Summer is on its way in the Twin Cities, and that means it’s time to start preparing to open your pool! While you probably won’t venture into the water quite yet, getting prepared early will ensure your pool opening goes as smoothly as possible. If you’re not quite sure how to ready your pool for summer, the swimming pool maintenance experts at Royal Pool & Spa outline the process below.


Clean the Surrounding Area

Before you begin opening the pool itself, take some time to clean the area surrounding the structure. Clean up leaves and other yard debris and trim back long branches and shrubs that could propel additional debris into the water. Examine any deck furniture for signs of winter wear-and-tear to ensure it’s safe for use, and give it a thorough cleaning. As well, examine all pool equipment for signs of deterioration, including your:


●        Diving board

●        Pool ladder

●        Slide(s)

●        Rescue equipment

●        Safety rails


Prepare the Chemicals

If you have swimming pool chemicals on hand, take an inventory of your stock. Before opening your pool, make sure you have all the necessary chemicals in the appropriate ratios. Check the expiration date on each container, and if you have expired materials, be sure to dispose of them safely. Not sure you have everything you need? Head to your swimming pool supplies store to pick up the following items:


●        pH test kit

●        Chlorine tablets or granules

●        Alkalinity chemicals

●        Stain treatment

●        Algaecide

●        Shock treatment


Remove & Store the Cover

Once you have your chemicals ready to go, it’s time to clean the surface of the pool cover before removing it. You can use a pool cover pump or a wet/dry vac to remove dirty water and yard debris from the cover, which will prevent additional contamination from entering the pool water.


After you remove the cover, be sure to clean it thoroughly with a specialized cover cleaner. Allow the cover to dry completely before tightly rolling and storing it. Always keep your cover in a dry location where insects and rodents cannot access it.


Inspect the Pool

After removing, cleaning, and storing the cover, it’s time to inspect and prepare the pool itself. Follow these steps:


●        Remove all drain plugs from the pool returns and skimmers. Reinsert the directional fittings where they belong.

●        Examine the return lines, filter, and pump for deterioration and purchase new parts, if necessary.

●        Reinsert pool lighting, if necessary.

●        Examine the pool deck and interior walls for signs of chipping, cracking, and other deterioration. If you locate damage, contact a pool repair service before completing your pool opening.

●        Inspect the pool for stains and remove them, if necessary.


If you’re unsure of how to properly set up your pool components for a successful opening, contact a swimming pool maintenance specialist who can do the job for you. Ideally, you’ll also want to retain their services for ongoing, weekly maintenance throughout the summer.


Adjust the Water Level

A closed pool is a partially filled pool, so before you can open it completely, you’ll need to adjust the water to the appropriate level. Using a garden hose, fill the pool until the water reaches the middle of the skimmer’s door flap, or weir. After filling the pool, perform a final cleaning to remove twigs, leaves, and other yard debris from the floor of the structure. Be sure to remove all debris from the leaf basket as well.


Test the pH & Turn On the Filter

Before you can swim in your pool, you’ll need to test the water’s pH and adjust it to the appropriate level. If you don’t feel comfortable testing the water yourself, you can bring a sample to your pool maintenance specialist or hire a professional to perform the test for you.


Depending on the test result, you may need to shock your pool with the appropriate chemicals before it’s safe to swim in. You’ll also need to run the filter for 12 to 24 hours to ensure the water is completely clean. Continue running the filter for a few days until the chlorine saturation levels off and you’ve had time to remove all settled debris.


Royal Pool & Spa: Your Twin Cities Source for Residential Pool Maintenance

At Royal Pool & Spa, we’ve been helping Twin Cities homeowners care for their pools for over 30 years. Each member of our maintenance team has over 10 years of experience in the pool care industry, making us the leading choice for exceptional knowledge and service. Whether you’re looking for swimming pool chemicals or you need comprehensive swimming pool maintenance, you can rely on us for all your residential pool needs.


To learn more about our residential pool maintenance services, give our team a call at 651-779-7606. You can also get in touch with us on our contact page, and we’ll get back to you shortly!