Tuesday, August 14, 2012

A little about pools

One of my followers, Maz is planning to buy a house on the beautiful island of Mallorca. It will be the retirement home for Maz and her husband.

It is likely that they will be looking to have a pool and so she asks, “What about the 'salt water' pools are they any better/easier to look after?”

By that I take it she means pools with salt water chlorination rather than a sea water pool.

I have no experience of salt water chlorination which I believe is very popular in Australia. My understanding though is that the system is not without faults and the people who maintain pools tell me it can be a pain in the butt. For one thing, the system does not produce enough chlorine for the summer so you have to add chlorine anyway.

Let me reassure you Maz, routine maintenance of a pool is pretty straightforward; you top up the water, test it for ph and chlorine and add chemicals as required. Keeping the pool clean means netting off any debris that is floating on the surface and vacuuming the bottom to remove dirt that has settled.

Occasionally things can go wrong and that’s when you might need the help of an expert either to give the tiles an acid wash, to change the sand in the filter or to replace parts in the pump house that have failed. 

Possibly the most serious problems occur where the builder has used flexible hose to connect the pool to the pump housing. Flexible hose might be easier to install but it will not stand up to the effects of chlorine. They really should use rigid pipe which is actually cheaper but they don’t because it is more difficult to install.

A number of people on our estate, including ourselves have had the pipe connecting the skimmer to the pump replaced with rigid pipe because that is the one which carries the highest concentration of chlorine. Of course, those who have sprinkled granulated chlorine into the water rather than use chlorine tablets in the skimmer box will probably still be OK. 

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