Here are some common questions that are asked about pool related problems:

(Click the question to see the answer)

How do I backwash my filter?
1. Turn off power to pump.
2. Move handle on muti-port valve to “Backwash” position.
3. Turn on power to pump. Continue backwashing until water is slightly hazy/clear in sight glass. (Approximately one - three minutes)
4. Turn off power to pump.
5. Move handle on muti-port valve to “Rinse” position.
6. Turn on power to pump.
7. Continue rinsing until water is completely clear. (Approximately thirty seconds - one minute).
8. Turn off power to pump.
9. Move handle on muti-port valve to “Filter” position.
10. Turn on power to pump.
11. Complete
How often do I need to test my water?
It is necessary to test pool water at least once a week for proper sanitizer, pH, and total alkalinity levels. Testing is also recommended after heavy rains, pool parties, or "incidents" (i.e. dead animals, bodily fluids, etc). Also, the water needs to be checked once a month by our professional water testing lab; however, we are glad to test your water weekly.
1 pint (500ml) of water is required for our professional tests (For samples better test results be sure water has circulated 24 – 48 hours)
How often should I change my sand?
Residential pool on chlorine 3 – 5 years*. Residential pool on Softswim® 1 - 2 years*. May be affected by algae problems or lack of proper filter cleaning.
What is the normal water pressure for my filter?
The normal pressure for filters varies with each pool system and sometimes changes over time.
*Note sometimes abnormal pressure is caused by a faulty pressure gauge.
To determine if the gauge is working properly: Turn off the equipment, if the dial does not fall back down to zero then the gauge is faulty and needs to be replaced.
If the gauge is working properly then you can determine your "normal operating pressure" by cleaning (backwashing) the filter, starting the equipment up, and looking at the pressure gauge readout. When it is 10 to 15 psi greater than the normal operating pressure it is time to backwash or clean the filter.
What do I do about air bubbles in my pool?
A variety of events can cause air bubbles in the system. One of the most common causes is low water level (Center of the skimmer opening is normal). Another cause can be skimmer and/or pump baskets that are clogged. Also one of the more difficult to find causes, is an air leak on the suction side of the system (anything between the pool and the pump basket). Air leaks are sometimes indicated by a "squirt" of water shooting out from pump lids, pump lid o-rings, filter hoses, plumbing, etc.
Why is there sand in my pool?
Sand in the pool can come from different sources feet, bathing suits, floats, toys, etc. But if you have a sand filter on your pool it can be a filter problem either broken internal filter parts or a malfunctioning multiport valve. Please contact us for service or parts.
Why do I have foam on top of my pool?
The most common causes of foam on the surface is certain kinds of algaecides, air leaks, detergents (cleaning chemicals not designed for use in swimming pools), and vandalism (laundry detergent, bubble bath, etc.).
I think I am loosing water do I have a leak? Is it evaporation? What should I do?
During the hottest parts of summer, pools can lose quite a bit (1/2 to 1 inch a week) of water due to sunlight, heat, and splash out. There is a simple test you can perform at home to eliminate evaporation as possibility:
1. Bring the pool water to normal level. Fill a five - gallon bucket with pool water to about 1 inch from the top.
2. Place the bucket on the first or second step of the pool. Ensure that the bucket is immersed in the pool at least five inches.
3. Mark the water level inside the bucket.
4. Shut off the pump and mark pool water level on the outside of the bucket.
5. Resume normal pool pump operation.
6. After 24 hours, compare the two water levels. If the pool water (the outside mark) goes down more than the bucket’s water level, there is probably a leak. If the levels are the same, only evaporation has occurred.
Test is invalid after 24 hours.
Click Here for a printer friendly version
In unfortunate circumstance that you do have a leak here are some likely places you can check: visually look for any wet fittings or wet locations around the pool, check the backwash line, with the multiport in the "filter" position, to make sure that no water is leaking out there. If the source of the leak can not be determined, then a leak detection service call may be required to find the leak in the pool surface or in the plumbing lines.
How often should I lubricate my o-rings? Can I use Vaseline® (Petroleum Jelly) to lubricate them?
