Monthly Archives

July 2021

Swimming Pool Bonding Requirements

By | Pool Safety Inspections

Written by Nicholas Tan and published on

Bonding is the process by which the electrical and metallic components of the pool are joined together with a wire to form a non-resistive path between the components. The goal of bonding is to connect, contain and prevent the transmission of any harmful electrical voltage to pool equipment, people and pets.

Bonding connects the pool’ s electrical and non-electrical metal components into a network that contains the electricity. The low impedance path back to the power source allows the harmful current to flow and trip the breaker at the panel.

Without a bonding system in place, you might conduct stray electrical current when touching the metal pool rail or pool water.

Equipotential bonding – do you know the rules?

Are you uncertain about your legislative requirements in relation to equipotential bonding in the ‘Wiring Rules’ in domestic and commercial construction applications?

Equipotential bonding is the act of bonding all the metal components in an area together to create substantially the same electrical potential, so that, under fault conditions, the difference in potential between simultaneously accessible exposed and extraneous conductive parts will not cause electric shock.

Australian Standard AS/NZS3000:2007 Section & outlines the requirements for equipotential bonding in a swimming pool/spa area as well as in domestic and commercial construction in a room containing a shower or bath.

If you are constructing a project in Australia or New Zealand and it requires equipotential bonding under the Wiring Rules, did you know that in a swimming pool / spa environment it is a requirement that all fixed conductive material within arm’s reach (1.25m) of the pool or spa’s edge must form an equipotential bond? This would include items like; the reinforcing steel shell of the pool or spa, the steel within the deck or under tiling, metal pool fencing or spigots, any metal lights, windows, downpipes, ladders etc.  Under the rules the connection point shall be located in an area that is testable and accessible and have space for further connections after the construction has been complete (Section  In a domestic or commercial environment, this would include the re-enforcing steel in the concrete slab or wall.

Conductor Hub Pty Ltd have developed a world first electrical safety device for wet areas that will save lives and ensure compliance.  After being part of the building industry for over 20 years, Em Ritchie said that her husband Austen had identified a need for a product to comply with the Australian Standard (Wiring Rules) for equipotential bonding.  To date, there is no product on the market that complies with the whole of the standard and that can be checked to ensure the safety of the installation.

The Conductor Hub is installed between the reinforcing steel before the concrete is poured and fits inside standard mesh without requiring any steel cutting to ensure structural integrity is maintained.

It is an Australian Made product made up of a copper bar, stainless steel zip-ties and a buss bar housed in a lidded base made from ASA, which includes a unique collar that can be sized to suit any concrete thickness.  The Conductor Hub has the ability to include multiple connection points either during initial construction, or over time as additions are made to a pool environment. These connections are encapsulated for safety and protection inline with the wiring rules which require all grounding points to be protected against mechanical damage and corrosion.

It is important that all contractors know their liability when it comes to the legislation.  With the new Wiring Rules set to be released later this year and equipotential bonding requirements to be once again included, it is a good time to familiarize yourself with the current requirements to ensure you are working inline with your legal obligations.

Mrs Ritchie believes that installing a Conductor Hub unit will give the contractor and the homeowner added piece of mind that there is a “safety seal” that can be easily tested and inspected at any time.

The Conductor Hub takes away the confusion and hassle of supplying compliant equipotential bonding, ensuring contractors are meeting their responsibilities and ultimately keeping families safe. It is a reliable solution to a known problem.

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Swimming Pool Chemical Guide: Keep Your Water Safe

By | Pool Safety

Written by Tracey and published on

Swimming pool owners enjoy crystal-clear water with minimal work. Fortunately, simply by using the right chemicals and following a structured pool maintenance plan, it’s easy to keep swimming pool water sparkling clean and free of contaminants. This swimming pool chemical guide provides pool owners with step-by-step instructions on how to use pool chemicals to achieve and maintain clean water that will extend the life of pool equipment while providing a pleasant and healthy swimming environment.

Swimming Pool Chemical guide to Keeping Pool Water Safe and Healthy

Swimming pool owners enjoy crystal-clear water with minimal work. Fortunately, simply by using the right chemicals and following a structured pool maintenance plan, it’s easy to keep swimming pool water sparkling clean and free of contaminants. This swimming pool chemical guide provides pool owners with step-by-step instructions on how to use pool chemicals to achieve and maintain clean water that will extend the life of pool equipment while providing a pleasant and healthy swimming environment.

