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Commercial Pool Safety

Water cleanliness is important in home pools and it’s critical for commercial pools. The department of health has set forth specific rules and regulations governing every facet of public pools ranging from fencing to chemicals. It includes any swimming pool or wading pool, used by the general public, along with those operated by health spas. Depending upon the number of people that’s served, some homeowner association pools may also fall under those guidelines.

Pool water must be regularly sampled and the appropriate chemicals applied in the correct amount. The pH balance must be maintained and chlorine levels achieved to minimize contamination by bacteria, viruses, and fungi. The Florida climate makes swimming available year-round and maintaining a commercial pool is a constant and ongoing concern.

Owners of commercial pools are typically focused on providing guests with an enjoyable experience. They often lack the time, knowledge, and certification needed to keep a pool in optimal condition and that can lead to expensive litigation if someone becomes sick.

That’s where the services of a professional pool company are indispensable. It’s money well spent. An added bonus is that the professionals have the tools to scan for defects and areas of potential trouble in the future, along with the specialized knowledge required for commercial pools to ensure they meet all safety codes. No establishment wants to have their pool closed or the costly fines for non-compliance issues.

Anyone that operates a commercial pool wants to provide a quality pool environment for guests. That means a pool that’s clean, safe, and hygienic. A professional pool company is a solution. They can test, apply chemicals, clean and identify potential problems, and maintain all facets of pool filtration systems.

The standards for pool water safety are especially important during the COVID-19 pandemic. The Florida Department of Health has determined, through guidelines issued by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), that the virus is rendered inactive with proper application of chlorine or bromine concentrations within the water. Pool professionals can ensure a safe experience.

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How Water Temperature Affects the Body

Whether an individual is getting a drink of water, taking a shower, or swimming in a pool, the temperature of the liquid has a definite effect on the body. It affects the biological and chemical reactions within the body. Water temperature affects the body in a myriad of ways, some of which may seem contradictory. Fortunately, the human body is a wonder of bioengineering and able to adapt.

Drinking cool liquids help reduce internal body temperature. Cooler water is transferred through the stomach and into the intestines quicker than warm beverages for faster hydration. The ideal temperature for drinking water is between 50 and 72 degrees Fahrenheit. It’s a guideline closely followed by professional athletes and studies have demonstrated that water temperatures of 60°F is the optimum temperature for initiating a sweat response and rehydration.

Warm water has the surprising ability to aid in fat burning and curbing appetite. Warm water mobilizes molecules within the body when ingested and makes it easier for the digestive system to burn calories.

The temperature of the water when swimming is important as it can affect the core body temperature and heart rate. When immersed in water of 102°F, moderate cardiovascular stress and hyperthermia take place. While few people will encounter those temperatures, it’s a good example of how water temperature can affect body function. The average temperature of a shower is 112 degrees, but doesn’t cause as much stress on the body since exposure is shorter in duration.

Conversely, swimming pool water kept at less than 78 degrees Fahrenheit will leave swimmers shivering when they emerge as the body tries to warm itself. Whether swimming in a pool or the ocean, water temperatures of less than 70°F makes breathing more difficult. During Olympic competition, water is maintained between 77 and 82 degrees Fahrenheit.

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Top 5 Things that Destroy Pool Chemistry

There are a number of factors that can disrupt and destroy the chemistry of a pool. A swimming pool is its own self-contained ecosystem that requires monitoring and the correct application of chemicals to keep it clean, healthy, and sanitary.  Anything that enters the pool has the potential to alter and destroy pool chemistry – and it can be expensive to correct.

People

When people use a pool, they bring a variety of unseen elements with them that includes sunscreen, makeup, dead skin cells, bacteria, fungi, and viral contaminants. Those all increase with the frequency with which the pool is used and the number of individuals that are swimming.

Sunlight

Rays from the sun reduce the amount of chlorine in a pool, allowing bacteria and algae to grow. Sunlight can easily reduce the amount of chlorine by up to 90 percent in just two hours when the pool water is directly exposed on a highly sunny day. Ultraviolet radiation from the sun breaks down chlorine, allowing it to gas off into the air.

Rain

The rainwater that falls in your pool contains acidic properties that will affect pH balances, alkaline levels, calcium and other chemicals. Heavy rain can significantly dilute the chemical balance of a pool. It’s further compounded if runoff from a house, porch or deck gets into the pool. The pool chemistry will also need to be tested and adjusted if individuals need to add water to the pool.

