5 Techniques to Keep Pests Out of Your Pool

You and your family absolutely love your new pool. You can’t wait to invent new games, teach new strokes, and create new memories. And of course, you thoroughly enjoy cooling off in the water during the hottest summer months.

But you aren’t the only ones who enjoy a good swim in your pool.

Mosquitos, backswimmers, and water boatmen live for the water. Many more bugs, such as bees, spiders, and wasps, may try to drop in for a drink now and again, and they might not always come out.

Understandably, you don’t want these bugs clogging up your pool filter or stinging your children. So what can you do to keep out uninvited invaders?

1. Properly Balance Your Pool Chemicals

Most insects prefer fresh water, both for drinking and for breeding. Mosquitoes will not lay their eggs in properly treated water, and other insects won’t pause for more than a few seconds over undrinkable water. Furthermore, balanced chemicals prevent algae from blooming, cutting out a potential food source for pests.

If you don’t know how to properly maintain your pool’s chemistry, talk to your pool installer for information.

2. Cover Your Pool When Not in Use

Your pool cover does more than keep out your children when you don’t have time to supervise their swims. When used correctly, a pool cover reduces heating costs, slashes evaporation and water loss, and prevents insects and other pests from sneaking a dip.

If you find manually covering your pool every morning and night to be a hassle, consider investing in an automatic pool cover. Simply press a button and you can say goodbye to water bugs.

3. Remove Standing Water on Your Property

Standing water attracts a variety of pests, from cockroaches to mosquitoes to ants. Although your pool represents a large amount of standing water, your property could have other puddles, pools, and holes that bring the bugs and rodents to your yard.

Thoroughly examine your property for anything that could hold water. Wheelbarrows, discarded flower pots, old tire swings, and poorly drained sections of your garden could create the perfect environment for mosquitos to lay their eggs. Remove these items and talk to a landscaper about drainage to ensure your property remains pest free.

4. Trim Trees and Bushes Near Your Pool

Trees and bushes near your pool offer a variety of benefits. They can shade your yard on particularly hot days, create a striking focal point on your property, and minimize erosion in your yard from the splashing and draining.

However, these plants also provide homes for insects and pests. If you have any overhanging branches near your pool, the bugs may fall from their leafy habitat to the water below.

To minimize unexpected drop-ins, regularly trim your trees and remove overhanging branches. If you can, choose trees with minimal leaf drop, such as magnolia, holly, or olive, and avoid trees that shed large leaves such as oak or elm.

5. Plant Bug-Repellent Plants in Your Garden

Your surrounding yard and garden can act as your primary defense against pests and invading insects. With the right plants, you can repel unwanted bugs that would otherwise clutter up your pool.

Herbs such as basil and lavender effectively repel flies, moths, and fleas. Lemon thyme and mint also work well as mosquito repellent, and they’ll easily adapt to pots you can maneuver around your pool.

If you prefer ornamental flowers, look into chrysanthemums, which repel roaches and ants, or marigolds, which keep mosquitoes and aphids at bay.

Not sure what to plant in your area? Talk to a local landscaper about the best insect-repellent plants for your yard.

Enjoy a Pest-Free Swim

With the above tips, you can keep pesky insects and animals away from your pool. However, keep in mind that some pests may require professional help to remove, and some extreme infestation cases may lead to pool damage. Don’t hesitate to call in a pest control expert and your pool technician to restore your pool to swimming shape.

A Better Kind of Green: 6 Strategies for a More Sustainable Pool

Your swimming pool provides hours of relaxation, low-impact exercise, and even an increase in your property value. But it’s no secret that pools can cost a lot in energy and water.

Whether you want to decrease your home’s environmental impact or simply decrease your household power bills, you need effective solutions to make your pool as sustainable as possible.

In this blog, we list six strategies to help you start making your pool “green.”

1. Clean Regularly With Less Chemicals

Routine maintenance helps each element of your pool run as efficiently as possible. Keep up with routine maintenance, even if it means skimming the surface by hand frequently. Clean pools consume less energy.

If you have a chlorinated pool, stay on top of chemical applications so you don’t have to add any extra chemicals. If you are planning a high-impact renovation, consider switching to a more eco-friendly sanitation method, such as an ozone system.

2. Create an Energy-Efficient Landscape

The landscape of your backyard can have a huge impact on pool debris and evaporation rates. When you change the layout of your backyard, do so with sustainability in mind.

