Pool Advice

It’s still a bit chilly in Northwest Ohio and Southeast Michigan, making it a bit impossible to take a jump into your swimming pool. The time isn’t that far away, though! One of the items you should be thinking about for your pool is the filter you use. The choice is largely up to you, the pool owner. Here’s a comparison of in-ground swimming pool filters offered at Hawaiian Pool Builders.

Read more: A Comparison Of In-Ground Swimming Pool Filters

Category: Pool Advice

Do you recall the summer of 1975? Maybe not, however, I bet you do remember that Jaws had beachgoers heeding the advice of the movie’s tagline, “Don’t go in the water”. Those five words kept millions of Americans out of the water. Now, in 2018, some experts fear that a rapid increase of recreational water illness (RWI) may in fact, do the same thing. Unfortunately, many kids and adults alike don’t get enough regular exercise. Anything that could hinder exercising, including swimming, may do more harm than good.

You may be asking, ‘why does recreational water illnesses even occur?’ and that’s a good question. Swimmers share the water, and the germs in it, with every person who enters the pool. As a result, the germs simply show up. In the past two decades, there has been a substantial increase in the number of RWI outbreaks associated with swimming.

Recreational water illnesses (RWIs) are caused by germs spread by swallowing, breathing in mists or aerosols of, or having contact with contaminated water in swimming pools, hot tubs, water parks, water play areas, interactive fountains, lakes, rivers, or oceans. RWIs can also be caused by chemicals in the water or chemicals that evaporate from the water and cause indoor air quality problems. RWIs can be a wide variety of infections, including gastrointestinal, skin, ear, respiratory, eye, neurologic and wound infections. The most commonly reported RWI is diarrhea. According to Aalen Greene, MD, “no one who swims is safe from RWI’s”.

But, there is good news! As with most things, the best defense is a good offense. It’s also smart to know your enemy. Unlike the great white shark from Jaws who lurked just below the ocean’s surface, simple prevention methods as well as quick treatment can help keep RWI’s at bay. The most commonly reported RWI is diarrhea, which is caused by germs such as Crypto, Giardia, Shigella, norovirus and E. coli. The best defense against diarrhea associated with RWI is to make sure that anyone using your pool is not sick. Do not allow friends or family members to swim even for a short time as you do not want your water contaminated. Crypto can stay alive for days even in your well-maintained pool. It’s also become the leading cause of swimming pool-related outbreaks of diarrheal illness.

Swimmer’s ear is the easiest to get. Excessive water in the ear canal breaks down the protective barrier in the ear and allows bacteria to get in. It is painful and progressive. Sometimes the ear will itch and produce discharge. Wearing ear plugs and/or a swimming cap pulled down over the ears is the best defense. After getting out of the water, employ the ‘tip and dip’ method. Simply tip your head to each side, gently pull on your earlobe, and any excess water will drain out. Encourage your children to do the same, because nothing ruins summer fun more than an ear ache. There are ear drops readily available that are formulated for swimmer’s ear, and pain relieving medications that can help.

Swimmer’s itch, is also known as cercarial dermatitis. It’s marked by tingling, burning or itching of the skin. Small, reddish pimples and/or small blisters can appear within minutes to days after swimming. Showering before and after taking a dip can help prevent skin rashes. Most cases of swimmer’s itch do not require medical attention, but not scratching and using an anti-itch cream can help. Swimmer’s itch is typically caused by swimming in lakes, ponds or oceans.

Most RWI’s (with the exception of diarrhea), are caused by germs that live naturally in the environment, in water and soil. Maintaining proper disinfectant levels in your pool or hot tub can keep these germs from multiplying and causing illness.

At Hawaiian Pool Builders, making sure you are enjoying your in-ground swimming pool is our number one goal. Keeping your pool water sparkling clean and virtually bacteria free is your priority. You can give yourself peace of mind with cleaner water by having us install Pentair’s BioShield® UV Sterilizer. By harnessing the power of UV light, bacteria is neutralized up to 99% to prevent its reproduction.

BioShield® UV Sterilizer: Recreational Water Illness
• Neutralizes harmful bacteria and pathogens instantly
• Reduces chlorine usage by up to 50%
• Employs commercial-grade sterilization power

Here are some of the unwanted guests you’ll kick out of your pool:
• Cryptosporidium – a leading cause of waterborne illness and is highly resistant to chlorine disinfection.
• Giardia – a microscopic parasite that causes severe intestinal discomfort.
• E. coli – can cause urinary tract infections, respiratory illness and other health issues.

Contrary to popular belief, chlorine does not kill all germs instantly. There are germs today that are very tolerant to chlorine and were not known to cause human disease until recently. Once these germs get in the pool, it can take anywhere from minutes to days for chlorine to kill them. Swallowing just a little water that contains these germs can make you sick.

