Get Your Pump Running
After youve got everything ready, let your pool pump run for at least 24 hours. Vacuum out any debris that appears. Retest your pool water, and if the results are where you want them to be, grab your swimsuit and jump in!
Understanding how to open an above ground pool makes jumpstarting your pool season a lot easier. As youre going through the opening steps, take a little time to create a pool maintenance schedule to keep things running smoothly all season.
Just be sure to make some time to enjoy all your hard work. Or whats a pool for?
Fill Pool To Middle Of Waterline Tile And Do Final Debris Removal
Grab a garden hose and fill the pool until the water level reaches the midpoint of the waterline tile or middle of the skimmer weirs. Once youve got the water level where it needs to be, you can now clean leaves, twigs and debris from the pools bottom by using a wall and floor brush. This is also time to dust off your algae brush and pool vacuum. Also be sure to remove any debris from the leaf basket.
Cover Your Pool With A Winter Cover To Finish
There are 3 main options for covering your pool in the winter:
- Winter cover
- A thin vinyl cover held down by water bags. Protects your water from the elements. Does not support heavy loads
To figure out which cover is best for you, check out this guide:Quick Guide To Swimming Pool Covers
Don’t Miss: Does Target Carry Pool Supplies
How To Open Your Above Ground Pool Like A Pro
If this is your first season opening your above ground pool by yourself, then youve come to the right place.
Its time to think twice about hiring a service because weve got a comprehensive, easy to follow guide that will have you ready for summer pool parties in no time. You have the pool already, you may as way learn your way around it.
If youve got an above ground pool we have 12 or 13 steps for you, depending on whether you consider a cannonball contest as part of the process. If you have an in-ground pool youll want to check out our other guide here.
If youre ready to open your above-ground pool, weve got your back.
1.Give your pool cover a spring cleaning
Use any soft broom to clean off any debris that may have found its way onto your pool cover. You want to do a good job at this since anything you miss is going to end up in your pool, haunting you later. Next you want to use a submersible pump to eliminate any still water sitting on the cover. Be patient and let the pump do the work.
2.Pull the Cover Off the Pool
Now would be a good time to recruit a friend or family member. Youll both start on one end of the pool to lift the cover and pull it back. Instead of pulling all the way to the end, fold it back onto itself to make it more manageable.
Pro Tip: Youre going to want to lay the cover out to dry, so start on the opposite side of where you want to end up.
3.Prepare your Pool Cover for Storage
4.Fill the Pool with Water
5.Skim the Surface
10.Clean Up Duty
Set Up The Pump And The Tank:
- Connect the water return and skimmer hose to the filter and connect the backwash hose to your filters waste inlet.
- Put all the caps back on .
- Check the pump cover gasket and replace it if it is dry or cracked.
- Install the pressure gauge and wrap the threads with Teflon tape to ensure a tight seal.
- Raise the water level above the skimmer .
- Fill the pump or the small basket with water and run the filter. Put the filter handle in the Filter position and start the motor. If the pressure is higher than 15 psi, do a backwash.
- Turn on the saltwater, chlorine, or water purification system.
- Reconnect the water heater or heat pump .
Recommended Reading: How To Lower Cya In Pool
When Is The Best Time To Open My Swimming Pool
Well, it’s that time of year again, folks. And after the winter we had here in Virginia, I say good riddance!
But with the warmer weather, the swimming bug’ will soon be affecting all of us.
In fact, as I write this article and sit in my car at a parking lot in Yorktown, Virginia, the temperature outside is about 93°F degrees on April 7. Wow, now that’s what I call skipping spring!
But during this time of year, many pool owners debate about when they should open their pools. When is too early? When is too late?
This is a legitimate concern, and this article will discuss my thoughts on the matter.
This is my general, all-encompassing rule of thumb:
When the temperature is consistently above 70 degrees during the day, it’s time to open the pool.
Why so early, you ask? Well, let me give you 5 main reasons:
How To Shock Your Pool
Once youve got your water balanced, youll want to shock your pool.
Use 2 pounds of pool shock for every 10,000 gallons of pool water, or 5 gallons of liquid shock for every 20,000 gallons of pool water. This is a double shock, using twice the normal amount. This will give your pool a sanitizing whammy to make sure the waters ready for swimming.
Important: Dont forget to shock at night or at dusk to keep sunlight from burning off the shock too quickly.
You May Like: Can Vdara Use Aria Pool
Getting Ready To Open Your Swimming Pool
Before you begin, youll want to make sure youve got all the tools you need lined up poolside and ready to go. Youll probably already have some of the items on hand, such as a garden hose, but you may need to pick up a few other things, most importantly, some protective gear.
