Figure 1 - Swimming pool with winter cover
If you want to get a head start on your swimming pool opening, you can undertake the some or all of these items in advance:
- Look at your swimming pool chemical expiry dates. Safely and properly dispose of any chemicals that have expired.
- Inspect ladders, slides, railings, solar covers and their mechanisms and diving boards for damage and loose nuts and bolts.
- Wash and clean all ladders, slides, railings, solar covers and their mechanisms and diving boards.
- Wash and clean all skimmer and filter baskets, nozzles, water jets, fittings, gauges, etc.
For those homeowners that want to tackle opening their swimming pool from start to finish, follow this procedure:
The cover on your swimming pool is most likely covered in water and will contain a collection of small, medium and large items that have deposited themselves on the cover, as shown in Figure 1, while the swimming pool has been closed. As well the water on top of the cover will be very dirty.
Remove all of the debris from the top of the swimming pool cover that you can reach using a leaf net or other long pole device. Be careful not to puncture the swimming pool cover.
Using a submersible pump, as shown in Figure 2, drain the water from the top of the swimming pool cover. Submersible pumps can be rented from most rental facilities and many swimming pool chemical dealers.
Note: If your swimming pool cover has a hole in it, you will end up draining the water that is below the cover.
Note: Some of the dirty water is bound to end up in the swimming pool, try to keep it at a minimum, but whatever does end up in the swimming pool will be vacuumed up or end up in the filter.
Figure 2 - Submersible pump
Once the water is removed from the top of the swimming pool cover, remove the cover. Lay the cover out so that it can dry. The swimming pool cover should be cleaned, and any holes should be repaired before it is folded and put away. It is wise to use a cleaning agent in order to kill any mold or mildew that may be on the swimming pool cover.
Note: If you use water bags to hold the cover in place these should be drained and cleaned in the same manner as the swimming pool cover before they are folded and put away.
Any debris that may have ended up in the swimming pool should be removed with a leaf net or other long handled device.
Check for and remove any debris that may have ended up in the skimmer. Make sure that the skimmer is moving freely. Install the skimmer basket.
Remove any plugs that were installed in the swimming pool water lines on the sidewalls of the pool and in the skimmer to prevent damage from freezing. If the pools jets were removed, reinstall them.
Note: All items that are reinstalled such as pool jets and the skimmer basket should be washed before they are reinstalled.
It is not uncommon to find a build-up of grime on the walls of the swimming pool above the current water level. This is when you should clean the walls as appropriate. Use a cleaner that is formulated for cleaning swimming pool vinyl or tile depending on your situation. Do not use regular household cleaners for this purpose as they may affect the chemical balance of the swimming pool water.
Commence adding water to the swimming pool to bring the water level up to normal operation level.