How To Take The Stress Out Of Any Vacation

Everyone enjoys traveling. Seeing and experiencing new things can be exciting. All vacations and excursions need to be planned well. A traveler who is unprepared can encounter a lot of problems. If you want some tips on how make your next vacation more enjoyable, read on.

Bring clothing that is suitable for travel. This means items that you can wash and dry in the hotel room, and that won’t wrinkle from being air-dried. Also, remember that you can buy clothing as you go, and it will most likely be more suitable to the climate and culture of the area.

TO ensure you have a pleasant and safe traveling experience, make sure your health insurance is valid in the country you’re traveling to. Doing this will make you feel more secure, and make it easier to enjoy your trip. It could prevent big problems down the line if you do fall ill.

Don’t judge a hotel by its name alone. Look for the year it was built or last renovated, which can be very telling. Hotels can take a beating and a newly built budget hotel, may be much nicer than a luxury brand that is showing a lot of wear and tear from not being renovated in years.

To travel efficiently, research the place you are going to as much as possible. You should know about the culture of the country you are traveling to, so that you do not do anything offensive or forbidden. For instance, be careful about the way you dress, and avoid certain hand gestures.

A good vacation requires good planning to ensure that everyone enjoys themselves. These are just some ideas that can make your next vacation a little more trouble-free. When you plan your next excursion, do some research and plan your itinerary well. Keep some of these travel tips in mind, and enjoy your next trip.

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What Does a Roofer Do?

Roof Cleaning Summerville SC build, inspect, repair, and replace roofs for residential and commercial buildings. They also bind, seal, insulate, and soundproof walls and floors.

Roofers work as a team, collaborating with contractors, carpenters, and electricians. They must have good customer service and communication skills.

People in this career typically have Realistic interests. They prefer tasks that are hands-on and practical.

A roofer repairs various issues with roofing, including leaks and deterioration. A roof is a crucial part of the house, and it must be strong and watertight to protect the underlying materials.

The first thing a roof repairer has to do is find the problem. This requires a thorough inspection, both inside and out. Look for water stains, black marks or mold, and puddles of standing water. Then trace the trail back to where it came from – this is usually a roof section with poor flashing or other problems.

To fix the leak, a roofer often reseal the area and replace the damaged shingle. A shingle is the covering that covers and protects a piece of sheathing beneath, so it is essential to have a good one. Getting the sheathing in good shape is also necessary to prevent future problems.

A roofer will use different methods to reseal the leaky areas of a roof, depending on the specific problem. For example, a roofer may reseal around the edges of chimneys and roof windows using a sealant or caulk. Other areas, such as the soffit/main roof joint, are more difficult to reseal. A good way to solve this is to lay a strip of adhesive ice-and-water barrier (available where roofing repair products are sold) across the gap, which will help stop leaks from rain and snow and maybe even ice dams.

Other repair jobs a roofer might tackle are broken or missing shingles. If access is easy, the shingles can be replaced with new ones. If the underlying sheathing is in bad shape, a roofer will fill the hole with a high-quality wood filler and caulk or tar to seal it.

Another common problem is a vent boot that needs better shape. These are usually plastic or metal and sit at the base of a vent pipe. To ensure it’s waterproof, a roofer will remove the vent boot and then replace or seal it. This will keep the water that might seep through the vent pipe from working its way into the house.

If you see shingles lying on the ground or notice water stains in your ceilings or walls, it’s time to call a roofer for a repair. It would be best if you also kept an eye out for cracking, tearing, and granule loss, which indicates the end of the life of your current roof. If you spot these problems, you must choose between a repair and a replacement. Homeowners who plan to sell their homes soon may want to consider a full roof replacement rather than patching leaks and damaged areas, as a fixed or repaired roof could lower the resale value of your home.

Roof replacement can be messy, and homeowners must make arrangements for pets and children while the work is done. The noise and dust can disturb dogs, cats, and even hamsters, so it’s a good idea to have them stay at a friend or boarding service during reroofing. The attic will collect the most debris during a reroof, so it’s wise to clear it beforehand and store sentimental or delicate items elsewhere.

