February 29, 2024

Get ready for pool season! Whether you’re emerging from a long snowy winter or a quick brush with cooler temperatures, opening your pool can be easy.

The first step in the pool opening process is deciding whether or not you will do it yourself or hire a professional. We recommend speaking to a pool professional for this process, especially if it is your first time opening your pool because a trained professional can more likely spot safety issues and concerns such as missing suction covers, electrical and/or gas problems.

For those opening their pool on their own, we've outlined a pool opening checklist for you. Ensure a smooth and easy pool season by following these steps:

18 Pool Opening Steps

  1. Remove any standing water and remove the cover.
  2. Remove any heavy debris from the bottom of the pool and sweep the walls of the pool.
  3. Take out the winterizing plugs in fittings, such as skimmers, and return fittings.
  4. Make sure the water is at the proper level. You can reference Hayward Pool Products, Tools, And Resources.
  5. Reinstall or assemble any equipment stored for the winter.
  6. Lubricate or replace O-Rings on pump lids and the equipment’s plumbing connections.
  7. Visually inspect equipment — pump, filter, heater, lights, automation system and chlorinator.
  8. Ensure drain covers are properly installed and secure.
  9. Make sure your heater is free of debris and has proper clearance of any combustibles.
  10. Power up equipment and check for leaks or drips; tighten connections, and replace O-Rings as needed.
  11. If using a DE (diatomaceous earth) filter, add the proper amount of DE.  If you’re using a cartridge filter, add clean cartridges (if not already cleaned).
  12. Vacuum any excess debris from the bottom of the pool. For best results, use the "Waste" setting on your filter (whether it's Sand or DE) or bypass the filter altogether and send the dirty water straight to waste with your cartridge filter. This helps prevent contaminating the filter media with debris, ensuring that your filter stays clean and effective.
  13. Check the water level and adjust if necessary after vacuuming. The cleaning process may have lowered the water level, so it's important to ensure that it's at the proper level for optimal pool function.
  14. Run your pump for several hours, then check and adjust water chemistry to proper balance (Make sure your testing kit and chemicals are not expired!).
  15. Super chlorinate (or super shock) your pool.
  16. Check the operating pressure on your filter and verify good water flow. It may need to be backwashed or the cartridge(s) may need to be cleaned.
  17. Turn on and operate your heater to make sure that it works properly.
  18. Re-install ladders and accessories that were removed and stored for the winter


Don't hesitate to call a pool professional if you run into any issues. Locate a Hayward-authorized professional in your area to diagnose problems or test your salt chlorination turbo cell for the upcoming season.