Every year, thousands of pool owners end up in emergency rooms due to poisoning from pool chemicals. Most of those injuries occurred because people were not wearing protective gear when handling pool chemicals. So when youre stocking up on all your other supplies, dont skip the safety gear. It matters.
By the way, if you need a little more help with caring for your pool once its open, youll find more information in The Pool Care Handbook and Video Course. Dont maintain your pool without it!
Why Does Stabilizer Need To Be Balanced
I dont need to tell you the importance of chlorine. And because CYA shields your pools chlorine from being eaten up by ultraviolet rays, it’s an important chemical.
If your CYA levels dip too low, your chlorine will be completely gone in a few hours and your swimming pool will become susceptible to bacteria and;algae growth.
If the pool stabilizer levels get too high, however, it overpowers the chlorine and makes it less effective. It can even lead to chlorine lock, making chlorine tests read negative even when you know there is some in there.
The only pools that dont require CYA are indoor pools.;
Unless your pool is exposed to sunlight, it should be able to maintain the right chlorine levels fairly well.
Also Check: Can Lice Live In Chlorine Pools
Safety First And Always
To ensure everyones safety in and around your pool, take a few more steps before using your inground pool for the first time after youve opened it.
- Spray your pool deck down thoroughly with a hose to rinse away any chemicals that may have spilled where swimmers could step in them.
- Test your water again to ensure chlorine levels are appropriate and water chemistry is balanced. Swimmers could get sick or develop rashes if your water chemistry and sanitizer levels are wrong.
- Just like you should test your smoke and carbon monoxide detectors regularly, be sure to test all the safeguards around your pool area, such as gate locks and door alarms. If anything isnt working properly, fix it as soon as possible.
- Put your winter cover somewhere animals or children cannot climb in and get trapped. Storing it in a strong container and out of sunlight will ensure it works effectively next winter, too.
- Store your chemicals safely, and out of reach of children and pets so they wont become a health hazard. Keep them in a cool, dry place in their original packaging. Be sure the containers are closed properly.
How To Put Chemicals In Your Pool For The First Time
First time opening your pool? Congratulations! You’re about to have endless summers of fun and enjoyment. Before you can get to swimming, follow these steps to put chemicals in your pool for the very first time:
Pro Tip: Be sure to check your filter and return lines for damage, cracks, or leaks. If you have a sandfilter, add sand if needed. If you have a cartridge filter, check the cartridge and clean/replace asneeded.
Recommended Reading: What Pool Chemicals Do I Need
Clean And Store Your Pool Cover
With your cover folded up, have your friend help you move it to your yard, and spread it out flat. That small step will help make your pool cover cleaning easier and go much more quickly. Apply pool cover cleaner or car wash soap and use a soft broom to scrub it gently. Avoid using any abrasive or sharp tools or harsh chemical cleaners, which could destroy your pool cover.
Rinse away all the cleaner or soap. Dry the cover with a towel or leaf blower before folding it up again. Store the cover inside a storage bag or heavy-duty container with a lid. And voilà! Your pool cover cleaning is done!
Important: Do not store your pool cover on the ground or the floor of your shed or garage. Thats just an invitation for bugs, rodents, and other pests to make their home in it over the summer. Then, when it comes time to close your pool, youll be buying a new cover.
Tip: If you used water weights, empty them and allow them to dry completely before storing.
Change The Sand Or The Filter Cartridge
We recommend you change the sand inside your pool filter every four years or sooner if you notice any algae or dust appearing shortly after you sweep the liner. Check your filter manufacturers guide to find out what sand they recommend and how much to use. An 85% silica sand that is washed, calibrated, and treated is a good choice because it is resistant to chemicals. Dont use construction or beach sand.
If you have a cartridge filter, clean it or replace it. The cartridge should be replaced every one to three years depending on how often you use the pool, if any oils or sun screens get in it, and if there are any trees above the pool. Insiders tip: Its time to replace the cartridge of your pressure gauge reads a higher pressure than what is recommended in the filter manual.
Recommended Reading: How To Clean Pool Waterline Tile
What Chemicals Do I Need To Open My Pool For The First Time
;If the pool is new, and the water fresh, use only a minimum of chlorine and condition the water with CLEAN & CLEAR. It will last all season and you will not have to worry about water balance or algae because it automatically prevents algae growth. Use just enough chlorine to sanitize the water.
