What you don’t know about your pool can hurt you

Do you know everything about your pool? Chances are you don’t. In this podcast episode we discuss how what you don’t know about your pool can actually hurt you.

Podcast Transcript:

Welcome to the Pool Doctor of the Palm Beaches online podcast. With your hosts, Holly Colasurdo and Elizabeth Varian.

Elizabeth Varian:  Hey everybody, Elizabeth Varian here with Pool Doctor of the Palm Beaches for our monthly podcast. I have Holly on the line here. Say hey Holly.

Holly Colasurdo:  Hey guys.

Elizabeth Varian:  Yeah, we’re all in the middle of-

Holly Colasurdo:  Happy December.

Elizabeth Varian:  … holiday season, yes. Kicking everything off.

Holly Colasurdo:  Happy holidays.

Elizabeth Varian:  Yes. Hopefully it’s a beautiful one, the weather has been going back and forth so we’re hoping it’s swimming pool holiday season, right?

Holly Colasurdo:  I hope so. I know Saturday we’re supposed to get a cold front, so for all of us northerners who live in Southern Florida, we’re ready with our sweaters and our boots.

Elizabeth Varian:  Yes, don’t mention that, we’re all be double bundled. Let’s get started. We have an interesting topic for today. We want to cover what you don’t know about your pool can hurt you. Together, Holly and I have compiled real questions that people have come to us, much later than they probably should have, and they didn’t think that the beginning events were actually a red flag to something bigger that was going on under the scenes or with their pool equipment. So, should be an interesting topic, because this has become common. The first question that we have is, “Why is my water so low? Can’t I just fill it up? Just pull that hose out and just add some more water?”

Holly Colasurdo:  Right, well most of the time after work as I’m driving, I’m trying to think, what do our clients think about, or people that aren’t our clients think about when they have a pool? So many of us do have a pool, so I try to get creative and I do most of my serious thinking, as I said, when I’m driving. I thought about that. I’m like, “What are they not aware of that could possibly hurt them?” Now, whether you have a service company or whether you do your pool on your own … Okay, so the first thing, the question we always get is, “Why is my water level so low?” Well, if it’s in the summer, of course it could be because of the heat. It can drain a lot of water from the pool. If it’s excess, then possibly be a leak.

That can hurt you, because if you don’t have enough water in your pool, and normally it’s the waterline tile, where the tile meets the pool, should at least be there. Then your pump can’t filter correctly. Then your motor is being extra stressed and taxed above and beyond, which can break down your equipment faster than the normal rate. So if you do notice that water is low, you can call Pool Doctor, your service company, have then come do a leak detection, which is important, because it could be something serious or again it could just be the heat.

Then that gets into our next thing. If you want to add water on your own, you have to be careful with that too. That question was if you add water, you have to be really careful, because then it can throw off the balance of the chemicals. If you’re doing it on your own, you better be balancing your chemicals once a week, and if not your service company is doing that, because that shows them what they need to add or what type of chemical they need to add, if they have to add anything. Weather becomes a factor, if we’ve had a lot of rain, lot of wind, lot of debris, that can throw off chemicals in your pool as well. It’s important to always keep your pool balance, especially if you’re swimming. Again, especially if you have some kids that are swimming. You want that water balanced all the time.

Elizabeth Varian:  Well, and probably if you’re filling it up, pay attention to how often you’re filling it up, because that leak detection is definitely something that can lead to bigger problems if you don’t catch it sooner versus later. Yeah, pay attention to how often that water is going down and you’re filling it up and if you have a service company or Pool Doctor, let the service tech know so that they’re aware of it sooner, so that you don’t end up with a major leak detection, which could end up being more higher dollar value of service repair. Now, one that I would have not thought of is there is constant debris at the bottom of my pool. I would think, “Well, just put the sweeper in and clean it up.” But that’s possibly something that another sign of deeper problems.

Holly Colasurdo:  Right, yeah. If you’re always seeing debris at the bottom of your pool, either your service tech isn’t showing up or you could be living under an oak tree that’s constantly molting, if it’s season.

Elizabeth Varian:  So you’d need more services if you have the trees hanging over, that makes sense.

Holly Colasurdo:  Right. You might need twice a week service as opposed to once a week service. Your filter could be dirty. If you’re doing it, make sure you’re taking the filter out and spraying it clean every time, once a week. That’s what our service techs do. Your motor could be down. It might not be working or filtering at all and it’s just sitting. Those are the things that your service tech will notice, if there’s no movement, if it’s stagnant, there’s no sound, if you’re not home, if you’re a snowbird. Those are all important things that we look at every time we go out and service a pool.

Elizabeth Varian:  Okay. That’s a good thing to be aware of. Again, when you’re in your pool, don’t just jump in and swim around, pay attention to various things. Now, this next one is common for new home owners that either decide they’re going to manage the pool themselves or they had no service company and they are just kind of figuring out the chemicals on their own. That one is, “I just bought the pool with a house … Or a house with a pool, I should say, and my pool is constantly smelling like chlorine.” Now, to the common folk, we’re thinking, “Boy, it’s clean, jump right in.” And you say otherwise.

