 36′ premium vacuum hose box with swivel and 1.5×50′ backwash hose
Below is a standard pool maintenance kit which contains; a skimmer, vacuum brush, vacuum head, thermometer and duo test kit and Sectional 3 piece 4-12’telepole, 1.5″ x 40′ premium vacuum hose box with swivel and 1.5×50′ backwash hose.
Deluxe 8 Piece Pool Cleaning Kit
This kit includes; 5 Piece Premium Vinyl Maintenance Kit a skimmer, vacuum brush, vacuum head, thermometer and 5-way test kit, sectional three piece 4-12’telepole, 1.5″ x 40′ premium vacuum hose box with swivel and 1.5×50′ backwash hose.
By following these tips and a regular maintenance schedule along with winter maintenance even if you get a pool cleaning service to do it, you should be able to open your pool and have it ready for swimming in the spring.
Choosing the Best Cover for Your Swimming Pool
There are three primary types of swimming pool covers on the market. There are fundamental differences between each category, and each has its advantages and disadvantages. To decide what type of pool cover is right for you and your swimming pool, understand what each type is about and what it can do.
Choosing a solar cover for your swimming pool is ideal if you are looking for a cost-effective way to heat your pool. Solar covers use the energy from the sun to not only heat the pool but keep currently running heat in the pool. Solar pool covers, however, should not be used as a safety cover and, if you have small children and pets, they will not be supported by it. It can be used over a mesh cover or on its own.
Solar cover reels are a great way to keep your solar cover safe while not in use, and a reel makes it much easier to install when you need it. Solar pool cover reel can be used for other types of swimming pool covers as well. They can be automatic and work with the press of a button, or use a crank and take a bit more work.
While some pool owners are lucky enough to have the weather to swim in all year round, those homeowners who experience colder winters have to shut down their pool for this off-season. Winter covers are the second type of pool cover, and they protect a swimming pool’s underwater surface during the cold months and tend to be exceptionally durable and are primarily marketed as a protective covering that can withstand the harshest of elements.
Safety pool covers are the third type of pool cover, and it has three primary purposes. It is, of course, a safety cover, it will keep debris out of the pool, and it helps to maintain the temperature of the water. There are many advantages to choosing a safety pool cover, especially if you have small children or want to heat your pool on a budget properly.
There are types of pool covers available. For example, leaf nets are a great option when you have a yard with several trees or a lot of natural debris such as leaves and twigs. They are mesh-style covers, and they are often less work than solid pool covers. Mesh pool covers are also great for areas that get plenty of rainfall (and snow during the off-season) that is not allowed to accumulate on the surface. Leaf net covers may let the smallest of debris in, but it is easily cleaned through routine maintenance.
There are several types of swimming pool covers available. Speaking to the experts at Pools Above Ground will not only help you decide which type of pool cover is best but also information on how to install and maintain it.
In Or Out: Mesh Versus Solid Pool Covers
In Or Out: Mesh Versus Solid Pool Covers
An above ground swimming pool can be an incredible investment. While there is a lot that goes into installing and caring for your homes’ above ground swimming pool, there is much to be taken from fun summer memories and an added family gathering place. It is why you have to invest in the most critical above ground swimming pool accessory: the pool cover. While pool covers come in several varieties, there are two primary types, mesh, and solid covers.
Quality swimming pool covers have several advantages. One of the top causes of loss of pool water is evaporation, and a pool cover will keep this to a minimum. When you routinely use a swimming pool cover when the pool is not used, you prevent unnecessary loss of water and can save several hundreds of gallons over the swimming season – mainly if you live in a warm place such as Arizona and California.
Swimming pool covers also keep out dirt and debris, which can keep maintenance – a timely and financial cost – down. Because of routine support, it is essential to decide whether you want a mesh or solid cover and weigh the advantages of each.
Mesh swimming pool covers are extraordinarily lightweight and can last for well over a decade. They are said to be the most manageable type of swimming pool cover and can support between hundreds of pounds. While mesh covers allow some debris in, they were created to prevent water from collecting on top of the cover. Some trash gets in, but the woven design is tight enough to avoid significant debris from getting into the pool.
Solid pool covers do not let as much light into the swimming pool as mesh swimming pool covers do. A solid pool cover will block all light from entering the pool, which actively prevents the growth of algae and prevents evaporation. One of the disadvantages of solid pool covers is that often water will collect on the top and this will not only cause damage to the cover, but the accumulation can be a drowning hazard.
When you close your above ground swimming pool for the winter or cold season, you will need a winter pool cover. These enormously high-quality covers come in both mesh and solid types. Winter pool covers kind of pool cover is more heavy-duty than a typical pool cover and can keep your pool safe and clean during the off-season. A winter cover can handle the weight of melted snow and ice that gathers on its surface. However, if you want to avoid this accumulation, mesh winter pool covers are another option that can carry just as much weight.
Even inground winter pool covers are going to be strong enough to handle the weight of both your children and pets, and that is why this type of protection is also known for its safety features. Both mesh and solid covers have their advantages and disadvantages, so it is essential that you make the best choice for your swimming pool.
Is Your Vinyl Pool Liner Out of Shape?
Is your above ground pool liner out of shape?
No, I do not mean it gained weight; but is it looking old?
Signs Your Pool Liner Is Distressed
Have you found minor cracks?
What about leaks, are you noticing that water does not seem to stay in the pool?
Is it faded?
These are signs that your pool liner may be in need of changing.
How Long Do Pool Liners Last?
The average lifespan of a vinyl swimming pool liner is 8 to 12 years.
Many people go with what they find pleasing to the eye when deciding on a liner. However, that is not always a good idea.
The higher gauge the vinyl is, the better quality and more it cost, however, the better quality, the longer it will last if it is adequately maintained.
Pool liners like most other things require care and maintenance; if you take care of it, you will most likely get 12 years from your liner.
Taking proper care of a pool liner requires that you test the water and maintain the appropriate balance.
Do Patches Work?
Patches can help as long as your liner is not at the end of its lifespan and it depends on where the piece needs to be placed.
You find a small tear or tiny hole in your liner; it is possible to patch it, especially if your liner is only a few years old.
However, if your liner is 7 or 8 years old, it is best that you replace the liner.
Types Of Liners For Above Ground Pools
There are four types of pool liners available to choose from;
• Overlap pool liners go inside the pool, hang over the edge, very simple to install
• Uni-bead pool liners hook into the top of the pool sides
• Expandable pool liners great for tall pools also conform to any shape and can allow up to 3 feet of extra water depth
• Beaded pool liners snap into the track along the top edges of the pool walls
If you wish to have some extra water depth or a distinct shape of above ground pool, then the expandable liner is the one you want.
Make sure to get the heavier gauge for the added strength and more protection against roots or rocks you may not see when you set up your pool.
An accessory that can help keep your liner in good shape is a footbath that will hold sand, tiny stones and sharp things like mulch out of your swimming pool.