As a swimming pool owner, you are guaranteed to run into some sort of problem with your pool from time to time. With regular maintenance and inspection, you can usually catch problems in the beginning stages before they become bigger more expensive problems. Your pool is fun, your pool is also an investment and requires maintenance. Regular routine swimming pool maintenance preferably by a professional is advised to prolong the life of your swimming pool. A large majority of pool problems are caused by lack of maintenance or improper maintenance.
EXCESSIVELY ROUGH POOL SURFACE
This can be caused by many different things, the most common being poor water chemistry over a prolonged period of time. Concrete and pebble pools can have different finishing techniques and materials used which can also cause the surface to feel rough on your feet. Improperly balanced pH, improper alkalinity aggressive fill water, acid rain, high calcium hardness in the water, improper pool plaster starts up techniques, craze cracks, plaster delamination pitting, and calcium nodules are all possible scenarios that would cause a rough pool surface, this is why it’s so important to have your pool and it’s chemistry monitored and adjusted weekly by a pool professional who is trained and educated to look out for and correct these issues before they becoming big expensive problems.
A separation or crack in plaster and or concrete shell of the pool. Most commonly due to ground movement and improper design and or improper construction techniques. A swimming pool must be engineered and constructed to withstand unstable or expansive soil and built to the specifics of the soil sample that should be obtained and analyzed prior to construction. If not built in accordance to the engineering or according to the design a pool may structurally fail and leak water.
PLASTER CRACKING & DELAMINATION
small hairline plaster surface cracking referred to as craze cracking is most commonly due to improper application of the swimming pools plaster surface and an improper mix of the surface plaster. Most commonly too much calcium carbonate added to the mix which causes shrinkage of the plaster. This calcium is added to the plaster to increase its drying time and hardness. These surface cracks can promote algae growth, staining, and produce calcium nodules eventually resulting in the need to completely remove and replace the swimming pools surface.
DISCOLORATION / MOTTLING (blotchy pool surface)
Due to swimming pool plaster’s porous nature it is susceptible to staining. Pauses while filling the pool can leave a ring around the waterline, improper trawling techniques while the plaster is being installed, improper water chemistry, filling a pool too soon, improper mix of plaster being applied can all cause spotting and mottling in your pool.
There are also many many different factors and causes of staining, from organic material such as leaves and dirt sitting on the pools plaster for a period of time, metal stains from fill water and improperly balanced water chemistry, copper from plumbing and heater elements, foreign objects being left on the pools surface. Sequestrants and stain removers can be used to effectively treat surface staining.
ALGAE / GREEN POOL
Probably the most common problem pool owners are familiar with, most commonly due to improper circulation, not enough circulation and or improper water chemistry balance, low sanitizer. Using a chlorine based shock and elevating the chlorine level 3x-5x the normal and a clean filter will solve this problem.
CLOGGED FILTER / LOW CIRCULATION
As your filter does its job it builds up pressure by trapping the dirt and organic waste in the filter, eventually it can’t filter anymore and needs taken apart cleaned and recharged. Don’t worry this is a good thing. A normal filter on a normal size pool should be cleaned and recharged 3-4x a year
CLOUDY / TURBID WATER
I’d say cloudy turbid water is one of the trickiest of problems to diagnose, could be cause by a dirty filter, rain, low chlorine, heavy use, usually resolved within a couple hours with proper treatment. This problem usually arises after heavy rains dilute the pools chemistry or the first couple weeks of summer when the summers hot sun starts to evaporate the free available chlorine in your pool. Cyanuric acid (conditioner) is needed in the warm months to protect the pools chlorine reserve and stop the suns UV rays from zapping your chlorine right out of your pool. The solution is to maintain 50-70ppm cyanuric acid and 3-5ppm chlorine level. A cloudy looking pool is the pools way of telling you something is unbalanced asking you for help before it gets really bad.
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