For example, plant hedges or build a wall to create a windbreak on the side of your pool that the wind blows from. This windbreak will decrease water loss and the amount of leaves that gum up your system.

3. Install Smart Controls

Programmable and smart pool features can ensure that you never use more energy than needed. You have a wide range of smart control options to design your most functional and efficient pool.

Common choices include programmable pumps, low-power systems, and single-touch activation for lights, heating, and water features. Learn more about these controls on 
our smart features page
.

4. Make Use of Your Pool Cover

Using your pool cover may seem like a hassle, but even a basic cover can diminish water loss by 97% and chemical use up to 60%. For an extra boost, invest in a high-quality insulated cover or solar blankets.

Insulated covers keep heated pools warm when not in use, making them ideal for daily swimmers. Solar blankets can actually start the heating process without your heater, which makes them a good choice during the off-season.

5. Opt for a Variable-Speed Pump

Your pool pump likely uses the most energy in your pool system, even if you have a whole-pool heater. Many pumps work at a single speed, which means that they expend a constant amount of energy throughout the day even when no one’s swimming.

Variable-speed pumps, on the other hand, can be adjusted according to the task. Slow down the pump when you get out of the pool, and speed it up again when you hop back in or add new chemicals.

6. Use Solar Heat

If you’re looking for a long-term solution that makes a dramatic impact on your pool’s sustainability, consider installing a solar heat system. Even if you have to combine a solar heater with a small electrical pump, the switch can greatly reduce your energy consumption.

Solar heaters are essential if you keep swimming during the off-season, when your electricity use can spike.

 

As you work toward a more sustainable household and backyard, consult with professionals. Your electrician and plumber can help you determine the highest drains on your power and water. Similarly, your pool contractor can help you identify the best ways to improve your pool’s performance without sacrificing a lot of energy or water.

Use these strategies to begin making your home a more eco-friendly oasis.

For more ideas for optimizing your home pool, browse our blog section.

Beyond Swimming Laps: 10 Ways to Exercise In the Pool

You’re thinking about getting a pool. You know your kids will use it often, but you’re not so sure about you. After all, you don’t necessarily enjoy swimming laps. Will you really use your pool enough?

Fortunately, there are hundreds of ways to work out in the pool aside from swimming laps. With such a wide variety of options, you can try a new pool exercise every day. Here are just a few examples.

1. Kickboarding

Swimming laps is a great exercise for both your arms and legs, but kickboarding is a fabulous way to focus solely on building leg strength. Simply hold onto a kickboard and kick your way across the pool. Kick with firm, straight legs for a faster speed.

2. Double Leg Lift

For another great leg workout, lean back against the pool edge and keep your legs in front of you in a straight line. Lower your legs and then bring them up again.

3. Aqua Jogging

Many people find that jogging in the pool is much easier than running on land-but it’s a similarly great workout. Just wear a buoyancy vest to keep yourself above water. Use your arms and legs to jog across the length of the pool.

4. Frog Jump

Stand in plié position, with your heels together and knees bent. Now, jump as high as you can out of the water. Finally, land back into the plié position. This exercise really works your quads and your buttocks.

5. Ball Lever

For this exercise, you’ll need a heavy beach ball. While holding the beach ball, lie on your belly and stretch your arms out in front of you. Quickly pull the ball underneath you toward your thighs, taking a breath as you head comes above water. Then bend your elbows and press the ball forward again.

6. Fly Back

Your arms will feel amazing after you perform a few fly backs. Stand in a lunge position, with one knee bent and the other leg extended behind you. Reach your arms straight in front of you, touching your palms together. Now, open your arms out to your sides. Finally, bring your arms back together in front of you. Repeat this move several times before switching your lunge position to the other leg.

7. Treading Water

You can work your entire body as you move your arms and legs to stay above water. Time yourself and see if you can keep treading water for five minutes, or even ten. For a variation, try bringing your knees into your chest and moving your hands back and forth to stay above the water.

8. Bicep Curl

You might find that lifting weights in the pool is much easier than lifting weights in the gym. At the same time, the water resistance makes you work harder, so you may get an even better workout. Holding onto a waterproof weight, curl your arms in, and then bring them out.

9. Pike Scull

Sit back and lift your legs into a V shape, keeping your head and toes above the water. To move yourself forward, cup your hands and move them in circles. Try to make it across the entire pool.

