One of the single most confounding problems homeowners face with their pools is water loss. Often times, this is due to a leak, one which might be small enough to evade detection. It could be hidden in a place that’s not easily accessible, like at the base of the steps inside the pool, even around a submerged, interior light, or, somewhere else that’s difficult to see.
More often that not, swimming pool water loss is due to evaporation. While this is completely normal, it can be more than just a natural phenomenon. Water evaporation is inevitable, and here in the Sunshine State, particularly along the coast of Sarasota, summer temperatures can easily rise into the mid 90’s. That amount of sun is enough to zap a pool of some water. As the months go by, water levels might begin to drop enough to be noticeable.
You might not think this to be a big deal, but water waste will always cost you in the end. It could be as simple as having to top-off your swimming pool, or, it could mean having it completely drained and professionally repaired. Even if it doesn’t seem that your pool is losing water, it likely is, and there are steps you can take in order to minimize waste.
Proper Swimming Pool Maintenance Tips
About two or three times per week, you should empty the skimmer and pump basket. These can easily become clogged and stoppage is detrimental to the system. Both of these can require more frequent cleaning, depending on the proximity of your pool to trees and other debris spreaders. Leaves, twigs, and branches are not only problematic to keep out of your pool, but also, these can contaminate its water, throwing off the pH level and balance.
Water bills can fluctuate quite a bit throughout the year and tend to peak during the summer when people water their lawns, turn up air-conditioning systems that use water, wash cars and even fill swimming pools. The good news is that there are reliable ways to reduce your water consumption, which in turn means lowering your expenses. As an added bonus, using less water also means reducing your energy consumption and lessening your environmental footprint.–U.S. News and World Report
In addition to routine pump basket and skimmer cleaning, you should also brush the sides and bottom of your pool. Even pools equipped with an automatic pool cleaner, this device does not remove all contaminate particles, however, it does loosen debris, which can be cleaned from the pool by brushing. About once a week or more, a leaf scoop ought to be used, along with adding a sanitizer, and a check of the water level to ensure the pump operates correctly. In addition to these, test and adjust alkalinity, oxidizer, and stabilizer levels.
Ways to Reduce Swimming Pool Water Loss
Your pool is certainly a wonderful and fun feature of your home. It’s where you go to cool off during those hot summer days and makes a great gathering place for cooking out and entertaining guests. However, it does require regular maintenance, but this can be reduced, in-part, by limiting water evaporation loss:
- Adjust the water temperature, if possible. If your pool is equipped with a temperature control, turn it down. During the summer months, when outdoor temperatures are high, this should be turned off. Warm water evaporates at a faster rate than cool water, which is an advantage that rainwaterprovides in lowering the temperature.
- Turn waterfalls and other features off when not in use. Though waterfalls and other features certainly add to the appearance of a pool, they also add something else — surface area. The more water surface area a pool has, the more evaporation will occur. So, turn off any water features when you’re not using your pool.
- Put a cover over your swimming pool. The single best step you can take to curtail evaporation and reduce water waste is to cover your pool. Manufacturers estimate that a cover can reduce evaporation by as much as 98 percent. In addition to this, a cover also reduces chemical and energy consumption up to 50 percent.
- Keep pets out of the water. You’d probably be surprised by just how much water loss occurs with dogs going in and out of a pool. The amount, if measured, is nothing short of stunning. Keep the canines out of the pool when you can to reduce water loss.
- Find and seal any leaks. This bears repeating and if you notice the water level drops by a quarter inch or more daily, you probably have at least one leak. These only worsen over time and should be found and sealed to reduce water waste.
In addition to these steps, you should only backwash your pool filters when it’s necessary — this process uses extra water.