If you live in anywhere in the USA, severe weather can be a major factor in the spring and summer months. Obviously this is prime swimming season. Most households have a box of storm supplies, candles, dry goods, waterproof matches, flashlight, radio, etc. But have you thought about what might happen to your above ground or in ground swimming pool? Are you ready with storm season approaching?
BEFORE THE STORM
#1 (and most important) DO NOT DRAIN YOUR POOL
Yes, you may receive heavy rainfall that could overflow your swimming pool however; a properly built and installed pool should be equipped with overflows or deck drains that will drain excess water. The water in your pool is a protector from the effects of a storm’s flying debris, and emptying the pool can result in permanent structural damage to the shell of your pool. In the case where surrounding structures might be damaged by water overflow, experts recommended only lowering the pool water.
#2 Turn Off Pool Equipment
Use extra care with your electrical parts and automatic pool equipment. Turn off the circuit breaker to the pool equipment (pump, motor, lighting, chlorinators, etc). If possible, cover the pool equipment with plastic tarp and secure with electrical or duct tape. If flooding is expected, try to disconnect the pool pump and motor.
#3 Remove Outdoor Plants, Pool Toys and Patio Furniture
Try to move all of objects that are not secured to the ground like patio furniture and small backyard or pool toys. Place as many objects as possible to a secure inside location such as the garage or shed. In a bad storm with high winds these can be like flying missiles catapulted towards your house and cause serious damage. If some items are too heavy to move, make sure to anchor them to something solid with chains, bungee cord, etc. It is NOT recommended placing any of these items into your pool. This can cause damage to the pool walls or vinyl pool liner.
AFTER THE STORM
#1 Remove Debris
Clean out debris from the swimming pool. Use a large skimmer or net to remove any floating debris and leaves. Do not use your regular pool cleaner, pool equipment or pool pumps, until the pool water is clear of debris because the debris is likely to clog the plumbing or cause greater damage.
#2 Check the Electrical System
Make sure you inspect your pool pump and motor for any electrical damage and completely dry the equipment before turning the circuit breaker back on. Inspect the wiring to ensure it is properly connected. If you are unsure your pool equipment has water damage, have them inspected by a pool professional.
#3 Re-balance Pool Chemicals
During this time of re-balancing and pool cleaning, do not allow anyone to use the pool. The heavy amount of freshwater rain you may receive will need to be counteracted with stronger pool chemicals. Balance water pH, super chlorinate or “shock” your pool with chlorine, and run the pool filter until the pool water becomes clear.
The process of recovering from sever weather is difficult. However, with some simple planning it can make the emotional, physical and financial toll easier to handle. Hopefully these tips will help you bring your swimming pool back to its normal state.