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How to Clean an Above-Ground Pool

A refreshing dip on a warm, sunny day is a great way to unwind. When your above-ground pool is in the best possible condition, you can jump right in without having to spend precious time cleaning it up. While the filter can handle a lot of the day-to-day upkeep, there are still some important procedures required to keep your watery oasis sparkling all season long. Relax knowing your pool is in tip-top shape with these helpful pool maintenance and cleaning tips.

What You'll Need Throughout the Year:


Thoroughly Clean the Pool at the Start and End of the Swimming Season

If you use your pool seasonally, give it a deep cleaning when you first open the pool for the summer and before you close it for the winter. When you first open the pool, remove any large debris that may have accumulated over the winter or when you removed the cover, including leaves and twigs. After you fill it, complete a thorough cleaning and chemical check before taking a splash. At the end of the year, follow the manufacturer's instructions for closing, including any suggestions regarding drainage or chemical usage.

Skim Leaves, Insects and Debris Regularly

Every day, objects fall or float into your water. Use a skimmer or leaf net daily to remove any floating debris on top of the water. Make sure the skimmer is in excellent condition and free of holes that may prevent it from catching anything.

Brush the Liner Weekly

Every week, you'll want to take a pool brush to the liner and gently rub away any debris or dirt that may have accumulated. If your pool amasses a significant amount of dirt or fungus along the liner, wipe the liner down more frequently and check the chemical levels to ensure that they are sufficient to fight any growth in the water.

Run the Filter Daily

The filter keeps your pool in top shape, filtering out unwanted dirt and debris that gets missed when skimming or vacuuming. Run your pool filter for 8 to 12 hours daily in order to filter all of the water. For the best results, follow the manufacturer's suggested timing.

Empty the Skimmer Basket Every Couple of Days or When Full

When the filter sucks water inside the plumbing, the skimmer basket collects larger debris such as hair, insects and leaves. If you clean out the skimmer basket regularly, your filter will work more efficiently. Make sure to check the basket after storms or when it gets closer to fall. These are notable times when leaves and debris are very susceptible to entering the water, causing a potential could clog in the filter.

Vacuum the Pool Floor on a Consistent Basis

You can vacuum from the outside or inside the pool, depending on the lengths of the pole and hose. Whether you're in the water or not, it's important to use a very slow motion to move the vacuum around the pool so you cover the entire surface, inch by inch. In addition to other regular pool maintenance, vacuuming every few days or weekly can keep the water and liner sparkling.

Backwash the Filter Often

Always follow the manufacturer's instructions on how to backwash your filter. When you run the pool filter at the recommended settings and vacuum the floor of the pool regularly, the debris and dirt can clog the filter, slowing it down. The backwashing process can remove some of the excess waste, making it easier to purify your pool water.

Check Chemical Levels Frequently

Before using the pool, you should always check the chemical levels, using a pool water testing kit. Add chemicals or water as necessary, and always follow the manufacturer's instructions when working with pool chemicals.