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Swimming Pools Project: Part Four - cleaning



The type of chemicals required and amount of cleaning needed vary depending on the type of pool you have and how much you use it. Pools require at least a daily whizz round with the leaf net to remove any surface debris, bugs or insects. The skimmer basket should be checked and emptied as needed.

Large dust and grit particles on the bottom of the pool are removed easily by using a ‘vac to waste’ attachment which connects to the filter and a vacuum cleaner. You can even purchase automatic vacuums which sit in the pool on the bottom and automatically go round the pool sucking up any bits and pieces.

Filters take away most of the dirt from the water and keep the pool clean. It’s necessary to clean them with a simple spray of water once a week, ideally they should be kept running all the time to achieve optimum water quality.


A pool which requires minimal amounts of chemicals is good on the pocket and better for the water too.

There are only two chemicals required for most liner pools - hydroxtal and chlorine (calcium hypochlorite). The hydroxtal is a mild detergent and keeps the water clean and free from algae. Providing the pool is cleaned every day, the pool can be left for several weeks without the need to add more hydroxtal, which is handy if your property is used as a holiday home. The pool can be kept in great condition using hydroxtal alone but a small addition of chlorine every now and again ‘brightens’ the water and removes any discolouration.

Winterising the Pool

Most pools do not need to be completely emptied for winter, only about 6 inches of water removed. Precautions to take are:

- Disconnect the pump and make sure all pipes are drained and free from water to stop ice forming inside them.

- Overdose with hydroxtal to minimise algae growth over winter, and ‘burn out’ with chlorine (this is an optional step, but will lessen the amount of cleaning needed when putting the pool back into use).

- Cover with a suitable pool cover. If using an all-purpose cover, this should be weighted down with water and siphons arranged to allow any excess rainfall to overflow safely.

Part One - Where to position your Pool
Part Two - Type of Pools
Part Three - Finishes and Tips for finding Suppliers
Part Five - Pool maintenance
Part Six - Cheap Pool Solutions