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Pool Chlorine Levels: The Importance of Getting It Right

As swimmers, we all hate the smell of chlorine and the way it makes our skin feel after a long swim. But as pool owners, we understand the essential role chlorine plays in keeping our pool water clean and healthy. Getting the chlorine levels right in your pool is important- too much causes unpleasant side effects for swimmers, while not enough makes forunsanitary pool water. 

Why We Use Chlorine

Chlorine is used to sanitize and disinfect the pool water by releasing free chlorine to control germs, microorganisms and algae. There are several chemicals that sanitize water effectively, but we use chlorine in pool water because it’s easy to apply, readily available, and more affordable.

How Much Is Enough?

Your pool’s free chlorine reading should be between 1 and 2 ppm each time you check, which should be daily because of how often that level can fluctuate. Getting the chlorine level right can be a challenge, even for professional pool operators, because so many factors affect the chemistry of pool water. Water evaporation in hot weather, high swimmer load, water splash out, and rain can all change our water chemistry, making it a challenge to maintain the proper levels of chlorine.

Getting It Right

Traditionally, chlorine has been applied to pool water manually with chlorine tablets added straight into the pool water by placing them in the skimmer basket or a floater dispenser. (Remember those floating chlorine ducks that your mother insisted you never play with?) Chlorine tablets in skimmer baskets create corrosive conditions when the pool pump is not running, which can cause premature aging of your skimmer and basket, can damage your system, and can cause copper staining. These direct dosing methods may be just right when water conditions are ideal, but when water levels drop or the water is very warm and dissolves the tablets faster, the chlorine levels can get too high, irritating skin and eyes and sometimes even forming a cloud of chlorine gas that hovers over the water, irritating airways of swimmers that breathe it in.

We Recommend a Chlorinator that is Safer and More Precise

We’ve found the QuikDekClor from A&A Manufacturing to be the best chlorinator option. By releasing diluted chlorine into the water, it removes the risk of highly concentrated, corrosive water damaging your pool system, staining your surface and harming your swimmers. The QuikDekClor is easy to install and makes chlorinating safe and easy. It is installed flush into your pool deck for easy access, and is large enough to accommodate several large “vacation” sized chlorine tablets so you don’t have to check it as often. You can go away for longer periods without worrying about finding someone to chlorinate your pool while you’re away. The QuikDekClor also allows you to easily adjust your chlorine levels to suit your pool’s changing conditions. It’s an excellent investment for pool owners who don’t want the hassle of frequent chlorinating and who want to extend the life of their pool system. It’s also a great option for pools that use ozone to sanitize but still need occasional chlorine.

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A&A Manfacturing QuickDecClor

4 Things to Consider When Planning Your Houston Pool Budget

4 Things to Consider When Planning Your Houston Pool Budget | Cypress Custom Pools

4 Things to Consider When Planning Your Houston Pool Budget | Cypress Custom Pools

Every pool has an initial investment as well as ongoing maintenance, upkeep, and repair costs. While a Houston swimming pool does not last forever, if you take regular preventative measures, maintain a water chemistry balance, and complete other pool upkeep tasks, you will greatly extend the life of the pool. Are you wondering what to consider when planning your Houston pool budget? The primary monthly components include energy, chemical and water usage, and pool maintenance.

As you begin calculating your monthly payment, keep in mind that every pool is different. Many pools include capacity for adjusting flow, pump performance, and energy consumption. It is worth taking the time to learn how to adjust these levels to reach an optimal balance.

Energy usage

A pool with a standard one and a half to two HP motor will cost anywhere from $60 to $80 per month. Older pools often have motors that are too large and consequently draw more energy. It used to be popular opinion that bigger pumps were better, which simply isn’t true.

Chemical usage

Chemical usage can run anywhere from $20 to $30 per month to $50 or more.

Water usage

A monthly water bill is largely dependent on how efficiently you use the water in your pool and the water rates in your specific area. For an average 12,000 gallon pool, a monthly water bill for the pool use alone can run $20 to $30 per month or more. This cost range may differ for pools of different sizes. Also keep in mind that the more swimmers and pool play you have, the more splash out you’ll have, requiring you to top up your pool water levels. Hot sun causes evaporation in the summer months. Remember this when planning the location of your pool- long hours of full sunlight will require you to top up water more often, raising your monthly water costs.

Pool maintenance

Some people opt to complete pool maintenance tasks themselves instead of hiring a cleaning company and do not include it in a list of what to consider when planning their pool budget. Whether you complete the work yourself or not, there are sizable costs for chemicals and pool treatments. If you are cleaning your own pool, you also have to calculate the amount of time you will spend working on the pool every day and then plan accordingly.