10. Spiderman

Face the pool wall and run up the wall with your feet. The hard part of this move is using your arms to keep your head above water. You can also hold onto the side of the pool to make the exercise easier.

Benefits of Pool Exercise

Many people enjoy exercising in the pool because the water’s support feels good on achy joints. It’s a very safe way to exercise and has a low risk for injury. Yet exercising in the pool is also a great muscle builder. The water provides resistance, helping you get stronger and burn more calories.

Invest in a home pool and you’ll be able to enjoy these pool exercises any time.

Luxurious Locks: 5 Hair Care Tips for Frequent Swimmers

As a pool owner, you know just how beneficial swimming can be for your health, energy levels, and mood. But sometimes, you just can’t bring yourself to go for a dip for fear of what your hair may look like the next morning.

Luckily, regular swimming doesn’t need to leave your locks looking dehydrated, droopy, or damaged. In this blog, we give you five guidelines that can keep your hair healthy and beautiful so you’re free so enjoy your pool as often as you please.

1. Apply a Protective Layer

If you’ve ever inadvertently worn lotion into the water, you know just how well certain substances repel moisture. One simple step you can take to prevent pool chemicals from penetrating your hair follicles is to apply a protective solution before you swim.

For a natural barrier, use coconut or jojoba oil directly on your hair. For a fast fix, choose a salon hair serum or sun veil. These products delay contact between harsh chemicals and your hair, which decreases the amount of natural oils your pool water claims.

2. Choose a Leave-In Conditioner

Even if you take all possible precautions before swimming, you may still experience some dryness and tangling just from being in the water. You can combat these negative effects, as well as the dullness that can come with them, by using a leave-in conditioner.

You can apply this conditioner to your hair when you shower off after a swim or use it as part of your regular bathing routine. As few as two applications can make your hair more manageable.

3. Rinse Your Hair Before Swimming

Whether or not you put a barrier between your hair and your pool’s water, you should get into the habit of showering before you swim. During this rinse off, wash out any hair products you have on and saturate your hair with water.

Pre-wet hair absorbs less pool water, which makes the experience easier on your hair color and style. Additionally, rinsing before you dive in keeps slick or oily hair products out of your pool, which helps you maintain its cleanliness.

4. Wash Your Hair After Swimming

When you get out of the pool, you may want to wash your hair to clear away any residual chemicals. The longer you let pool water sit in your hair, the more likely you are to experience discoloration, unruliness, or texture changes. On a daily basis, you can simply re-wet your hair, letting it fill up with clean water the same way you did before you got in the pool.

However, at least once a week during the swimming season, you should use a clarifying product. If you want a natural solution, rinse your hair using equal parts warm water and apple cider vinegar. Let this mixture sit on your hair for 30 seconds for beautiful shine.

For tried and true results, opt for a gentle clarifying shampoo from your favorite brand. This step clears away any debris and sets your hair up to renew its natural oils more quickly.

5. Wear Your Favorite Swim Cap

You can prevent many swimming-related hair concerns by wearing a swim cap while in the pool. A swim cap is the best way to protect particularly sensitive hair, such as color treated or permed hair.

If your hair is too long or too thick to fit under a traditional swim cap, put your hair in a braid after your pre-swim rinse. In a braid, less of your hair’s surface area comes in contact with pool water, which can minimize any negative effects.

 

Rely on the tips listed here to keep your hair shiny and strong, no matter how many times a week you indulge in a swim.

For more information about how swimming can fit into a happy, healthful lifestyle, browse our blog section.

Different Strokes for Different Folks: 4 Swimming Strokes and Their Benefits

As a child, you may have learned the most basic “dog paddle” technique to stay afloat in the pool. You’d splash around for a little until the effort exhausted you, and then you’d spend the rest of the time floating and relaxing on your back.

But as an adult, you need to refine your technique. Though the dog paddle works fine for beginners, more precise strokes help you glide beautifully through the water. Better still, each stroke offers different health benefits that can help you build muscle and burn fat.

Not sure which stroke you should try first? Take a look at the following to see what they can do for you.

1. The Breaststroke

If you haven’t spent a lot of time in the water, the breaststroke is a great place to start. With the stroke, your face stays above the water, so you know where you are in the pool, and you don’t have to panic about putting your head under the water. The breaststroke allows you to adjust your pace easily, so you can casually move through the water to build muscle or amp up your efforts to enjoy a good workout.

