4 Seasons Pools & Spas, Pool Contractors, Point Harbor, NC

Pool Tips

Four Seasons Pools and Spas

The ring or scum line that forms on the tile is a combination of oil and dust. A liquid or powdered tile cleaner applied with a brush will generally remove this light residue. Gray or white deposits (scale) on the tile can be removed with a soft pumice stone or a liquid tile cleaner.
NOTE: Persistent heavy scaling indicates a serious water problem. Check your calcium hardness.

Use a surface skimmer or leaf net to collect all floating debris. A leaf net works best for this.

NOTE: This chore can be greatly minimized with a properly functioning pool filtration system with adequate flow and a properly functioning skimmer weir. (That's the flapping device in the skimmer channel that small children and teenagers - especially in commercial pools - love to play with, and often manage to lose the parts to). This inexpensive device increases the velocity of the surface water into the skimmer, thereby ensuring it's ability to remove surface material from the pool. It acts as a one way street - allowing stuff in but not out. This device is often overlooked and when it is, greatly increases the amount of time required to clean the pool properly and keep it clean.

Prepping the Bottom - necessary only with unusually heavy volume of leaves/debris)

If leaves and large debris have accumulated on the bottom, they should be removed with a leaf bagger (such as the Jandy leaf-master which works off of water pressure from a garden hose or a pool sweep connection), or leaf net (also known as a leaf skimmer or leaf rake). This will help to prevent clogging the suction lines and the need to frequently clean the pump basket during vacuuming. An alternative to using a leaf bagger or net before vacuuming is to use a leaf catcher - an in-line device attached to the suction hose at the skimmer while vacuuming.


Brushing is critical in maintaining the plaster’s appearance. Failure to brush the pool can result in the formation of stubborn dirt stains and algae. The pool should be brushed at least once a week unless there are unusual circumstances. Set your valves so that the pump is drawing maximum suction from the main drain. Start at the shallow end with slow, deliberate, slightly overlapping strokes, brushing from the tile line down, and work toward the main drain.


The pool surface skimmer and the pump strainer baskets should be checked weekly (daily or more often in windy weather). This will ensure proper filtration and efficient suction for brushing and vacuuming. Failure to clean baskets will result in their damage and possible damage to the pump.


The pool equipment will operate more efficiently and last longer if the filter is backwashed and recharged regularly and thoroughly. As a general rule, the filter should be cleaned when the filter pressure gauge indicate a rise of 8 to 10 pounds above the normal clean starting pressure.
Vacuuming works best when the system’s suction is as great as possible. The filter should be relatively clean; and at the very least should not be overloaded. The addition of a length of vacuum hose represents a constriction on the system and therefore reduces the amount of suction available at the vacuum head. Hooking the vacuum up to a system with minimal draw could result in complete loss of suction. If the filter pressure is too high, say eight pounds or more over starting pressure, it would be advisable to clean the filter before vacuuming.

To ensure that the suction is maximized, all suction should be concentrated at the skimmer or point of vacuum hookup. To achieve this, shut off the main drain by means of gate, ortega, or diverter valves.


The pool should be vacuumed at least once a week and more often during windy conditions. When vacuuming, use slow, overlapping strokes.
The method of vacuuming is essentially the same from pool to pool. The only variance is due to differences in skimmer or suction hookups. Following the general procedures outlined below are the step-by-step processes for the various skimmer configurations.


The most common error in vacuuming is the failure to ensure that all air has been eliminated from the vacuum hose before connecting it to the point of suction. This results in the complete loss of suction and the pump running dry. Using the following method will enable the pool owner to avoid this problem.

Attach the vacuum head to the telepole, and the hose to the vacuum head. The swivel cuff end of the hose should be placed on the vacuum head. Lower the vacuum head to the bottom of the deep end. Slowly feed the vacuum hose hand over hand straight down into the water, forcing the air out of the hose. Be sure that the hose is full of water when the end reaches the water’s surface. Pull the hose through the skimmer channel and attach it to the vacuum inlet or into the skimmer. If the vacuum inlet is inside the pool, simply keep the hose end under water and attach). When vacuuming, never allow the vacuum head to leave the water. This will result in loss of prime (suction) and could cause damage to your pump.

If the pool has an extraordinary amount of debris and dirt, we recommend that you vacuum directly to waste. This can only be done if you have a multi-port valve, however, which set at "vacuum to waste". This will increase the suction and reduce maintenance of the filter medium. However, pool water will be lost when vacuuming to waste and must be replaced. Do not allow the pool water level to drop below the skimmer.


The pool area should be rinsed before swimmers arrive to avoid dirt being tracked into the pool. Periodically, the decking and coping should be scrubbed with a stiff brush or high pressure cleaner. Concrete or stone decking (and maybe wood decking depending on the type of wood) should be washed down with a five percent chlorine solution to kill bacteria and prevent infection. A concrete cleaner may also be used.


Vacuum hose and all other tools made of plastic should be stored out of direct sunlight. Although most pool plastics are manufactured to be UV resistant, the sun will cause degradation of the plastic and shorten its useful life.


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