Anyone can come down with recreational water illness, but those who are most likely to get it are children, pregnant women, the elderly, and people with weakened immune systems. They can experience a more severe reaction to the illness(s) if infected.

Along with installing the BioShield® UV Sterilizer by Pentair, here are a few easy and effective healthy steps you can take to help protect your family and friends from recreational water illnesses:

Keep the pee, poop, sweat and dirt out of the water!
• Stay out if you have diarrhea.
• Shower before you get in the water.
• The pool is not a bathroom; go inside.
• Don’t swallow the water on purpose.

Every hour on the hour is break time!
• Take kids on a bathroom break.
• Check diapers and change them in a bathroom; never pool side.
• Drink plenty of fluids.

Check the free chlorine level and pH before getting into the water. (You can get your test strips by stopping into our retail store and purchasing a supply for the summer.)
• Pools: Proper free chlorine level: (1-3 mg/L or parts per million [ppm]) and pH (7.2-7.8) maximize germ-killing power.
• Hot Tubs/spas: Proper disinfectant level (chlorine [2-4 parts per million or ppm] or bromine [4-6 ppm] and pH [7.2-7.8]) maximize germ-killing power.

By following these simple guidelines, being aware of what an RWI looks like, and having Hawaiian Pool Builders install the BioShield® UV Sterilizer, you can enjoy your swimming pool practically worry-free this summer.  

Category: Pool Advice

If you are reading this article right now, it’s probably because you have decided to purchase an inground swimming pool. It’s a big investment, and you may be thinking, we will wait until after the holidays are over.

Read more: Four Reasons To Purchase An In-ground Swimming Pool Now

Category: Pool Advice

Safe, low-odor saltwater in-ground swimming pools are gaining popularity. Could you have saltwater in your future? While salt systems aren’t a new invention, they have gained some traction over the years. Once primarily a perk in health spas and resorts, saltwater pools have now become popular among U.S. homeowners. Today, about 30% of all U.S. in-ground pools are saltwater. People are increasingly appreciating the benefits associated with them.

Read more: Saltwater Filtration Systems Gain Popularity

Category: Pool Advice

Long days spent playing in the water are fun, but the end result can leave you with blurry, red eyes. Knowing some basics—like how pool water affects your eye health—could prevent irritated swimmer's eyes. At Hawaiian Pool Builders, we have answers to five of the more common questions in relationship to swimming and your eyes.

Read more: Five Tips To Help Prevent Irritated Swimmer’s Eyes

Category: Pool Advice

Swimming pool hair. What can you do about it? How can you stop it from happening, and most importantly, is it possible to prevent chlorine damage to your hair? Hawaiian Pool Builders has these five tips for you to keep your hair protected from the effects of chlorine damage.

Read more: Five Tips To Keep Your Hair Protected From Chlorine Damage

Category: Pool Advice

The popularity of solar pool heating is increasing in Northwest Ohio. The fact is solar pool heating is an environmentally-friendly alternative to other heating systems. Solar pool heating systems can reduce greenhouse gas emissions and pollutants. What’s more, these systems are low-maintenance and easy to use, with a proven long-life span. Hawaiian Pool Builders has answers to your questions about solar pool heating.

Read more: Five Questions About Solar Pool Heating Systems

Category: Pool Advice

Your swimming pool filter traps oils and dirt with turns into a gummy, gooey mess that goes by the term ‘gunk’, or, if you have a sand-filter, ‘mud-balls’. As a general rule of thumb, your filter should be cleaned at least once a month during the swimming season.

A cartridge filter uses a pleated fabric of woven polyester. Minerals, metals, dirt and oils get trapped inside a web made of thousands of fibers. Hosing the cartridge with high pressure water is a decent way to remove debris, but it doesn’t remove oil and mineral scales, or metal stains. Also, high pressure water can damage the cartridge, thereby reducing the cartridges effectiveness.

Read more: Cleaning Your Swimming Pool Filter

Category: Pool Advice

Whether you are considering the purchase of an in-ground swimming pool, or have already started the process, you may be confused about some of the terminology. At Hawaiian Pools, we’ve put together a list of some swimming pool terminology that you’ll hear during the process of building your in-ground swimming pool.

Read more: Swimming Pool Terminology

Category: Pool Advice

Admit it — peeing in the pool is something we’ve all done at one time or another, hopefully not since we were kids who didn’t know any better. But did you know that peeing in your pool is more than just gross? It could also be dangerous.

Read more: Why Peeing in Your Pool Could Be Harmful For Swimmers

Category: Pool Advice

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