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Pool Chemicals

Spring is coming: How to get ready by Shocking the Pool

All Swim 16 inch rubber bristle brushAfter a few months of hibernation over the winter, the arrival of spring means it’s time to think about getting your swimming pool ready for the new season – and hopefully lots of fun and relaxation over the summer!

Before starting, it’s a good idea to make sure you have everything you will need to open up the pool, including:

  • A good leaf net and extending handle
  • Waterline or Tile & Liner Cleaner
  • Winter debris cover cleaner
  • Pool brush
  • Garden hose
  • Protective equipment (chemical resistant gloves & safety goggles)
  • Chemicals to put in to the pool (shock chlorine, algaecide, pH adjusters)
  • Test strips

Once you’re fully stocked up, follow the below step by step guide to opening up your outdoor swimming pool:

  1. All Swim waterline cleaning productsRemove surface water and any debris from the winter cover before taking it off.  Then carefully clean the cover, dry it off (towels or a leaf blower work well here) and re-package it ready for storage.
  2. Using your extending handle and leaf net, remove as much debris from the pool as possible and clean any tide marks at the water line using All Swim Tile & Liner Cleaner or Waterline Cleaner. To view our complete range of waterline cleaning products click here.
  3. If you removed the pump last winter, reconnect it making sure all the electrical connections are free from dampness – if unsure call in an electrician to do this step.
  4. Open any valves beneath the water line which may have been closed or plugged.
  5. Check there are no obstructions to the drains, the outlets and the pump strainer basket.
  6. If necessary, top up the water level so that it can be drawn in through the skimmer / skimmers.
  7. Prime the pump, turn it on and check that the filter, skimmers and drains are all working. Don’t be too concerned if the water from the circulation is discoloured at first. If the water level was too high because of rain over the winter, pump to waste.
  8. Run the filter for several hours, vacuuming out any remaining debris.
  9. Backwash the filter and top up with fresh water.
  10. Prepare your heat retention cover ready for use, cleaning off any patches of algae or mould.
  11. Check the pH and adjust to 7.2 – 7.6. Use All Swim Pool Acid if you need to lower the pH or All Swim Pak 2 to raise it. To view our complete swimming pool water balance chemicals click here.
  12. Lo-Chlor Knock-out Algaecide, Jelly Clear Cubes and Jolly GelDose the pool water with All Swim Shock Chlorine following the instruction label on the container.  This will kill off any algae and harmful organisms that may be present. Allow the water to circulate to ensure thorough mixing and if required, add Lo Chlor Algae Knock Out to get rid of particularly stubborn patches of algae.
  13. The final step is to add an algaecide to prevent algae growth. Long life algaecides such as Kleen Pool or Lo Chlor Pool Algaecide can keep algae at bay for up to 6 months, or if you prefer to dose it regularly, All Swim Algicide is a weekly treatment. To view our complete range of pool algicides, clarifiers and cleaners click here.

Once the pool is clean and ready for the start of the season remember to bring or send in a sample of your swimming pool water in a 500ml empty still mineral water bottle with your pool details and we can test the sample FREE of charge for you using a photometer to analyse the current water balance and we will then give you a free report detailing any recommended remedial action required.

If you are unsure of any element of swimming pool chemicals or water treatment please do not hesitate to contact us for further help and advice by calling 029 2070 5059.

Looking after your swimming pool

All Swim water balance chemicalsAs a new swimming pool owner you probably feel there is so much to learn and familiarise yourself with – this is true, but if you start out on the right foot, pool maintenance and water treatment will become easy to maintain in the long term.

The biggest learning curve with pool ownership tends to be the water chemistry, so we have put together a brief guide we hope you find helpful.

Guide to the chemicals in a new pool

A simple system to help pool owners learn about proper water balance is the Blue Horizons ‘BOAST’ system. This system will help you remember the key points in achieving safe, clear and clean water:

B  =  Balance your pool water for bather comfort and maximum chemical efficiency. This includes adjusting the pH level up or down as required, raising Total Alkalinity and Calcium Hardness when necessary. All the products you need to adjust your swimming pool water balance can be found here.

