I have never had charge of a swimming pool before – What should I do and not do?
Within the house information there should be some information specifically about the swimming pool to help you, and also a contact if there is anything wrong or if you are unsure of anything
ANY INSTRUCTIONS AT THE HOUSE WILL OVER-RIDE THIS INFORMATION WHICH IS GIVEN FOR GENERAL GUIDANCE AND NOT AS SPECIFIC INSTRUCTIONS
Simple daily maintenance which you would normally be expected to carry out during your stay
1) Check circulation – The pump should circulate the water for at least good proportion of the day ( There may be information on what time the pump is set to run). You will probably hear the pump running, and you will see and feel water disturbance at the underwater inlets in the pool. If there is a robot cleaner (see below) installed, it will usually only run when the circulation pump is running.
If you are concerned that the pump has not run at all contact the Manager/Caretaker for advice: Do not attempt to alter any settings yourself.
Signs that the pump has not run may include clouding of the water and build up of floating debris.
2) Topping up – During sunny breezy weather some evaporation will occur, and there may be small leaks that will cause the level of the pool to drop. The water level should normally be maintained so that there is water flowing into the skimmers (Pictured below) while the pool is circulating: However, please be respectful of hosepipe bans which are imposed occasionally during the hottest weeks.
3) Removal of debris from the pool – Somewhere around the pool will be a long handled net that should be used to remove floating debris from the pool – this includes the odd insect and frog that may accidentally get into the pool. Please remove any debris regularly, and dispose of away from the pool where it will not find its way back into the water. Minimising the amount of debris reaching the filters helps the pool run smoothly.
4) Clear skimmers – If there is a lot of floating debris finding its way into the skimmers, carefully remove the cover of the skimmer, and empty the basket/mesh inside TAKING CARE NOT TO LOSE ANY CHEMICAL TABLETS THAT MAY BE IN THE SKIMMER – THESE MUST BE RETAINED AND REPLACED IN THE MESH/BASKET.
Be careful if you pick the debris out of the basket/mesh with your fingers as there may be insects among the debris.
If you find the skimmer lids screwed shut, then please leave them alone. The Pool maintenance engineer will deal with the skimmers, and if you are concerned, please contact them.
Covering and uncovering
If your pool has a hard cover which is an accepted safety measure, the cover should be replaced whenever the pool is not in use: It should always be clipped into place. REMEMBER TO UNDO THE CLIPS before removing the cover again.
The flexible ‘bubble’ covers are easily placed and replaced, although many will not put them on at all unless there is an extended period of cool weather.
Sliding ‘Abri’ covers are heavy, and should be moved with care.
At all times, follow the instructions at the property relating to covering and uncovering the pool.
Pool Servicing, Cleaning and Maintenance
Pool pumps and machinery are specialist items of equipment, and Guests should not adjust anything in the pump room without guidance and express permission from the Owners or Caretakers.
How and when this is carried out should be detailed in the house information: Many pool engineers may be on site at first light, and you may not see them or find any evidence that they have been, so don’t worry unduly if you don’t see them.
A majority of pool cleaning and maintenance will be done during the changeover hours just before you arrive, so again, particularly for one week stays, it is unlikely that the pool will be serviced during your stay unless a problem arises.
Please note that a heavy rainstorm may upset the chemistry of the pool temporarily, and the water may become cloudy or green for a day or two – This is quite normal and poses no threat: You need do nothing. The pool should soon adjust itself back to clear water again. It is safe to swim.
A high proportion of pools will have flexible membrane lines – effectively heavy duty plastic or rubber sheeting which contain the water.
Sharp objects must never be used in the pool, and the long handled implements must NEVER be used without the head of the implement attached and in no circumstances used for vaulting.
Pet claws can also damage the liner, or a scrabbling pet may pull the top of the liner away from the side – another reason why pets must not be allowed into the pool at any time.
Many pools have underwater robot cleaners installed running on umbilical hoses that are attached to the side of the pool. They use water pressure to travel around the pool dislodging and collecting debris as well as providing a change to the circulation pattern of the pool to stop debris gathering.
They will work only when the circulation pumps are working, and occasionally there may be a squirt of water from them onto the poolside – so beware if you are sunbathing nearby!
You should not remove the robot from the pool. You can swim with care when the robot is in operation, and you can safely move the robot to a corner when it is not in operation, but you must not disconnect the robot’s umbilical or otherwise interfere with it.
Pool Safety Measures
Please see this separate article on Pool Safety measures which explains them in more detail. You should not disable, or attempt to disable any of the safety measures in place during your stay.
General Pool rules – Common to almost any pool
- Avoid swimming after meals or when under the influence of drink
- Most pools will be under the safe depth for diving in
- Do not use drinking glasses or ceramic plates on the pool surround
- Shower and/or remove excess sun blocker before swimming
- Supervise children when swimming at all times
- Pets must not be allowed to swim in the pool
At the end of the day….
- Remove all inflatables and toys from the pool
- Put all cushions and fabric items under cover
- Collapse all sunshades, parasols etc, and store away
- Return all sunbeds and furniture to their original positions
- Remove all litter, clothing, towels etc from the pool area
Please remember that the swimming pool is probably the central feature of your holiday – and will be the central feature for someone else’s holiday after you leave: Please respect it, treat it with care – but above all…. ENJOY, and enjoy safely.
Are you ready to look at booking a house with a pool? Go to the HL Holidays website or the France for Families website and browse the choice of houses with – and without- swimming pools, with a choice of properties for 2-32 people