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How to Spend Less on Backyard Pool Maintenance

Having a backyard pool is fun, but it can sure get expensive! Here are some great tips on how to save money on your pool, from adjusting the pH naturally without chemicals to a fun cleaning trick (and even a DIY kiddie pool cover if you don’t have the real thing!).

By
Bruce and Jeanne Lubin,
clean pool

Lifehack for a Clean Pool

Did you know you can use tennis balls to clean your pool? Just keep a few tennis balls floating on the surface of your pool, and take them out and wash them thoroughly with soap and water each week. Oils from skin and sun block on the surface of the water will cling to the fabric of the tennis balls, keeping your pool clean.

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How to Fix a Pool Liner in Five Seconds

When pool liners tear, it can be very costly to repair them—and can mean expensive water damage to your pool if you don’t. But duct tape can do the job. Simply cover the tear, and keep an eye on it to make sure it doesn’t start to peel off. Believe it or not, a single piece of duct tape can usually last underwater for an entire summer.

Adjusting Your Pool’s pH Without Chemicals

If there is too much chlorine in your pool or hot tub, don’t buy expensive treatments that will just have you balancing and counter-balancing chemicals for the rest of the summer. Simply don’t put the cover on your pool for several days. The sun will naturally lower the chlorine content, and after a bit of evaporation, you can add more fresh water. When alkalinity needs to be increased in your swimming pool or hot tub, baking soda can be added to restore a balance if there is too much chlorine.

No More Money Down the Drain

Save money and electricity by running your pool pump and filter for the minimum amount of time necessary. Experiment by decreasing the amount of time you run it until you find where that point is. You should also set it for off-peak electricity times (morning and evening), when most electricity companies charge less for power.

DIY Kiddie Pool Cover Ever

Don’t have a real pool? Here’s a tip for the Kiddie kind. The next time you’re getting rid of a shower curtain liner, run it through the washing machine (on cold) with some white vinegar to get rid of any mildew and mold, then repurpose it as a DIY cover! It only takes a few minutes, and it saves time later because it keeps leaves, dirt, and even snakes (eek!) out of your kids’ pool. With a pair of scissors, cut holes in the forms of small xs into each corner of the curtain by folding it and making it small snips. Then make stakes with wire hangers by folding them into v shapes, and threading them through each x. Push the other ends of the hangers into the ground and your pool is covered until the next time you need it!

For more outdoors tips, check out or book Who Knew? Household Shortcuts, follow our Pinterest board of kids’ summer tips, or like us on Facebook for our Tip of the Day!

The suggestions offered here are for informational purposes only.  The authors and publisher do not accept liability for damages arising from the use, attempted use, misuse or application of any of the suggestions included on this website.

Image courtesy of Michele Trombley

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