Using swimming pool chemicals to properly maintain pool water involves five simple steps:

  1. Balancing pH.
  2. Sanitising.
  3. Shocking.
  4. Clarifying and algae control.
  5. Periodic cleaning and maintenance.

Step 1: Balancing pH in Swimming Pool Water

Pool water balancing involves maintaining correct levels of the water’s pH, calcium hardness and total alkalinity. This step is an important part of overall swimming pool maintenance as unbalanced water can reduce the effectiveness of pool sanitisers. When sanitisers are not performing properly, pathogens and other potentially harmful contaminants may remain in the water, posing a risk to the health of swimmers. Unbalanced pool water can also cause corrosion of pool equipment, staining and eye and skin irritation.

Swimming pool chemicals used to balance pool water include:

  • pH increaser and pH reducer
  • alkalinity increaser
  • calcium hardness increaser
  • pH Increaser/pH Reducer

The ideal pH range of swimming pool water is 7.4 ppm to 7.6 ppm. If your pool’s pH level is below 7.4, then you will need to add pH increaser. The active ingredient in pH increaser is soda ash or sodium carbonate. By raising the pH of swimming pool water, pH increaser reduces the water’s acidity. During ongoing pool maintenance, the required dosage of our pH increaser will depend on the water’s current pH level. However, the recommended initial dosage of our pH increaser is 1 pound per 45000 litres.

If, on the other hand, your pool’s pH level is above 7.6, then you will require the use of pH reducer. Containing granular sodium bisulphate, a pH reducer will lower the pH level to correct water conditions and improve the effectiveness of other chemicals. The recommended initial dosage of pH reducer is 6 ounces per 45000 litres.

Alkalinity Increaser
The alkalinity level of swimming pool water indicates the amount of alkaline material present in the water. Low total alkalinity can cause rapid and seemingly random changes of pH levels and can therefore decrease the effectiveness of sanitising chemicals while also causing irritation to swimmers and metal corrosion. As a rule, you will use alkalinity increaser when your pool’s pH level drops below 7.4 or when the total alkalinity drops below 80 ppm. Alkalinity increaser is available in granular form and contains sodium bicarbonate as its active ingredient. As for the dosage, 700 g of alkalinity increaser per 45000 liters will raise alkalinity by approximately 10 ppm.

Calcium Hardness Increaser
The calcium hardness level of your pool water is an indication of how much dissolved calcium is present in the water. A low level of calcium hardness, which is anything below 150 ppm, results in corrosive water. Calcium hardness increaser contains granular calcium chloride and a dosage of 2 kg per 45000 litres will increase your pool’s calcium hardness level by approximately 40 ppm.

Step 2: Sanitising

Pool water sanitisation is essential to maintaining healthy water as sanitising chemicals will eradicate unwanted contaminants which could otherwise cause cloudy water or transmit illnesses to swimmers. The two swimming pool sanitisers most commonly used by pool owners are chlorine and bromine. While both of these chemicals effectively kill bacteria, fungi, viruses and other contaminants, there are certain differences between the chemicals which will likely have an impact on which chemical pool owners choose to use.

To begin with, chlorine and bromine differ in the sense that bromine can function effectively over a wider pH range & is more effective than chlorine at higher water temperatures. While bromine breaks down much faster in sunlight than chlorine (more bromine than chlorine will need to be added to an outdoor pool), bromine tends to be less irritating to skin and eyes and is therefore the preferred choice for some pool owners. Bromine dissolves much more slowly than chlorine and must be added to the pool water through an automatic chemical feeder. Chlorine, on the other hand, can simply be added manually. The recommended level for bromine concentration in the water is 3.0 – 5.0 ppm, the recommended level for chlorine is 1.0 – 3.0 ppm.

Step 3: Shocking

The purpose of pool water shocking is to remove organic debris such as swimmer waste and perspiration from the water. This can be achieved using chlorine-based shock or chlorine free shock. Either way, shocking provides pool water with a high dose of an oxidizing agent which will destroy bacteria and other organic contaminants to leave the water clean and clear. The amount of pool shock required will depend on the size of your pool and the type of shocking chemical you are using. It’s important to always read the product instructions prior to use.

