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Pool Tips

Tip No. 1

How do I get my swimming pool water crystal clear?

We use a brilliant BioGuard product called Polysheen Blue. It’s a concentrated water clarifier, only 15ml needed per 10, 000l of pool water. We’ve been using it our pools in Durban North for 13 years and have never been disappointed. 

Tip No. 2

How do prevent my chlorine reading dropping to zero? Stabilise your pool water.

To protect the chlorine from being zapped out of your pool by UV rays from the sun, add SunShield stabiliser. This will help to keep a chlorine residual in your swimming pool water, even on Durban’s sunniest of days.

Tip No. 3

What should I do after my pool has just been re-plastered? (Marbelite)

The single most important thing to do once your pool has been re-surfaced and topped up with fresh tap water is to balance it. Every pool we re-surface gets balanced by us, on start-up, with calcium, Sodium Bicarbonate, and Stabliser. This ensures the proper curing and longevity of your newly plastered pool surface.

Tip No. 4

How often should I change the sand in my filter?

This depends entirely on how the pool is used. Do dogs swim in the pool? Do you have a high bather load, with lots of kids and lots of suntan lotion going into the pool? If you do, we recommend changing the sand in your filter every 2 years.

Tip No. 5

My Kreepy keeps getting stuck on the steps.

If your Kreepy or Pool Cleaner gets stuck in places in your swimming pool, there are a few things you can try:

1. Take one hose off

2. Put an extra hose on

3. Try changing the direction the aimflow jet is shooting water in

4. Increase the suction strength on the flow control valve

5. Try using a different pool cleaner to see if it works better - borrow one from a friend

Tip No. 6

How can I clean the scum-line off my swimming pool tiles?

We use a great product called Off The Wall made by BioGuard. It’s perfect for swimming pools as it doesn’t affect the water balance like house hold cleaners would. Easy to spray on, let the foam soak, and then wipe it off. (Older scum-lines are harder to remove, so the process may need to be repeated.)

Tip No. 7

My pool keeps going green after the rain.

Every time it rains or there’s a thunderstorm, a swimming pool can easily turn green for a number of reasons. We use a great product called BackUp by BioGuard. In the event that the chlorine in the pool gets depleted, BackUp helps algae prevention, which in turn saves you having to keep shocking the pool after rain storms.

Tip No. 8

How do I get my pH in my swimming pool right, and prevent pH bounce?

If you find it difficult to manage your pH readings, then it could be that your Total Alkalinity is very low. Increase your pool water alkalinity - 80ppm (parts per million) to 120ppm in Marble Plaster Pools and 120ppm to 160ppm in Fibreglass Pools. Have your pool water tested at a professional pool shop with a professional water testing station to get your water fully analysed. 

Tip No. 9

How often should I test my pool water at home?

During the summer months, we recommend that you test your pool water at least once a week. This will keep you in the know about your pool’s water balance and can help you pick up potential problems, like your pool going green or cloudy, before it happens. 

Tip No. 10

Is a Salt Water pool easier to maintain?

Yes, it certainly is. Salt Chlorinators prevent you from having to physically add chlorine to your pool water. So this not only saves you time, but also saves you money. Note that not all Salt Chlorinators are equal, investigate and purchase a chlorinator that is manufactured by a reputable brand. 

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Durban South Africa has a high concentration of swimming pools, even though the beautiful warm Indian Ocean is right on our doorstep. BLUPOOL swimming pool services recently exhibited at the House & Garden show, building a temprary concrete (not gunite, but hand-packed) swimming pool with colour changing LED lights, a few water features and a sunken fire pit inside the pool. Here's what it looked like.

 

 

 

uneven plaster and pitting in swimming pool

A swimming pool owner in Durban had some concerns about his swimming pool:
1. Possible Cracking in the Corner of the pool
2. Marble plaster discoloured
3. Marble plaster pitting and surface uneven in places.


Jason Sanders from BLUPOOL Durban, a member of the National Spa and Pool Institute of South Africa, attended to the pool inspection and reported the following:

Read More: Cracking and Discolouration in Gunite Pools

What causes cracks in swimming pools? Cracks can be caused by a number of issues, we’ll take a look at a few in this blog. Once a swimming pool is cracked, seek advice and remedial services from a reputable swimming pool builder that belongs to the professional association in South Africa, namely, the National Spa and Pool Institute (NSPI).

One of the fundamentals when building a swimming pool is to make sure the ground you’re building the pool into is suitable. Very often, pool builders who belong to the NSPI in South Africa have had enough experience to [read more] know whether the soil is going to cause a problem down the line or not. The second part to building a good, solid swimming pool is to make sure the specifications (or minimum specifications) are adhered to. For example, the NSPI in South Africa insist on a certain size and type of reinforcing steel depending on the size of the pool and the soil conditions. Sometimes the appointed engineer may request the builder to underpin the pool with piles to prevent the shell from settling or moving and cracking.

BLUPOOL, a reputable swimming pool construction company in Durban North, recently had the task of rehabilitating an 8m x 4m swimming pool which had cracked in several places. On closer inspection of the pool, we discovered that the pool did not have a ring beam around the top of the shell, and the shell had also settled. The movement caused long downward cracks in the swimming pool, and the pool ‘leaked like a sieve’. There were also places in the surrounding paving that the bricks had sunk into hollows in the soil.

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Our first activity was to drain the pool and uplift the paving around the swimming pool. We then opened up spaces next to the shell which would enable us to build reinforced concrete ‘pillars’ to which we could strap the shell. We then stitched the cracks in the pool with steel ‘staples’ and strong epoxy. Finally we cast a steel reinforced ring beam around the pool which would hold the pool shell in place. 

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Once we were happy that the pool was stable and strong enough to hold water, we re-tiled the scum line and plastered the pool with a good quality Marbelite (marble plaster mix). The preparation of the the pool surface before plastering is essential for longevity of the marble plaster. If done correctly, and with properly balanced water after the pool is filled, black algae, rough patches and pitting will not be in issue for many years to come. A good, well rounded pool company that is proficient in all areas of swimming pools (building new swimming pools, renovating swimming pools, maintaining water balance in swimming pools) will always balance the pool water after re-filling the pool and before handing it back over to the pool owner.

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Avoid the temptation of getting as many quotes as possible and going for the cheapest pool contractor. Nine times out of 10 this will backfire and end up costing more money a few years down the line. Unscrupulous pool contractors that undercut reputable companies will take short cuts without the pool owner even knowing. These short cuts will manifest into problems down the line, and the pool contractor can often not be found.

Do your homework, get a good pool contractor not a cheap one, and finally, happy swimming!