O = Oxidise to establish a sanitiser level then weekly to destroy waste compounds. Chlorine is the most common sanitiser used in swimming pools, which kills bacteria and keeps the water safe and clean. Shock Chlorine is used to raise the sanitiser level quickly (and to kill algae off if present). TIP: if the pool is heated, Quick Dissolve Shock does not need to be pre-dissolved, so will save you time and energy!

A = Algae prevention, stop algae establishing itself in your pool water. Using a long-life algaecide such as Kleen Pool or Lo Chlor Pool Algaecide will help keep the pool free from algae for up to 6 months. Or use All Swim Algicide for weekly dosing. To view our complete range of swimming pool algicides, clarifiers and cleaners click here.

All Swim water balance chemicals SSanitise, maintain a constant sanitiser level to prevent and kill bacteria. Stabilised chlorine (Cyanachlor) in the form of either granules to be pre-dissolved in water or tablets with a floating dispenser are used for regular dosing. To view our complete range of chlorine water treatment chemicals click here.

T  = Test your water frequently, you really don’t know what the levels are without testing! Test strips are extremely easy to use and provide an accurate reading of your water chemistry and there are also various test kits available to keep track of your water balance. To view our complete range of pool and hot tub water testing kits click here.

We also provide a FREE water sample testing service in our showroom, simply bring or send in a sample in a 500ml empty still mineral water bottle with your pool details and we’ll use a photometer to analyse the current water balance and we will then give you a free report detailing any recommended remedial action required.

If you are unsure of any element of swimming pool chemicals or water treatment please do not hesitate to contact us for further help and advice by calling 029 2070 5059.

 

Heatsavr is put to the test

An outdoor swimming pool before using HeatsavrHeatsavr, the original liquid pool cover, was first introduced to the UK leisure industry almost 10 years ago. During this time, a number of commercial pool operators and domestic owners have adopted the technology and enjoyed considerable energy savings, as well as the benefit of a simple pool cover system that works 24 hours a day. However, for pool managers and council heads who are in control of expenditure where the pool itself has limited controls, using Heatsavr may feel like a leap of faith as the energy savings may not be easily extracted. Furthermore the product is odourless, tasteless and completely invisible, tempting pool managers to wonder if it is working at all. It is unsurprising that some pool managers seek credible analysis to prove that Heatsavr really can save energy. However carrying out product trials can be expensive and time consuming.

All Swim's supplier decided to approach EEVS, the UK’s leading provider of independent performance measurement and verification (M&V) services for energy, water and waste efficiency products and services, to carry out analysis on a client’s energy data. The objective was to determine if, through independent verification, Heatsavr could be proven to offer customers a level of energy saving worth investing in. Pool boiler readings were supplied to EEVS by our suppliers client, Hoburne Holiday Parks in Torbay. The readings related to weekly gas consumption for the pool for a 13 week period between April and July in 2010 and 1 year later, in 2011, when Heatsavr was in use. Taking into consideration the external air temperature during these 2 time periods, Heating Degree Days were used to determine a base temperature on which to compare Heatsavr’s ability.

An outdoor swimming pool after using Heatsavr liquid pool coverThe Hoburne site in question was a deck level pool that had VSDs linked to humidity. There were no changes to the fabric of the building during the 2 time periods so no known external factors affecting the results. EEVS was able to determine from the data provided that the site had benefitted from a reduction in gas usage during the 13-week period in 2011 of 56,509kwh. Using a commercial gas price of 2p per kwh, this equated to a financial saving of £1130, equivalent to an impressive 21.7% reduction in gas usage. On a cumulative basis the reduction in gas consumption would be equivalent to approximately £4500 per annum.

The Hoburne site could have enjoyed even greater savings by reducing the air heating system at night when the pool was closed. The report does not evaluate the associated savings on water consumption either as this data was not available for analysis.

Based on a saving of 56,509kwh, the Hoburne site also produced the equivalent of 10.5 tonnes less CO2 during this time period, or 42 tonnes on an annualised basis. Heatsavr works by slowing evaporation from the pool’s surface. The Heatsavr monolayer spreads across the water and traps energy and moisture within the pool. In an indoor pool, energy savings relate not only to pool water heating but also to the ability to turn down the dehumidification system due to the reduced evaporation.

