How to Properly Test Your Pool Water With A Pool Testing Kit

As the warm weather approaches, your pool will undoubtedly be used more often. Because of this, you must know how to make sure that the pool is safe for use. You’ll have to check the water quality, and you’ll do so with pool test kits!

If you are unsure of how to use a pool test kit, we have prepared a guide to help you.

Frequency of Tests
You will need to determine the right time to test your pool water. Although there isn’t a specific guideline, the more often you check, the better!

Testing for chlorine and pH levels should be done at least twice a week, while testing for alkalinity should be done once a week. For acid tests, perform them whenever you’re adjusting the pool’s pH levels. As for other tests like calcium hardness, total dissolved solids, and cyanuric acid levels, they should all be done once a month.

That said, let’s get into the know-how of using pool testing kits:

Step 1: Grab a sample
Use a plastic tester to collect a sample of the pool water. Because the chemical composition of the water near the surface and at the bottom of the pool is different, you’ll have to take a sample from both depths. For a sample from the bottom, dip the plastic tester at least 18 inches into the pool for more accurate results.

Step 2: Test for chlorine
To get accurate readings, make sure your vials are filled appropriately following the manufacturer’s guidelines. Then, add the appropriate solution to test for chlorine. With the right chemical to pool water ratio achieved, you can then cap the vial and start mixing. After a few seconds, the colors should change. Compare these colors to a guideline that is usually printed onto the plastic tester itself. This initial reading indicates free chlorine levels. By waiting a few minutes and comparing the colors once more, you’ll get a reading for residual chlorine.

Step 3: Test for PH levels
After thoroughly cleaning the plastic tester, repeat the first step. Then, look for the chemical sodium thiosulfate (No. 4) and add it into the sample to neutralize the chlorine. Then, add five drops of the phenol red indicator solution (No. 2). After mixing, compare it with the pH color standards. Do note that if your residual chlorine is higher than three, you’ll have to get it down to proper levels before proceeding.

Step 4: Test for acid demand
Make sure that you perform this test only after your chlorine residue and pH levels are at their proper levels. Do not throw away the water after the pH test, but instead add titrant. You’ll have to count each drop until the color reaches the 7.4 indicators. From this, you’ll find out just how much acid you’ll need to add to your pool to balance the pH levels.

Step 5: Test for alkalinity
Once again, only proceed with this test if your chlorine level has dropped down to normal. Clean the tester thoroughly and fill it up only until the lower dashed line. Add a drop of chlorine neutralizer, as previously mentioned in step three and mix. After that, add a reduction of the alkalinity indicator (No. 5B) and mix gently. Then, count each drop of solution No. Three you add into the tester until the color changes to either light green, light yellow, or goes transparent. Multiply the number of drops by ten, and that’s your pool’s alkalinity.

We hope that our guide has given you the much-needed knowledge to use pool tester kits properly.

If you a looking for a top-rated pool maintenance company to help you test your pool water, call Purple Heart Pools now! We are happy to help.

5 Reasons to Start a Weekly Pool Pump Maintenance

Having a pool is a luxury, not only because it affords you to bring people in and socialize, but it also allows you to have space to be healthy, fit, and beautiful. Having one brings so many wonders to the mental, physical, and emotional well-being of every person who gets to enjoy it. Swiming can reduce stress and prevent depression. It also gives the children plenty of opportunities to have fun too.

This is why it is essential to take good care of the pool. You have to make sure that the pool pump is at its optimum efficiency. The cost of repairs for pool pump malfunctions is high, not to mention that it will also affect the health of those who swim inside the pool.

Preventing that from happening will save you a fortune. Follow the guidelines to ensure that your pool continues to help you make beautiful memories with the family. Here are the reasons that you should keep the pool pump working.

1. The pump is an essential part of the pool.

The pool pump is the pool’s circulation system. It is the pool’s central control that sends water through the filter, removing debris, dirt, and dust. If it malfunctions, improper filtration ensues. That’s when algae start to form. It will fill your pool and turn it into a bright, mossy green. Who wants to swim in that?
Moreover, the filthy water can cause more problems to the entire pool. The pool’s electrical and mechanical components are going to erode. If left unresolved, it will degrade the pool walls and flooring.

2. Filth accumulation causes damage.

A pool that’s been accumulating dirt will have increased wear and tear on its pool pump. That means that the problem is right around the corner. If you notice your pumps making odd sounds, have decreased water levels, or are causing the circuit breaker to trip more often, they are broken. These problems come from a lack of maintenance, which leads to filth accumulation in and around the pool pump.

3. It keeps the water clean.

If you’re asking about the lifespan of the pool pump, the answer will depend on several factors. These include the size of the pool, the type of piping it has, and the number of people swimming in it, as well as the frequency of their swimming. Only a pool professional can tell you the answer. They have the training, the skills, the knowledge, as well as the equipment to determine the right amount of time that the pool pump should be running.

4. It is energy-efficient.

The pool size is the most significant factor to consider if you want to know exactly how long you need your pool pump to run. The larger your pool, the longer the pool pump needs to pump. Bigger pumps consume more energy, which results in higher utility bills. However, when the pool pump ceases to work, it no longer matters if it’s a big pump or a small one.

Filth will always make your pump function inefficiently. If your pump is dirty, it needs to work twice as hard, which requires it to consume more energy. More energy consumption means higher utility bills, so a properly running pool pump is energy-efficient.

5. Repairs are costly.

Pool owners spend about $600 on average per pool fixes. The cheapest repair can be $80, while the most expensive ones cost around $2,500. With this, it will be enough to convince you to keep your pool adequately maintained. Weekly cleaning will save you from paying much higher expenses.