There is no exact time frame for lubricating o-rings but as a general rule o-rings that are moved often (as in pump lids should be lubed every 2-4 times they are taken off. All other o-rings that are not moved often (such as unions or multiport o-rings) should be lubed every time they are accessible. This will increase the lifespan of o-rings and parts they are attached to. Vaseline® (Petroleum Jelly) should never be used on o-rings! Certain chemicals in Vaseline® (Petroleum Jelly) can cause o-rings to break down and parts to seize up. The recommended product to lubricate is a product is Magic Lube II®, which is a silicone based lubricant and will not cause o-rings to deteriorate or parts to seize up.
When should I open my pool?
Open your pool up as early as possible, as water temperature rises in the spring your pool becomes "alive", algae and bacteria wake up from there hibernation at about 50ºF - 60ºF (10ºC - 16ºC). Opening your pool prior to rising temperatures reduces the risk of a cloudy and/or an algae infested mess in the spring.
When should I close my pool?
Closing your pool as late as possible, will ensure that the closing chemical treatment will last till spring. Closing a pool prematurely will almost guarantee algae problems in the spring.
My water is cloudy and I can’t clear it up. What could be causing this?
A couple of different factors contribute to cloudy water problems with the most important being filtration. Filtration contributes about 90% to water clarity and chemical balance contributing the other 10%. Sometimes cloudy water can be solved by simply cleaning (backwashing) the filter or balancing the water. However, sometimes it evolves a more complicated problem such as the filter media needing to be replaced, chlorine demand, or other problems. But help is here between our computerized water analysis to our knowledgeable staff we will be able to solve any problem (Do not forget to bring us a water sample).
Why does my pool have a strong chlorine smell? Do I have too much chlorine?
This is common myth in the pool industry. Believe it or not the problem is you do not have enough chlorine, free chlorine, in the water. This occurs when chlorine in the pool is "tied up" with a nitrogen or ammonia compounds to form chloramines, causing the strong odor. The cure for this is to super chlorinate the pool to "free" the chlorine and allow it to start working to sanitize the water.
How do I treat my pool for pink algae?
It is actually a bacteria and regular algaecides will not work well to destroy it. You will need to super chlorinate your pool and chemically clean your filter according to product directions. It is also suggested that maintenance equipment be tossed into pool prior to super chlorinating to disinfect these items also.
My pool heater is not working, what is the problem?
All pool heaters have a safety feature that will not let it turn on if it is not getting enough water and more than likely your filter is dirty. You may need to clean (backwash) and/or chemically clean you filter. If the heater still will not come on you will need to set up a service call.
What is making my hair turn green? Is chlorine to blame?
Actually green hair is caused by metals dissolved in the pool water which can come from a variety of sources including some kinds of algaecides, pool heaters being damaged due to improper water balance, source water, etc. Bring in a water sample and tell us to check for the presence of metals and ask how to keep it from happening.
How often do I need to drain my pool?
Avoid draining the pool if it can be helped. Sometimes draining your pool can cause irreversible damage to liners, cause pools to float out of the ground, damage to the decking, etc. If you think you need to drain your pool, contact us for advice before draining. A complete draining may not even be necessary.
Why is water coming out my backwash (waste) line? Is that normal?
Most commonly the cause is a bad spider gasket in the multi-port valve or the entire multiport may be bad. Contact us or service and parts.
Why should I shock my pool?
To eliminate contaminates from the water to insure a healthy swimming environment. Heavy rains and bather loads have an impact on the need to shock your pool.
When to I need to add stabilizer or conditioner to my pool?
When the stabilizer level falls under 30 ppm. The ideal level is between 30-50 ppm. The level could deplete prematurely in the event of heavy water loss.
What causes ring around the water line?
Dirt and oil from bathers is the largest cause. Regular brushing and using cleaners designed for pools is suggested for cleaning this from the surface.
My walls feel slimy, what should I do?
Make sure your pool has a proper sanitizer level. Also it may be bio-film which would indicate you need to brush your pool walls and floor. By doing this you may prevent what may be the beginning of an algae growth.
How many hours per day do I need to operate my filter?
8 - 12 hrs continuously during daylight hours is the minimum operation time. However, we suggest that the filter be ran 24/7 during peak season.
My eyes are burning; do I have too much chlorine in my pool?
High chlorine can cause your eyes to burn but it is more likely due to poorly balanced water. Improperly balanced pH would be the most likely cause. This is why water balance is so important.
How long do I have to wait to swim after adding chemicals?
You will need to follow the recommendations linked to the individual chemicals. The wait time will vary depending on what you added to the pool water.