Vegetative Material

When removed right away, leaves won’t have a substantial effect on the pool water. However, if they’re left very long they’ll begin to use chlorine, stain the pool, and can result in an algae bloom. Even if there aren’t any plantings close to the pool, leaves and pollen can easily be displaced by the wind where they will be deposited into the pool. The same is true of mulch.

Too Many Chemicals

Maintaining the correct ratio of chemicals can be a balancing act. Adding too much, not enough or the wrong chemical can lead to pool chemistry that only a professional can remediate. Any of those situations can also result in injuries, and even emergency situations, if swimmers breathe them in or swallow even small amounts of pool water.

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Summer Pool Maintenance is Essential!

Pool maintenance is a must in the summer and the watery oasis may need more frequent attention depending on its usage and weather conditions. In very hot weather, a pool’s chemical balance can change quickly and it will be affected by a number of variables.

Increased Usage

For those that have large families or entertain frequently, summer pool maintenance is especially important. Each time someone gets in the pool, they bring along with the dead skin cells, sunscreen, and a myriad of normally occurring bacteria, fungi, and viruses. The levels of all those elements increase as more people use the pool or people use it more often.

More Debris

Trees, bushes, flowers and grass shed leaves and pollen throughout the summer that will find its way into the pool. It’s important to skim any large debris from the pool to help the filter work more efficiently and ensure it doesn’t get blocked. A weekly check is critical. The task may need to be performed even more often if there are a lot of plantings very near the pool. It can help to remember that the pool’s filter works much like the kidneys in the human body to filter waste.

More Algae

No one wants to swim in an algae laden pool and it’s more than just an aesthetic concern – it’s also a health issue. There are a number of factors that will have a bearing on algae growth including warm temperatures, pH balance, and sunlight, all of which cause algae to flourish. Poor water circulation and incorrect pool sanitation measures also have the ability to contribute to algae growth.

More Chemicals

Inexperienced pool owners often try to compensate for problems by adding more chlorine. That chemical and others have specific uses within the pool environment and should only be used for the issues for which they were intended. Too many chemicals or in the incorrect amount will cause an imbalance in pH levels, causing swimmers’ eyes to burn, irritation of the nose and throat, and even a burning rash.

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New Pool Construction

True Cost of an In-Ground Pool in Florida

A pool is an ultimate goal for many in Florida to beat the heat and humidity of summer. However, the cost often takes individuals by surprise and can vary greatly depending on a multitude of factors. The price tag will also depend on whether individuals opt for a traditional in-ground pool or a saltwater pool.

The professionals hired to install the pool will have to excavate the site, install the pool, and create a pool deck – the area immediately surrounding the pool where outdoor furniture will be placed. That doesn’t count the cost of features that can include mood lighting or sound systems.

A basic, in-ground freshwater pool can range from $35,000 to $60,000 on average, but can run as much as $115,000. Much depends on the size, material with which it’s constructed, where it will be located, and the project’s complexity. They typically come in 10×20, 15×30 and 20×40 sizes.

For those that desire any of the popular add-ons that are available, such as waterfalls, fountains, covers, lighting, sound systems, or incorporated hot tubs – expect to spend another $2,000 to $10,000 depending on the feature. The following costs when performed by professionals, with all the details taken care of and the pool swim-ready when they leave.

Fiberglass

A fiberglass pool will last for up to 25 years. Installation can range from $45,000 to $$85,000. It will also cost in the neighborhood of $3,700 each year to maintain. The benefit is that fiberglass pools are easier to maintain than other types. Installation can take as little as a week and the surface is resistant to algae.

Vinyl

A vinyl pool will need to have the liner replaced approximately every 10 years and they’re offered in a variety of pre-designed shapes. The average cost is $25,000 to $45,000 for installation and about $13,000 for maintenance over 10 years. Vinyl pools are easy to clean and resistant to algae.

Concrete

A pool made of concrete can last up to 50 years, can cost up to $5,100 per year to maintain, and run from $35,000 to $60,000 for installation. Individuals have more options to be creative with design, but the pools require more chemicals to maintain them in swimmable condition. Every few years it will require an acid wash for mold and algae and will need to be refinished every 10-15 years.

