A rainstorm can either be a gentle storm or it can be a monsoon — like those that portions of the state of Arizona deals with during its monsoon season. Monsoon season, starting soon, can wreak havoc with a swimming pool. You don’t even have to live in an area of the country that has monsoons to have a swimming pool that can have its water chemistry impacted by a sudden storm.
When you’re listening to weather reports and know a storm is looming, there are steps you can take to protect your pool and the water chemistry from being too heavily impacted by the storm.
What can you do to protect your pool? It depends on the type of storm your region of the country gets as to the steps you need to take to protect the pool and its equipment.
Pool Care After A Rain Storm
Receiving adequate notice about an impending storm is ideal As you know, though, nature doesn’t always offer notice and flash storms and rain pop up during the heat of the summer. Prior notice is also ideal if you’re home to care for the pool before the storm blows through. When you have notice that a storm is coming you will have an easier time getting your pool ready to survive the potential onslaught of rain and wind. In Arizona, we also contend with dust storms and the debris those bring and drop into our pools.
“Surprise storms” though mean you need to have a plan in place to care for your pool after the storm has passed. When you have adequate notice, it’s easy to get your pool prepared before a storm blows through and when this happens you will have an easier time with post storm pool clean up. When you get surprised by a storm the best way to address pool care is by jumping in to clean up as soon as you get home.
Here are simple steps to take to get your pool back into swim shape after the storm is done. Remember, don’t ever go in a swimming pool when there is thunder and lightning.
What To Do To Your Pool After It Rains
Wait until the rain and lightning and wind have blown through before you go out to begin pool clean up.
Thorough clean up. Even if you work with a pool contractor, he or she may be so busy with other pools that it may take him a day or two to get to you and your pool. Give him a call and ask what you can do to safely clean up your pool before he gets there to address any devastation the storm has wrought.
Don’t sit idly by and do nothing. That is the best advice pool contractors give.
- Clean out twigs and other debris
- Empty the skimmer basket
- You may want to turn off the pool pump and filter if you don’t know how much debris may be hidden in the murky depths of the water. If the pump has to work too hard it may burn out the motor.
- If you can see the bottom of the pool, clean out big debris then vacuum the pool. Work slowly so you don’t stir up too much debris and dirt.
- Stop and clean the skimmer basket and filter frequently
Grab the water test kit or bring water to a pool contractor for testing. After the pool has been cleaned and vacuumed, test the water. Massive rainfall and dirt and debris in the water is sure to throw the chemicals out of line. Test it so you can see what chemicals are out of line and what you need to add to bring it back to swimmable condition.
Swimming pool chemicals, as any pool owner knows and any pool contractor will tell you, need to be perfectly balanced to keep the water safe for swimming and to protect pool equipment.
Improperly balanced pool chemicals lead to staining of the pool tiles and structure and lead to equipment damage. Rainfall and rainwater causes the pool water’s pH to drop and makes the water more acidic. If the rain has watered down the water, you need to add more chlorine to keep the pool bacteria-free.
Rain storms can also overfill your swimming pool and you will need to pump out the additional water to get the levels in the pool back where they belong.
Even a light rain shower could lead to water chemicals getting out of balance. Test the pool water after a storm and add chemicals to get everything back in line.
If you have prior notice of an impending storm what can you do to protect your pool?
- Remove any items that have the potential to blow into the swimming pool. Pool furniture can damage the pool. Store it or tie it down.
- Cover the pool pump and other electrical equipment
- Store all patio furniture cushions and umbrellas
- If you have potted plants, move them away from the pool’s edge and nestle them in an area they will be protected from the storm
- Cover the swimming pool. If you have a rain cover/mesh cover use that to protect your solid cover from damage if there is a lot of water. Covering the pool can protect it from dirt and debris.
Turn off electrical and gas to the pool. Don’t do this unless you are comfortable with it. Call your pool contractor to ask how to do this. Turning off power and turning off any timers so they don’t turn on during the storm will protect to the pump motor to prevent it burning out.
Prepare the water. Add algaecide to the water to prevent algae growth from dirt that gets blown into the pool water. Algaecide wards off organic contaminants the storm blows in.
Stay out of the water! Do not go into the pool even if you don’t hear or see thunder and lightning. Playing in the rain may seem fun, but if you live in an area of the country that is prone to lightning strikes you’re playing with your life and your health. Watch the storm from the safety of your porch or patio.
Make the pool off limits. Batten down the hatches. Ride out the storm in safety. Prepare for post storm clean up.