My home pool is frustrating me and I don’t know where to turn.  Let’s explore the myths:

Myth 1: Sanitizer is bad

Many of us are not experts in chemistry, so naturally, we assume Google will make our pool clear, blue, and clean.  The problem is that a pool can be clean, clear, blue, look amazing, and be loaded with disease-causing micro-organisms.  Proper sanitizing should be the main priority. A pool without adequate sanitizer can turn green, grow algae, smell funny, and put people at risk for disease. Did you know children swallow four times the amount of water while swimming than adults do? Since many pools are outdoors they are exposed to the environment, dust, dander, pollen, birds, animal feces, and spores. Not to mention that humans no matter how clean we claim to be, still have bits and pieces of organic goodness on us, and guess where that ends up?

Myth 2: Salt Pools Fix Everything

Another misconception is that salt-water pools are Chlorine-free pools. Salt known by its chemical name is NaCl (Sodium + Chloride) and electricity takes that salt and turns it into Chlorine and Salt.  Your pool water feels smooth because it’s loaded with salt.  This same salt flavor though will corrode metal parts and electrical components around your pool. Residential salt generators are not strong enough to make up for huge pool parties.  They produce chlorine daily but it’s not massive.  Supplemental chlorine must be added, and shocking still must be done.  You must still test your pool water daily for safety.  The other part with salt pools is that they can harm fabric on auto covers.  Salt, when dry is rather sharp and running your new pool cover over it daily, can lead to abrasion.

Myth 3: Chlorine Tabs will fix everything

Will the white hockey puck that floats in my pool will save the day? To a point. Organic chlorine such as Tri-Chlor, or Di-Chlor is combined with Cyanuric Acid. CYA acts as a stabilizer so that chlorine lasts in the sunlight. (Think Chlorine Sunscreen.) Without CYA, UV light from the sun will break down non-stabilized chlorine in a few hours.  CYA can also build up in your pool making it almost impossible to correctly sanitize your pool.  Knowing how to test your pool is one of the best pieces of advice that we can give. Each time you add a tablet you are inducing more and more CYA.  It accumulates in your pool and the only way to quickly eliminate it is by draining a portion of your pool water and filling it up again.

Myth 4: pH Doesn’t Matter

Strong enough for a man, but pH balanced for a pool. pH balance is important since it affects how other pool chemicals work.  A low pH can cause chlorine to react more aggressively. A low pH can destroy your pool plaster, liner, or gel coat off your fiberglass pool.  Low pH can destroy your pool heater.  pH stability is regulated by total alkalinity (TA) and these two things can’t be adjusted independently.  This is why you find using a pH-increasing agent increases your total alkalinity.

Myth 5: Pools are hard to take care of

A correctly balanced pool is rather easy to take care of. It will remain clear and the water won’t be cloudy. A correctly balanced pool is an investment in longevity since if you get the chemistry right, your pool and equipment will last longer. This is why every pool owner needs to have their own pool test kit with fresh reagents on hand at home.  A correctly balanced pool will not smell.  When you can smell a pool that is a sign that your sanitizer is combined with ammonia-like products such as urea and sweat. This is a good time to shock the pool.  A correctly balanced pool will preserve your investment.

Please check out the new client video introduction below and see how we can get started with your pool.

Myth 6: My Pool is safe from electricity

The Pool Envy methodology involves looking at everything and because of safety, this is a requirement for all pools we service.  No surprises, we want to ensure pools have safe drain covers and GFCI receptacles.  A pool without a GFCI is an electrical shock waiting to happen.  GFCI means ground-fault-circuit-interrupter. When it senses the electricity going to a piece of pool equipment isn’t consistent, it will trip. Without GFCI, you could be shocked to death in the water.

Myth 7: Pipe size does not matter

Pool plumbing systems matter too.   Many years ago builders were not focused on water velocity, but as we have improved pool safety over the years, some pools may have plumbing that is too small to be safe.  Thankfully, it is very easy to change out the pipe on a swimming pool to larger sizes which improves energy efficiency and also safety.

Myth 8: Leak Detection is simple

Leak detection is a specialty within the pool service industry.  Pool Envy is one of the few pool companies doing leak detection on plumbing systems.  Pool plumbing is pressured and with equipment rated up to 50PSI, it can be very dangerous for DIY work.  The use of specialized equipment for finding leaks and the time necessary to find and narrow down to where a leak is located requires expertise.  We located and fix leaks only.  This means if a client hires us we will find the leak, fix the leak, and leave the pool in working condition.  We will not find a leak for someone to do a DIY repair.  Improper fixes are the leading cause of failures reoccurring.

Myth 9: Concrete Pools are strong

Concrete pools can be some of the strongest pools in existence if they are built correctly.  Rebar spacing and design should be done by a structural engineer.  Many pools we see today have reached premature failure due to cracking, improper concrete (not enough PSI strength), excess sand in the mix, and not enough cement.  Rebar must be embedded a minimum of 3″ and must NOT touch the ground otherwise it can wick moisture and cause rust and cracking.  Rebar must also wrap around the bond beam of a pool correctly and return back to the structure at correct intervals and distances.  There are many ANSI/ASME standards governing the quality of concrete pools.