Step 4: Clarifying and Algae Control

Algae blooms can be a troublesome problem for many pool owners. Some algae species float on the surface of pool water while others attach to pool walls or floors. In either case, algae can cause cloudy and unsightly water that nobody will want to swim in. Fortunately, there are a variety of pool algaecides available that are designed to effectively kill and prevent the growth of many different types of algae. Available algaecides include non-foaming products as well as natural and non-toxic formulas designed to enhance the oxidizing power of chlorine-based shock treatments. Clarifying will also help to achieve clean, crystal-clear pool water by aiding the filtration of particles suspended in the water. By causing fine particles to attach to each other to form larger particles, swimming pool clarifiers allow the suspended particles to be trapped and filtered out of the water by the pool’s filtration system. In this way, pool clarifiers transform cloudy water into sparkling clear water.

Step 5: Periodic Cleaning and Maintenance

Once you have completed all of the above steps, your pool water will be ready for swimming. However, it’s important to continue with periodic cleaning and water balancing to ensure that your swimmers always have a healthy and clean aquatic environment. Dirt and debris can be removed through the use of a swimming pool vacuum while weekly use of a pool water test kit will tell you which chemicals need to be added to maintain balanced and sanitised pool water.


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How to Ensure Clean Your Own Pool

By | Pool Safety

Written by Kilian Allen and published on

Summer days can make the blue cool waters of a swimming pool look very inviting. But before you take the plunge, keep in mind that these pools may not be as clean as you think they are.WAIT. Dirty swimming pools? You heard right. You’d be surprised how much yucky stuff is found in a swimming pool, whether it’s a public pool or the pool you own. Things like pee, poop, sweat and dirt can all make their way into a pool. But don’t start draining the water just yet. This article will shed some light on how dirty a pool can get and the preventative measures you can take to ensure your watery haven is safe and sanitary.

How to maintain your pool

Keeping your pool looking good doesn’t have to be hard work. Regular maintenance once a week will make sure your pool is ready to swim in, when you want to. We’ll show you how to keep your pool clean, what things you’ll need, and how to check your chemical levels.

Tools and materials


  • Leaf scooper


  • Chlorine
  • Pool brush
  • Pool hose
  • Pool salt
  • Pool testing kit
  • Pool vacuum


1. Scoop leaves out of the pool

If leaves are left to settle at the bottom of your pool for too long, they’ll break down and stain the bottom of your pool. Simply scoop them out when they’re floating on the surface. This will also make vacuuming the pool much easier.

2. Brush the pool

After scooping the leaves, brush the floor and sides of your pool. Regular brushing prevents algae, removes dirt and keeps the pool surface smooth to ensure a long lasting finish. Have the pump running when you brush, so that any debris will be pulled into the filter, and removed from the water.

3. Vacuum the pool

Even after scooping out the leaves, there’ll still be debris left in the pool. Connect the pool vac and give it a thorough clean. This shouldn’t take too long and will leave your pool looking great.

4. Test your pool water

To keep your pool healthy to swim in, check the chemical levels in it once a week. Back wash the filter before you carry out the tests. There are several pool test kits that tell your pH and chlorine levels. Follow the instructions on the kits to conduct the tests and add the recommended amount of acid or chlorine.

5. Adding chlorine to the pool

If you need to add chlorine, there are several ways of doing it. There are liquid chlorines, powdered chlorines and chlorine tablets. The tablets make it easy to add chlorine to the pool. Simply drop the tablet into the dispenser, put the lid on and let it float in the pool. For the other chlorines, follow the instructions on their packages.

6. Tip for salt water pools

If you have a salt water pool and it’s been raining heavily, turn your filter off. Fresh rainwater is lighter than the salt water in your pool so it will sit on the surface. This means the rainwater will be drawn in through your filter and dilute your salt water and you will then have to add more chemicals.


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Swimming Pool Inspections: What to Check To Expect?

By | Pool Safety Inspections

Written by Admin and published on

With the help of a thorough swimming pool inspection, homeowners and homebuyers learn about the overall condition of a swimming pool along with its mechanical procedures. If a swimming pool is devoid of any inspections and is left unchecked, then any potential problems can lead to costly repairs later on.

So, what do home inspectors look for in a pool inspection process? Well, let’s find out in this comprehensive guide of ours.

