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Top 10 Things Every new Pool Owner Should Know

Individuals should be aware that a pristine pool in the back yard isn’t the end of the pool process. Many new pool owners either don’t know what’s involved in maintaining a pool or assume that little is needed beyond cleaning the filter periodically.

The most important thing any pool owner can do is install the proper barriers and safety-related equipment to prevent children, the elderly and pets from drowning. The following are the Top 10 things every new pool owner should know – and be aware of before they have their new pool installed.

  1. A professional pool service is well worth the money. They’re highly-trained experts that are skilled in all facets of pool maintenance and can conduct repairs and perform replacements.
  2. Pool water must be tested weekly to identify imbalances to ensure it adheres to specific levels of cleanliness for safe swimming.
  3. There are a number of chemicals that pools require and individuals will need to learn what each type is for, how much to apply, and when to do so.
  4. Pools that receive frequent use or are utilized by large numbers of swimmers will affect pH balances and other chemical levels.
  5. Multiple factors can affect the chemical levels in a pool, ranging from UV light and bodily fluids to adding water and rainwater from storms.
  6. Despite the best of intentions, pool water can become cloudy or spawn algae growth that can require shocking the pool.
  7. Even salt water pools require a certain amount of chlorine and a salt water pool won’t be the same as swimming in ocean water.
  8. Never drain the pool, even if a hurricane is approaching. Modern pools are designed to drain away from homes. Be sure to turn off the power to all the pool-related equipment and secure the pool deck. The pool will take care of itself.
  9. Automated cleaning systems make owning a pool much easier. It’s still important to have a professional perform periodic cleanings and check for any peeling or hairline cracks.
  10. One dog is equal to 50 swimmers. Canines will place extra strain on the pool’s systems. It’s also an essential safety measure for pets that don’t know how to exit the pool and can drown.

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pool maintenance

What the Best Pool Maintenance Companies do Right

Engaging the services of a professional pool maintenance service is going to save a significant amount of time, money and stress for pool owners. The pool experts provide much more than simple water testing and applying the appropriate chemicals. The best pool maintenance companies provide other essential services and are highly trained professionals.

Leak Detection

A large leak will obviously affect the water level in a pool, but every leak begins as a small crack or other defect that can easily be detected by a pool professional in the earliest stages. A full-service pool maintenance company will use sonar technology to identify leaks within 10,000th of an inch within the pool itself. Pipes will be pressurized and the technician will use ultrasound devices to detect leaks.

Repairs

If a leak is detected or a breakdown occurs within any system, including solar heating units and salt water systems, a superior pool maintenance company will be able to obtain the required parts and repair it. The experts will also be able to install new equipment if existing systems can’t be repaired.

Remodeling

Whether individuals want to update the look of their pool, upgrade heaters or plumbing, or add custom water features a pool maintenance company will be able to accomplish those desires. The company will have the ability to provide services for residential or commercial pools and spas. The specialists can plaster, replace coping, and complete rock or masonry work to create a whole new look.

New Construction

A premium pool company has the experience and expertise to install a new pool and take care of every facet of its maintenance requirements after its completed. The professionals are knowledgeable about all prevailing regulations and safety rules. They’ll also be able to determine if the space and soil is appropriate for the proposed pool and can offer suggestions for alternatives if it’s not.

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Pool Property Managment

How to Keep Algae Out of Your Swimming Pool

If you want to have a beautiful, clean, and healthy swimming pool, then you need to know how to maintain it regularly. In fact, maintenance is considered to be one of the most important aspects of pool ownership. Without proper maintenance, your pool can easily develop several dangerous contaminants such as algae, which can also clog the filters of your pool. In addition, if you do not properly maintain your pool on a regular basis, there are high chances that it can lose its luster and even it’s color. So, to help you in maintaining your pool at its best, here are some helpful tips:

Clean the Pool

The first thing that you have to do is to remove any leaves or other debris from your pool. It is very important to do this so you can prevent algae from forming on the sides of the pool. Then, make use of skimmers so you can get rid of the dirt and leaves in the water.

Proper Chemicals

One of the most common mistakes that most people make when it comes to keeping their pool in good condition is using the wrong chemicals for it. Make sure that you use the correct chemical that is suitable for the type of pool that you have. There are several types of pool chemicals including automatic pool cleaners that help in keeping algae at bay while using minimal amounts of chemicals. Also, regular maintenance is required to make sure that the chemicals are still in the right quantity. By following all these tips, you can surely enjoy crystal clear and beautiful pool water.