Click here to view our Heatsavr productHeatsavr has to be added to the pool on a daily basis to maintain its effectiveness. This is because Heatsavr biodegrades – it has what is called a 2 day half life – which means that in 2 days 50% of it has biodegraded.

The EEVS report is available from our supplier to anyone who is genuinely interested in saving energy and CO2 output from within their pool. Our supplier chose to work with EEVS due to their credibility within the M&V sector. EEVS was the first UK adopter of the International Performance Measurement and Verification Protocol (IPMVP), the leading global standard. EEVS is also certified by BSI to ISO 9001:2008.

In providing customers with the independent analysis that they have been seeking, All Swim hopes to be able to deliver energy saving benefits and ultimately, peace of mind, to a greater number of commercial operators and domestic pool owners across the UK. Pool managers and pool owners alike should have confidence in the findings and recognise that whilst invisible, Heatsavr continues to work throughout the day and night, saving energy and enabling you to focus on other cost saving initiatives within their site.

For further information on EEVS and the services offered, please visit www.eevs.co.uk. If you are interested and would like to contact All Swim for advice on energy, water and CO2 savings with Heatsavr please call us on 029 2070 5059.

Introducing Bayrol Active Oxygen chemicals, an alternative to chlorine and bromine sanitisers for your pool

Have you been looking for suitable alternatives to chlorine or bromine sanitisers for your swimming pool? Perhaps you suffer with sensitive skin and need a milder disinfectant for your water? Finding a suitable alternative to traditional sanitisers has never been easier with our Bayrol Soft & Easy range!

What is Bayrol Soft & Easy?

Bayrol Soft & Easy active oxygen pool sanitiserBayrol Soft & Easy is a combination of granules based on active oxygen and algaecide that helps provide your pool with reliable pool water disinfection whilst helping prevent algae growth. In addition, Soft & Easy also contains a clarifier for enhanced sparkling water. Soft & Easy features handy sachets that you can use directly in your pool’s water once a week - an even simpler way to enjoy safe, swimming water without the need for Chlorine or Bromine!

How to use Bayrol Soft & Easy

Before you start using Bayrol Soft & Easy you will need to ensure the pH value of your water is between 7.0-7.4. Once the pH value is in range add a double dose of Soft & Easy to get started.

For regular maintenance add the required number of sachets on a weekly basis to your pool. After dosing, wait for a maximum of 1-2 hours before testing the water with an 02 pool tester and DPD No4 tablet. The desired level of Bayrol should be at least 8 mg/L. If this level is not achieved, repeat the dose of Bayrol, again, waiting to test between the 1-2 hour time limit.

How to shock with chlorine when using Bayrol Soft & Easy

Even though Bayrol Soft & Easy is totally chlorine free, it is recommended that a periodic shock dose of chlorine, especially for use as a problem solver, is used with this system. All Swim Shock is an ideal maintenance shock treatment for use with Bayrol Soft & Easy.

Please note: household cleaning products must not be used in your swimming pool or surrounding area, always use specially formulated, swimming pool friendly cleaning chemicals.

Why Is My Pool Going Green & Eating Chlorine?

Green swimming pool caused by algae formationOne of the most common issues pool owners are facing at the moment is the pool turning green and having to then spend time and money rectifying the problem. But what causes the problem and how can you prevent it?

Algae loves the sun!

The green colour in your swimming pool is caused by the presence of algae in the water. When conditions are right, algae blooms and the pool turns green; having out of balance water, warm temperatures, sunlight and the presence of phosphates all contribute to algae growth but so does the lack of good circulation, filtration and sanitisation.

If it’s all starting to sound like a lot of hard work, fear not, it is possible to keep your pool clear and free of algae with a little commitment to the cause. It is really important to regularly monitor and test the chlorine level and to then dose the water with the appropriate amount based on the volume of water your pool holds. Another essential step during this weather is to ensure your pump is turned on and the water is circulating – not turning the pump on will stop the chemicals from circulating and allow the algae to thrive! Chlorine does a great job of sanitising the water, keeping it free from bacteria and harmful organisms. But when the weather is hot and sunny and the pool is being used a lot, the demand for chlorine increases, so you will find that your usual dose is not as effective and your water balance is suffering.

How do I clear my green pool?

There is a handy guide to looking after your pool available on our website as well as step by step instructions for How To Clear A Green Pool.