Swimming Pool Inspections: What to Check When Buying a Home with a Pool


Seeking a new home with outdoor space for keeping cool, entertaining, and exercising? Many people are, and for these reasons, some house hunters see the advantage of buying a home with an existing inground swimming pool. With a ready-made backyard resort, you can begin enjoying a private aquatic leisure center on move-in day.

Many homebuyers prefer an empty yard to build a pool to their personal specifications. But for homes that happen to come with swimming pools already in the ground, take the right steps to protect your investment: Before closing escrow you will want to know about the pool and the condition of its structure and equipment systems.

Whether or not you’ve previously owned a home with a backyard pool, it’s important to arrange for an expert evaluation of the condition of the pool at the home you may soon call your own. Just like a house typically undergoes a professional inspection before escrow closes, so, too, should a pool and spa.

A thorough pool inspection should assure a potential buyer of several key issues, ranging from the elevation of the deck surface to the functionality of the pool pump.

Although some mortgage companies require a pool inspection before funding a home purchase, state or municipal regulations typically do not. In addition, while a good certified or state-licensed home inspector may add the pool onto his or her checklist for review, don’t count on it.

Even if your home inspector does include the pool, that evaluation may not be enough: Due to the complex nature of an inground pool’s structure and its specialized mechanics, pool-industry professionals strongly recommend hiring a specially trained pool inspector.

Swimming pool inspectors: Is it worth hiring one?

Before interested buyers complete the purchase of a home, they typically hire a home inspector to evaluate the house’s condition. Inspectors review a variety of elements ranging from the functionality of light switches in the bathrooms to the condition of the home’s foundation.

Inspectors provide a written report of their findings, which includes a list of any areas of concern. For example, the kitchen-sink garbage disposal may malfunctioning, or the paint could be peeling off the front door.

After the buyer’s inspector presents a checklist, the buyer and seller can negotiate on the items. The seller may agree to fix all or some of the items, the seller may provide a price credit to the buyer, or the seller and buyer may agree to a combination of repairs and credits.

If a home has a backyard pool, it too should be part of the same review process. However, not all home inspectors are well-versed on how to properly evaluate a pool’s condition, according to San Diego-based swimming pool consultant Rick English.

“A dedicated pool inspector can tell you a lot about what’s going on with the pool,” he says. “More so than a home inspector who might just have a checklist for a pool.”

English adds that swimming pools have a lot of complicated parts with which an inspector needs to be familiar, such as pumps, filters, and heaters. Many pools have additional equipment components and specialty accessories.

With this in mind, English advises potential home/pool buyers to check with their local chapter of the American Society of Home Inspectors (ASHI) for a referral to experienced swimming pool inspectors in their area. “Ask ASHI, and don’t necessarily just rely on a realtor,” he says.

Like a home inspection, a typical pool inspection might cost a few hundred dollars. However, highly experienced pool inspectors with more specific knowledge may charge a higher fee, perhaps as much as $600.

This level of inspection is worth it, according to English, especially if you receive an itemized report with dozens of pages of in-depth information that a homebuyer can use to barter for credit on the overall purchase price of the house and pool.

With this in mind, let’s take a look at five primary areas to examine during an in-depth pool inspection.

1. Safety features that meet local requirements

An inspection will determine if a pool complies with local safety regulations, which vary state to state and from municipality to municipality. Your pool inspector should be well-versed in any local regulations.

For example, a common pool-safety mandate is a permanent perimeter fence at least 5 feet high that surrounds any accessible perimeter of a pool. The fence gate should open outward and have a self-closing, self-latching lock.

Local regulations may also require that homes with pools have other kinds of safeguards, such as alarms on all doors and windows that lead to the pool; safety glass on any windows five feet or less from the water’s edge; a pool cover that can hold stable if a child walks onto it; or an alarm that activates if someone touches the pool water.

Remember, even if a requisite safeguard is not in place, there are ways to address this shortcoming. You can ask that the seller to either remedy the issue or provide you with a credit on the final purchase price so you can make the addition as needed.

2. Physical conditions of the pool structure, interior, and materials—and the deck

Some wear and tear on a pool may be easy to see. However, an expert will know what to look for in terms of deterioration. He can identify and assess the necessity and likely cost of making repairs or replacing certain materials.

Among the key physical factors to inspect are those you see every day, such as the interior finish. However, what matters too are the less-obvious ones, such as the grout between stones in the rock waterfall or uneven spots in the deck. Here are some of the key features your pool inspection should cover.