Some things, like the geographic location of your home and weather conditions, will affect how much it costs to replace your roof. But other factors are within your control, such as the type of shingle and any alternate materials you decide to use for your roof. The cost of the materials and installation can be higher or lower depending on your choice, and you should consider any energy-efficient rebates that apply.

When choosing a roofing contractor for your roof replacement, look for one with an excellent reputation and experience working on residential houses in your area. Check their website for testimonials, and ask for references from previous clients. You should also request a quote for the job before hiring anyone. A reputable roofer will provide you with a detailed estimate that specifies all the expenses involved in the project. They may hide something if a company can’t or won’t give this information. Avoid contractors who demand a large upfront payment or agree to begin the work without inspecting your roof in person.

Your roof may seem like an insignificant part of your house, but it’s a system that performs critical functions. It sheds rain, keeps wind and snow out, protects the interior of your home, and allows air to circulate. Because of its important tasks, your roof needs regular inspections to ensure it’s working properly.

In addition to checking for current leaks, a roof inspector will examine the roofing materials for deterioration, aging, and damage, such as dislodged or missing shingles and curling, rust stains, moss growth, and algae formation. The condition of the pipe boots and flashing (the metal strips that divert water away from the joints in the roof structure caused by penetrations such as chimneys, vent pipes, dormers, and skylights) will also be assessed. Flashing that is damaged or corrupted can let water seep into the roof and cause damage to the interior and exterior walls of your home.

If the inspection reveals problems with the roofing material, your roofer can recommend appropriate roof repair or replacement options. If the problem results from improper installation or poor craft during previous repairs, addressing it early will reduce the risk of more expensive repairs.

Roof inspections can be conducted from the ground, but a professional roofer will always get on the roof to visually inspect its condition. This method is a lot safer than climbing up on a ladder, and it allows the inspector to assess the condition of the underlayment, shingle sheathing, gutters, and other components essential to the roof’s integrity.

Aside from identifying issues that require immediate attention, a roof inspection can help homeowners plan for the future. Suppose it’s time to renew your home insurance policy or sell your house. In that case, a recent roof inspection will provide proof of your roof’s condition, supporting your claim in an accident or natural disaster. A good quality, well-maintained roof can add substantial value to your property. Therefore, it is in your best interest to schedule periodic inspections of the roof and promptly repair as needed.

Keeping your roof in good condition requires routine inspections to spot trouble as it develops. These inspections should be done twice a year. The frequency of these inspections will vary based on where you live. For example, if your home is in a hurricane-prone region, you may need to have inspections more frequently.

A roof maintenance program should include three steps: a visual inspection, repairs, and documentation. The program should be tailored to each roof and consist of a historical file that documents the condition of the roof system. This file should include the original plans and specifications, a detailed repair history, warranties, and thorough documentation of roof maintenance. Building maintenance personnel should also be familiar with the contents of this file so they can take appropriate action if a problem is identified.

Look for loose shingles, cracks, or damage when visually inspecting. In addition, check for signs of moisture damage, such as rot and mold. Also, inspect for fungus, moss, and algae that can eat through the roofing materials.

It’s important to regularly clean your gutters to prevent the build-up of debris and clogging that can lead to water damage. It would be best to clear out any ice dams that form due to fluctuating temperatures. Be sure to remove snow as soon as possible since allowing it to pile up can cause significant damage and ice dams.

Other roof maintenance tasks include periodically surveying your chimney and its flashings for cracks or deterioration. Also, inspect all vent outlets and skylights for leakage problems. Finally, ensure your attic is properly ventilated to reduce stress on the roof. It’s also a good idea to insulate your attic, which can further reduce strain on the roof materials and prevent leaks.

Preventative maintenance can save you money and keep your roof in good shape. By catching problems before they develop, you can avoid expensive repairs and the potential damage to your roof decking, insulation, and ceiling. Work with a qualified roofing contractor and follow their maintenance plan for the best results.

Carpet Cleaning Tips

Carpets and rugs trap all sorts of dirt, germs, and odors. To keep them looking and smelling their best, they need periodic cleaning. Daily maintenance involves vacuuming a cylinder cleaner and blotting liquid spills as soon as possible with paper towels or white cloths (no printed ones that may transfer dye).