By maintaining your chlorine at a level of 1 – 1.5mg or ppm (parts per million) consistently you will dramatically reduce the chance of algae taking hold, and save yourself the headache of battling it!

Lo-Chlor Knockout Algicide and Starver XIn addition to chlorine you can also utilise other chemicals to make algae control a breeze!

Lo-Chlor Algae Knock-Out is highly recommended for stubborn algae blooms it is a heavy duty, copper free, dual action formulation, guaranteed to kill even the most stubborn forms of algae!

Phosphates are a major food source for algae, high levels of which often result in a recurrence of stubborn algae in swimming pools. By removing the phosphates from the water, the algae cannot survive. Lo-Chlor Starver X is an effective superior strength liquid phosphate remover for use in swimming pools.

Kleen Pool Longlife Algicide will maintain your pool free of most algae for periods up to 6 months. One simple application will free you from the problems caused by algae blooms; discolouration and hazes which can affect the appearance of your pool. When your pool is not being used for swimming, such as holiday times and throughout winter, Kleen Pool will keep your pool clear and free of most algae without the use of other pool chemicals.

Further advice on water treatment and calculating the volume of your pool can all be found in our Water Treatment Guide as well.

Our guide to opening your swimming pool this Spring

Opening your outdoor pool for spring – A step by step guide

Removing leaf debris with a swimming pool netAs we welcome the onset of Spring it is time for outdoor swimming pool owners to start getting their pools ready for the season.

If you used a long life algaecide, such as Winterclear or Kleen Pool when closing down your pool for the winter, you will hopefully now find the pool free from algae, which is one less thing to take care of. Here is our step by step guide to the process of opening up your outdoor chlorine pool:

  1. Remove surface water and debris from the winter cover before removing it from the pool. You will then need to clean and dry it before putting it away for storage.
  2. Using a leaf net, remove as much debris from the pool as possible and clean any tide marks at the water line using either our All Swim Tile and Liner Cleaner or All Swim Waterline Cleaner.
  3. If you removed the pump over the winter, you will need to reconnect the circulation pump – making sure all electrical connections are free from dampness. If in any doubt, be sure to contact an electrician.
  4. Open up any valves beneath the water line which may have been closed or plugged.
  5. Check there are no obstructions to the drains, the outlets and the pump strainer basket.
  6. If necessary, top up the water level so that it can be drawn in through the skimmer/skimmers.
  7. Prime the pump, turn it on and check that the filter, skimmers and drains are all working. The water may be discoloured initially, which is common and no cause for alarm! If you find the water level is too high due to winter rainfall, you will need to pump it to waste.
  8. Run the filter for several hours, vacuuming out any remaining debris. Backwash the filter and top up with fresh water.
  9. Prepare your heat retention cover for use, cleaning off any patches of algae or mould.
  10. All Swim pool chemicalsCheck the pH and if necessary adjust to within the 7.2 – 7.6 range. pH is increased by the use of PAK 2 and lowered by using Pool Acid, both of which can be found in the Water Balance Section on our website
  11. Next you will need to give your pool a good dose of our Shock Chlorine Granules which is essential to kill off any algae and harmful organisms that may be present. Allow the water to circulate to ensure the shock chlorine is thoroughly distributed.
  12. If there are any stubborn algae patches, using our Lo-Chlor Knock Out Algaecide will help remove them.
  13. Adding an algaecide will help keep your pool free from unsightly algae during the season. Long-life algaecides will keep the pool algae-free for up to 6 months, or alternatively All Swim Algicide is a weekly treatment if you prefer regular dosing. Our full range of Algaecides and Clarifiers are perfect for these types of treatments.

And finally...time to pray for some sunshine, so you can enjoy your outdoor pool to the max this season!

If you need any advice regarding maintaining your swimming pool, feel free to contact us on 02920 705059, email us on sales@allswimltd.com or pop in to the showroom!

How to remove unwanted metal stains on swimming pools

Metal stains in your swimming pool.

