How Often Should You Clean a Swimming Pool?

swimming pool cleaningThe question, “how often should you clean a swimming pool?” is a difficult one to answer, because cleaning a swimming pool is no simple task!

There are many jobs – big and small – involved in proper pool maintenance. Some must be performed daily, some weekly, some monthly, some seasonally.

Even though you can create a maintenance chart to follow, keeping your pool properly maintained is not as simple as following the chart. You have to be observant and take care of problems as, or before, they arise.

Swimming Pool Maintenance

It’s important that you keep your swimming pool clean. This is one of the best ways to avoid future pool repairs. Taking a little time to spot clean any time you see a floating leaf or a bit of algae, or notice some piece of equipment that just doesn’t seem to be working correctly or making a loud noise, can save you money and headaches.

If you have had unusual circumstances, such as very hot weather, lots of swimmers, pets in pool, or a rain storm, you should also do extra shock treatments on an as-needed basis. In addition to daily tidying up, you need a regular maintenance schedule for pump cleaning, tile cleaning and vacuuming.

Cleaning Pumps and Skimmers

pool repair arlingtonKeep your pumps clean on an ongoing basis by watching the pressure levels. When the pressure is high (e.g. 40s), backwash them right away. Twice each season, you should clean the pumps thoroughly. Open them up and clean them out completely. This task requires daily, weekly and seasonal attention!

When people ask, “How often should you clean a pool?” they often don’t realize that many factors go into determining this. Clean your skimmers daily if your pool is near trees. If there are no trees around, once a week may be alright.

You’ll only know if your schedule is adequate by the number of times you need to backwash the pumps, and whether or not your skimmers and plumbing are becoming clogged with leaves, hair and other debris.

Generally, your weekly maintenance tasks should consist of:

  • Test pH levels. They should be between 7.4 and 7.6.
  • Adjust pool chemicals as needed to maintain the correct pH levels.
  • You also need to test free available chlorine levels. They should be between 1.0 and 3.0 parts per million (PPM). Adjust chlorine levels as needed.
  • Be sure you skim your pool for insects, leaves and debris – and then empty your skimmer basket.

hammerhead vacuum cleaning poolNo matter what else you do, vacuuming your pool is critical.

Vacuum your pool at least once a week – maybe twice. Again, this depends on how much errant debris you’re collecting from trees and swimmers. Vacuuming makes it easier to control the pH level, so it’s important to be sure to vacuum frequently enough to avoid debris decay on the bottom of your pool.


Your weekly maintenance tasks should consist of the following:

  • Give your pool a routine shock treatment. (This is different from the major shock treatments provided by professionals, using large amounts of chlorine.) Add a bag of shock for every 10,000 gallons.
  • Treat your pool with a maintenance-level dose of algae preventative.
  • Clean your pool tile/pool water line.
  • Brush the pool walls.
  • And of course, vacuum the pool.

Additional Tasks:

In addition to daily, weekly, and bi-weekly tasks, monthly, you should gather water samples to take to a water testing service for professional testing and pool chemical analysis.

Every two months, you should close your pool for 2-3 days and perform these tasks:

  1. Use filter cleaner and degreaser to clean your filters and remove built up grease and oil.
  2. Dose your pool with a flock or metal remover. Allow this to work for 2-3 days, then vacuum the pool.

Note that you cannot perform these tasks on rainy, windy days. You must perform them on still days that would probably be good for swimming!

If you don’t keep your pool clean, you will have a problem with algae, so it’s very important to keep your filters clean and stay on top of your maintenance, for the best looking and safest pool. In addition to following these guidelines, you should also simply keep an eye on your pool and clean whatever needs cleaning as soon as you notice it.

It’s easy to see that, when you ask, “How often should you clean a pool?” the answer really ends up being, “Every day!” There is always something to watch for, and the magnitude of tasks adds up to a list you’re better off addressing regularly, rather than letting them build up.

By keeping your pool clean and preventing problems, you are increasing the life and usability of your pool. Pool maintenance is a big job, and it requires a certain amount of knowledge, skills and abilities to do it correctly.

While you may believe you are able to keep up with your pool maintenance on your own, you may very well find yourself overwhelmed by the unexpected! For professional consultation and service, be sure to contact Sun Valley Pool Service at 817-358-9102 (Tarrant County) or 972-831-1234 (Dallas County) or request a quote online.

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2 thoughts on “How Often Should You Clean a Swimming Pool?

  1. Thanks for the great article on general pool maintenance. We are considering a pool and I like that you recommend testing pH twice a week to make sure the levels are around 7.4 to 7.6. I think you also made a great point about vacuuming the pool once or twice a week and shocking the pool once a week. I will have to make a cleaning schedule once we get our pool.

  2. Thanks for explaining that keeping our pool clean will increase the life and usability of it, so it’s an important thing to prioritize. My husband and I just moved into a home with a pool in the yard; it’s a new thing for us, so I need to do some research about how to take care of it. I’m glad I read your article because now I can see why it’s important to hire a pool service for regular cleaning.

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