It’s still early in the year, but countless pool owners are already planning for the longer, hotter days ahead. If you live on Long Island and own a pool, you can save yourself a huge headache by hiring a professional to handle everything for you. Here are seven reasons why you might want to consider having a professional open your pool:
1. They have the tools for the job.
Properly winterizing a pool is pretty labor- and thought-intensive. There’s a lot to consider, including details like properly installing winterizing plugs. These plugs need specialized tools to install and remove and are easily damaged if they aren’t handled properly. If your pool’s been winterized, a pro can save you the trouble of buying and storing tools and installing and removing plugs.
2. Pool chemistry can be challenging (and mistakes can mean disaster).
Every pool owner on Long Island knows the hassle that tweaking their pool chemistry can be. Maintenance isn’t too difficult, but actually getting to the right level of chemicals is a challenge. Opening your pool after winter involves reaching the right levels of chlorine, sanitizer, and pH all over again.
If chlorine and sanitizer levels are too low, the water could harbor E. coli, campylobacter, salmonella, and even the microorganisms responsible for dysentery. Too high, and the water could cause chemical burns on contact. A professional can test your levels, get everything cleaned up, and balance your pool’s chemistry for you.
3. They can shock your pool.
Freezing alone often isn’t enough to keep pool water clean. Even if the pool freezes and unfreezes multiple times over the winter, some undesirables might take up residence — especially if Long Island has a mild winter that year. Pool covers can help keep debris out, but algae and other microorganisms can still find their way in. Pool professionals can shock your pool and add an algaecide if necessary, in addition to testing and balancing your pool’s chemistry.
4. They can inspect your pool pump and filter.
Before you can open your pool, you need to make sure your filter, pump, and all their component parts are in good working order. All of the filters should be cleaned and checked. All of the connections and pipes need to be inspected for leaks. Any wiring should be checked for fraying or damaged insulation. Pumps might need to be primed.
There’s a lot of knowledge and labor involved in inspecting a pool before opening, and not all of it is something the average homeowner can do. Overtightening fittings can lead to pump failure over time. Improper drainage around the pump can let water accumulate from rain or snowmelt, leading to failure. Loose connections, wiring problems, or even infestations of insects, snakes, or even squirrels can lead to electrical issues. Pumps are workhorses, but they’re also delicate pieces of machinery. Protect your pump by having a professional inspect your pool in spring.
5. They know how to refill a pool.
It might sound deceptively easy, but a fair bit of expertise goes into refilling a pool. Some Long Island pool owners drain their pools completely for winter. For those who don’t, their pools may still lose water through evaporation or need to be drained and refilled.
A pool’s water needs to be at a safe level before its pump can operate. If it’s too low, the pump won’t pull enough water to run properly. Water acts as a coolant for the pump. If it’s allowed to run dry, it can overheat, break down, and need replacing. Hiring a professional to refill a pool and inspect its pump and filter can completely avoid this issue.
6. They can spot pool leaks and defects.
Water expands when it freezes, which is why it’s so important to lower your water level and keep your pool’s lines clear and sealed off with winterizing plugs. Opening your pool before spotting any cracks or other damage can lead to leaks, a lowered water level, and a dry, damaged pump. Pool pros know which areas are most likely to sustain freezing damage.
7. Handling pool covers is a pain.
Pool covers do different things. Some are intended to protect children or animals from falling in the pool, while others keep debris out of the water. If you don’t have a powered pool cover and use a regular winter pool cover, you’ll need to take it off at the beginning of the season. Unfortunately, that means having to handle a big, heavy, cumbersome, wet pool cover. The larger your pool, the more cover you’ll have to struggle with.
Chances are that your pool cover has also accumulated its fair share of dust, grime, and bird droppings from being out for months. You not only have to remove the cover, but you also have to keep any of this debris from landing in the water you’ve been protecting all winter.
If the cover isn’t stored properly, it might become moldy or covered in mildew before you can use it again. Removing a pool cover is a huge undertaking, especially for one person. Save yourself the trouble and have a professional deal with it.
Professionals can remove your pool cover, clean it off, and leave it outside of your shed or storage area to dry to keep it from becoming moldy or mildewed while it’s in storage. Pool pros have a lot of experience dealing with winter covers, so they know how to do it quickly and efficiently.
If you’re looking forward to another warm, sunny Long Island summer, don’t let pool maintenance stand in your way. Hiring a professional to open your pool this spring means you can enjoy pool time without any stress.