●  Interior Finish (“plaster”)

The finish that goes on an inground pool’s interior is usually referred to as plaster. The three major types are marcite (white Portland cement mixed with finely ground marble); quartz aggregate (a step up from marcite that includes granules of natural quartz); or pebble (the top tier of pool finishes with the highest durability, aesthetic quality, and price tag).

The finish on a pool should be generally uniform, and free of stains, major streaks, discolorations, or areas that are rough or mottled. Do note that some kinds of stains are relatively simple and affordable to remove, while others require draining the pool for a major acid washing to attack the unwanted blemishes.

You may see hairline “spider web-like” cracks. The good news is that these are normal with aging finishes. A professional inspection should help determine if any cracks appear to be serious or—in rare cases—are an indication of underlying structural issues.

If a pool does need resurfacing, English advises avoiding a cheap plaster job. “If a seller takes care of refinishing it, he’s going to want to go for the [more affordable] plaster,” he says. “Better for the buyer to get a credit for the job, and get the pebble or quartz because it will last longer.”

●  Tile

Colorful tiles are used along the pool’s waterline to help waterproof the pool structure at the perimeter and as a decorative element. Pool builders also set tile on any raised bond beam (walls raised above the pool surface) and areas such as the façade of an elevated spa.

It’s fairly easy to assess the condition of pool tile. The grout, the mortar or paste material between each tile, should completely surround each tile and be in good condition. Look for chips and any corners where grout has deteriorated and exposed a sharp angle. After all, you don’t want any loose tiles falling off or a curious child or adult playing with a corner edge and scratching their fingers.

It’s also smart to take a good look at all of the tiled areas, and scrutinize each section for any individual tiles that appear to have been replaced, but don’t closely match their neighbors’ color and pattern.

●  Coping

In some areas of the country, decking cantilevers over the pool’s perimeter edge. However, in most regions, pool perimeters have coping.

Typically, coping runs 12 to 18 inches in depth. It’s is a decorative element that comes in a wide variety of materials, including brick, natural stone, premade concrete coping stones, or colored concrete pavers. The expanse around the pool defines the pool’s shape, and it separates the surrounding deck from the pool structure itself.

The coping material should be stable without loose or seriously chipped pieces. The grout between each piece should be in good condition. There may be mastic, a sealing material between the coping and the deck, and this should be intact to provide a waterproof seal.

Your pool inspector will also look for coping pieces with stains or cracks. A number of major or deep cracks could indicate that the deck is shifting. That’s a potential problem, and your expert will advise if troubles could be minor or more serious.

●  Decking

Unless there is bare ground or grass lawn serving as the deck don’t overlook the hardscape that surrounds your pool.

Of course, you want to assess how the deck looks in terms of the surface, the color, and the overall condition of the stone, pavers, concrete, wood, or other materials from which it was built.

But you also want to look at the deck’s position. Is it pitched properly so that rainwater or pool-water “splash-out” travels away from the pool and off to a proper area for effective drainage? Or, are there any drains built into the deck to route away the water, and if so, are the drains clear and functioning?

Another common issue to look for is an uneven surface, notes Jerry Jackson, owner of Home Team Inspection Service in San Antonio. “Soil can settle and cause the deck to be uneven or even create gaps,” Jackson says. “That can be a cosmetic issue and it can also be a safety issue.”

In a serious case, large gaps of space between the deck and the ground below can lead depressions, or worse, lifting—a costly problem; depending on the deck material, lifting may require a partial or full deck replacement.

—Special advisory for saltwater pools:

If the pool has a salt chlorine system, you will want to check for possible damage from salt exposure, such as railings in the pool. Erosion can also occur on surfaces exposed to repeated splash-out water. Frequent victims of the salty splash-out include wood decks, unsealed natural stone coping, natural rock waterfalls, and plants in any landscape boxes or plant pockets immediately adjacent to the waterline

3. Equipment 

You will also want to assess the line-up and condition of the equipment that runs your potential new pool. If you were buying a used car, you would want an expert to check under the hood, and the same is a smart move for a “second-hand” swimming pool.

Now, during a pool inspection you can’t take equipment apart. But you and your inspector can take it out for a test drive. Turn on all of the systems, and observe them at work.