Pool Maintenance Company

Pool cleaning and chemical maintenance can be overwhelming for any pool owner. One of the best things you can do hire a company to regularly visit and maintain you pool. They will keep you pool clean, clear, and ready for use.

 

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pool construction

Maintaining your Saline Pool

A great many people are choosing to install a saline swimming pool rather than a traditional chlorine model. While saline pools are gentler on hair and skin, it’s important to understand that the saline levels are not comparable to ocean water – salinity levels are approximately 1/10th that of the ocean.

The second thing to know about saline pools is that they’re more complex systems and if you’re not familiar with them, your best decision will be to hire a professional pool service for regular monitoring, maintenance and repair. Your initial set up will be more costly, but a saline pool is less expensive to maintain over time.

Maintaining a saline pool isn’t like a traditional chlorine pool and trying to apply the same principles will result in damage. Saline pools still require chlorine, but it’s not simply dumped in the pool. Chemicals must first pass through a salt chlorine generator that converts chemicals into hypochlorous acid and hydrogen gas. The hydrogen gas dissipates into the air and the hypochlorous acid is what sanitizes the water.

Salt is a corrosive material. In the recommended concentrations, it’s not harmful to any part of the pool system. If you add too much, the saline will begin to corrode pipes, fittings, pool liners and railings. Rectifying and repairing the damage will be extremely costly.

It’s critical that proper circulation be maintained to prevent salt from building up in specific areas. Depending upon the shape of your pool, it may require additional circulation devices to be installed. If you see salt crystals growing anywhere in the pool, call a professional.

Regular cleaning is required for any type of pool, but not all tools that are used for cleaning a chlorine pool are effective for a saline environment. Always make sure that your filter, skimmer and pump are kept clean.

You’ll need to maintain proper pH levels, manage stabilizers, sustain appropriate salt levels, and shock the pool when appropriate. Regular testing is critical to know what chemicals to add and when. Anytime you’re in doubt, engage the services of a pool expert.

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Trees to Avoid Planting Near your Pool

Planting trees near your swimming pool can aid in creating specific landscaping effects for a more inviting environment. In addition to leaves, some have pollen, blossoms, seeds, and fruits that will fall in the pool and add to maintenance costs. It will also make the pool unattractive and may even render it unusable. The following are trees you’ll want to avoid near your pool.

Evergreens

An evergreen may seem like a good alternative to traditional leafy varieties – until you consider that they shed needles at an amazing rate. Those needles can fall or be blown into the pool and carried in on damp feet. The trees also emit sticky pitch that’s difficult to remove.

Fruit and Nuts

Trees that bear fruits or nuts should be avoided whether they’re trees that are considered domesticated or those found in the wild. Fruits and nuts attract insects, wildlife, and present a hazard for people who can trip, fall, and be injured. Fruits and the husks of nuts will also stain pools, concrete and other surroundings.

Invasive Roots

Some tree species have invasive roots that actively seek sources of moisture – including your pool. They can grow through the sides of pools, erode the soil around the pool, and damage and destroy underground plumbing. Willows, aspens and cottonwoods are water seekers.

Big Bloomers

Trees that produce big blooms are beautiful to behold until they begin to drop their petals into the pool. The resulting debris can be considerable. Southern magnolias are well-known for their gorgeous blooms and messy aftermath.

Thorns, Spikes, and Spines

Some trees develop thorns as they mature, while others produce seeds with thorny coverings. Sycamores and sweetgum produce seeds with spiky coverings that are painful if stepped on. Hawthorns, honey locusts and acacias sprout thorns.

Messy Seeders

The catalpa tree is a messy seeder and the northern variety is even worse than the southern version. The long seed pods open to release clouds of fluffy seeds that can resemble a snow storm when blown about by the wind. Their flowers also create a mess when they drop and the seeds pods are unsightly when they fall on lawns and in pools.

Weak Limbs

Silver maples and Bradford pears are just two species that tend to have weak branches that break and fall in the wind. They can cause a significant amount of damage if the branch is large, while a continual rain of small twigs is equally annoying.

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pool cleaning

Pool Supplies Every Pool Owner Should Have

Many individuals choose to perform maintenance on their pool themselves. Keeping a pool clean, sparkling and healthy will require a familiarity with a range of chemicals and their proper application. There are also basic tools and equipment that every individual should have. The following are pool supplies that every individual should have.

Chemicals

Anyone with a pool knows how many chemicals are required to maintain pH balances, kill algae, and keep pools sanitized for a healthy environment in which to swim. There are also chemicals to shock pools, clarifiers, chemicals to remove stains. Test strips are also needed to determine if there are imbalances that need to be rectified.