Lo-Chlor No More Metal and Multi Stain RemoverMetal stains can be an unsightly and problematic issue on your swimming pool and occurs when water has lots of metal components in it. This can be caused by metal components in the pool (like pool ladders) rusting and degrading, accidental metal contamination from around the pool (your local builder dropping a few roofing nails) or even, if your pool water is sourced from a well or spring, metal compounds already present in the water (like iron and copper). The stains typically look black, green, rusty brown, orange, or yellow and can appear on the bottom or walls of your swimming pool, along vinyl liners or fibreglass pools and on steps or other pool equipment.

Don’t panic though! Removing these metal stains can be done with our specialist range of Lo-Chlor chemicals, even if a few repeated treatments are required.

How do I clear and prevent metal stains in my swimming pool?

Firstly you will need to treat your swimming pool with our Lo-Chlor Multi Stain Remover, specifically designed to remove iron, copper, manganese, tanning and cobalt (black stains present on fibreglass pools) and even rust from the floor and walls of your pool.

To begin the treatment you will need to reduce the chlorine level in your pool to 0ppm and adjust the pH level to between 7.2 and 7.6 pH. If the stain is present in a localised area of the pool you can apply the Multi Stain Remover as close to the stain as possible to help with removal, if the problem is widespread then apply the product evenly over the swimming pool surface. Always ensure your swimming pool pump is running when treating as this will help lift the stains from the pool surfaces.

Once you have treated your pool with the stain remover it is important to follow this with an application of Lo-Chlor No More Metal as this acts as a sequestering agent for any metal stains lifted from the pool surfaces that will now be trapped in solution in the pool water. Adding this to the water helps your pool filter trap any metal particles for safe removal during backwash. You should run the pump and pool filter for at least 12 hours after treatment of No More Metal, if the stains are particularly problematic run for 24 hours.

I’ve treated my pool but I still have some stains. What next?

After treating with Lo-Chlor Multi Stain Remover and No More Metal some metal stains can respond well to backwashing your filter thoroughly and brushing all of the surfaces affected by the metal staining. Follow this with a second treatment of Lo-Chlor No More Metal and run the pump and pool filter for at least 12 hours, longer if necessary. If the metal stains have been removed make sure you backwash the filter thoroughly. If the stains are still present you can try to rebrush the affected areas and apply another dose of No More Metal and repeat the backwashing and brushing steps.

If the metal stains are still present on the pool surfaces you will may need to start the Multi Stain Remover and No More Metal treatment again. Be patient! Multiple treatments of tough metal stains do respond well to this treatment, always ensure that you treat with the correct water balances outlined on the dosing instructions.

Need more help or advice?

If you are unsure about the suitability of using any specialist chemical treatments on your pool please don't hesitate to get in touch with us on 029 20 70 5059. Alternatively you can find more information on removing stains from your swimming pool by visiting the Lo-Chlor website.

Understanding water balance in your swimming pool and hot tub

Chlorine

All Swim stabilisedchlorine granulesWhen chlorine is added to pool or spa water a portion is consumed in the process when it destroys bacteria, algae and other contaminants introduced to the swimming pool or hot tub water. The amount of chlorine consumed is known as chlorine demand. Sunlight, bacteria, perspiration, urine, algae, make up, fake tan and many other forms of debris all create this chlorine demand.

Once this initial demand has been met, the chlorine that remains in the water is referred to as the total residual chlorine, which is a combination of free available chlorine and combined chlorine. The free available chlorine is the active chlorine that’s left to kill any new contaminants entering the pool or spa. Combined chlorine is tied up in nitrogen and ammonia compounds referred to as chloramines, which remain in the water from organic waste from swimmers and bathers. Chloramines are responsible for eye irritation and the chlorine odor that some people find offensive. When chlorine is tied up in chloramines it loses most of it’s effectiveness as a sanitiser.

To keep a swimming pool or hot tub sanitary with chlorine it is necessary to maintain the following free chlorine residuals:

  • Residential Pools between 1.0 and 3.0ppm
  • Commercial Pools between 1.5 and 2.0ppm using Calcium Hypochlorite or Liquid Chlorine, sometimes a little lower if using UV
  • Residential & Commercial Hot tubs and Spas between 3.0 and 5.0ppm

When levels are kept within this range chlorine is able to control organisms as well as destroying any new contaminants entering the pool or hot tub.