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Great Summer Reads for Poolside

Relaxing by the pool with a good book is one of the benefits of having a pool. While some people choose to catch up on classic works from every age, others prefer something lighter, shorter, or stories that will immerse them in another world. The following are just some of the books that have won popularity for reading by the pool, in no particular order.

“Beach Read” by Emily Henry – The only thing a romance writer and a literary fiction writer have in common is writer’s block, no money, and living in the same neighborhood. Until they strike a fateful deal.

“Craigslist Confessionals: A Collection of Secrets from Anonymous Strangers” by Helena Dea Bala – The author ran an ad on Craigslist inviting people to share their secrets. Everyone has a story to tell and respondents tell all in the book.

“Oona Out of Order” by Margarita Montimore – Oona turns 19 and finds herself living in her 51-year-old body at the stroke of midnight. A stranger in her home discloses that she’s destined to live her life out of order and will jump to another point in her life on each birthday.

“Parakeet” by Marie-Helene Bertino – A bride-to-be is visited by her dead grandmother in the form of a parakeet. The bird directs the bride on a discovery of self, an exploration of matters long buried, and the path to true love.

“The Nickel Boys” by Colson Whitehead – Based on the real life reform school in the Jim Crow South of the 1960s, Nickel Academy is an eye-opening look at the horrors that occurred there and they’re not always easy to digest.

“The Secret Women” by Sheila Williams – Three different women have recently lost their mothers and meet at a yoga class. As each go through their mother’s belongings, they discover secrets about the women that raised them and come to a better understanding of themselves.

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Creating a Pool Oasis

A swimming pool is a place for relaxing, washing away the cares of the day, and spending time with family and friends. The ambiance of the pool environment should reflect the feel of an oasis. There are multiple ways to accomplish that and the following are just some of the ways pool owners can enhance the overall pool experience for themselves and guests.

Greenery

Nothing says oasis like the lush beauty of plants around the pool. Foliage has the ability to change the entire look of the pool area and make it a place where guests want to linger. It can include potted plants and beds, along with a variety of palm tree species planted directly in the ground – but not so close that the roots will damage the pool or debris will find its way into the water. Plants also provide an added level of privacy.

Water Features

Excluding the sound of splashing in the pool, the sound of water has a calming and relaxing effect on the psyche. The installation of fountains and waterfalls are often overlooked when planning a pool environment. A mini island in the middle of the pool is also an option that adds a distinctive touch.

Lighting

Lighting has become an essential element for pools. The right illumination choices can dramatically change the way the pool is perceived. LED lights offer a myriad of options that are less expensive to operate than traditional bulbs and they’re eco-friendly. Lighting can be installed to give the impression of a hidden underground grotto, gently moving tides, or any other inviting effect.

Create a Fantasy

Each person has their own vision of how their personal pool oasis should appear. Some want a highly landscaped and manicured look, while others prefer a wilder, more natural appearance. There are no set rules about what an oasis should look like. Creating a fantasy pool oasis of their dreams will be a different vision for everyone.

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Commercial Pool Maintenance

Anyone that operates a commercial pool knows how stringent the rules are for cleanliness and hygiene. To obtain that superior level of sanitation, a variety of actions must be taken weekly and monthly to ensure the safety of all that will use the facility.

Commercial pool maintenance is a complex, complicated and highly-technical service. It requires scientific knowledge and experience that only a specially certified pool technician can provide to ensure all health, safety, and code requirements are being met.

Those operating a commercial pool at their facility are focused on the customer experience. A pool is an integral part of that, but owners have little time to devote to balancing chemicals or the equipment needed to conduct detailed inspections. That’s where the services of a commercial pool maintenance company will save time, money, and ensure guests won’t see a “pool closed” sign.

Chemical Balances

In addition to pH levels, calcium and chlorine, there are other types of chemicals and elements that must be maintained in a delicate balance to ensure the pool ecosystem is safe and hygienic. Proper chemical balances will be affected by the pool’s water source, the number of people using the pool, and even how sunny or cloudy the weather is. A pool professional can test the chemical levels upon each visit and adjust them accordingly.

Pool Cleaning

Cleaning a pool is far more complicated than simply running a robotic cleaner around the pool. Commercial pool maintenance includes specialized pool vacuuming and a thorough brushing that reaches every corner. Tiles and filters will also be cleaned. Pool filters are the first line of defense for a sanitary pool and that requires regular cleaning and emptying of baskets.