Carpet Cleaning Lehi involves pre-conditioning the area with a solution that loosens soil deposits using pressurized hot water to rinse everything. Most carpet manufacturers recommend this type of cleaning and often carries a warranty.

carpet cleaning

Pet urine left unattended can cause odors, permanent damage to carpet and even leakage to the padding and subfloor. Urine stains are much more difficult to remove than water-based spills, but a few simple steps can eliminate the stains and the smells. If a stain is fresh, the best strategy is to soak up the liquid as quickly as possible using paper towels or newspapers. Next, blot the area until most of the moisture is gone. The longer a stain is wet, the more it spreads and the harder it is to get out.

When the stain has dried, a cleaning solution made with equal parts vinegar and water can cut through the odors and deodorize the area. The solution can also be used to rinse the area and blot the soiled carpet. If a lingering odor persists, there are enzymatic cleaners available that break down the molecules in urine to eliminate odors. These should be used according to manufacturer’s instructions. It is best to apply them as soon as possible to minimize odors and lasting stains.

Another way to help prevent urine stains and odors is to train your pets properly so they understand where they should go. This means allowing them access to the outdoors or their litter box for potty breaks. Lastly, keep toys and other items away from the areas where you allow your pets to relieve themselves. This will ensure that they don’t use those areas for other purposes.

If an old odor or urine stain persists, consider hiring a professional for thorough carpet cleaning. They may be able to find the spots that you missed and treat them with enzymatic cleaners or baking soda to eliminate odors and reduce lasting stains. It is especially important to hire a professional when dealing with a urine stain that has soaked into the pad or subfloor and can be very difficult to remove. In some cases, you may need to replace the affected portion of the carpet or padding. If the odor has reached this stage, it will be very difficult to eliminate with a standard carpet shampooing or steam cleaning machine.

Food and drink are essential for a home-cooked meal, but these foods can also stain carpets. The good news is that most stains can be removed from your carpet using common supplies you may have around the house. The most important thing to remember is to act quickly. The longer a stain sits on the carpet, the harder it is to remove.

First, blot the area with a cloth or paper towel to soak up as much of the stain as possible. Next, apply a cleaner. Be sure to read the label on the bottle and follow the directions for your particular carpet. When you’re finished, blot the area with another dry cloth or paper towel to remove any residual cleaning solution.

Water-based stains are the easiest to treat. If you can catch them while they are still wet, you’ll be able to rinse them away before they have time to set in. Start by blotting the stain with color-safe cloths or paper towels (plain white without prints). This will absorb the stain and prevent it from spreading. Avoid rubbing the stain, as this can push the stain deeper into the carpet fibers.

If you have a stubborn stain, try spraying it with a combination of vinegar and water. This will work great on wine or fruit juice stains. Be sure to use a white spray bottle so that you don’t accidentally leave any dyes behind.

Vinegar is also an excellent stain remover for coffee or tea stains. If the stain has already dried, pre-treat the spot with a stain-removal product that’s certified by the Carpet and Rug Institute (CRI). Then blot the spot with a color-safe cloth or paper towel. Finally, cover the stain with a stack of paper towels and weigh it down with a heavy object. Let it sit overnight, then vacuum it up in the morning.

For grease, oil or ink stains on your carpets, try making a homemade stain remover with cornstarch and milk. Mix together a paste and apply it to the affected areas. Allow the stain to set before blotting it with a clean damp cloth.

Dirt can be a problem for carpets in any home. It can be difficult to remove from the carpets, and it can cause permanent damage if allowed to sink into the fibres of the carpet. To prevent dirt from becoming ground-in, you should vacuum the carpets frequently, at least once per week. This will help to eliminate most of the dirt before it has a chance to sink deep into the fibres. If you need to tackle a dirty spot, you can use a carpet cleaner that is safe for the type of carpet you have. There are powder and liquid cleaners available for everything from spot stains to everyday grime. These can be used in a carpet machine or applied to the stain by hand. They may require some time to dry before you can vacuum the area.

