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With Maryland temperatures rising into the 80s on some days, if you haven’t opened your pool yet, now is a good time to do so. The easiest way to do it is to call a pool service to do it. But if you’re a do-it-yourselfer, we’ve put together a step-by-step process to tell you how to open your pool. You can use these directions to get your pool ready for the unofficial start to summer.
If you still have them, you may also want to get out your various manuals to refer to.
Step #1 Gather the Tools and Supplies You’ll Need
Think of this as spring cleaning for your pool. You will need:
- Pool cover pump
- Broom or leaf blower
- Pool cover cleaner
- Pool brush
- Pool net
- Pool vacuum
- Pool shock and algaecide
- Pool chemical testing kit
- The storage bag for your winterization plugs
- The fittings and deck accessories
- Garden hose
It’s easiest if you have everything you need at the poolside, ready to go.
Step #2 Clear Debris from Your Pool Cover and Pool Deck
Run the pool cover pump to remove any standing water from your pool cover. Then use a soft broom to sweep away any leaves or gunk that has formed on the cover. You can use the broom or a leaf blower to clear debris from your pool deck.
Step #3 Remove the Pool Cover
Once your pool cover is relatively dry and clear of debris, gently remove it. It will be helpful to have a second person assist you with this. Standing on opposite sides of the pool, lift and fold the cover and transport it to an area where you can lay it flat, being careful not to drag it over rough surfaces.
Step #4 Clean and Store Away the Pool Cover
Once you have laid the pool cover flat, it’s time to clean it. This is also a good time to inspect it for rips or tears. Apply pool cover cleaner or car wash detergent and use a soft broom to scrub the cover gently. Rinse it with a garden hose.
Next, dry the cover with towels or a leaf blower before folding and storing in a heavy-duty storage container, or bag.
Step #5 Skim Any Floating Debris from the Pool
Use your pool net to skim any floating debris and any larger debris that sank to the bottom of your pool. This will make your additional cleaning easier, and prevent the filtration system from clogging when you turn it back on.
Step #6 Remove the Winterization Plugs and Re-Install Fittings
Next, remove all of the winterization plugs from the pool plumbing. Once you’ve done that, re-install the skimmer baskets and return jet fittings.
Step #7 Re-Install Ladders, Slides, and Diving Board
Now it’s time to re-install your pool equipment, such as ladders, pool slide, or diving board. Inspect the bolts for rust. If the equipment got dirty in storage, hose it down away from the pool before installing.
Step #8 Add Pool Water as Needed
Most inground pools lose a few inches of water over the winter due to evaporation. Use your garden hose (with a filter) to bring the water level back up to where it should be before you open your pool.
Step #9 Set Up and Run the Pool Filter and Pool Pump
Hook up your filtration system and pool pump, as well as your pool heater if you have one. This is where having your owner’s manuals may come in handy. Reinstall your drain plugs and apply pool gasket lubricant to the O-rings.
Next, power up the pump and filtration system. Check for leaks and ensure the pump is pulling water. If you notice problems, you can try troubleshooting, but you may need to call for pool repair services.
Step #10 Brush and Vacuum Your Pool
Scrub the pool service with a pool brush or use your pool vacuum to get up as much dirt and debris as possible.
Step #11 Add Pool Chemicals
Add pool shock and sanitizer to pool water, including chlorine, DE, and algaecide and let them work their magic to clear and disinfect the pool water.
Step #12 Let the Pump and Filtration System Run for 24 Hours
Leave the pump and filtration system running for a full 24 hours. This will mix up the pool shock and filter out any remaining debris or gunk left over. Test the water chemistry one more time before everyone dives in. Adjust the balance as necessary.
Step #13 Open Your Pool and Enjoy!
The last step of course is to join family and friends for your first pool party of the season. Enjoy!
Consider Hiring the Pros to Open Your Inground Pool
If all of this sounds like an awful lot of work, you may want to consider hiring a professional pool care company. Check out our pool opening package for full details on the services we provide. And be sure to check out our other pool service options to keep your inground pool in top shape all summer long!
We serve pool owners throughout Anne Arundel County, Baltimore City, Baltimore County, Carroll County, Cecil County, Harford County, and Howard County.