Although the breaststroke requires a strong kick to move you through the water, it primarily works the upper body, strengthening your forearms, upper back muscles, and chest. And as you sweep your hands outward and then pull them again inward, you also exercise your biceps, triceps, and trapezius muscles.

2. The Backstroke

Once you’ve mastered the breaststroke, why not flip over and give the backstroke a try?

The backstroke allows you to keep your face above the water, though your ears will submerge, helping you to slowly adjust to swimming under water without panicking. Should you tire during your swim, you can stop the stroke at any time and allow yourself to float on your back at your leisure.

If you spend a lot of time staring at a computer screen, the backstroke can help alleviate your back pain by improving your posture. It opens the chest muscles while strengthening the lats and upper back muscles. It pulls your shoulders back, and it tightens your entire core.

3. The Butterfly

If you feel ready to take your swimming to the next level, don’t feel shy with the butterfly. This powerful stroke is one of the best calorie-burning workouts you can do, and it quickly propels you through the water at an intense pace.

The butterfly stroke requires a lot of coordination between the arms and the legs. As your arms rotate through the water, you build powerful deltoid, trapezius, and bicep muscles. As your legs kick together, you strengthen your glutes and hamstrings. And the entire swimming motion develops your ab and back muscles simultaneously.

4. The Freestyle

Despite its name, the freestyle stroke doesn’t involve you freely kicking your arms and legs in whatever motion feels natural to you. Rather, this precise stroke is the fastest, most efficient stroke in competitive swimming.

Also known as the front crawl, the freestyle requires that you take a prone position, with your head in line with your trunk and your face looking downward. Though you can turn your head to breathe, your face will remain mostly underwater, so don’t attempt the freestyle unless you feel completely comfortable swimming.

But once you feel ready to tackle this stroke, you can expect an amazing workout. As your arms push and pull underwater, you work your triceps, deltoids, and biceps. To keep your torso in a straight position, you work all of your core muscles. As your legs kick to propel you forward, you build strong hamstrings, glutes, and quads.

Feel Free to Switch Up Your Swim

As you can see, each of these swimming strokes offers a lot of benefits, so feel free to try them all. If you need help perfecting your technique, don’t hesitate to talk to a swimming instructor for advice.

As these strokes take a lot of time to perfect, you may want to have a personal swimming pool to practice your technique. If you don’t have one, hire a reliable pool contractor to install a pool that helps you feel safe learning new strokes.

7 Ways That Learning to Swim Sets Your Child Up for Success

For many children, swim lessons offer one of the most enjoyable achievement-based activities of childhood. As a parent, you love that swim lessons encourage your child to be active and to spend time outdoors.

But did you know that the foundation of swim lessons, coupled with regular swimming in an at-home pool, can contribute to your child’s success throughout his or her life? Here are seven benefits that most children experience when they learn to swim early in their lives and continue to swim as they mature.

1. Boosts Confidence

Learning swim strokes does more than help your child cross the pool-it also gives him or her opportunities to learn about his or her innate strengths, fears, and emotions. Many children feel wary about putting their faces in the water initially. Choosing to face that fear and learning how to use his or her body to achieve a desired result can give your child confidence in all areas.

2. Contributes to Academic Performance

Several studies show a connection between swimming at a young age and high-quality academic performance. Swimmers tend to reach developmental and academic milestones before their peers. Additionally, the problem solving required by swimming helps children learn classroom concepts more quickly.

3. Creates Friendships and Cultivates Teamwork

If your child swims as part of a group or team, he or she is more likely to learn important social cues, build friendships, and participate in group efforts. Swimming offers athletes the opportunity to improve their personal performance while working as part of a team. This concept can help your child work better with groups within your home, at school, and at work in the future.

4. Encourages Lifelong Wellness

As we discussed in a previous blog entitled “6 Ways Regular Swimming Keeps You Energized, Healthy, and Young,”
swimming is one of the best forms of low-impact exercise available. Making a commitment to regular physical activity during childhood will not only help your child stay healthy during his or her youth, but it will also give him or her the tools needed for lifelong wellness.

5. Optimizes Mobility and Coordination

One of the reasons so many physical therapists recommend regular swimming to their patients is that it teaches and optimizes mobility and coordination. Swimming gives children the body control they need to excel in competitive swimming, other athletic endeavors, and everyday physical activities.

6. Provides Personal Safety Tools

Some parents enroll their children in swim lessons simply to teach water safety. You should never underestimate the importance of this benefit. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports that one in every five fatal drowning victims is under the age of 14.