If you need to remove a fresh mud stain, you should first allow the mud to dry before trying to clean it. Attempting to clean the stain while it is still wet will only push the mud deeper into the fibres of the carpet. If you do not have a vacuum that can be used to remove water, use a damp cloth to blot the stain until it is fully dry.

Another way to deal with a fresh mud stain is to use a cleaning solution made from one teaspoon of mild dishwashing detergent and one cup of warm water. Mix the solution well and apply to the affected area, allowing it to sit for 10 minutes before blotting it dry with a clean section of the cloth. This should lift most of the mud stain from your carpet.

A professional steam cleaning machine is also a good option for getting rid of mud and other ground-in dirt from your carpets. It uses hot water and high pressure to loosen the dirt, stains and soil in the fibres of the carpet. It can be dangerous to try this at home without the proper equipment, and it is important to use a cleaning solution that is safe for your carpet. It is also essential to vacuum the carpets thoroughly after this method to remove the dirt, stains and detergent residue.

Even a relatively new carpet that was professionally installed may accumulate dust over time. This is because dust, pollen, and pet dander are constantly settling on it.

A dusty carpet looks dirty and dingy even after you wipe it down. It also binds to other dirt and can cause stains. It’s important to regularly vacuum and spot clean to keep carpets looking good and functioning properly.

Vacuuming is the most effective way to remove surface-level dirt and soil from carpet. Make sure the vacuum is a good quality model that can provide strong and thorough suction. Vacuum frequently, especially in areas of heavy traffic. It’s best to move furniture and other obstacles before vacuuming and to go over high-traffic areas several times to get the most dirt out.

Sweeping a carpet with the right broom and dustpan is another essential step in keeping it clean. Look for a broom with stiff bristles, such as an indoor/outdoor broom from TreeLen. It’s also helpful to have a rubber-edged squeegee for quick clean-up of crumbs and pet hair.

If a stain or spot remains on a carpet, apply a cleaning solution of water and soap and blot. Do not scrub or rub the stain as this can damage the carpet fibers. Allow the cleaning solution to remain on the carpet for about five minutes to break down the soil. Then, blot with a microfiber cloth until the carpet is dry.

An alternative to rubbing and scrubbing is a dry powder cleaning method. It uses a soft, natural cleaning product combined with a safe-to-use solvent to form clumps that absorb and then dissolve soil. The clumps are then vacuumed up, leaving a fresh-looking and odor-free carpet.

You can also reduce the amount of dirt that builds on carpets by stopping it before it enters your home, such as removing shoes at the door and using doormats outside and inside the house. If you have pets, confine them to certain rooms so they don’t track dirt and dander onto the carpet. Changing air filters and using an air purifier can also reduce airborne dirt particles. It’s a good idea to deep clean carpets every 12 to 18 months to remove embedded dirt and prolong their life.

How to Repair Leaky Pumps and Cracks in Your Pool

Pools rely on a pump to circulate water, filter out dirt and organic debris, and balance the chemicals. Professionals can fix problems like a leaky pump lid, broken seal plate or motor shaft.

Pool Repair

Surface cracks in a concrete pool may not look like much, but they can cause structural damage and leaks. A pro can repair these cracks and replaster the pool if needed.

A pool leak can be a huge problem for your backyard swimming experience. Not only does the loss of water lower your overall pool chemistry, but it can also damage the structure of your pool and surrounding area. Thankfully, pool repair experts can quickly pinpoint the source of your underground leak by using sophisticated equipment like hearing and pressure testing devices or even the old-fashioned garden hose.

Oftentimes, a pool leak is caused by a crack in the concrete of your pool or one of its components. These include the skimmer, the drains and returns, or the pipes that are underground. The most common location of an underground pipe leak is at the equipment pad or near the skimmer, but they can also be found elsewhere in your plumbing system.

Cracks in the structure of your pool can also cause leaks, especially if they are left unattended. Whether it’s smaller surface check or shrinkage cracks on steps, or larger structural cracks that run across the pool walls, these must be repaired quickly to avoid any further damage.

Structural leaks can be more difficult to detect, and oftentimes are a result of ground movement. These can happen over time due to soil shifts or if your pool was improperly installed during construction.

