Monthly Archives - October 2016

Pool Heat Pump

How Much Should I Pay For a Swimming Pool Heat Pump?

There is so much information available for us once we decide to purchase a pool heat pump. There are many different aspects that need to be considered and will in the end have a direct impact on how much you should expect to pay initially and in the long run, we will go over some of these factors in this blog.

Initial costs

The biggest investment on a swimming pool heat pump would be the initial cost. Even though the operating costs of heat pumps are lower, many consumers decide against them because of the initial investment. Specifically, most heat pumps are available for purchase for between $2,000 and $5,000, depending on factors like swimming pool size. And to install your heat pump, you will need to hire a licensed swimming pool contractor, who will charge for labor and parts.

Operating costs

Heating costs vary with each swimming pool. The size of the swimming pool, the heating source, the desired temperature, the cost of electricity, and the outdoor environment will all affect your heating costs. In fact, heating costs vary so much that many companies are hesitant to provide specific numbers to their customers.

Heat pumps generally cost very little to operate because they are very energy-efficient. In fact, some consumers spend as little as $2 per day to heat their swimming pools. If you utilize a solar cover, you can usually heat your swimming pool for between $100 and $400 per swimming season. If you choose not to utilize a solar cover, you can expect to spend between $800 and $1,000 per swimming season. For specific numbers, you can take advantage of AquaCal’s free online heat pump cost estimator.

Maintenance costs

In order to optimize the efficiency and maximize the lifespan of your heat pump, you should hire a licensed heat pump professional to perform annual maintenance checks. AquaCal, specifically, offers a 20-point planned maintenance and safety check for Florida residents for $99.00. To learn more about this program, click here.

Repair costs

Like operating costs, repair costs of heat pumps vary greatly. Different manufacturers sell different warranties with their heat pumps. So, while one type of repair may be covered under one manufacturer’s warranty, it may not be covered under another’s. And, different manufacturers offer warranties that expire after different lengths of time. Some warranties are only good for one year, while others are good for ten years.

Heat pump repair costs can fall anywhere between $100 and $1,000. By regularly maintaining your heat pump, you can minimize your repair costs.

So there are four costs you should know about before you purchase a swimming pool heat pump. You should also research heat pump brands, warranties, and installation companies in order to ensure that you receive the most value for your money. Do you have any questions or comments about purchasing a heat pump? Leave us a comment below!

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Important Pool Water Maintenance Tips Every Pool Owner Needs To Know

Important Pool Water Maintenance Tips Every Pool Owner Needs To Know

If you have a pool and want to make sure you keep it sparkling all year long, then you must devise a regular pool water maintenance routine. One of the main problems with swimming pools is algae can develop, and when this happens your water will become contaminated beyond the point of which you can safely swim in it. This article will tell you about what good pool maintenance is all about.

pH Range

The pH level of your pool basically refers to how acidic the water is. A pool with a high pH (acidic) is very likely to become filled with algae. Your target pH readings are between 7.2 and 7.6 (the higher the number, the more alkaline your water…low number is acid, high number is alkaline). If you can keep your readings in this range, you will be able to keep your pool water maintenance in check and not have to worry about growing algae.

If your pool water has a high pH level (above 7.8), then your water is too alkaline and you should add some muriatic acid or sodium bisulfate. Sodium bisulfate is used more often because it’s much easier to handle and there are no problems storing it. Whereas, muriatic acid comes in a liquid form.

Chlorine Level

For ideal pool water maintenance with no algae, you will have to maintain proper chlorine levels. Chlorine is responsible for killing any algae that begins to grow in your pool. If you have enough chlorine, algae won’t grow. However, you should know that chlorine is very toxic. It is recommended to keep your chlorine level at 1 to 3 parts per million.

Algaecides

If you administer any form of an algaecide regularly, then you help to ensure the algae in your water will never start to multiply. For instance, one chemical that interferes with the algae’s ability to complete the process of photosynthesis is called potassium tetraborate, which basically starves it before it can multiply. You can thus use this as a great pool water maintenance solution.

Brushing And Patching

Another pool water maintenance task is to clean the lining of your pool regularly, as this also helps to keep algae away. If your pool is lined with concrete, you can use a steel brush to brush it, but if you have nylon liners, you must use a soft scrub brush. By doing so, you will manage to dislodge any algae colonies that might have formed. Eventually they will be drawn into the pool filter system and filtered out of the water. Proper pool water maintenance will keep your pool sparkling all year long.

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6 Unusual Tips for Pool Care

6 Unusual Tips for Pool Care

Keep your outdoor spaces sparkling with these easy pool-cleaning hacks.

If you have a pool, odds are, you know the usual maintenance tips — vacuuming, skimming, maintaining water and pH levels, changing filters — like the back of your hand. And you probably also know that keeping up with routine maintenance can be a real pain when all you want to do is enjoy your pool.

Here are six hacks you can use to keep your pool clean — and make your summer a bit more relaxing.

  1. Supercharge that skimmer

Skimmer baskets already do a great job filtering out leaves and other debris from your pool, but they also leave a lot behind.

How to make that skimmer work harder? Take an old pair of pantyhose and wrap them around the baskets. Hair, sand, and fine dirt are no match for the teeny-tiny holes in the fabric. Remember to clean out the baskets once a week, and skim the surface for large debris every few days or as needed.

  1. Natural bug banishers

Bugs are not only a nuisance to sunbathers and swimmers, but after they’ve buzzed their last buzz? A pest to clean up as well.

Whether they end up in your skimmer baskets or floating on the surface, keep them at bay by planting lemongrass nearby. The plant’s skin contains citronella, which helps ward off mosquitoes. If wasps and hornets are a problem, create a decoy wasps’ nest by filling a brown paper bag with plastic grocery bags. Generally, the stinging bugs won’t build a nest within 200 feet of an existing one (even if it’s a fake).

  1. Use baking soda

Baking soda is a powerhouse outside the kitchen — for cleaning, freshening clothes, and even cleaning your pool.

Check your pool’s pH levels once or twice a week and after a heavy rain. A pound of baking soda is equal to a pound of any alkalinity product and is a fraction of the cost.

Bonus: Make a paste of baking soda and water to clean the tile and grout in your pool. Do this about once a week to prevent algae from growing.

  1. Toss in tennis balls

From sunscreen and makeup to hair products and body oil, grime is bound to build up in your pool. Place a few new tennis balls in the water, or stick them in the skimmers so they’re out of sight. They’ll help absorb the oil, leaving you with crystal-clear water.

  1. Make bathing suits a requirement

A friend forgot a bathing suit, so he jumps in with his khaki shorts on. A pool party gets a little rowdy and soon everybody’s fully clothed in the pool. Your cousin has a sun allergy, so he swims in a T-shirt.

In small doses, clothing will do no harm. But fibers fray and dyes can bleed when in contact with chlorine, which can make your pool cloudy over time. Make it a rule that only bathing suits are allowed. (And maybe skinny-dipping.)

  1. Go au naturel

If you really want to cut back on your pool maintenance, opt for a “natural” pool. Most are made of two zones: one for swimming, which is lined with rubber or concrete, and a zone with aquatic vegetation that acts as a biological filter. A simple pump will keep the water flowing through either a gravel filter or the natural plant filter.

It may seem like a lot of work, with all those plants in your pool, but because it’s a natural ecosystem, it takes care of itself. You won’t have to monitor pH or chlorine — just skimming the surface and occasional vacuuming to remove any debris from the bottom should do the trick.

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