If you've gone to all the trouble and expense of having a swimming pool installed then you're going to want to maintain it in tiptop condition.
Below are 4 tips that will help you do this without taking up hours and hours of your precious swimming time.
1. Use a cover when not in use
An automatic pool covers are excellent for keeping foreign objects out of your pool but be aware that in warm weather they can create the perfect environment for water-borne bacteria and algae. Some cheaper pool covers act much like a greenhouse, providing a humid atmosphere that microbes love and thrive in. Pool covers are best used during the winter months when the pool isn't in use and the temperature is too low to create a sufficiently humid environment. If you can, have a cover specifically made for your pool so that it is the perfect fit.
2. Check your pH on a regular basis
The pH of your water is not only important for you as a swimmer, but it's also important for the efficiency of your chlorine and any mechanical part of the pool, such as the filters. Ideally, you should have a slightly alkaline pH because this is the environment in which chlorine works best.
It is also the pH of your body, meaning you shouldn't have any adverse effects from frequent swimming i.e. red eyes, dry skin etc. An alkaline environment will also prolong the life of your pool filters, in turn saving you money over the long run.
3. Skim regularly and empty your skimmer basket
Good swimming pool maintenance starts with skimming. Not only do you skim off the obvious bits of detritus, such as leaves, flower heads and bird feathers, you also skim smaller yet more potentially harmful things like bird excrement and pet fur.
It's also important that you empty your skimmer basket or net after each use because leaving detritus in it between skims will allow all manner of bacteria, viruses and even fungal growths to form.
4. Use the correct chemicals
There are several chemicals that are vital for effective swimming pool maintenance. The first and most important is chlorine. Chlorine kills any algae and bacteria that may be on the tiles, or indeed in the water itself. You can also use a special chemical known as an algae preventer to stop further growth.
This chemical is however very strong and can damage your tiles if used incorrectly so it's advisable to hire a professional pool cleaner to do this bit.