A broken pool pump will prevent you and your family from enjoying the benefits that a swimming pool brings. Moreover, the repairs will be costly. If you don’t want to encounter these disadvantages, it is best to invest in your pool pump’s weekly maintenance. Hire the best pool professionals, and they will take good care of your pool.

If you a looking for a top-rated pool maintenance company in Jacksonville, get in touch with Purple Heart Pools now! We are happy to help.

A Guide to Cleaning Your Swimming Pool Waterline Tiles

Waterline tiles are the ones installed by the edge of your pool where the water meets the line. Cleaning this is one of your responsibilities as a swimming pool owner. Over time, calcium deposits and natural stains accumulate on the edges, leaving a weird ring around the waterline.

Regular cleaning and proper maintenance are crucial if you want to keep it looking appealing all year long. Read on for our guide on how to make your swimming pool’s waterline tiles as shiny as the first time you installed them:

But first, what is that stuff?
That unsightly line that forms around your pool’s waterline is the result of scaling and staining. As water evaporates, calcium deposits are pushed to the sides of the pool, leaving a whitish-grey colored scum that is difficult to remove. There are two types of scaling we usually see in swimming pools: calcium carbonate and calcium silicate. Let’s take a closer look at each one.

1. Calcium carbonate
Calcium carbonate appears as a flaky white crust on the pool’s surface. It bubbles up if you pour muriatic acid on the area. Fortunately, calcium carbonate is easy to scrub off using a pumice stone or a stain eraser.

2. Calcium silicate
Calcium silicate is trickier to remove because it takes a longer time to settle into your pool’s waterline. Calcium silicate appears as a whitish-grey scum and does not react to muriatic acid. This type of scaling takes more effort and a lot of elbow grease to strip off.

Tips for tackling staining and scaling
As with all things, prevention is better than cure. Don’t wait for the scum to build up. Keeping your pool’s waterline stain-free means you have to clean it regularly. Algae from decaying leaves and other debris create a chemical imbalance to your swimming pool, causing stains when they cling on to the tiles. Make sure to vacuum your pool’s surface at least once a week to remove dirt.

If you see signs of that scum line appearing on your pool’s waterline, it’s time to bring out the big guns. Extensive cleaning can be time-consuming, so it’s wise to start in small areas per day. You can try using all-natural, homemade cleaning solutions for minimal grimes. Vinegar, baking soda, toothpaste, and borax are some of the everyday household items that make effective cleaners. Make a paste and scrub the ring with a used toothbrush.

For tougher stains, there are commercial tile cleaners you can get at your local hardware store. These are acid-based products that are very strong, so you need to use them with caution. Always wear protective gloves and mask to avoid inhaling harsh chemicals.

Big jobs may require you to call for reinforcements. Hiring professional pool cleaning services ensures that the job gets done quickly and adequately. They have special equipment and cleaners that can strip away the toughest stains in your pool’s waterline tiles. Bringing the professionals in at least once a year will keep your pool looking fresh and save you the costly expense of having to re-tile your pool’s waterline.

If you a looking for a pool cleaning service in Jacksonville, get in touch with Purple Heart Pools now! We are happy to help.

Spot Pool or Hot Tub Leaks in 3 Steps

Compared to most problems that show that something is wrong with your pool or a hot tub, a leak is probably one of the most difficult problem to spot because of how a pool is built.

Think about it: how could you possibly spot a leak in a pool or hot tub when it’s full of water in the first place

It may seem impossible at first but when you have the right knowledge, the task will not be so daunting.

There are various ways to detect leakage in a pool or a hot tub and understanding how to find the cause will help you save time and money.

STEP #1: Watch out for these signs
– Water-quality issues or a sudden presence of algae
– Loose tiles or cracks in the pool deck or the surrounding area
– Loose coping stones
– Check for tree roots that can lift the pool deck, plumbing, or pool walls
– Look for cracks or gaps in the bond beam
– Extra soggy soil or grass near the pool, spa, pumps or pool plumbing equipment could me serious issues
– Water levels consistently dropping overnight

STEP #2: Go deeper into the inspection with a test
Once you spotted the signs of possible leakage, then it’s time to carry out a test to confirm the actual leak. The best DIY way to implement the process of leakage confirmation is the evaporation test.

You will need a bucket and an indelible pen to do the evaporation test. Start the test by filling a bucket with pool water and placing it on the deck right beside the pool or hot tub. Mark the water level of both the pool and bucket with an indelible pen. Afterward, turn off the circulation and wait for two to three days.

Once a few days have passed, take a look at the water in the bucket and the pool and then measure the distance between the line marked on the first day and the waterline now. If a pool is fine, then both the water in the bucket and pool should evaporate equally. However, if the pool’s first-day line and current waterline distance are significantly more than that of the bucket’s, then it’s safe to assume that your pool has a leak.

STEP #3: Call the professionals once you spot a leak
Once you’ve confirmed that your pool or hot tub has a leak, then it’s time to call a pool repair professional. A pool repair professional will bring a geophone or pressure testing equipment as part of the repair.

A leakage in a swimming pool or hot tub may seem like a simple problem at first, but it is absolutely important to remember that it should not be overlooked. By following the steps mentioned above, you can save your time, money, and most importantly, your pool or hot tub.

If you don’t have much time to maintain your pool yourself, leave it to the professionals. Call Purple Heart Pools today. We offer various pool care services, so you can enjoy your free time swimming rather than constantly maintaining your pool.