Pools: the criteria to consider when choosing a maintenance system

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When the word “pool” is mentioned, most people don’t just picture a structure with water in it: they almost certainly also imagine the blue and crystalline water and the sun reflecting in it. Of course, nobody pictures any algae. But to get to this result, the owner must install an appropriate maintenance and treatment system adapted to the type of pool and to the manner in which it is used.

Manual or automatic? Chlorine or bromine tablets? There are many maintenance and treatment systems for public and home-owner pools alike. Buyers often don’t know what to choose from this comprehensive offering. It is also difficult, when you are a specifier, to determine the most suitable solution. To make the right decision, a certain number of criteria must be taken into account.

Defining the uses

Public pools will never have the same maintenance needs as a home-owner pool: the number of users is much higher all year round, the volume of water is also often much higher, etc. For private pools, the family composition is also an important aspect to take into consideration: how many members in the family, are there any children or will the pool be used exclusively by adults? Generally speaking, a user-friendly system is preferable so that the owners can learn how to use it quickly. The period of use of the pool is also an important criterion: a pool that is used only in the summer and is covered during the winter will require less maintenance than one which is used throughout the year.

Features that change the deal

Some optional features are synonymous with comfort and are many consumers’ dream, but not exclusively: other features have an influence on pool maintenance requirements. For example, an outdoor shower can reduce the impurities (grass, dirt, etc.) that bathers may bring into the water. A pool enclosure will have the same impact, with more or less efficiency depending on the model chosen (fixed, removable, flexible, retractable). A heated pool will require a different kind of maintenance: for example, chlorine cannot be used to treat the water, as its efficiency is reduced when the water temperature rises. Higher water temperatures also create conditions favourable for the development of microorganisms and algae, which is an important aspect to keep in mind!

Adapting to the environment

Lastly, the location in which the pool is to be built must also be taken into consideration. Firstly, the weather conditions: pools installed in the Marseille region, where the sun shines 2,801 hours per year, and in Brittany (1,492 hours/year), will not be used for the same length of time during the year. The immediate surroundings can also have an impact: the presence of trees, insects or animals is likely to increase the quantity of impurities entering the water. A high-performance filtration system will then be required to avoid spending hours cleaning the pool with a net before being able to enjoy clear water. Lastly, depending on the landscape and the distance separating the pool from the house, allowance must be made for the space occupied by pool equipment and the noise generated.

Keeping an eye on the budget…

Depending on the length of the swimming season, the climate or the users’ schedule, some pool owners spend little time in their pool, even during the summer, while others can make the most of their heated pool throughout the year. They will probably not allocate the same budget to the maintenance system! The budget is obviously a key component to avoid any subsequent regrets on the purchase and to be able to maintain the pool properly. For example, chlorine has the advantage of being economical but it is quickly degraded by UV rays. On the other hand, bromine is not very sensitive to UVs, but more expensive, and requires purchasing a brominator. Finally, salt-water electrolysis has many advantages both in terms of ease of use and cost, but the pool must be equipped with an electrolyser, which could cost more than €1,000.

…and the planet!

On top of their initial cost, these systems also generate energy consumption costs, which can vary a lot depending on the system chosen. In the past few years, more and more solutions have optimised water treatment and heating using clean energies. Heat pumps, solar thermal energy or even thermal covers are different solutions to enhance the comfort of a pool or to benefit from a heated outdoor shower, while also protecting the environment. And in the long run, there is no doubting that these systems are much more economical.

By taking these different criteria into account, you will necessarily find THE solution that is perfectly suited to each pool, for optimum maintenance in the long term and guaranteed pleasure with each dive.

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