To help pinpoint the source of the leak, you can use the bucket test. Place a bucket on the second step of your pool and mark it with a water line, then shut off the pump and allow the bucket to sit for 24 hours. If the water in your bucket is lower than the mark you made on the side, there’s a good chance you have a leak. Another method involves spraying the suspected area with food coloring. If the food coloring is sucked into the crack, there is a leak.


Some people are tempted to leave cracks in their pool unrepaired, because they don’t care about aesthetics or they’re into that Japanese philosophy of wabi-sabi (embracing imperfection). But if you have cracks in your pool that show up faster than you can plaster them, then it’s time to talk to an experienced professional. That’s because those cracks might be a sign that your pool isn’t being well designed or installed, and it’s vulnerable to deeper structural problems like bad leaks.

Pool Cracks are usually divided into two categories. The first are surface cracks in the pool’s plaster that don’t extend further than the plaster surface. These are pretty common and aren’t particularly serious for most pools. The second category are structural cracks that run through the shell of your swimming pool and could be indicative of a leak or a structural problem.

Most of the time, smaller cracks can be fixed easily by draining your pool and removing any loose material with a metal tool like a flathead screwdriver. Next, you can widen the crack a little and then use putty made specifically for swimming pools to fill the crack and smooth it out.

Bigger cracks are a little more complicated, since you will need to drain the pool all the way down and open your relief plugs. You will also need to chisel around the crack and widen it further, and you will need to sand down the area. After that, you can use a fiberglass layer and then another gel coat to seal the crack. You can use store-bought products to repair cracks, but they don’t last very long and you’re better off with an experienced pool contractor who offers high quality concrete solutions.


Tears and punctures in vinyl-lined pools are generally easy to repair, but you must shut down the pool water and drain it to the level below where the damage is located. Then, you need to sand the damaged area and apply a bond coat and mixed polyester putty. Once the putty is dry, you can use a fiberglass layer to complete the crack repair.

This is a good method for repairing small tears or holes in your vinyl liner and can work on liners up to 10 years old. However, if your liner is older and you are noticing more punctures or tears, it may be time to purchase a new one.

If you notice a sizable bulge in your pool, it could be a sign of structural problems that need to be addressed immediately. These issues can include leaks, cracks in the structure of the pool and even collapse.

You can find the location of a tear or hole by walking around your pool with a pool dye test and looking for wet areas. You can also squirt a little pool dye near fixtures such as lights and returns, to determine whether the problem is in or around those areas.

If you can’t find the source of a leak, it may be a plumbing issue that should be addressed by an experienced professional. It is important to hire a company that has experience with this type of repair to ensure that it is done properly and is long-lasting. A company that specializes in concrete, gunite and fiberglass shells should be able to handle this type of issue with ease. They should also be able to advise you of other structural repairs that may be needed to protect your investment.


Many pool owners are surprised to find that despite regular filtering, chemical monitoring and occasional frog skimming, their pools will eventually begin to show signs of deterioration. In addition to the usual cosmetic problems like cracks, erosion marks and discoloration, deterioration can cause serious structural problems and even a hazard to swimmers.

Over time, your pool will inevitably crack, especially if it’s been built on expansive or poorly compacted soil, and if it wasn’t designed or constructed properly in the first place. Structural cracks are often more difficult to repair than surface cracks, and can quickly grow into larger areas if left unattended.

Cracks that are too deep may lead to structural leaks, and repairing them is a much more in-depth project than patching. When water passes through structural cracks, it can weaken the supporting soils around your pool, and this can result in further damage to the structure and even a collapsed pool.

Staining is also a sign that your pool may need to be resurfaced. It can be caused by hair clips and other non-pool toys, but it’s also common for garden and lawn fertilizers to contain high levels of iron and other metals. These metals can enter the water and cause stains, but they are not usually permanent and can be corrected with acid washing or sanding.

One last sign that it’s time to resurface is when you see pebbles on the bottom of your pool. These loose pebbles are a symptom that the old plaster is degrading, and you’ll need to have the entire pool shell resurfaced. This is a major job that requires proper surface prep, including the use of sandblasting or chemical surface etching to create a bond with the new plaster.


