Cleaning Your Pool After a Party
Everyone loves a good party. Visiting with friends and family to celebrate an occasion — or just because — is a great way to spend a day and/or evening. And the fun gets kicked up a notch or two when there's a pool for everyone to enjoy. But when the party ends and it's time to clean up, it's important to include cleaning your pool as part of the process too.
Parties can be tough on your swimming pool, even if it's spared the anguish of a hangover. Equipment and other accessories can be displaced during the party, and debris and waste can wreak havoc on your water's balance.
Thankfully, just like that first cup of coffee and a greasy breakfast, Leslie's has some tips to help you through the aftermath.
When you clean a pool after a party, highlights include:
Pick up in and around your pool
Depending on the size and intensity of the party, your backyard probably needs tidying up. Be sure to clean your pool after a party too. Remove any items from your pool that aren't supposed to be in it, including trash, toys, floats, and — if it was a REALLY good party — furniture.
When you pick up pool floats, toys, or other accessories in and around the pool, make sure to store them properly. A large deck box is a great way to keep common pool goodies stored properly but still easily available for your next pool day.
Replace any equipment or other items
In preparation for your party, you might have removed equipment and/or other maintenance objects from your pool. Remember to put back automatic cleaners, floating chlorine devices, and any other pool care items as soon as you can to ensure proper maintenance.
Skim, brush, and vacuum your pool
With all the activity in and around your pool, there almost certainly is a significant amount of dirt and other debris and waste in your pool.
Using a skimmer, remove debris from your pool's surface. Be sure to check your skimmer basket and pump strainer so you can clean them out when necessary.
Next, brush the pool walls and steps thoroughly to ensure any present dirt and debris settle on the pool floor.
After you've skimmed and brushed your pool, manually vacuum or turn on your automatic pool cleaner to remove the dirt and debris from the bottom of your pool.
DIY TIP: When vacuuming your pool, always begin at the shallow end and move toward the deep end.
Shock and balance water chemistry
Even though your pool may look clean and clear after skimming, brushing, and vacuuming, there will still be a good amount waste present.
With a larger group of people enjoying your pool than normal, the amount of sunscreen, alcohol and other drinks, and, yes, even pee, will leave behind microscopic and potentially harmful organic contaminants. If left unchecked, this can lead to annoying algae growth, as well as potentially harmful germs in your pool.
To stop the growth of these contaminants in their tracks, begin by using a powerful pool shock — such as Cal Hypo Shock or Dichlor Shock. Add enough shock to raise the chlorine level to around 10.0 ppm.
Once the pool has been shocked and the chlorine level has subsided to around 3.0 ppm, start balancing the water chemistry, beginning with Total Alkalinity. After the Total Alkalinity has been brought to normal levels — between 80 and 120 ppm — you can adjust the pH, chlorine, and Calcium Hardness of your water.
Run your circulation and filtration systems
Running your circulation and filtration systems is the last step to achieving a clean, clear, and healthy pool after a party. As simple as it sounds, the rule here is to run your pool equipment until the water is completely clear. If your pool is really dirty after a party, it might take a few days, but it is important to make sure your system is running the entire time.
DIY TIP: You can use a powerful enzymatic water clarifier to help speed up the process.
Take extra care to check the skimmer baskets, pump strainer basket, and the pressure of the filter while you are running the equipment around the clock. Empty the baskets as soon as they fill up with debris, and backwash your filter if the pressure gauge reads 8-10 PSI higher than the clean starting pressure. This will help keep your equipment running smoothly, and will give you a healthy pool in no time!