Super Chlorination

Super chlorination is recommended as a weekly treatment if temperatures exceed 90 degrees, when your swimming pool or spa is receiving a heavy bather or swimmer load, is subject to long periods of rain or when high winds carry debris and pollen into your pool. Super chlorination is the addition of an extra dose of chlorine to pool or spa water, which brings the free available chlorine levels to 3.0 to 5.0ppm (Generally a super chlorination boosts the free chlorine level up to between 5 – 10ppm). This helps restore the chlorine’s ability to control algae and bacteria. Some algae spores can also become immune to small doses of sanitisers so super chlorination can help combat this.

Shock Treatment

All Swim stabilisedchlorine granules Shock treatment is a larger dose of chlorine to bring the free available chlorine level up to 10ppm. This is intended to control visible algae, burn out organic swimmer and bather waste and destroy excess chloramines. When swimmers complain of burning eyes and a strong chlorine smell, it is due to excess chloramines and not enough free available chlorine residual in the water - not too much! The odour can also be even stronger if the pH is also low. The use of a periodic shock treatment along with a normal chlorination routine will aid in the prevention of undesirable side effects of using your swimming pool or hot tub. After shock treatment do not resume swimming or bathing until the chlorine residual drops to below 3ppm.

Please note, if your chlorine reading is very high, typically 10ppm, you may obtain a false result when testing for pH with a testing kit. In these cases lower the chlorine levels first before testing for pH and total alkalinity.

Bromine

Bromine is another type of pool and hot tub sanitiser, although it is quite different to chlorine. If you using Bromine you won’t require a conditioner (an additive that helps prevent chemicals dissipating under the action of the ultraviolet rays of the sun). Like chlorine, bromine combines with nitrogen and ammonia compounds to form bromamines (as opposed to chloramines). Unlike chloramines, bromamines do not irritate eyes or have an offensive odour, and bromamines are effective sanitisers. Bromine is a more effective sanitiser at higher temperatures and therefore is a popular choice for hot tubs and with pool and spa users that dislike the unpleasant odour associated with chloramines.

A molecule of bromine is 2.25 times as heavy as chlorine, a 1.0ppm chlorine residual is therefore equivalent to a 2.25ppm bromine residual. Therefore, it is important to maintain the following bromine levels:

  • Residential & Commercial Pools between 2.0 and 4.0ppm
  • Residential Hot tubs and Spas between 3.0 and 5.0ppm
  • Commercial Hot tubs and Spas between 4.0 and 6.0ppm

When levels are kept within this range bromine is able to control organisms as well as destroying any new contaminants entering the pool and hot tub.

PH & Total Alkalinity

The two most important factors in controlling your sanitisers ability to kill bacteria are pH and total alkalinity levels.

All Swim PAK 2pH is a value expressing the relative acidity or alkalinity of swimming pool or hot tub water. It is expressed as a number from 0 to 14 with 0 being the most acidic and 14 being the most alkaline. A value of 7.0 is neutral. Low pH values cause corrosion of equipment and pool or spa surfaces. High pH values cause scale to form on equipment and on pool or hot tub surfaces. The ideal range for pools is 7.2 - 7.6 and the ideal range for hot tubs is 7.0 - 7.6. For swimming pools, to raise pH you will need to use Sodium Carbonate or PAK 2 and to lower pH you will need to use Sodium Bisulphate or Pool Acid. For hot tubs, to raise pH you will need to use Aquasparkle pH Plus and to lower pH you will need to use Aquasparkle pH Minus.  

Total Alkalinity is the ability of water to resist a change in pH. It is also commonly known as the buffering capacity of water. High alkalinity makes it hard to change the pH and may cause scale. Low alkalinity causes dramatic changes in pH, often referred to as pH bounce, and causes corrosion of equipment and pool or hot tub surfaces. The ideal total alkalinity varies depending on the type of sanitiser you are using. For swimming pools, to adjust your Total Alkalinity you will need to use Bicarbonate of Soda or PAK 1. For hot tubs you will need to use Aquasparkle TA Plus.

Always remember, total alkalinity is the key to water balance. Always adjust total alkalinity first and then adjust the pH.

Sanitiser type Ideal Total Alkalinity range

Liquid Chlorine
Calcium Hypochlorite

80 - 100ppm

Gas Chlorine
Trichlor tablets
Bromine tablets

120 - 140ppm

Dichlor granules
Two part bromine

100 - 120ppm

pH and Total Alkalinity are related. It is not possible to change one without affecting the other.

