Blog Category: Pool Maintenance

Give Your Swimming Pool A Merry Chistmas Too!

Posted by: Pete the Pool Guy

Pool Maintenance Service Tampa Bay

With all the holiday shopping and running around you might forget your swimming pool.
Cooler weather affects your pool chemistry. You may want your friends to be green with envy over your lovely holiday decorations, but not over your green pool water. As a reminder, keep your pool's chemical readings in these ranges:

PH: 7.2 to 7.8
Alkalinity: 80 to 120 ppm
Calcium Hardness: 250-450 ppm
Cyanuric Acid 30-50 ppm
Chorine residual: 1.0 to 1.5 ppm;

Adjust down PH with muriatic acid. Never add more than a pint at a time. Re-test than add again as needed. As you add acid to adjust down the PH this should in turn cause the alkalinity reading to come down. Read your test kit guide; it has plenty of useful information and tips. Call your local pool store if you have any questions.
The temperature has a drastic affect on your swimming pool. In cooler months, the temperatures mean that you might have to pay more attention to your water chemistry and the clarity of your swimming pool water. It should be crystal clear all the time and swim ready.
It may be too cold for Santa to swim in the pool but it can still look beautiful to him as he drops down your chimney.

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Algaecides not Suicides

Posted by: Pete the Pool Guy

Pool Maintenance Service Tampa Bay

Pool stores have dozens of different algaecides -- one for every problem, right? Not Really! There are only four WORKABLE algaecides:

1. Chlorine
2. Bromine and some bromine compounds
3. 'poly-quat', and
4. Copper in all various incarnations

Packaged algaecides contain one of these products, or a mixture. So what works? For quick, TERMINATOR TYPE killing, chlorine does best. Copper goes into your pool in a many ways, ranging from 'ionizers' to algaecides to so-called 'chlorine-free' pool potions. No matter what you use, it stains pools and blond hair. (Makes your hair green!) So . . . what should you do? The easiest thing is simply to avoid algae in the first place. Want some algae preventing tips? Here are three: Brush regularly (weekly?), especially walls and deep end, to prevent invisible algae colonies from getting their start. Test your pool's sanitizer levels regularly and never, NEVER let chlorine get low. Make sure your filter is working properly, and that your pump runs at least 6 hours per day, preferably divided into two different intervals If you follow these simple rules above you won't look like a green-haired Goony and your pool will not make you want to pull you hair out.

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Do I need a Pool Maintenance Service?

Posted by: Pete the Pool Guy

Pool Maintenance Service Tampa Bay

Look, if you are able bodied the answer is probably no. Unless of course you want to see a young hunk in your back yard bending and sweating. Hate to give you statistics but the average age of a Pool service tech is 39 years old. Sorry ladies. Here's a tip; do it smart and your pool should take little effort. Promise! Maintaining a pool should take less than 1 hour a week. And your chemical costs shouldn't exceed $35 per month. (GET SALT AND IT'S EVEN EASIER AND COSTS LESS---WAIT …THAT'S ANOTHER POST.) Of course, rain and pool parties will all add maintenance time. And, if you are a really, really neat person, it will take you longer to keep the pool clean. Can you say "WHITE GLOVE SYNDROME" anyone?   So . . . what's the trick? Consistency, chlorine, and cleaning. Pools don't demand much, but they absolutely will not forgive you if you don't do what they do demand. Be consistent -- or be swimming in green! Chlorine has a bad rap, mostly by the uneducated. Chlorine does three functions: sanitizes, oxidizes, and kills algae. Also regular cleaning is necessary. Clean your pool and filter weekly. With the average Pool Service costing $100 per month, you can save some money and take out your honey even more times per month.

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Swimming Pool Testing - Houston, We Have a Problem!

Posted by: Pete the Pool Guy

Pool Maintenance Service Tampa Bay

If you have a chlorinated pool, you know that maintaining an adequate level of chlorine is the single most important element.
The best way to test for chlorine is also the cheapest and easiest.
There are three practical methods of testing for chlorine in swimming pools:
·        OTO drops which turn yellow in the presence of chlorine.
·        DPD tablets which turns pink.
·        SYD test pads on test strips which turns blue.
MY ADVICE IS THE TEST KIT --- THE OTO OPTION.
If your chlorine is too low, OTO will tell you by staying clear or turning pale yellow.
If you chlorine is too high, OTO will tell you by turning  dark orange to brown.
The other methods do have benefits.
If you use a hotel pool or hot tub, it's much easier to carry a baggie with a few test strips. Better than being quite ill.
But, for everyday  testing: "Is my pool reasonably safe and likely to stay clear?", OTO is best.
But, while OTO is good, it's still possible to screw it up!
Don't take your water sample from the very top surface of your pool or spa! There's oil from swimmers, debris from the air, and (often) no chlorine from the sunlight.

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Do You Add Chlorine at the RIGHT TIME of Day?

Posted by: Pete the Pool Guy

Pool Maintenance Service Tampa Bay

IF NOT, YOU'RE POURING MONEY DOWN THE DRAIN!
Adding chlorine -- calcium hypochlorite, sodium hypochlorite---to your swimming pool in the evening, instead of the morning can reduce cut your chemical costs BY 50%.
Yes 50%.  
Why?
At night, chlorine is working in your pool.
During the day, it is lost to UV in the sunlight.
When you are first starting your swimming pool or when need to 'shock' your pool (add a bunch of chlorine at once to clean up a mess) it's especially important to add in the evening. 
EVER WONDER WHY POOL MAINTENANCE COMPANIES COST SO MUCH?
THEY ONLY PUT CHEMICALS IN A POOL FROM 9AM-5PM. THEY USE A LOT TO MAKE UP FOR SUNLIGHT. WHO PAYS THAT? OUCH, YOU DO.

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