Spalling is when your plaster starts to chip and peel, which can happen to any type of pool. When it does, you need to decide between resurfacing your entire pool or patching the problem areas. Unless your plaster is in really bad condition, you should try to do the latter as it is a less costly option.

A common mistake by many pool owners is to confuse spalling with delamination, which happens when an entire new layer of plaster separates from the underlying surface. This can occur due to improper surface preparation for bonding the new material to the old, lack of rebar in the structure, ground movement during construction and other reasons.

To repair a spalling area, you can chisel away the loose material with a hammer and a chisel. It is important to use safety goggles, ear protection and a heavy duty work glove when doing this. Rinse the crack with clean water before you replaster it. If you are repairing a large area, you can also sand it down and prime it before replastering it. If you are using a concrete patching product, it is best to add some sand to the mix so it can grip into the crack more securely. Also, cover your patches with wet bed sheets if you won’t be filling the pool for 4 to 6 hours to keep them from drying out and shrinking before they can cure underwater.

Pool Cleaners

Cool New Tips For Pool Cleaners

Swimming pools provide hours of fun and relaxation for the entire family. A pool requires regular cleaning to avoid algae and mineral buildups.

Keeping up with these maintenance tasks can be tricky. Using a few simple hacks can save you a lot of time and money. Read on for six cool new tips to keep your pool cleaner and safer.

1. Melamine Sponge

Keeping up with pool cleaning duties can be a tedious and time-consuming task. There are a number of things that you already have in your home that can help make the job easier and quicker, though. These everyday household products are used for a multitude of jobs, including helping to remove stubborn stains and grime from your pool’s surface.

A woman named Lisa Pack recently posted a tip on Facebook that went viral. In her post, she suggested that you can clean your dirty pool by simply adding a Magic Eraser to the skimmer basket overnight. This summer hack is said to help remove any circulating algae in your pool, leaving you with sparkling clear water without having to scrub at it.

Pool technician Andrea Nannini decided to replicate this trick for her own use. She filled a large jar with green fountain water and placed a Magic Eraser inside. After allowing the jar to sit for 24 hours, she was surprised to find that while the sponge did absorb some of the algae in her pool, it did not completely get rid of it.

Vinegar is an all-around cleaner that works well in a variety of areas, including removing stubborn stains. It is also a great way to shine up metal surfaces such as pool ladder handles. If you don’t have any vinegar on hand, lemon juice can be just as effective for cleaning your pool. Just be sure to mix it with salt, and apply it to the surfaces of your pool that need a bit of extra scrubbing.

You can also keep vitamin C tablets, which are made of ascorbic acid, on hand for another type of cleaning. By crushing these handy little items and applying them to your stained pool surfaces, you can remove a wide variety of stains, including those that are caused by a build-up of sunscreen or even from rust.

2. Vinegar

Keeping your pool clean is essential for safe swimming, and that task can be difficult. There are a lot of ways to keep up with pool maintenance, from using the right cleaners to following a routine schedule.

Aside from skimming and brushing regularly, you can use a mixture of water and vinegar to create a non-abrasive cleaner that will not damage your pool tile or vinyl liner. Vinegar will also help remove calcium buildup from the surface of your pool. This is an easy and inexpensive way to maintain your pool.

You can also use rubbing alcohol, which is available in most households, to wipe away stubborn spots on your pool deck. Just make sure to dilute it with water, as too much rubbing alcohol can cause burns and other damage. You should also keep a bottle of rubbing alcohol in the house to treat cuts and scrapes on kids who swim or play around your pool. This helps kill bacteria and keeps the wounds clean so that they heal quickly and without infection, preventing them from spreading to the water.

It’s a good idea to empty the skimmer basket on your pool several times a week to prevent it from becoming overflowing with debris. Debris will clog your filters and throw off the balance of chemicals, creating an environment where algae thrives. You should also backwash your filter monthly to partially clean it between full cleanings.

You can also try dropping a tennis ball into your pool to absorb any oils that find their way into the water, such as sunscreen, hair products, and natural body oils. If you have children who use the pool, you should make sure that they wear proper swimsuits and not street clothes. This helps keep the chemicals and fibers of street clothes from absorbing into the pool and damaging your water quality.