Check if the parts on each component are secure. Listen for any that make unusual noises that may point to mechanical issues. Do the systems appear to operate correctly by creating the desired effect, such as water circulating or lights activating?

The chief pieces of pool equipment that warrant you and your inspector’s close attention are those that operate key functions: the pump, filter, and if present, a heater.

●  Pump

A pump serves as the heart of a pool’s equipment system. It provides the needed water flow for filtration and circulation, which help maintain a healthy swimming environment.

The pump also helps operate pool features, such as waterfalls or pool cleaners. An inspection should ascertain that the pump is bolted to the equipment pad and that it’s free of leaks. It should be properly wired and grounded with a ground fault interrupter (GFI). The time clock should be working properly as well.

For your monthly utility bills, it’s worth noting the type of pump on the pool: Is it single speed, two speed, or variable speed? Two-speed units can save up to 70 percent on energy costs, and variable-speed ones save even more!

●  Filter

The pool filter captures dirt and debris from water passing through it. Filters fall into three categories: sand, cartridge, and Diatomaceous Earth (DE). The cartridge designs consist of cylindrical tubes of pleated fabric that sits inside a storage tank, and they are increasingly popular among homeowners for convenience and environmental reasons.

English says that he often recommends them to prospective buyers, and advises that for energy efficiency, the pool should be using the biggest cartridge possible. Large pool cartridges also save water, and the biggest models can go as long as a year before needing a cleanout.

A good pool inspector will make sure that the gauge on the filter works properly. And he will also check to make sure there are no defects in the clamp to the filter tank that could cause it to fail.

●  Heater

The pool you are buying may or may not have a heater. They are a costly item to purchase, so it’s important to take that into consideration if no heater is present and you plan on using the pool beyond the hot months of the year in your area. And if the pool comes with a heater, you want to know you that it’s unlikely you will have to replace it anytime soon.

The most common kind of heater runs on natural gas, although some regions and neighborhoods rely on propane. In some parts of the country, solar pool heating is a popular option; in others, an electric-powered heat pump is a common choice.

During a pool inspection, it’s critical to verify that the heater—like the pump—is properly grounded. The inspector will turn on the heater to make sure it is succeeding in boosting the water temperature.

Gas heaters come in different sizes. Your inspector will consider if the heater size is appropriate for the water volume of the pool, as that’s critical for efficiently and quickly warming the pool. With energy use in mind, be sure to check that the unit has a thermal efficiency rating of 90 percent to 95 percent.

4. Other features and accessories

If the pool has other optional design, comfort, and convenience features and upgrades, you will want to review them thoroughly. Whether it’s tanning ledge or alternative purification system, you want the condition examined. Here are some typical features and accessories.

●  Pool with a spa

Spas are a wonderful addition to most any pool. Test the spa blower and check that is has a properly operating GFI and is grounded. Check that it’s wired correctly. When turned on, does the blower appear to provide adequate air to the spa’s hydrotherapy jets? Check that each jet delivers a balanced, strong output.

●  Automatic pool cover

A superb safety and water-saving tool, an automatic pool cover is an expensive accessory you will want to be sure is in good working order. Does it open and close smoothly? Are any parts wearing out? What’s the condition of the cover material?

●  Automation

Your inspector will check that the base unit uses proper wiring, and they will advise you the number of different pieces of equipment and features is designed to operate. Each of the buttons and any group program should appear to work: For example, will the unit activate the lights, cleaner, pump, heater, and other equipment that it’s supposed to? Does it turn any water features on and off?

●  Remote control and/or remote platform

You may be fortunate to have a pool with the ultimate in convenience: An automation system that’s upgraded to work with a handheld remote or an internet-compatible PC or mobile app. If so, check their functionality. And if there’s handheld unit, perform a test to make sure it works from inside the house.

●  Diving board or slide

Accessories like diving boards and slides are fun, but if improperly installed or in poor condition, they can pose safety issues. Be sure your inspector thoroughly assesses them. If you want to consider removing the item altogether, consider how it’s attached to the deck on what the deck might look like after you have the item removed.

●  Water features

Fountains, bubblers, laminars, deck jets, cascades, spouted, waterfalls, and grottos provide flowing liquid flourishes to any pool. However, they can also leak. Or, the features may have some water missing its mark.  For example, a malfunctioning or poorly calibrated one could send some water off to the deck instead of back into the pool.

Bonus tip for natural stone waterfalls: Check out the condition of the grout used to hold the stones in place.

