Gear Up for Summer: Pool Preparation & Other Household Upkeep

Getting your home and pool ready for summer involves an assortment of tasks – from ensuring the pool is clean and safe for swimming to preparing your home for the blistering heat of summer. Here is a comprehensive guide to help you with your pool preparation and other household tasks to get you and your family ready for summer 2024!


Summer Pool Preparation

In Florida, you don’t typically have to start from scratch when it comes to opening up and preparing your pool for summer. Because summer in Florida typically means more pool parties, especially for children on break from school, it's a great time to give your pool (and home) a good spring cleaning. How often you’ll need to do the following will depend on how often your pool is used, how much foliage there is in the area, and weather conditions. For example, when it is excessively windy or rainy, more debris and sediment can wind up in the pool.


Deep Clean the Pool

Start by removing debris in the pool using a long-handled net. Empty the skimmer and pump strainer baskets. Use the appropriate pool brush to scrub the sides and bottom of the pool. Does your pool have a vinyl or fiberglass liner or tiled surface? Use a soft-bristled brush. Is it plaster-lined instead? Then feel free to go for a stiff, hard-bristle brush. The pool’s filter system should remove any debris you missed, along with sediment, algae, bacteria and other germs. 


Test Water Chemistry

Florida’s high temperatures, humidity, intense sunlight, and frequent rainfall can quickly disrupt the balance of chemicals in your pool. When chemical levels are out of balance, it can cause health issues (due to algae and bacteria), skin irritation, and corrode pool equipment. Make sure you’re testing your water chemistry at least a few times a week to maintain a safe and enjoyable swimming experience.


These are the levels you’ll want to regularly check:

*Recommended by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

The CDC also recommends maintaining the following additional water chemistry levels: total alkalinity, between 80-120 ppm; calcium hardness, between 200-400 ppm; and total dissolved solids, under 2,500 mg/liter.


If you need to shock (super-chlorinate) your pool, it’s important to do it in the evening because the hot Florida sun will lessen the effectiveness of the chlorine. 


Equipment Check

Take a good look at your pool and all its components. Assess the following equipment, looking for signs of damage or wear and tear:

  • Pump
  • Filters
  • Heater
  • Automatic pool cleaner
  • Pool liner
  • Drain cover(s)
  • Electrical connnections

It’s also a good idea to have your pool pump professionally inspected and serviced once a year to reduce the risk of fire.


Pool Safety

It is critical your pool remains safe for you, your loved ones, and your guests. Having and using the right pool safety precautions can help avoid injuries and death. Safety concerns in pools include drowning, slip-and-falls, broken bones, cuts and bruises, head injuries, and electrocution.

Child Safety in Pools

Pool safety is especially important if children use your pool. Florida, after all, leads the nation in the number of kids who die from drowning each year. Anytime children are in your pool, they should be supervised by an adult who knows CPR. Also, be sure to enroll your children in swimming lessons at the earliest possible age so they will know how to float and tread water, at a minimum.


Additional resources on the topic of pool safety for children include:


Pool Safety Features

Multiple safety approaches are recommended to ensure your pool is safe for everyone, including:

  • Barriers – For example, installing a fence around the pool, with a self-closing gate and high latch, to make it difficult for children to get into the pool by themselves.
  • Pool alarms – This should alert you when someone enters the pool area or water when they shouldn’t.
  • Pool cover – When properly installed and secured, it reduces the risk a person or pet may accidentally fall in when the pool’s not in use.
  • Lifesaving tools – Keep a ring buoy, rescue hook and pole, as well as a pool first-aid kit nearby.


Florida’s Residential Swimming Pool Safety Act requires at least one pool safety feature – such as a barrier, alarms, or pool cover – and applies to all pools built after Oct. 1, 2000.

You may also wish to consider an animal ramp or critter escape ramp if pets or wildlife are regularly in your pool.


Don’t Drain the Pool!

Don't drain water from your in-ground pool unless you absolutely have to. The pressure from the earth surrounding an empty pool can break pipes, crack the pool itself, and may even float it or pop it out of the ground.  


Protect Yourself With Insurance

Swimming pools are often considered an “attractive nuisance,” at least within the realm of personal injury law. The goal of the attractive nuisance doctrine is to ensure potentially dangerous features on a homeowner’s property are safe for children and others – especially if someone is tempted to trespass in order to access it.


There are certain adjustments you can make to your homeowners insurance policy to better protect yourself against potential property damage or liability claims when others are injured or die in your pool, including:

  • Increase your personal liability protection (Coverage E of your homeowners policy), depending on the value of your assets. The greater your net worth, the higher your personal liability coverage should be.
  • Consider an umbrella rider, which provides additional liability coverage, typically in increments of $1M. This may be needed if your net worth exceeds the personal liability coverage limits on your current homeowners policy.
  • Make sure your other structures protection (Coverage B of your homeowners policy) is enough to cover the cost of repairs to your pool. Note: if your pool is above ground, it's typically covered under the personal property section (Coverage C) of your homeowners policy
  • Ensure the personal property (Coverage C) section of your homeowners policy will protect your pool furniture and other pool-related possessions you might keep outside.


Pool Preparation When a Storm Is on the Way

Here’s a checklist of how to best protect your pool when you know a hurricane or tropical storm is heading your way.


  • Empty skimmer and pump strainer baskets before and after a storm.
  • Disconnect electric pool equipment – pump motor, clock, lights, pool heater, etc. – and turn off power at the circuit box. Store or cover immovable items with plastic so they remain dry in heavy rain.
  • Bring into the house or otherwise store all pool toys, furniture, automatic pool cleaners, etc. – basically, anything with the potential to be blown around in the high winds. Don't throw patio furniture into the pool; both the furniture and the pool may be harmed
  • Add extra chlorine (at dusk or in the evening, for the most effective results) to help prevent algae and bacteria growth. 
  • Don't cover the pool – high winds will only damage the pool cover or blow it away. 
  • Don't drain your pool.


Home Upkeep in Prep for Summer

To ensure your home is ready for the warmest months of the year, make sure you perform these basic home maintenance tasks in preparation for summer:


  • Is your AC running efficiently? Schedule an AC cleaning/maintenance if you haven’t already. Ideally, this should occur every 6 months.
  • Replace the air filter in your home to improve the air quality in your home and help your AC system run more efficiently.
  • Inspect and reseal windows and doors if necessary, using weather stripping or caulking. This helps keep the cool air in and the hot air out.
  • Clean and inspect outdoor items – e.g., patio furniture, lights, fans, grill – to ensure they are functioning as they should.
  • Keep your yard and trees trimmed. If using a service, ask for a “hurricane trim” between June 1 and November 30 to better prepare your trees to withstand high winds. 
  • Review your pest control strategy. Clear piles of leaves and standing water (where mosquitoes breed). Ensure outside trash cans have tight-fitting lids and regularly dispose of garbage. If using insecticides or baits/traps, place them strategically where pests are likely to pass by – but out of the reach of children and pets.
  • Test the fire and carbon monoxide detectors throughout your home.
  • Your roof and gutters should be assessed for signs of damage and cleared of debris.


Taking care of these tasks not only enhances the comfort and safety of your home but can help prevent costly repairs in the future.


Edison Insurance Can Help You Prepare for Summer

With proper home and pool preparation, you’ll be able to relax and enjoy summer in Florida with fewer worries. At Edison Insurance Company, we offer additional personal property and liability protections you can easily add to your homeowners policy to protect you in the event summertime home and pool activities turn hazardous. For more information, contact your Edison agent or get a quote from us online. 

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