7 Pool Care Hacks You Need to Know
Maintaining a pool can sometimes feel like a time-consuming and expensive endeavor. From balancing the water chemistry to cleaning filters and skimming debris, the list of tasks can seem never-ending. Which is why we've put together seven DIY pool care hacks that will simplify your maintenance routine and save you some serious money. So whether you're a new or seasoned pool owner, these hacks will make pool care a breeze, allowing you to spend more time relaxing by the water and less time worrying about maintenance.
1. Cleaning Pool Tiles
Cleaning stain and scale from tiles and plaster is easy with a simple baking soda mixture. Mix baking soda and water in a bucket to form a paste. Then, using a sponge, old rag, or small brush, scrub the tiles around your pool’s surface. The baking soda might raise your pool's pH slightly, but other than that, it's relatively harmless. So don't worry about rinsing the mixture off after scrubbing!
Bonus Tip: If you don't have pH increaser on hand, baking soda can increase the pH level of your water chemistry. This is especially important after rain water enters your pool, lowering the pH level. If your pH reads at least 7.2, grime will not develop on your tile lines.
2. Removing Wrinkles From a Pool Liner
If your above ground pool has sat for awhile and has low water, try filling the pool with fresh water to add weight against the walls and floor. If there are still a few wrinkles, try using a squeegee to smooth out the wrinkles or a household plunger on either side of the wrinkle.
Drain the pool and use a shop vac or air blower to remove the air between the liner and the pool walls, if the above tricks don't work. Set the blower to reverse mode, and blow air between the liner and pool frame to push out the wrinkles. Now, reverse the suction again and remove the excess air under the liner. If these hacks don't do the trick, you may have to replace the pool liner altogether.
3. D.E. Powder in a Sand Filter
While sand filters expertly trap larger debris, they sometimes struggle to sift out extra fine particles from the water. Which is why many pool owners add one cup of D.E. powder or cellulose fiber to their sand filter for extra help.
The safest way to combine D.E. to your sand filter is by adding the media to your skimmer and let it circulate through the filtration system.
4. Removing Oils from the Water Surface
Place tennis balls or Sun Sorbs around the pool, in the skimmer basket, and in your spa to absorb oils caused by sunscreens, lotions, makeup, hair products, and water runoff. This pool care hack is also great for homeowners with dogs, as the tennis balls trap dog hair before it enters the filter. Tennis balls are an efficient and affordable way to keep the water surface clear all summer long. And to further help reduce oily residues, incorporate enzymes into your maintenance routine to break down organic contaminants.
5. Filtering Fine Particles from the Skimmer Basket
This pool care hack helps filter extra-fine debris particles before they enter your filter. All you need to do is insert the skimmer basket into an old panty hose, tie a knot at the top, and place the basket back into the skimmer. The small holes in the fabric efficiently trap debris particles, while still allowing sufficient water flow. Just be sure to rinse out the basket after every filtration cycle to avoid a debris dam!
6. Making a DIY Pool Vacuum
Do you have a small pool, but don’t own a pool cleaner or vacuum? Don't worry, we have a solution! All you need is a 1” diameter hose, plastic funnel, pantyhose, rubber band, and a glue gun. Glue the funnel to one end of the plastic tubing, then stretch the pantyhose over the funnel and secure with a rubber band. That’s it! Submerge the hose and funnel to remove any air, then place the funnel against the suction filter inside your pool, and use the other end to vacuum up dirt and debris from the pool floor.
7. Cooling Your Inground Pool
Aerators are one of the easiest ways to circulate cooled water into your pool. By adding an aerator valve to one or more wall jets, you can cool the pool water temperature by a few degrees — depending on the outside temperature. Simply screw the aerator attachment into the returns on your pool walls, open the correct valve(s), and then run your filtration system. Water will begin to flow through the plumbing and create a fountain that sprays the cooler water back into your pool.
Don’t have adjustable return jets? No problem! Just attach a spigot valve to your garden hose and hang it over the edge of the pool. Slightly open the valve, weigh down the hose with a bucket or rock, and watch your DIY aerator go to work.
Expert Tip: Run your aerators or fountains at night to maximize cooling in combination with the cooler air temperatures. Aeration is also a great way to raise a pool’s pH level over time.
By incorporating these DIY tips into your normal pool care routine, you can save time, effort, and money maintaining your clean, beautiful pool. From balancing water chemistry to optimizing cleaning and filtration methods, these hacks offer simple solutions to common pool care challenges. For more tips on how to take great care of your pool, stop by your neighborhood Leslie's! Our pool care experts are ready to answer any questions you have.