Gates and Fences

Every pool is required to have a fence that children can’t climb under or over and an automatically locking gate latch to prevent drowning. It can also be helpful to place an alarm on the gate and specially designed pool motion sensors are available.

Pool Brush

This is an essential cleaning tool, but be careful to select the right head for the type of pool finish. There are brushes that are equally appropriate for concrete and plaster pools, while others are used for vinyl lined pools only. One of its most important functions is scraping algae off the side after the pool has been treated with an algaecide. Some are equipped with a magnetic edge to retrieve missing jewelry.

Pool Cover

A pool cover will keep debris out of the pool when it’s not in use and it’s an important safety feature that helps prevent accidents. Solar pool covers will use the power of the sun to help warm the pool water.

Skimmer

This is a flat net attached to a long pole, enabling owners to remove debris floating on the surface of the pool such as insects, leaves and flower petals. It’s also effective for reaching pool toys that have floated out of reach or that have sunk to the bottom.

Vacuum

A manual vacuum designed for pools allow people to reach the bottom, sides, and hard to reach corners to remove any slime, algae or residue that’s built up in the pool. A robotic cleaner is another option. While a robotic cleaner isn’t an absolute necessity, they’re very convenient and save time. The robots can clean the bottom, sides and even steps, depending on the model, while owners are sleeping or at work.

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pool cleaning

Things to Consider when Hiring a Pool Service Company

One of the easiest and most convenient means of keeping swimming pools sparkling clean and always ready for use is to hire a pool service company. A swimming pool represents a significant investment and it requires far more than dexterity with a vacuum to be a pool professional. The following are things to consider when hiring a pool service company.

It’s absolutely essential that the selected pool company holds a current license from the state, that only certified technicians are employed, and it’s been in business for several years. Make sure the company is insured, bonded and doesn’t hesitate to guarantee its work in writing.

Many people hesitate to hire a pool company in the mistaken belief that it will be too expensive. A reputable pool company offers reasonable rates and offers flexible maintenance and cleaning schedules. Some pools will require more attention than others based on multiple variables. Its money well spent for anyone that wants to spend more time enjoying their pool and less time on maintenance.

Pool companies will be required to apply chemicals appropriately to address issues ranging from maintaining pH levels to green pool cleanups due to algae growth. Fresh water swimming pools and salt water pools are maintained differently and pool technicians must have the knowledge and experience to rectify problems in either type.

Maintenance services encompass more than simply cleaning. Pool owners will want to hire a company that has access to the latest technological advances to detect leaks, perform acid washes, perform repairs, and provide resurfacing if needed. The pool technicians should be able to provide equipment maintenance and installations that includes pool heaters and filtration systems.

For those that have spas incorporated into their pool, the technician should understand the special needs of a spa and be able to offer the same type of services as for pools. A professional pool service company will be able to perform pool installations. It will provide equipment sales, pool installations and remodeling, and property management services for a complete solution for any individual or commercial enterprise.

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Pool Deck Materials Matter

The decking that surrounds a pool is an important part of the pool environment. It sets the tone, character and style of the swimming area and will be where tables, chairs, and other outdoor furnishings will be placed. However, not all pool decking is the same and there are some factors to consider when choosing pool decking.

The materials used in pool decking will have an impact on the people using the pool. Decking materials have function and performance requirements that are far different than an ordinary patio. A pool professional can provide invaluable assistance in choosing the decking materials that best fits individual needs.

Heat Retention

In Florida’s abundant sunshine, pool decking can soak up a lot of heat. The surfaces can become extremely hot and result in burns to the soles of the feet. Individuals have a number of materials available that offer superior levels of reflectivity. For those that have their heart set on a specific material, there are decorative overlays that substantially reduce the amount of radiation and heat absorbed.

Maintenance

No one wants to spend time on maintaining the decking when the pool is so inviting. Concrete is one of the most often used materials for pool decking and while there are pavers and tiles aplenty, they’ll can often require more maintenance than concrete. The selected material will need to be able to withstand constant exposure to pool chemicals, heat, and water without degrading.

Slip Resistance

Splashing and water spillover from pools are to be expected, but it can also lead to a very slippery surface that can result in falls and injuries. The decking can be hazardous for everyone and particularly dangerous for children, the elderly, and anyone that has partaken of alcoholic beverages. Footwear can fail to gain traction on wet surfaces just as easily as wet feet. Slip resistance should be a priority for every pool owner.

Space

A good rule of thumb for a rectangular pool is decking that extends a minimum of four feet on both sides and eight feet on the ends to provide ample space for walking and lounging around the pool. Some materials will cost more to cover the same amount of space.

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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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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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