There are two kinds of Intex pools - the Easy Set and the Frame Set pool. Both pools are taken down at the end of the season and stored for swimming the next year. Although neither pool is as tough as a steel or aluminum above-ground pool, they will last for a few years if you take good care of them.
Read the set up directions and watch the pool set up video before you put up your pool for the first time. Both types of Intex pools set up in an hour or less. The Easy Set pool has an inflatable ring that must be blown up using a pump. Once the ring is blown up, water is added and the ring and the pool walls gradually rise with the water level. The Frame Set pool is made of rubberized canvas supported by PVC piping. It looks like a traditional pool before you add the water. The Frame Set pool has a slightly larger usable space, because the sides don't tilt in.
Check for rips in the liner when you set up your pool each year. Tears can also occur in the inflatable ring in the Easy Set Pool. Finding and repairing rips before you put any water in the pool is much easier than trying to get a patch to stick in a pool full of water. Make sure that the plastic covers on the pool ladder legs haven't come off. The unprotected legs can tear the liner.
Find a level spot in your yard to set up the pool. If the pool is set up on a uneven surface, there will be too much pressure on the "deep" end of the pool and the pool can burst at the seams. This really scares any kids who may be bobbing along on a tube, blissfully unaware that in seconds that their pool will no longer exist. It also means a costly trip to the store to buy a replacement pool. It is an expensive lesson to learn, so do your best to make sure the ground is fairly level.
Maintain a good level of free chlorine in the pool. A floating chlorine dispenser alone won't do it. You need to shock the pool on a regular basis. When you first fill the pool, use double the amount of shock you normally do as you will need more shock in water that has never been treated with chlorine. If it is very hot or has rained, you will need to add shock more often. You can buy test strips at any pool store. Use them often to determine if you need more chlorine or PH Increase or Decrease. Add algaecide once a week to prevent your pool from developing a nice greenish tinge to it.
Vacuum the pool whenever the bottom starts looking dirty, usually every few days. Clean out the filter every few days by squirting it with a hose. Although it is recommended that you replace the filter every two weeks, it will last a month or two if you keep up with squirting it out.
When your lifeguarding days are over for the summer, drain the pool water. You may find that all of the water doesn't drain out through the drain opening. If that happens, rent a small sump pump to remove those last few inches of water. Once the water has drained, clean the bottom and sides of the pool using rags or paper towels and store the pool away from the elements. Be careful to put a tarp or ground cloth under the pool as you drag it away or you could rip the liner on rocks or sticks.
Store the ladder and pump. If you are storing the pump in a cold garage or shed, first remove the black rubber ring in the pump lid and keep it inside so that it does not crack.