Myth 10: Pool Plaster is a waterproofing layer

Pool plaster is cosmetic only.   A thick layer of pool plaster will NOT waterproof the vessel.  Cementitious waterproofing products should be used PRIOR to the application of plaster to ensure the pool will flood test successfully.  A correctly built concrete pool will hold water WITHOUT plaster for a period of time.  In fact, this is one way to test if your pool was built correctly.

Myth 11: Pool Smell is Chlorine

The often quintessential part of summer is that “pool smell” which many equate to Chlorine.  The smell is actually caused by a lack of sanitizer in your pool.  When Chlorine combines with organic compounds such as fecal material, urine, and sweat, it combines with chlorine to form Chloramine (Cl2) chemical formula.  These Chloramine products produce a distinct smell and they are bad for you to breathe.  Chloramine can cause eye irritation, and itchy skin, and aggravate asthma.  Breakpoint chlorination is also known as “shocking” to 10 times the amount of combined chlorine (this value needs to be measured with a test kit) will free up the Combined Chlorine and eliminate the issue.

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House on the market?

Don’t neglect your true blue asset – your pool!

Did we mention that we also do real estate inspections? If you’ve ever bought or sold a house, you’ll already be familiar with the seemingly endless list of things that need to be inspected and repaired before a transaction can take place.

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But first, the fine print

As much as we value having you as a client, we also value not getting electrocuted on the job. It goes without saying that loose wires and vast amounts of water don’t exactly mix, so do us a favor and let us get our electrical inspector to have a look before we schedule our consultation. Our friends and family thank you for not putting us in mortal danger.

Oh, and since we’re already talking about the serious stuff, we should probably also mention the Virginia Graeme Baker Act.

If you haven’t heard about this yet – it’s never too late to get up to speed. If you’re keen on safety and not getting fined for endangering other humans, this is a must-read.

Of course, you don’t have to worry about the specter of the VGBA at all if your pool is well-maintained, compliant, and in tip-top shape. One more reason to rely on us for all your pool renovations, equipment upgrades, water quality management, and winterizing needs. There will be a terms and conditions form that you will need to sign to start service.

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Residential pool safety risks

Swimming pools are death traps in your backyard waiting to kill you and your family.  What we don’t know can hurt us badly, and since there is so much that can go wrong, we should be on alert and seek quality guidance.

Pool Envy believes knowledge and education is the best tool for safe swimming pool ownership. All of us likely own a car and understand the responsibilities, right? Seatbelts, tires, oil changes, air filters, tie-rods, brake pads, and the list can go on, sounds familiar.  Onto your swimming pool, how many regularly check the ANSI/ASME or ISPSC or CSPSC or VGBA, NEC, DOE, Local Building Codes?

Swimming pools with a single main drain can cause suction entrapment injuries and drowning.  The VGBA act was passed in 2008 due to an accident where Virginia Graeme Baker drown in a backyard whirlpool.  More ironic? The law did nothing to force homeowners to make changes to their pools.  It did however push major changes in public swimming pools:  hotels, condos, schools etc.

Pool pumps draw a vacuum when they are pulling water from the main drain.  A body could get stuck over this drain and the pump will continue to run, trapping the swimmer at the bottom of the pool. None of us want that to happen, but many pools in the area continue to have these single drains.

Drain covers are the second issue after suction entrapment comes hair entrapment.  Children love to swim and often will do handstands in pools.  The problem is when long hair is pulled into an old drain cover and becomes entangled, the swimmer can drown.  A fun afternoon can turn to tragedy in a matter of seconds.

The VGBA requires manufacturers to have warning labels on covers, and while the public pool world must replace their covers regularly, many pools we see in the Brown County area are 20+ years old.  UV from the sun can damage plastic, bad water chemistry can cause the plastic to become brittle, and as time goes on the risk of accidents only increases.

Solving the problem is simple, just get rid of the main drain.  Many of these old pools have 1-1/2” plumbing that is very dangerous. Small pipes increase the velocity of the water and increase the chances of hair entrapment.  The answer is to slow it down.

One simple option that can be done is upgrading your pool plumbing.  Pipes are rather easy to get out of the ground, and upgrading them can not only save energy by allowing you to move more water slowly, but you also reduce the speed of the water which results in a low likelihood of entrapment.  Some pools can even eliminate their main drains altogether.  Pools clean best using the skimmers, and by adding additional skimmers you can have a cleaner pool and eliminate the suction entrapment risks with convention main drains.

NON VGBA drain cover
Non-VGBA compliant, flat drain cover.  These can lead to death. Replace them ASAP.  Ensure screws are always in place.

Inground Vinyl Liner Replacement

Vinyl liners do not last forever.  Good prep work is helpful in ensuring a near-flawless job. While many pool companies will toss in a liner and call it done, we go the extra mile to make it safe.  We ensure all liner replacements that we do involve adding dual-drains if the pool does not have them.  This is a requirement under VGBA law, that when the liner is changed, the pool must come into compliance per ANSI-5. If a pool company swaps a liner and does not ensure the pool meets VGBA then they can be held liable if an accident or injury were to happen.  It’s also just not safe, so we do not leave it to chance.