●  Infinity edge

If the pool has an infinity edge (also called a vanishing edge or negative edge), the pool inspector will check out the pool hydraulics to see that the recirculation to the catch basin is correctly working.

●  Multicolor LED lighting

Advanced LED lighting systems provide many, many years of energy-efficient illumination before burning out, so this technology is vastly superior to old-school incandescent lights and it rarely poses issues. But of course, your inspector should check that the LED lighting works, and that any color-changing light shows activate as well.

●  Advanced sanitizing technology

Inquire if there is technology on the pool that offers an alternative to traditional chlorine. Options include chlorine generators (salt generators), ultraviolet germicidal light, and ozone systems. You want to be sure the system is sized and properly plumbed into the equipment and is working effectively.

5. Equipment systems, infrastructure, and backyard conditions

A variety of other conditions and systems can affect an inground swimming pool. And inspection may uncover other issue or factors for you to consider.

Supporting the pool equipment and its overall operating are electric runs and plumbing lines. For example, your inspector will check that the breakers are properly labeled. He will check if the plumbing lines at the equipment appear to be free of leaks. He will check for bubbles in the return lines, which could be a clue to a suction leak.

The best inspectors might look at surrounding variables as well. Proper drainage is an important one. For example, if the pool is located close to the house, it is important to to note gutters on the roof. Why? Depending on their position, they may empty rainwater onto the ground below—where it will gather and likely overflow into the pool.

Inspectors may point out other factors. They might let you know that the wind coming off the canyon will constantly blow dust into the pool. Will the beautiful trees block much of the sunshine you want by the pool, or will the trees heavily shed leaves that you will need to clean out unless you have top-flight automatic pool cleaner?

Sealing the deal

Of course, you can always pass on the house with a pool. Many home buyers who want a pool prefer to find a house without a “second-hand” one, and instead hire a builder to design exactly what they want from the ground up. That’s always an option.

But if you find the ideal home with a pool already in place, be smart about obtaining a full evaluation.

With all of the intricacies involved in assessing the condition of a swimming pool, conducting a comprehensive evaluation without the help of a pool inspector can challenging.

By engaging a trained inspector or pool professional, you will get an expert’s highly valuable advice. You can  relax, knowing that any mandated safety features are in place. You will be confident that the physical components are in good shape and that major equipment systems are in working order. Or, you will learn if any structural or mechanical components may need repair, replacement—or in lieu of them, a buyer’s credit in the home purchase price.

“Get an inspection done that goes above the normal standards of practice,” San Antonio’s Jackson reiterates.

Yes, a pool inspection is optional—but it’s a process worth the time and investment. The result will be peace of mind and a new home with a stable, properly functioning backyard resort.

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Calcium Buildup In Your Pool

By | Pool Safety

Written by Admin and published on

Jumping into a nice, cool pool provides a great escape from the summer heat. However, swimming in a dirty pool can put a damper on the fun and keep people out of the pool. Stains occur naturally in a pool and require regular maintenance to keep them out. Sometimes, it can be fairly easy to get rid of stains, but other times, those hard-to-remove spots can take a bit more than a simple scrub. Pool stains on the wall or floor of a swimming pool can be caused by metals in the pool water, or by an organic material left in the pool. Your first clue to diagnosing a pool stain is to check out it’s color.

What to Do if Your Pool has Calcium Buildup

Calcium buildup happens to every pool at one point or another. We’re going to tell you what to do to get rid of the buildup so your family can get back to summerfun in the pool.

calcium buildup

If you see a layer of white or greyish-white grime on the sides of your pool around the waterline, that’s calcium.

Calcium can build up in your pool water when the pH levels are off and leave deposits on your pool tiles. It’s similar to what happens in your bathroom sink, toilet or bathtub.

If this happens, it needs to be taken care of right away. Calcium deposits aren’t going to go away on their own. If not removed, they can make your pool unswimmable.

It’s not easy, but you can clean up calcium deposits. However, the steps you need to take aren’t the same as removing calcium and lime from your bathroom.

Read on to learn more about how to identify calcium buildup, removing calcium deposits, and getting your pool water back to the right levels so your family can get back to swimming in your pristine pool.

Identifying Calcium Buildup

There are two types of calcium compounds that form in pool water and create scaling–calcium carbonate and calcium silicate. Both are caused by a pH imbalance. Your pool should be at a pH between 7.4 and 7.6.