Freshwater from a municipality is already carefully balanced and potable . There is no need to disrupt this balance by adding chemicals other than chlorine and CLEAN & CLEAR as a stabilized mineral treatment. These additives merely continue the sanitation and balance levels already existing.;
Adjust The Ph Balance
Once the TA is within its proper range of 80-120 ppm, adjust the pH balance. When TA is back to an ideal range, test the pH. The acceptable range is 7.2-7.8, and the ideal range is 7.4-7.6.
If the pH level is above 7.8, add small doses of Leslies Dry Acid. Wait 2 hours with the circulation system running and retest before adding more acid. Always follow the label directions.
If the pH level is below 7.4, add 6 ounces of;Leslies Soda Ash,;which should increase the pH level of 10,000 gallons of water by about 0.2 ppm. Wait 4 hours with the system running and retest the water before adding more Soda Ash. If the pH is below 7.0, follow the label directions for the amount needed or to go your local Leslie’s store for additional testing.
Read Also: How To Get Iron Out Of Your Pool
Why You Need To Know How To Open An Above Ground Pool
Your pools been covered all winter. As convenient as it would be to just pull the cover off and dive right in, think for a minutethat waters been sitting there, stagnant, all winter long. Do you really want to submerge yourself in that? Didnt think so.
Knowing the above ground pool opening process will ensure that when you do finally get back into the pool, its in clean, clear, non-swampy water.
How To Open An Above Ground Pool In 11 Steps
If you own an above ground pool, your thoughts are probably never far from the sun and fun of pool season. But before you can enjoy your pool, youll need to open and prep it. You could pay someone to do it for you, of course. But why P-A-Y when you can DIY?
Once you learn how to open an above ground pool, the process will become easier every year. All you need is a friend, the right supplies, and a little elbow grease, and youll be swimming again in no time.
Recommended Reading: When Do Pools Open In Utah
Treat The Water Properly
Start by checking your pH, alkalinity and calcium levels so that you know how to move forward with balancing your pool water.
Once properly balanced, you’ll want to shock your pool with a quality shock treatment to get rid of all that winter algae buildup. We recommend you wait to shock your pool until the sun starts to go down for it to be most effective
Check out this chart to help balance your pool:
Clean Your Filter And Other Pool Equipment
With your swimming pool clean and balanced, next is your pool equipment. Heres what to focus on:
- Pool filter
- Skimmer basket
- Pool pump basket
To clean a cartridge filter, take off the top housing, and remove the cartridges. From there, clean the cartridges using a filter cleaner or soapy water. Then, rinse them clean with a hose, and replace or store them once dry.
If you have a sand filter, set your filter valve to backwash and run your pump. Alternatively, you can also use a special sand filter cleaner.
To clean a DE filter, simply backwash it. For added measure, you can also remove the grids, rinse them off with a hose, and add a cup of DE powder through the skimmer.
Before moving on:
- Open up your skimmer lid and clean out the basket
- Clean out your pool pump basket
IMPORTANT: At this point, leave your pool pump running for the next 24 hours
2a.);Service your pool heater and filter pump
Most guides on closing your inground pool dont mention this, which is unfortunate. Especially considering the hundreds, if not thousands of pool owners who open their pool each year, only to discover that water isnt flowing, or that their heater isnt warming up.
No one wants to swim in a cold, dirty pool.
Servicing your pool heater and pump extends their lifespans and keeps them running at peak performance. Both of which saves you money on energy costs, and expensive repairs.
You May Like: What Is The Best Pool Vacuum
What You Should Do
First, this might not be the news you want to hear, but you may want to maintain the pool to some degree at least. A pool isnt designed to be stagnant during the warm months of the year, and pool covers deteriorate faster in strong summer sunlight. Leaving the pool closed all summer is a guaranteed way to end up with a green, smelly mess and permanent stains or damage to the pool surfaces.
What I would recommend ~ is to brush the pool well, then and add water balancers as needed, and then add a good stain & scale chemical, followed by a strong algaecide, and a floater kept full of chlorine tablets. Come to think of it, these are the chemicals in our Winter Kits. Keep the water level at the bottom of the tile, or a few inches lower, and keep the winter pool cover installed tightly.
If you cannot do all of this, ask a neighbor, a family member or a pool service to check and maintain the water on a monthly basis. If you dont keep up with some maintenance, your pool liner or plaster will deteriorate into a big mess thats harder and more expensive to open the next time.
If you dont mind the possibility of permanent stains, and possible damage to the pool plaster, vinyl or fiberglass surfaces, then go ahead and just let it go. This is a good option if you are planning a pool renovation. Next year, or whenever, the pool will be drained and acid washed, or pressure washed, filled and started-up again, after repairs are made.