Conditioner or Stabiliser

Whatever type of chlorine chemical you use in your swimming pool or hot tub as a disinfectant is a very active chemical that is easily dissipated by the ultraviolet rays of the sun. To prolong the useful life of free, available chlorine the addition of cyanuric acid (conditioner) is recommended when filling a new pool or at the start of each swimming season if required. Conditioner acts as a type of chemical umbrella, protecting the chlorine sanitiser against loss against the sun’s UV rays. The ideal range for pool stabiliser is 30 - 50ppm. All Swim Conditioner is ideal for adjusting the levels of stabiliser in your swimming pool.

Calcium Hardness

All Swim PAK 2Calcium hardness refers to the portion of the swimming pool or hot tub water’s total hardness due to calcium salts. Calcium hardness will vary with your local water source, the chemicals you add to the water and the rate of evaporation. If you’re based in Wales you can check your local authority’s source water quality at the Welsh Water website.

High calcium hardness can cause cloudy water and also cause the formation of scale on pool and spa equipment. If hardness reaches a level of 400ppm, approximately 25% of the pool or spa water it should be drained and refilled. Soft water without hardness is undesirable because it can cause equipment corrosion and adversely affect the grout on concrete tiled pools. Recommended hardness levels are 200-400ppm for tiled pools and 175-250ppm for vinyl, fibreglass or other types of pool and spa surfaces. Increasing water hardness can be achieved with the use of All Swim’s Pak 3, Calcium Chloride.

Phosphates and their relationship to algae in green pools

Win The War Against Algae This Season

Green swimming pool caused by algae formationWithout doubt, one of the most irritating things for swimming pool owners is the dreaded appearance of algae in your pool. Not being able to use the pool during the algae elimination process, the expense of treating the problem and so on.

It is a common problem amongst pool owners, and for many, when the algae is caught early and swift action taken to tackle it they find it easy enough to manage.

However, others may find despite that knowing how to clear the pool of algae and following the correct procedure, they are plagued by stubborn recurrences of algae – and are fed up of it!

If that sounds familiar, you may be experiencing an issue with the level of Phosphates in your swimming pool. Phos-what?! Allow us to explain…

What Are Phosphates?

Phosphates are pollutants that also happen to be a form of plant-food. They are present in rainwater, fertilizers for landscapes, soil and leaves – all of which can find their way into your swimming pool water. When the level of phosphates in water builds up over time, it provides an excellent food source for algae, which alongside light, water and carbon dioxide set the perfect conditions for algae to thrive in.

Green swimming pool caused by algae formationWhat Can Be Done To Stop Recurring Algae?

As mentioned above, algae requires four components to enable it to thrive; Light, Water, Carbon Dioxide and Food. By removing one or more of these components, algae will struggle and be unable to thrive. If you find that algae keeps making an unwelcome return to your swimming pool each year, you more than likely have a higher than desired level of phosphates present.

Testing For Phosphates

If all of this sounds familiar, it makes sense to test your water for phosphates. This can easily be done by bringing a water sample into All Swim for us to test for you. Once you’ve identified a high phosphate problem, you can take the necessary steps to remove the phosphate (food) source, dramatically reducing the chance of persistent algae recurrence.

How Do You Remove Phosphates?

Lo-Chlor Starver XWhen conducting a shock treatment to kill off algae you typically conclude the treatment process with either a clarifier or floculant product to remove the dead algae spores from the pool water.  While this appears to resolve the problem, phosphate particles are very small and do not get removed at the same time. They remain in the water, waiting for the next batch of algae to emerge!

Fear not though, as there are products specifically designed to remove phosphates; Lo Chlor Starver Phosphate Remover and Lo-Chlor Starver X. These products are a natural composition of unique polymers and rare earth compounds, proven to safely and effectively remove phosphates from swimming pool water, ponds and fountains.

Both Starver and Starver X are fast acting while simultaneously increasing the efficiency of sanitisers and salt water chlorinators. There is no need to vacuum to waste as no residue settles in the pool and they are compatible with all pool treatment products and equipment.

