Pool Opening Checklist – and what to do after the pool is opened

Pool openings in Michigan tend to happen in April/May/June. We’ve seen many new homeowners this year who are experiencing their first or second season with their pool. Here are a few quick tips that relate to before, during, and after your opening.

To open your pool:

  • Remove leaves and debris from pool cover.
  • Take off the cover, clean it, and store it.
  • Hook up pool pumps and filters and reconnect all hoses and electrical connections.
  • Remove leaves and debris from skimmers, filters, pumps and drains.
  • Take out leaves and debris from the pool.
  • Fill pool water up to proper level.
  • Turn on the filter pump and make sure all skimmers, bottom drains, and filters are functioning properly.
  • Vacuum up any remaining debris in the pool.
  • After pool filter has been running 3-4 hours, test the water. Retest water to see if any adjustments have to be made.
  • Once adjustments have been made, shock the pool following label directions.

If your pool is green, or cloudy when the pool is opened, you need to shock it. When our service team comes out to open a pool, we do add shock, and then you need to circulate your water continually for 24 hours a day until it clears up. If you have a sand filter, you will probably need to backwash every few days during this process. Also, if you have a sand filter, we recommend changing the sand out every 3 to 5 years. Or, if you can’t get your pool cleared up, it is often a sand issue. (A sand change runs approx. $250)

Some people like to put timers on their pump and only run the system for a few hours a day. Your pool pump must run at least 10-12 hours a day. Did you know that they are actually designed to be run 24/7? It always surprises me when people have water clarity issues and their pool professional does not recommend continual running of their pump. My pump turns on in April and gets turned off in November. I would highly recommend doing this for optimum water clarity – and prevention of problems. As a side note, if you have a chlorine generating salt system, chlorine is only being produced to sanitize the system when your pool is running – so if it is off, you are not creating or sanitizing your pool. If your pool is very large (20,000 gal or more) and you have only one salt cell on the pool, you must run continually to create enough chlorine for your pool.

See our post on water chemistry if you are experiencing issues with cloudy water – sometimes it is a chemical balance issue.

If you are a new homeowner, here is something else you should keep in mind. Please create a relationship with a pool company who can become familiar with your pool. When we know what to expect, we can effectively serve you. If it’s our first time at your pool, we are getting to know you and your pool as much as you are getting to know us. If it’s our first time opening your pool, we don’ t know what to expect under your cover. If your pool was improperly closed (which we have seen happen with very dirty pools, lots of debris, and zero water clarity) we have to learn what happened to be able to remedy the situation.

A professional crew will have a process to evaluate what needs to happen to remedy any problems, but keep in mind they do take time. If the cover comes off your pool and the water is swamp green, the filter has to run continually to help clear the water to obtain visibility to take care of any issues we can’t see when we get there. As the homeowner, you may need to add chemicals for several days after an opening, as well as vacuum a few times to clear the debris based on your situation. We are always happy to help our homeowners with maintenance and service calls to help get the pool cleaned up as quickly as possible. Stay positive, keep the lines of communication open, and you will have a successful pool experience.

As always, if you have any questions, we are happy to help. Email, call, or comment on this post. Thanks! 248-478-4978