3. Lemon Juice

Even if your pool is regularly cleaned by a robot, there’s no substitute for a good scrub. If you’re finding stains are sticking to the walls, consider using vitamin C tablets and lemon juice as natural cleaning products that won’t hurt your water. They can help remove algae and brighten the pool without the need for harsh chemicals or caustic cleaners.

Chances are you have rubbing alcohol in your medicine cabinet, which is also useful as a natural swimming pool cleaner. Rubbing alcohol, or isopropyl alcohol, kills germs and works great at removing gunk from shiny surfaces like metal ladder handles. It’s important to always dilute rubbing alcohol before use as a cleaning product so that it doesn’t damage your pool.

Another natural pool cleaner is simple green, a household cleaner that can do away with grease, mineral deposits, and other gunk on tiled surfaces as well as metal frames. This is a great alternative to caustic chemicals, but always be sure to follow manufacturer instructions for diluting and applying this chemical as it can eat away at certain types of materials, especially fiberglass.

Baking soda is a staple ingredient for many household cleaners and can be used in the pool as well. This non-toxic ingredient can help dissolve phosphates and sanitize the water. It can also neutralize excessive copper levels, which often occur when there’s a chemical imbalance.

Planting lemon balm around your pool is a natural bug deterrent that can keep bees from pestering you while you’re enjoying a swim. These plants also produce delicious lemons that you can eat or make into homemade cocktails.

4. Citric Acid

Whether your pool is in-ground or above ground, it needs a lot of attention. Debris can clog filters, throw off chemicals and provide food for algae, making your pool cloudy and uninviting. Plus, the constant influx of dirt and debris can lead to premature wear and tear on your pool’s equipment. So it’s important to keep up with regular cleaning hacks, says Ryan Smith, a home cleaning expert with Ant & Garden Pest Control.

Vacuuming, skimming, scrubbing tiles and maintaining water and pH levels can save you from a ton of headaches later on. And these helpful tips don’t require a trip to the pool store or expensive special cleaners.

An old toothbrush and baking soda can get rid of grimy stains from your pool tiles. Just scrub them with a soft brush, then rinse the area with clean water. And don’t forget to scrub the pool deck, too. Finn Cardiff, founder of the summer sports gear company Beachgoer, suggests scrubbing tiles and miscellaneous areas like light and ladder fittings one to two times a week to avoid algae growth.

If you’re looking to lower the alkalinity in your pool, consider using muriatic acid (sodium hypochlorite), a household chemical that also doubles as a strong cleaner. But be aware that this acid can burn skin, eyes and lungs, so always use acid-resistant gloves and safety goggles when handling it. Add half a cup per 10,000 gallons of pool water to lower the alkalinity. But be sure to test the water again afterward to ensure it’s within the recommended range. A low alkalinity level can help your sanitizer work more effectively. Also, be sure to vacuum the pool daily to reduce staining and chemical usage.

5. Baking Soda

Known by the chemical name of sodium bicarbonate, baking soda is a handy ally when it comes to tackling a number of pool concerns. The DIY household staple can clean metal, prevent clogged filters, keep algae away from the walls of your pool, and even raise your pool’s alkalinity or pH level. It’s safe, effective, and best of all, it costs you nothing.

When your swimming pool’s water has a low alkalinity or pH level, it can cause erratic and unpredictable swings in the levels of acidity, causing corrosive and scaling conditions. Adding baking soda to your pool can help restore these levels back to their ideal range, ensuring prime water quality for a healthy, sparkling pool.

Simply sprinkle a few pounds of baking soda into your pool’s water, or pour it directly into your skimmer basket. Spread the baking soda across the pool in wide arcs to avoid dumping it all in one spot, and then turn on your pool’s circulation system. Wait at least six hours to ensure the baking soda is completely dissolved and then test your pool’s pH and alkalinity levels.

You can also scrub slimy tiles with an old toothbrush and some baking soda to remove the stains and grime that can cause your tiles to feel slippery and give the pool water a green tint. To prevent algae from growing in the first place, you should use an algicide and then superchlorinate your pool before beginning maintenance with baking soda.