How to Open an Inground Pool - Sutro, Inc

How to Open an Inground Pool

Guest Post by Joel Peters

When most people hear the word “pool” different things run through their minds: they think about fun, relaxation, exercise, and summer. Some also think about all the refreshing dips they took during hot summer days. The get-togethers, parties, and of course, the relay races always come into play. No matter what pools are often associated with positive things.

But rarely people know what the process looks like if you want to open your inground pool and all the work involved.

If you are one of those, fear not, as we have the answer to how to do so, both in video and text below:

13 steps to open your inground pool

Once opened, remember Sutro can help you keep your water clear and safe by checking your pH, alkalinity, and chlorine levels 3 times per day and recommending adjustments when needed.

Below are the steps for opening your inground pool.

Step 1: Remove water and debris from your pool cover

Remove any leaves and debris from the winter pool cover. If you’re using a solid cover, drain the water off the cover using a submersible pump. Clean the cover thoroughly and let it dry in the sun before storing it.

Step 2: Remove your winter pool cover

You should do this carefully without getting any debris that might remain on top of the cover into the pool. If dirty water and debris eventually fall inside the pool, you can remove it later.

Step 3: Clean and stow away your pool cover

Lay your cover out flat on a soft surface from your pool, like a field or lawn. After that, spray your cover off with a garden hose and brush away loose debris. If you usually keep your cover in the cover or basement, you may want to clean it to a greater extent. Properly fan-fold cover and store away.

Step 4: Remove winter plugs and skimmer ice compensator(s)

Endeavor to remove all your winter drain plugs from around the pool, including return jets and step jets if you installed them. Replace your return lines with the proper eyeball or jet fittings.

The next thing is to remove the ice compensators from your skimmer buckets. Remember to remove the winter plugs from the bottom before replacing the skimmer baskets.

Step 5: Re-attach deck equipment

Gather up your pool equipment such as diving boards, step rails, and pool ladders and re-attach them where necessary. Make sure you lubricate all bolts to prevent rusting during the summer period.

Step 6: Fill your pool up

You must have lost a few inches of water over the season, even with a winter cover on your pool. Bring your water level up to normal now to avoid the need to balance your water chemistry twice in the process. If the water level in your pool is below the midway point of the skimmer opening, use your garden hose to fill it up.

Be sure to use a hose filter to prevent metals and other contaminants from getting into your pool.

If needed, you can ask for pool water delivery, thus saving some on your water fill-up!

Step 7: Set up and run your filter and pump

Re-install the drain plugs in your pump and filter using thread seal tape. Lubricating any O-rings with pool gasket lubricant helps protect them. If you have a multiport valve, make sure you replace the air bleeder, pressure gauge, and side glass.

It is important to turn your multiport valve to “Filter.” Re-install any additional equipment, including a booster pump, heater, or chlorine dispenser.

Step 8: Fire it up

Try and turn on the power to your pump and filter. Ensure that the system starts up properly and also check for any leaks or drips.

Step 9: Clean it up

Clean out any debris that might be floating around with a pool net. After removing as much debris as possible, use your brush and scrub the pool surface.

Step 10: Shock the pool

Shock the pool with any chlorine shock product. This is available in liquid or granular form. You can add enough to raise the chlorine level of the pool to at least 3.0ppm (darker yellow color in most liquid test kits).

If you’re using a granular shock, don’t throw it directly into the pool. Mix the granular shock chlorine in a bucket and add the mixture into the skimmer while the system is running.

Step 11: Test your pool chemistry

Using your test kit (or Smart Monitor), test your water chemistry for alkalinity, pH, calcium hardness, and chlorine levels. After this, go to your local pool supply store and have your water samples tested there. It’s always good to test at the local pool store when you open.

Step 12: Add algaecide

Buy a good quality algaecide and follow the manufacturer’s directions. 

Step 13: Finish up

Finally, let your pool’s pump run for 24 hours and use a pool vacuum to vacuum up any loose debris that might have sunk during the cleaning process. Test your pool chemicals and balance again if needed.

If the pool is crystal clear, then you’re ready to swim.

Charlie Nadler gave five reasons for the opening pool this summer sooner than later.

The reasons are improved aesthetic, swimming, money, algae, and kids.

Once opened, remember Sutro can help you keep your water clear and safe by checking your pH, alkalinity, and chlorine levels 3 times per day and recommending adjustments when needed.

Correcting common problems after pool opening

Sometimes things don’t go well after opening your pool. Here are some common problems and what actions you should take.

Filter not working properly

You might experience DE or sand filter cracks. If you find DE or sand in the pool or near the filters, they might be a damaged part of one of the filters. Take them apart and check for cracks.

If your filter is dirty, your sand or DE filters may seem not to have proper pressure and are not filtering the water well; they probably need to be cleaned. Backwash them and add DE or sand as needed. If this persists, the filters may need to be acid washed or serviced by a professional.

Pool losing water

When the pool is consistently draining to the bottom of the skimmer, you might be the cause. If it’s draining to the bottom of the return jets, it could be a return line leak. You need to get a professional to fix this.

Filter or pump leaking

If you notice filter tank dripping, try and tighten the fittings. If you see holes in your filter, you need to replace the filter.

Analysis of Best Practices

Before opening your pool, you will need some few items:

  1. The first thing is net, brush, and skimmer, also be sure to get a clean plastic container to hold the water sample

2. Clean and remove your pool cover and also store it

3. Prepare for warm weather

4. Fill your pool and prep your pump and filter

5. Turn it on before you clean and shock your water

Tools you can use

To get going with your pool, you’ll need the following tools:

Winter coming? Ready to close your pool? Then checkout our post on that.

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