Winter is Pool Planning Season

Posted 12/14/2016

From free-forms and classics to infinities and beyond, pools are a mainstay in Arizona, and for good reason. With sizzling summer temperatures and more than 300 days of sunshine a year, the Tucson and Phoenix areas boast (nearly) perfect environments for adding a backyard pool –opening up a world of fun and entertainment for the entire family.

As the weather cools off and pool season all but ends, it can be easy for homeowners to simply throw on a tarp and forget about their beloved swimming hole all winter long. But, taking care of your pool doesn’t end when the cover goes on. In fact, it’s imperative to continue your pool maintenance throughout the entire off season.

Here are a few winter pool maintenance tips we’ve compiled at Maracay Homes to help you kick off your summer fun swimmingly:

Say no to green: One of the great things about living in Arizona’s warm desert is having the option to keep your pool open all winter long. However, many homeowners, especially those without heated pools, choose to shut theirs down during the colder months. If left unkempt, a pool that sparkles in the warmer months can easily turn green – seemingly overnight — once winter hits. Typically caused by an overgrowth of algae, a green-colored pool can be unhealthy to swim in. That’s why it’s important to add an algaecide or algae stat (particularly one that lasts for a good length of time) to the water on the last day of use. Continue running the pump for another 24 hours to fully circulate. After that, some experts recommend resetting the pump timer to run half as many hours in the winter as it does during the swimming season. This will ensure an easy and healthy startup come spring and summer.

Open early: Those who wait until later in the spring to open their pools for the summer have a greater chance of having more algae or biofilm growing in the water, simply because microorganisms thrive in warmer liquid. To prevent this, open the pool before the weather starts to heat up and you should have a pool that sparkles in the spring.

Maintain pH levels: When water cools, the pH levels can increase much quicker, which means you’ll need to monitor the levels more frequently – about once per week. While it’s not difficult to do this on your own, we do recommend hiring a professional each season to inspect any potential issues that could be arising.

Stay safe: When it comes to owning a backyard pool, safety should always come first, even in the winter when it’s not in use. Pool owners, especially those with children, should make sure their pool cover is heavy duty and attached to brass safety-cover anchors installed in the surrounding concrete or brick of the pool’s patio. This will ensure both toddlers and wildlife don’t accidentally enter the pool.

Reduce chlorine: In the summer, chlorine is broken down and evaporates much quicker, because the sun’s ultraviolet rays are stronger. Since there isn’t as much direct sunlight in the colder months, or activity in the pool, you can reduce the amount and frequency of adding chlorine. However, talk to a professional about proper chlorine levels, as too much can cause serious health problems and damage your pool and liner.