Holly Colasurdo:  When you smell chlorine, your pool is actually dirty. Chemicals are totally off balance. You probably have to add a different chemical, maybe not even chlorine. Any time you smell chlorine, and you’re going to smell a lot of heavy chlorine, especially if it’s a commercial pool. There are a lot of bodies in there and if they’re not keeping up with it, which most of them don’t, because they think they can do it on their own or they misjudge the season and they haven’t had more swimmers than not, you’re going to add a lot of chlorine and it’s going to really smell too strong, and that’s detrimental.

Again, if you smell a heavy chlorine smell, your pool is dirty. You’re doing the wrong thing. You need your chemicals balanced professionally by a professional pool technician. A lot of people, do-it-yourselfers we call them, put the little floating chlorine tabs in the pool. You’re not really supposed to be swimming in the pool with that floater in there. I see people swimming around in pools with the chlorine floaters all the time.

Elizabeth Varian:  That’s not good.

Holly Colasurdo:  At least if you’re getting in, pick it up and put it on the side, and be careful where you put it. If you put it in the grass, it can kill the grass. If you put it on your beautiful deck, it can stain the deck. Pools are high maintenance. They’re a definite luxury, high maintenance. A lot of people don’t have that mindset. They think it’s just a big bowl of water in the back yard that they can tend to whenever they feel like it. That is just not the case. That will cost you so much money in the long run.

Elizabeth Varian:  It’s better to maintain than be preventative.

Holly Colasurdo:  Those are motors like in your car. They’re expensive. If you don’t change your oil frequently, your motor’s not going to last as long. Your car’s not going to last as long as you would like. Maintenance is a huge part. It’s the most understated, but your service weekly is the most important part in having a pool.

Elizabeth Varian:  Now, you mentioned with the discoloration of deck, that kind of leads into the next question, is why would I find discolored spots on my deck? What are some possible reasons there? Besides the floating chlorine thingy.

 Holly Colasurdo:  Well, deck staining is common. If it’s unsealed, you’re going to have deck staining, you’re going to have an oak tree maybe hanging over and that’s definitely going to stain your deck. Sometimes you can just clean it off with a mild cleanser and a brush, or you need a power wash. If your deck is stained, that’s better, sometimes not. It just depends on what tree you’re under or what’s going on in your backyard. When the deck is discolored, your service technician should see that and then report it to us.

Also, you have staining in the pool. If you see staining in the pool, it could be as much as having … If you have a pool heater in your pool and you just don’t use it a lot or you use it once a year when you come down from the northeast, your heater could be corroded. The water still has to flush through there and when it’s corroded, that can also leak stains on to the surface of the pool. It’s not just some bird flying by dropping droppings in your pool or one of those nuts from your oak tree, it could be the heater.

Again, your service technician should be aware of those things and checking those things weekly if you do have weekly pool service and they notice, then those things can be fixed and then the surface of your pool, you won’t need an expensive recleaning or resurfacing.

Elizabeth Varian:  It’s probably best to leave a note, just in case the service tech isn’t seeing that portion of a deck on the outside, just kind of leave him a note and let him know, “Hey, check this area, I’m concerned about it, and these stains inside. Be aware-“

Holly Colasurdo:  Call the office.

Elizabeth Varian:  Yeah, they’ll most likely see the stains inside, but definitely check to kind of make it aware so it brings to the attention, and you guys can help out with all of those. I want to thank you, it’s kind of a short show today, but I think

Holly Colasurdo:  I think that we got a lot in. I think we got a lot of good info in. Don’t discount your service tech. A lot of people don’t know their service techs. Get to know them. Walk outside. Say hello. They come from other countries or they’re from the United States, they’re very devoted, hardworking people with families. Go out and say hello. Get to know your service tech. That helps everybody. They’re not the underdog. In this industry, it’s easy just to discount your service tech. You don’t see them, you don’t really know if they’ve come. Of course, we have the tickets we put out by the pool equipment to say we’re there. Get to know your pool service technician and your pool service company. They’re there to serve you.

Elizabeth Varian:   Absolutely, and it’s good, because then you can go, “Hey, so-and-so,” pull you aside and just give them a note. They are coming, even though it’s your backyard area or the garden area, they’re still coming to your home, so I think that would definitely be wise to get to know them and I hope that during this podcast today that some of the questions that were raised, things that you might think to just brush off and not give it a second thought, that you’ll start paying attention to, like the water being low, debris, any staining, and the smell of chlorine, because the number one thing Pool Doctor wants for you is to be safe and to find things before they get out of hand with cost, to get them preventative versus big cost fix.

I hope everybody has a wonderful holiday season, and Holly, as always, thank you so much for joining us.

Holly Colasurdo:  Yeah, it’s fun.

Elizabeth Varian:  Yes, absolutely.

Holly Colasurdo:  We love the radio show and hopefully people are listening.

Elizabeth Varian:  Absolutely. I want to wish everyone happy holidays and see you in 2017. Goodbye.

Holly Colasurdo:  Thank you, bye.

Thank you for listening to our monthly podcast. Be sure to contact Pool Doctor of the Palm Beaches for your South Florida pool needs. Call 561-203-0270 or visit us online at www.poolspalmbeaches.com.

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