An average swimming pool will hold thousands of gallons of water, whether it is an inground or above ground pool.
Although water might be the primary thing you need to use a pool, it is also one of the easiest to overlook, and many new pool owners often underestimate just how much water they will need.
Given the enormous volume of water you need and how often you have to add more of it to the pool, it can be pretty expensive. It is also not always easy to get all that water without making prior arrangements in some places.
This guide explains what you need to know about pool water delivery, from where to get pool water to tips for minimizing water loss, so you do not have to keep refilling.
Where to Get Pool Water
There are several places and ways of getting water for your swimming pool. Sometimes you might even end up using more than one source to save some money or even for convenience. That said, here are the most common sources of pool water.
1. Municipal Water
Provided there is some water coming out of the faucets in your backyard, and you have a long enough garden hose, you should not have any problem filling up your pool.
However, this is not always the best way to fill up a pool as it often translates to high water bills. An average household in the USA will use around 300 gallons of water every day, but homes with a pool will use at least double this.
Therefore, if you use municipal water to fill and refill your swimming pool, you can expect to at least double your monthly water bill.
Depending on the water pressure or flow rate on your municipal water line and the pool size, it can take up to two days to fill up your pool.
Also, if you plan to use municipal water, make sure you check with your water company as it might attract an extra charge for areas with water shortages and rationing.
2. Well Water
For those with wells in their property, this can be a good water source for your pool. A well is a cheaper method since you will only need to pay extra for electricity as you have to run the pump longer than usual to fill up the swimming pool.
Some wells use solar-powered pumps, meaning it will cost almost nothing to fill up the pool. However, this method still has many shortcomings, such as putting too much strain on the pump, given you have to run it nonstop for many hours.
The well water is also hard as it contains many minerals, which means it will strain your water softening system. If you do not have a water softener, the water will throw the pool chemistry off balance and make it harder to keep balanced in the future.
The time it takes to fill your pool when using well water depends on the capacity and efficiency of your pump. However, in most instances, it takes at least a day or two.
3. Water Delivery Service
You can order a pool water delivery service online or by making a call and have the water delivered in a tank within a few hours.
The companies that offer pool water delivery services will also have some powerful pumps and high-capacity hoses that will allow them to fill up large pools in just a few hours. The people filling up your pool are also professionals that will ensure optimal pressure regulation, so there is no damage to your pool surfaces and liner.
Besides helping fill up the pool quickly, companies that offer water delivery services can provide pre-treated and even pre-balanced water to ensure less work for you afterwards.
If you live in areas with water shortages or rationing, a water delivery service might be the only viable option for filling up your pool. However, before you ask for water delivery, make sure you get a quote first, as this method can be pretty expensive.
4. Fire Hydrant
A fire hydrant delivers water at a high pressure, which is perfect when you want to fill up your swimming pool quickly. However, before you use this fast rushing water to refill your pool, make sure you check the legality in your area.
In some places, the fire department will allow you to use water from a hydrant for free as they use the exercise to flush out their lines. To use this method, you need to make sure you have a fire hydrant close enough to your home.
How to Refill Pools Correctly
Now that you know the best places to get water for your pool, the next vital thing you have to understand is how to fill up the pool correctly. This should also be relatively easy if you follow the few steps below.
Step 1: Start by Adding a Few Inches of Water
When filling up your pool, it is always better to start by adding just a few inches of water at low pressure. Doing this allows you to check for leaks, which might not be easy to detect later.
Also, with a few inches of water, you can smooth out any wrinkles in the liner and reduce pressure build-up in the pool before adding more water at high pressure.
Step 2: Fill Up the Water to the Right Level
The next step is to add more water until you get to the minimum recommended level. If the water level is too high or too low, you will have inefficient filtration. However, keeping the level too low is more problematic as it can damage the filtration system.
Most pools will have the maximum, and minimum levels indicated somewhere on the walls to guide you. If you cannot see any markings, make sure the water surface is around 3 inches below the pool’s edge.
Step 3: Add Pool Chemicals
Once you have your water at the optimal level, you can now add the pool chemicals. Chlorine is the most vital chemical as it is what sanitizes the water. But you will also need others like cyanuric acid, sodium bicarbonate and dry acid for pool stabilization, pH and alkalinity control.
You can use a water chemistry fact sheet to check the optimal levels of these different chemicals. Once you add all the chemicals, you should switch on the filtration system.
Step 4: Give the Pool 24 Hours Before Use
It is essential not to use the pool immediately after a refill as it will not be safe. Make sure you give the chemicals at least 24 hours to allow them to mix into the water and clean it properly.
When Will You Need to Fill/Refill a Pool
It is always better to keep your pool full and clean even when closing it for winter. Therefore, you will not need to fill it up very often. However, there are some instances when it is inevitable to fill it again.
One of the main reasons for filling up a pool is when you finish constructing a new inground pool or setting up the above ground types. Also, you often have to top up the pool as the swimming season begins and after instances that lead to water loss, such as splash outs by swimmers.
Sometimes you have to drain the pool for repairs or deal with persistent issues like algae bloom or chlorine lock. When dealing with these pool problems, emptying and refilling the pool is a crucial part of the solution.
It is also a good idea to empty and refill your pool if it has been more than three years since you filled it or you want to change your sanitation system by converting the pool to saltwater one.
Easy Tips to Minimize Pool Water Loss
- Reduce water evaporation by keeping the pool covered when not in use or installing a canopy.
- Avoid unnecessary filter backwashing as hundreds of liters of water go down the drain every time you do it.
- Check for pool leaks often and ensure you fix them in good time before losing a lot of water.
- Enforce good swimming habits with minimal splashing and use gutters to catch most of the water that splashes out.
Filling your swimming pool does not always have to be an expensive affair as there are many inexpensive options you can use.
The best way to ensure you do not use a lot of cash is by knowing how much water you need and then looking for the most cost-effective way to get it in your locality.
Also, it is essential to know how to minimize water loss in your pool to ensure you will not need to keep refilling it and hence spending money often.