What happens during liner replacement?

  • Initial consultation & measuring of pool
  • Identify problems: electrical, drains, plumbing
  • Remove & Disposal of old liner
  • Prep pool for new liner based upon client consultation findings
  • Add drains, repair concrete in the pool, etc.
  • Installation of new liner
  • Vacuum secure new liner and add water
  • Go swimming, you not us!

Skin rashes, bad smells, asthma are all not fun. Clear Comfort can help minimize these from happening.

Clear Comfort is an amazing treatment system for oxidizing pool water.  It can help eliminate harmful disinfection byproducts found in your swimming pool. Think of it as a ‘real time’ pool intervention.  By eliminating these byproducts you can feel a notable skin difference. Your water will feel better, and it will look better. Your sanitizer will be able to do the heavy lifting doing what it does best, sanitizing your pool.

Forget about water – your pool will easily drown you in debt first

If you want a pool that costs nothing to maintain, you’re probably better off just digging a hole in your backyard and filling it with water. The truth about sparkling blue pools is that it costs a fair amount to keep them in that condition. We’re pro-pool, so we obviously believe that this expense is worthwhile (and you will too next time you invite friends over for a backyard barbeque and catch their wistful glances at your perfect pool). The trick to keeping these costs down is to get ahead of them before they heap up. That’s why we recommend booking a consultation and having an expert evaluate what your pool needs before the damage gets a foothold.

When you weigh up the cost of a $1000 consultation against $10,000 worth of emergency repairs and potential property damage, the former seems like a pretty good deal, right?

  • Major Equipment Pad Updates – Full Remodel
  • Property Preservation – Pool winterizing and safekeeping
  • VGBA Drain Installation – Single to Multi Drains
  • Winterizing 
  • Clear Comfort Installation 
  • Plumbing Upgrades 
  • Large Scale Renovations – Indoor and HVAC
  • Heatpumps – Raypack, Pentair, Aquacal, Jandy
  • Automation – Pentair IntelliCenter
  • LED Light Upgrades 
  • Chemical Management 
  • Concrete Pool Pads 
  • AquaMatic Automatic Pool Covers
  • Inground Vinyl Liner – Full Renovation Only
  • Pool Opening – Initial Start of Season Chemicals
  • Training and Chemical Management – Jason Davies, CPO, CPI, RWI
  • Water Quality Management
  • Plaster Repairs and Missing Tiles – Starting at $500
  • Leak Detection – Starting at $800
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Hear all about how we blew these clients out of the water

Allahyar Jazayeri
Allahyar Jazayeri
2022-01-20
Verified
Replaced our pool cover great job! Thank you.
Kirsten Weddles
Kirsten Weddles
2021-04-17
Verified
Jason was amazing and helpful!! He was able to correct my problem via FaceTime (I’m in FLORIDA!!) at 8pm on a Friday night in 10 minutes!!! Extremely knowledgeable and beyond excellent customer service. Thank you so much Jason!!! 10 stars from me!! ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
Jason Peters
Jason Peters
2020-10-21
Verified
Ryan Rodig
Ryan Rodig
2020-08-16
Verified
We moved into a new home in late Spring and had no experience caring for a pool. Jason at Pool Envy got our pool in working order after several challenges, and installed our new cartridge filter. Jason has always been responsive and patient with whatever questions we've had along the way, no matter the time or day. He is very knowledgeable and always provides thoughtful solutions and options to try. I would definitely recommend Pool Envy for anyone needing help with their pool!
Doug Andersen
Doug Andersen
2020-08-16
Verified
We had Pool Envy repair our ancient (1990s sand filter) after it split apart! A huge mess, and in peak poll season too. Jason at Pool Envy worked all afternoon to bring us a new filter to replace our defunct sand filter with a cartridge unit. We were very impressed by the fact Pool Envy had filters in stock and available mid-summer, but also the attention to detail with installation. The plumbing looks amazing! Thanks Jason, you got us going again, and the pool looks great!
Nicole Davies
Nicole Davies
2020-08-02
Verified
Tremendous help to first time pool owners!
Diana Zellner
Diana Zellner
2020-07-06
Verified
We were first time home buyers with a home with a pool! We were struggling with getting our pool chemicals correct and safe for our family. We reached out to Jason and immediately he went to work and helped us more than we could ask!! We highly recommend!!
Jason Davies
Jason Davies
2020-06-19
Verified
Jeff Kennedy
Jeff Kennedy
2020-02-22
Verified
During spring and early summer of 2019 we were having an extreme algae issue in our pool. Our pool had become a pond! I reached out to Jason and he came over, took some water samples and came up with a plan. In a matter of a week Jason had our pool crystal clear and ready to swim!! We have already scheduled Pool Envy to open our pool in May, 2020 with weekly treatments. I highly recommend Pool Envy and Jason.

Our work

The bluest pool on the block can be yours. Serve your friends and neighbours a healthy dose of Pool Envy today.