Top 5 Tips for Maintaining your Pool and Solar Heating System this Summer
As the warmer months tend to play havoc with your pools health and balance, the team at Boss Solar would like to provide its customers with some helpful maintenance tips. Pool maintenance, including your Solar Heating Systems is an important part of keeping your pool in tip top shape – check out our top five tips.
Maintain your pool chemistry
It’s very important to be vigilant, check and maintain your pools chemistry before anyone takes a dip. A balanced pH is essential to ensuring you pools ecosystem is happy and healthy. A low pH indicates acidity, while a high one indicates alkalinity – too much of either is not good for your pool and can actually damage your pool equipment.
We suggest visiting your local pool shop on a regular basis to ensure your pool water is balanced. Alternatively you can buy yourself a good quality at home chemical test kit. Pool maintenance can be broken down into five steps:
- Balance: Clean and balanced water chemistry are the key to pool maintenance. Test your pool chemistry with an at home test kit at least twice a week. This will let you know what products your pool needs
- Chlorine: Maintain a free chlorine level of 1-4 parts per million (PPM), this will help keep the pool water healthy and fight off bacteria and germs
- Shock: A shock treatment solves and prevents the majority of pool problems by helping destroy contaminants in your water. It adds a high concentration of chlorine of 5-10 PPM. Shock treatments are ideal if the chlorine levels are low or after a heavy rainfall
- Algaecide: If the walls of your pool start to feel slick or oily that means that you have a build-up of algae. Use an Algaecide on a weekly basis to prevent build ups
- Skim, brush and sweep: Skim the surface with a pool skimmer, brush the walls and sweep the floors with a pool vacuum
Keep it clean!
Nobody likes to be swimming through a face full of leaves! Keeping your pool clean and crystal clear will not only improve your swimming experience, it will also aid in maintaining pool chemistry and ensure your solar system can function properly. Debris such as grass and leaves can cause blocked tubes, which in turn can damage your system. The following tips can help to to ensure your system runs smoothly:
- Installing a TufFilta® and check, clean or replace the cartridge regularly
- Establish a regular cleaning schedule
- Keep your pool’s water between 1/3 and ½ way up the opening of the pool skimmer
- Pour in water before backwashing and vacuuming
- Remember to maintain your filters
Use a Pool Blanket
Pool blankets are a brilliant investment, allowing you to cut down on energy use and costs, water consumption (through reduced evaporation), chemicals and leaf load. They also allow your swimming pool to retain any heat that your Solar Pool Heating system has accumulated through the day. Used overnight, a quality pool cover should retain enough heat to make it warm enough to swim in the next day. This means your solar system only has to top the heat up, rather than starting from scratch.
Going on holidays – Switch it off!
If you’re going on holidays the number one thing is to be smart when using your system. Don’t run it when you don’t need it, this includes going on holidays or in the chillier winter months. However during the swimming season, make sure you run the system for an hour a day as this cleans out the pipes and keeps your pool and the system sanitised. If you have an automatic solar controller, then your system will do this for you.
- Find a neighbour or friend: This is the key to success when it comes to keeping your swimming pool clear while you’re away. Pick someone who has a pool themselves
- Get you water checked before you go: Take a sample of your pool water to your local pool store and get it professionally checked. Address any issues before you leave
- Make sure your pool is clean, clear and the pool blanket is on: This will help to ensure the pool stays as clean and regulated as possible before your return
Cool your Over-heated Pool with Tropical Mode
During a heat wave or in tropical climates, overheated pools can be a problem. If your swimming pool feels more like a hot bathtub than a refreshing oasis, know that there are methods to get the water back to a cool temperature. You may have seen tips online that suggest dumping large amounts of ice in your pool. While this may seem like a good idea the effects are short lived and costly. There are other ways to cool your overheated pool:
- Use your Solar Pool Heating system: Yes you read that correctly! Just as your solar collectors are great at collecting heat, they are also efficient at expelling it. When the ambient temperature is cooler than your pool water, the circulating hot water will be cooled as it passes through the system. Your digital solar controllers ‘Tropical Mode’ is designed for this very situation.
- Install a Reverse-Cycle Heat Pump: Some Heat Pumps come with either heating or cooling cycles, meaning that they can be reversed to actually cool down your swimming pool.
- Remove the Pool Cover: Pool covers hold in the heat so if you have a pool cover leave it off, particularly overnight. This will allow the pool water to cool as it comes into contact with the cooler air and wind allowing the hot swimming pool to cool down.
- Consider a Pool Cooler: Yes there is such a thing! Pool Coolers operate in a similar manner to a Heat Pump, water flows through the unit and passes by chilled air created by the internal fan, cooling the pool water down.
- Add Shade: Consider installing an awning, sail or umbrella to block the sun and shade the pool
The team at Boss Solar provides these tips in the hope that they prove helpful and that you manage to keep your pools and Solar Heating Systems healthy, balanced and clean over the summer months. When it’s warm, who can resist the allure of a sparkling pool with water shinning like a jewel – use these tips and you will enjoy your pool right through the summer months and beyond.