Learning how to safely dive, float, and tread water gives your child important safety resources that he or she may need in your home pool, on vacation, or at a public pool.

7. Teaches Time Management

Because swimming requires preparation (like gathering supplies and changing into a suit) and a recovery period (for taking a shower and changing), it teaches children time management skills. Swimmers learn to account for all the steps involved in an activity, which helps them adjust to commutes, multi-step projects, and long-term projects.

 

If you already have a pool, ensure that your child knows how to use it safely and effectively. If you don’t currently have a pool in your backyard, consider investing in your property value, your health, and your child’s future. Talk to a pool contractor about your options today.

Swimming can bring your child hours of enjoyment, highly beneficial physical activity, and myriad other benefits. Set your child up for success when you enroll him or her in regular swim activities.

For more information about the benefits of pool usage, read our other blog posts.

Safeguard Your Furry Neighbors: How to Keep Animals out of Your Pool

Your pool should give you a source of fun and relaxation-and normally it does. However, sometimes animals see your pool as a source of drinking water, and they fall in. Ideally, you rescue these wild animals or pets before anything happens to them. You do not want your pool to become a source of sadness for your family, so you must find some way to keep the animals out.

Below, you will find a few strategies that assist in this endeavor. Use these tips to keep both pets and wild animals at bay and ensure your pool stays fun.

1. Install a Fence Around Your Pool

A fence gives your pool its first line of defense. Most animals will not venture inside if they encounter a barrier. A fence also gives you a great way to keep larger animals like deer, wild cats, coyotes, and others away from your pool. These animals cannot effectively jump or climb the fence due to their size.

Additionally, if you line the top of the fence with little spikes, even small animals will not want to climb over.

However, if you have a chain-link fence, smaller animals like squirrels, mice, and frogs could simply climb through the holes instead of going over the top. Luckily, you can install slats that run through the holes to create a sturdy barrier against these little creatures. Alternatively, you can also install a different kind of fence that lacks wide gaps, such as a vinyl fence.

2. Trim Overhanging Trees So Animals Cannot Get Over the Fence

Even if you have installed the world’s most animal-proof fence, it will not do you any good if animals can still use the trees to reach your pool area. If you have trees near your pool, trim them so local creatures cannot get over the fence and put themselves in danger. The same rule applies to nearby bushes, vines, and other plants that could give wildlife access to your pool.

3. Do Not Keep Plants, Garbage Cans, or Snacks in the Pool Area

Normally, animals will not pay attention to your pool because they can find food and water elsewhere. However, if you keep plants, garbage, or snacks around your pool, animals may feel more motivated to get into the area. Put these items somewhere else, even if you stash them immediately outside the pool’s fence.

4. Cover Your Pool When You Do Not Use It

If your pool has a cover over it, then animals cannot fall in. Instead, local wildlife and pets may find themselves stuck in your pool area overnight. When you do not use your pool, put the cover on it. Make sure the cover stays firmly in place.

5. Add More Chlorine So Animals Do Not Want to Drink the Water

In dry seasons, animals may seek out your pool as a water source even though they can smell the traces of chlorine. Warn animals away from your pool by increasing the amount of chlorine in your pool water. Of course, you should still keep the levels safe, but make sure the chlorine smell is strong. The strong smell should tell animals that the water isn’t safe for them.

6. Use an Infrared Deterrent

Most of the time, animals get into your pool area at night. However, if you have motion detectors or flashing infrared deterrents, these features scare the animals and keep them away from the water. You can also add supersonic deterrents as well-as long as you do not have pets. The high-pitched sounds will upset your furry family members as well as the wildlife.

 

If you do find a live animal in your pool, make sure you use a skimmer or other device to get it out. Do not use your hands, as the animal could panic and bite. Additionally, if the above tips do not work for you, talk to your local pool experts. They have experience working with different kinds of pools and the animals in your local area.

6 Pool Apps You Shouldn’t Be Without

Congratulations on your new pool! Your landscaper and designer did a fantastic job at selecting a pool that fits your style without overwhelming your yard. You and your family can’t wait to swim a few laps in its clean, clear water.

But maintaining a pool isn’t always as fun as swimming in one. If you forget to adjust the chemicals or hire a professional to check for leaks, your new pool won’t stay beautiful and pristine for long.