Inspections

A commercial pool technician will have the knowledge required to perform detailed pool equipment inspections and make repairs if needed. It’s an essential service that will minimize the potential for break-downs before they can occur. Inspections of the pool itself are critical to identify even the smallest of cracks, peeling or leaks.

Hire a Specialist

Maintaining a commercial pool to ensure it meets health, safety and code requirements requires specialized knowledge. A certified pool specialist will be able to detect potential problems, areas of concern, and will utilize state-of-the-art equipment, techniques and strategies to maintain pools at the highest level of cleanliness. Attributes that commercial pool owners should also seek in a pool company include resurfacing and remodeling services should those services become necessary.

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green pool cleanup

Common Pool Maintenance Mistakes

Everyone wants to save money, but a DIY approach to the swimming pool isn’t necessarily a good idea. It can actually cost you money in the long run, make the pool unusable, and cause damage. The following are some of the most common mistakes that people make when trying to service the pool themselves.

Automatic Pool Cleaner

A robotic cleaner may sound like a time saver to remove algae, but it only succeeds in pushing it around the pool. The mesh bags used by automatic cleaners quickly become clogged and instead of capturing algae it’s simply stirred up within the pool.

Brushing

Failure to give the pool a thorough and regular brushing results in scum build-up that’s unpleasant and unhygienic.

Calcium Content

Balancing the calcium hardness in the pool extends the life of everything from the vinyl liner to the filter. Too much calcium will make the water cloudy.

Filter

You want the pool to look clear and sparkling and to obtain that appearance the filter should be run a minimum of eight hours each day. Less than that and the water can become contaminated with all types of unwelcome elements.

pH Levels

The pH level in pools requires close monitoring to ensure the water is appropriate for swimming and to prevent damage to equipment. A pH level that’s too acidic will damage filters, pumps, heaters, vinyl liners, automatic pool cleaners and solar blankets.

Shocking the Pool

Pouring “pool shock” directly into the pool can set up a chain of events that will be expensive to repair. Pool shock is concentrated chlorine. When poured directly into the pool, t sinks to the bottom and bleaches the vinyl liner, which then becomes brittle. It’s only a matter of time before the liner fails and leaks occur.

Testing

There are a number of things that a pool should be tested for each week beyond the pH and alkaline levels. To ensure a safe and sanitary pool, you’ll need to test for calcium hardness, salt, copper, iron, and chlorine.

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Drowning Prevention: Home Safety Tips

A backyard pool is one of the first things that people think of in connection with drowning prevention, but it’s far from the only danger. There’s a multitude of water-related hazards around the home that aren’t even on the radar of most people. The majority of threats affect children, but the elderly and disabled are also at increased risk. Even skilled swimmers can drown.

As little as .067 ounces of water per pound of body weight entering the lungs can result in death. It occurs when the liquid enters the voice box, causing it to spasm and close. It’s a situation that can occur several hours after an individual is originally affected. The following are some essential tips to minimize the potential for drowning.

Never Leave Children Unattended

Youngsters should always be within arm’s reach of an adult anytime they’re near water. Drowning is the primary preventable cause of death for children ages 1-4 from pools, ponds, lakes, and even small streams.

Know how to Swim

Teaching children to swim is one of the best ways to prevent drowning. That doesn’t mean that adults should relax their vigilance.

Eliminate Distractions

Everyone should put away their phones when they’re around water. It only takes a moment’s distraction for disaster to strike. The tip applies to adults watching children and for the safety of adults themselves. Alcohol is also a distraction that should be avoided.

Water Containers

All tubs, buckets and kiddie pools should be emptied as soon as they’re no longer being used. Children less than a year old can drown at home from water left in a bucket.

Install Fences

Every pool and hot tub should be encircled by a fence at least four feet in height to prevent an accident, along with a gate that locks automatically. It’s also helpful to install an alarm that will alert individuals should the gate be opened.

Toilets

Children can and do drown in toilets. They’re fascinated by the water and if they lean far enough, they can tip over into the toilet with no ability to right themselves. Toilet seat locks are available and it’s a good idea to keep bathroom doors closed.

Know CPR

CPR is a skill that everyone should know, along with how to respond to various types of emergencies. Always keep a fully stocked first aid kit on hand at home, along with a shepherd’s crook or life ring with a rope if there’s a pool. It’s always better to be “over-prepared” than risk a life.

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