We get the “when to open your swimming pool” question a lot, especially from new homeowners.
There are a few things to consider when deciding on a time frame for your Spring opening:
What type of cover do you have?
Algae are plants, so when you see the grass getting greener, the flowers out, the algae in your pool is growing as well. So the longer you wait, the more green your pool will be, especially if you have a standard mesh safety cover. The sun will go through the cover and help the algae to grow. There are sun-blocking safety covers on the market, such as the Merlin Industries SmartMesh™ cover which will significantly reduce algae growth. These covers also filter down to about 40 microns (a sand filter filters about 30 microns), so you’ll only get the finest debris in the pool as well.
Do you have flowering trees over or around the pool?
I can speak to this one personally! You might want to wait until the blossoms have fallen off of the trees so you’re not scooping them out of the pool or have to empty the skimmer baskets multiple times a day. Those helicopters from maple trees are a pain as well.
Do you have a heater?
A gas heater will give you a longer season. A heat pump on the other hand works like a reverse air conditioner, it takes the heat from the air and puts it in to your water, so you’ll need to wait until it’s warmer to get benefit from a heat pump.
You lose 95% of the heat from the surface of the pool, so if you have a gas heater or a heat pump a solar cover is a must. The reels make it easy to handle, they even have ones that work at the push of a button, so no cranking.
If you are planning on having a Memorial Day party, don’t wait to open your swimming pool the week before Memorial Day. You’ll want to give yourself a cushion to make sure the pool is clear, ready for use. You may have mechanical issues that need to be taken care of before the pool will start up, or a valve just may not budge.
Also, if you closed the pool in the fall, frustrated because it wasn’t clear, unfortunately, it didn’t magically clear up over the winter.
All this being said, if you have pressure from the kids, then all of this advice gets thrown out the window.