Fortunately, the following apps can help you monitor your pool’s condition so you know when and how to take action.

1. Insta-Link Water Testing

As a pool owner, you have to test and balance the water to ensure sanitation and prevent algae growth. But those testing strips can seem tedious and confusing if you lack previous testing knowledge or experience.

Insta-Link Water Testing takes the guesswork out of pool testing. You simply scan the testing strips with your smartphone, and the app will then give you simple recommendations for balancing your pool’s chemicals.

Availability: iOS and Android

2. Pool Pal

Pool Pal lets you enter your pool’s length, width, and depth measurements to accurately assess how many gallons are in your pool. From there, the app lets you set goals for your pool’s maintenance and tracks pH, bromine, chlorine, and calcium hardness levels. It even allows you to adjust your calculations based on water temperature.

The app works well for above-ground and in-ground pools, though you may have to adjust your measurements to account for any abnormally shaped pools.

Availability: iOS and Android

3. Swim University

SwimUniversity.com gives its readers numerous resources for keeping their pool in good condition, and now they’ve expanded their site to include a free, easy-to-use app.

The app, like the website, offers how-to instructional videos and articles that even beginners can follow. It also gives you extensive buying guides so you know which products will give you the most for your money.

Availability: iOS

4. Pool Cloud

Pool Cloud combines multiple services into a single center for all your pool needs. Like the apps listed above, it provides step-by-step instructions for maintaining your pool as well as video tutorials to clarify any confusing points. Additionally, it quickly calculates the chemicals you need to maintain your pool via its chemical brand database.

But that’s not all the app can do. It also gives you tips on how to handle special scenarios, such as when you leave for a few days or an accident requires extensive cleaning. And it helps you set up service plans so you know when to call your technician for a tune-up.

Availability: iOS

5. My Pool Doctor

Although many homeowners prefer to treat their pool with chlorine, you don’t have to stick to the traditional method to ensure your pool stays clean. If you have allergies or sensitivities to chlorine, you can use My Pool Doctor to calculate chlorine-free disinfection.

Additionally, My Pool Doctor gives you professional insight into what chemicals to avoid and what treatments you should never forget. With My Pool Doctor on hand, you can learn how to better care for your pool and avoid costly repairs in the future.

Availability: Android

6. Pool Genius

Pool Genius focuses on simplicity. As with other apps, it gives easy-to-follow guides and instructions, so you don’t have to second guess your maintenance routine.

However, the app takes your basic information further with in-depth articles on different filtration systems. You can then use the app to help you weigh pros and cons of these systems so you can make the smart
decision about how to maintain your pool.

Availability: iOS

Need Additional Advice?

While the above apps can help you monitor your pool, they can’t replace a professional. If you have further questions about how to best maintain your pool, talk to a pool technician and check our blog for frequent updates.

4 Must-Have Features That Will Make Your Pool Stand Out

When you think about installing a pool, you probably think about function more than style. You might want a regulation-size pool to keep up with your exercise regimen. Or maybe you prefer a shallow depth to make sure no accidents occur on your watch.

But once you’ve made the decision to put in a pool, you should also consider how this important asset can add to your property value. A small investment now can help you express your personal style, customize your pool to fit your needs, and greatly increase the value of your home if you ever choose to sell it.

With these factors in mind, read the rest of this blog to find out four important features you should think about adding to your pool.

Diving Board or Built-In Basketball Hoop

If your kids or grandkids grow up with your pool, they’ll learn to be comfortable in the water. But children who spend a lot of time swimming might also need some added sources of entertainment.

To keep your kids coming back to your pool year after year, install a diving board. Youngsters will enjoy learning to jump, dive, and flip from a certified springboard, and you’ll enjoy the boost to your property value this coveted feature provides.

Sporty children may also enjoy a basketball hoop designed especially for aquatic use. A downsized hoop and waterproof ball will let your family members and friends enjoy a rowdy game of ball without damaging the equipment.  And if you choose to put in both the diving board and the basketball hoop, prepare yourself for creative variations of one-on-one and shooting drills all summer long.

Waterfall or Artificial River

If your aesthetic focuses on the organic, a natural-looking feature may be just the thing to catch your visitors’ eyes.

A waterfall cascade or bubbling brook will help your pool blend in with the natural surroundings of your home. You can even pick stones and rocks to match the hues of nearby canyons. For animal lovers, these water features also provide you with the perfect location to store koi or other outdoor fish, and your pool’s heating system will help keep your underwater friends warm and comfortable.

