My pool is cloudy. What chemicals cause it to do this?
This is a common problem for pool owners. Cloudiness is almost always a problem with filtration. Most of the problems are with sand filters and pumps that aren't run often enough during peak usage. Sand filters are the easiest, but not the best filters for swimming pools. They need help. The way to clear up a pool that looks cloudy (green or blue) is to leave the pump running 24-hours a day for a few days, (depending on how efficient the pump is). No two pools filter alike and it may take some experimentation on the best amount of time to leave it on normally for the best looking pool you can have.
My pool has stains in it - won't the chemicals take care of this?
No. Chlorine has no effect on the stains in your pool. See our Staining section for further information.
How can I tell if my pool leaks?
The bucket test. Take a bucket or pot and fill it with pool water, place it on the top step so that it's exposed to the air. Make sure pets can't get to it. Mark the inside and the outside of the pot at the water level. If the pool water drops faster than the water in the pot, the pool is leaking. This will eliminate evaporation as a cause for water loss. The water in the pot will evaporate at the same rate as the pool. So if the pool leaks, the level will drop faster in the pool than in the pan.
How often should I change the sand in my sand filter?
Sand in sand filters should be replaced every four to six years because it gets contaminated with tanning oils, skin oils, dust, dirt and pollen from the atmosphere. Once the sand becomes contaminated, it will bind together and form channels that will allow particles (unfiltered) to pass through the filter.
Why do I need to have year-round pool service when I only use the pool in the Spring and Summer?
A statement from the City of Austin says it all. Pools lose their chlorine over the winter and although you may not want to pay to have it cleaned, keeping the chemicals in balance to ward off disease-carrying insects is important. Texas has very long summer seasons that sometimes last through October and part of November.
In the spring we see a lot of pools that have been neglected over the winter. Typically the owners just stop checking the chemicals when they are no longer using the pools. Perhaps they keep the chlorinator full. When we get the pool, the pH is acidic. That is the worst chemical condition you can have in a pool. It's much worse than if the pool's merely green. What it means is that the walls of the pool are being consumed by the low pH water. This will degrade the quality of the plaster and it means you will have to replaster much sooner.