If you have calcium carbonate in your pool water, it forms white flaky scales. It’s pretty easy to remove.

Calcium silicate, on the other hand, which is white-grey, is harder to remove. It takes longer to form, so by the time you see buildup on the sides of your pool, you probably also have buildup elsewhere, like in the pipes and filtration system. If this happens, you might need to hire a professional.

If you’re not sure what kind of calcium scaling you have, you can test the deposit. Place a few drops of muriatic acid on a sample. If the deposit reacts by foaming, it’s calcium carbonate. If there’s no foaming reaction, then it’s calcium silicate.

Lowering the Calcium

The first thing you’ll want to do is remove calcium from pool water. For this, you’ll need to partially drain your pool. The optimal calcium level is 200-400 ppm. A higher ppm causes deposits on the surface and cloudy water.

Then refill the pool adjusting the alkalinity. When you retest the pool water, the alkalinity should be lower.

It’s also a good idea to keep the chlorine levels at 2-3 ppm, especially as the weather heats up.

Adjusting the pH

The next step is to get your pool to the right pH and alkalinity.

If your pH levels are higher than optimal, then that means it’s basic. The water is over-saturated and wants to deposit excess material. In most cases, this deposit is calcium. So you want to add acid to balance it out.

Test the pool pH using a phenol red solution. It will turn different colors, depending on the pH of the water.

If the water is high, the add pool acid, a little at a time. Don’t add too much in hopes that you’ll adjust the water level quickly. This can make the pH swing in the other direction.

Typically, you should add 1 gallon of pool acid per 10,000 gallons of water. Then retest after 12 hours and make
adjustments as needed.

Once the pool water is at the correct pH, then you can get started at removing the calcium buildup.

Removing Calcium Carbonate

The best ways to remove calcium carbonate is to use a calcium releaser/cleaner, preferably an acid-free product, so it doesn’t ruin the finish of the pool tile or glass.

Next, you can try using a pumice stone or scale remover. What you use depends on your pool’s surface.

If you have tile or concrete, a pumice stone is perfect for removing scaling. It’s important that you keep both the pumice stone and the surface wet to prevent scratching.

You can also use a commercial stain eraser to remove calcium carbonate. Stain erasers make removing calcium carbonate deposits easy. They’re designed for specific areas and have an attachment to make it easier to reach areas.

If your pool surface is fiberglass, then you’ll want to use a scaling treatment. Most scaling treatments are safe for any pool surface. The treatment is added to the pool water. Over several weeks the deposits are slowly dissolved until completely gone. There’s no scrubbing involved.

Removing Calcium Silicate

Calcium silicate deposits are removed with a pumice stone and a whole lot of scrubbing. However, you can only use a pumice stone on tile or concrete. If you have a fiberglass pool, a pumice stone will scratch.

Your other option is to then use a professional calcium remover. It will dissolve the deposits.

You should first test the product to make sure that it doesn’t scratch or discolor the surface. With stubborn scales, you may have to reapply the remover several times until the surface is free of all scales.

Preventing Further Calcium Buildup

A great and easy way to prevent calcium buildup is by applying a calcium prohibitor or blocker to the pool tiles or glass. This protects your pool tiles and glass and helps maintain the longevity of your pool looking great longer.

Another great way to prevent calcium buildup is by maintaining proper pH balance in your pool water. You should test the water regularly, and make sure that the pH level is between 7.4 and 7.6. Keeping the pH from going basic or alkaline will prevent calcium levels from getting too high which causes deposits and scaling.

You may want to install a pool cover. This will prevent too much evaporation. As the water levels are reduced, calcium and other minerals become more concentrated.

Finally, you can remove calcium with a reverse osmosis water treatment.

Enjoy Your Summer

Don’t let calcium buildup prevent you from having a great summer. Be proactive and test and maintain your pool water regularly.

As summer approaches, if you notice murky water or scaling on the side of your pool, don’t wait to treat it.

You have a swimming pool in your backyard because you want your family and friends to enjoy it. The last thing you want is to have embarrassing calcium scaling or have the pool off-limits for weeks because the buildup has gone too far.

Yes, maintaining a pool is hard work. But if you take all these steps, you’re sure to have an enjoyable and carefree summer lounging around your swimming pool.

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