Water Purification System

When you tire of pulling sludge out of your pool with a net or a manual vacuum, consider upgrading your pool’s cleaning system.

Today’s technology offers you a vast array of purifying and filtering options. Some, like automatic vacuum systems, are designed to conveniently save you time. Other mechanisms use natural cleansers to lessen your environmental impact. 

Whatever your current situation, when you update your pool cleaning technology, you add value to your home, and you spend money in a way that will enhance your quality of life and peace of mind.

Heat Pumps

The saddest day of the year for pool owners usually occurs when the first frost appears on the morning dew. If you find yourself wishing that you could enjoy quality time in the pool year round, purchase a heat pump to keep your pool usable throughout the year.

Though most heat pumps cannot take on sub-zero temperatures, many heating systems have proven useful in most temperate climates. The latest heat pump models also extend the life cycle of your pool without increasing your utility bill too much.

And, as an added bonus, potential buyers will love that your home offers them a pool that they can use for more than just the sweltering summer months.

 

You may not feel the need to upgrade your pool’s features right away–especially if you just installed a brand new swimming pool. But when you feel ready to take your pool to the next level, call a pool specialist for the latest technology and the most affordable prices.

8 Tips for Safe Backyard Pool Usage

As a proud new pool owner, you can already envision the relaxing summer afternoons you will spend in the water with your children or grandchildren. You already know which appetizers you wish to serve and which poolside accessories you want to purchase.

However, even though you feel excited, you also feel anxious. You can picture the potential dangers and problems just as clearly as you can imagine the fun. How do you ensure your pool’s visitors stay safe?

Below, you will find a few pool safety tips. Familiarize your swimmers with these tips to ensure everyone has a memorable experience in the water for enjoyable reasons, not ones that take them to the emergency room.

1. Do Not Swim Alone or Without an Adult Present

Even an experienced swimmer could accidentally bump his or her head or run into another situation that requires outside assistance. For that reason, no person should ever use the pool alone.

Additionally, even if children swim in groups, they must not enter the water unless they have an adult to supervise them. Their playmates might not notice in time if something goes wrong, nor would young children necessarily know how to respond to an emergency. A responsible adult should oversee pool activities at all times.

2. Take Shifts Being the Designated Lifeguard

Even if you have many adults in the vicinity of your pool, none of them probably pay sufficient attention to quickly notice and attend to an emergency. Therefore, you need to choose someone to act as lifeguard and take a break from socializing for a brief time. You can even have each adult at your gatherings take a turn.

3. Have New Swimmers Wear Flotation Devices

If some of your guests do not know how to swim, have lifejackets and other flotation devices on hand to assist them. They need something to keep them afloat just in case they slip or wander too close to the deep end.

If you do not own these devices, have a capable adult stay close to each child or inexperienced swimmer.

4. Remind Swimmers to Recreate Responsibly

People should not run around your pool. Nor should they dive if your pool does not go deeper than six feet. Your swimmers must not play roughly either, just in case someone sustains injuries and becomes trapped underneath the water. As long as everyone plays carefully and interacts responsibly, everyone will stay safe.

5. Keep the Pool in Good Repair and Report Any Problems

Filters, jets, drains, pool covers, ladders, stairs, and other parts should stay in perfect repair at all times. Sharp edges or strong drains could cause injuries.

In the same vein, you should also keep your pool clean by vacuuming out debris and chlorinating away bacteria and algae. You reduce your swimmers’ risk for illness this way.

6. Store a First-Aid Kit and Phone Near the Pool

Even the best prepared pool owners experience an emergency every once in a while. Make sure you can respond to that emergency by stocking a first-aid kit and a phone near your pool. Should an emergency occur, tell one of your guests to call an ambulance while you apply first aid.

7. Learn Basic First-Aid Skills

As a pool owner, you should know CPR and the way to dress a wound at the very least. Take first-aid classes in your area so you know how to help your guests if they become injured.

8. Install a Pool Cover and a Fence

Despite your rules and your warnings, children and other playful guests may try to use the pool without your permission. Ensure these rambunctious individuals do not injure themselves by sealing the area from their use. Use a pool cover to cover the water, and use a fence with a locked gate to prevent unauthorized swim time.

 

You and your family members can make fun memories, rather than stressful ones, if you follow the safety tips above. To learn more about caring for and using your pool, browse our other blog posts.