We offer free, comprehensive advice on all manner of water chemistry queries and managing your swimming pool too of course, so please feel free to get in touch with any questions you have either by calling 02920 705059, emailing sales@allswimltd.com or visiting our swimming pool and hot tub showroom here in Cardiff. We’re here to help!

 

 

Heatsavr and Ecosavr, the liquid swimming pool cover

What is a liquid pool cover?

Heatsavr is an effective ‘liquid pool blanket’ for swimming pools and spas that replaces the need for conventional pool covers, greatly reducing heat loss and evaporation from exposed pool surfaces 24 hours a day.

Heatsavr is a patented, non-toxic, biodegradable and completely safe liquid that does not change the appearance or operation of your pool and has been fully tested by numerous independent authorities to ensure that it meets the health and safety standards required.

What are the benefits of Heatsavr over conventional pool covers?

  • Low capital cost
  • Quick payback – costs funded directly from savings
  • Available 24/7
  • No cleaning issues due to bacterial build up
  • Fully automatic – no cover to remove
  • Pool always ready to use
  • Ultimate reliability
  • Energy Savings up to 50%

Using Heatsavr for outdoor pools

An outdoor swimming pool before using Heatsavr Heatsavr works like conventional solar covers for outdoor pools by enabling the pool to benefit from direct solar radiation, so an unheated pool will be naturally warmer or a heated pool cost less to run. Savings relate directly to reduced evaporation and hence pool water heat loss. Heat savings of up to 40% can be expected using Heatsavr although actual savings will depend on location and usage.

Using Heatsavr for indoor swimming pools

In addition to savings on water heating, Heatsavr also reduces the overall energy usage which includes dehumidification and air heating. Reduced evaporation means less load on any dehumidification plant and when the pool is unoccupied the air temperature can be reduced to a set back level, resulting in reduced air heating costs. Dependant on building design and pool usage, overall reduction in energy costs can be as high as 50% when using Heatsavr compared to an uncovered pool.

Chemical Savings of up to 50%

An outdoor swimming pool after using Heatsavr liquid pool cover Whilst the chemical saving benefits of Heatsavr have long been recognised, controlled tests carried out on several outdoor pools during 2011 showed reductions in chlorine consumption of between 45 and 50% - economic justification alone for the use of Heatsavr without taking into account the energy savings!

How does Heatsavr work?

In non-technical terms Heatsavr is a mixture of carefully chosen ingredients which are lighter than water so the mixture automatically floats to the surface. The particles of the liquid are then attracted to each other so they always try to form a perfect, very thin layer - one molecule thick - over the whole surface of the pool. They are individually so small that they are 500 times smaller than the spaces in a super high quality filter so you won’t lose performance from your swimming pool filtration system.

Unlike a conventional pool cover which has to be removed from the pool for swimming, the Heatsavr molecules break apart locally whenever the water is sufficiently disturbed but when the water calms down again they regroup to re-form the protective layer.

Easy and inexpensive to install, it provides a reliable and accurate method of ensuring that the pool benefits from the maximum energy savings possible. Fully programmable to suit pool size and hours of operation, it only requires a periodic check of the reservoir, topping up as necessary.

How to calculate the application rate of Heatsavr

Calculate your swimming pool’s surface area (length x width) then add 0.8ml per sq metre every 24 hours for a skimmer pool and 1ml per sq metre every 24 hours for a deck level pool. To help automatically dose you can use a Heatsavr dosing pump to ensure the Heatsavr liquid is added to your pool on a regular basis.

  • Save money, water & energy
  • Biodegradable: Environmentally friendly
  • Reduces make up water
  • Proven: Lab & field tested and verified
  • Easy to use – no manual handling
  • Reduces humidity in indoor pools
  • An outdoor swimming pool before using HeatsavrSafe: Tested extensively
  • Transparent
  • Safe for filters & plumbing

Heatsavr is also undetectable by pool users as it’s  tasteless, odourless and leaves no residue on your hair or clothing.

Ecosavr

For a handy way to dose your domestic swimming pool with Heatsavr why not try the Ecosavr Fish? Combining the effective ‘liquid pool blanket’ treatment in a handy, easy to use sachet. One Ecosavr Fish treats a pool up to 40m2 for approximately one month, larger pools will require two Ecosavr Fish.

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