Pool service cleaning companies charge anywhere from $50 to $300 per month with an average rate of $100 per month. It is important to remember that what you pay for is what you get. Do not simply shop around for the cheapest cleaning company. Make sure that you are working with a reputable and experienced staff.

Top 5 Pool Surface Options in Cypress

Top 5 Pool Surface Options in Cypress | Cypress Custom Pools

Top 5 Pool Surface Options in Cypress | Cypress Custom Pools

Cypress swimming pool owners can choose from multiple beautiful, durable pool surfaces. While it is nice to have a lot of choices, the selection process can be a little overwhelming, particularly when you don’t have a lot of information. The following list includes the top 5 pool surface options with details about each one that will make the decision process simple and straightforward.

Standard white plaster

While trendier options may come and go, classic white stays on the top 5 pool surfaces list throughout the years. You’ll get a traditional pool aesthetic with white cement and white marble aggregate. It is important to remember that throughout the lifespan of white plaster, it will change in appearance from minor staining to marked cracking. As standard white plaster has a softer finish that many other pool surface options, it is one of the most susceptible surfaces.

100% quartz

When combined with white cement, 100% quartz makes for a highly durable surface. There are additional quartz formulations on the market such as 50% and 75%. However, it is best practice to use 100% quartz for pools. It is available in a wide range of colors from vibrant blue to soft tan.

Gemstone pebble

Gemstone pebble surfaces have small, smooth river pebbles throughout the surface. These surfaces have a natural appearance that many people find aesthetically pleasing. Gemstone pebble is also known for being highly flexible and dependable. As river pebble stone material is chemically dormant, there is a very small chance that it will react with pool water and undergo changes in appearance.

Hydrazzo

Hydrazzo surfaces are made of colored and white marble aggregates, graded color aggregates, white Portland cement, and additional helpful materials to produce a high strength of cement. Hydrazzo surfaces are available in a unique palette of colors and have a naturally varied aesthetic as well as a natural resistance to topical stains, spot etching, algae adhesion, and permanent scale.

Beadcrete

Beadcrete surfaces combine small reflective clear glass beads with selected colored quartz. The quartz mirrors the light under the surface of the water, producing a bright sparkling finish. The effect is beautiful during the day and absolutely breathtaking at night under pool lights.

It is important to keep in mind that all pool surfaces are submerged in water, which means that they are exposed to water chemistry conditions over time. While durability varies for different finishes, all surfaces require basic maintenance to prevent deterioration.

A Pool That Cleans Itself? Pool Maintenance Has Never Been So Easy!

Owning a pool can be fantastic! Cleaning a pool? Not so much. There are several products on the market that can make pool maintenance easier, but the in-floor cleaning and circulation system from A&A Manufacturing offers complete automation for a truly hassle free pool. Imagine a pool that cleans itself while you relax poolside with a good book, blissfully at ease. No more unsightly hoses, bulky attachments, or hours spent scrubbing tiles and vacuuming your pool. A&A’s in-floor cleaning system does this and more. While it’s true that other in-floor systems exist, A&A’s innovative system has taken in-floor technology to a whole new level, providing incredible cleaning power, improved pool circulation, and 50% savings on energy costs!

The Muscle Behind the System

Every great innovation is made up of several essential parts, and the A&A in-floor system is no different. Behind the pop-up G4V cleaning heads that are built in to the pool floor, the water actuator valve is the muscle that creates the increased water flow and wider surface coverage. 

Unlike other cleaning system valves that are bulky and poorly designed, the sleek low profile of A&A’s Water Actuator Valve allows it to get closer to the pool surface to increase efficiency and save you money. A&A’s Water Actuator Valve capitalizes on cutting-edge design to create better circulation and deliver 45% more flow through each zone of your pool. In addition to cleaning your pool better and faster than traditional piston valve systems, the Water Actuator Valve’s increased efficiency requires fewer cleaning heads and pumps, so it can save you money, too!

Like all of A&A’s products, the Water Actuator Valve built to last. A&A Manufacturing created the project with quality as the central concern, so we have eliminated the traditional supplementary parts like internal screens and external pressure devices to make sure that the required maintenance is minimal. The valve is also designed with convenience in mind, so it can be customized to fit the shape and size of your pool. With superior functionality, the Water Actuator Valve is easy to use and completely adjustable. Feel like taking a swim, but worried about interrupting a cleaning cycle? Don’t worry! Just pause the A&A in-floor cleaning system, enjoy your swimming pool, and resume the cleaning when you’re finished. 

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A&A Manufacturing Water Actuator Valve

Ozone: A Safe Alternative to Chlorine

The all familiar chlorine smell has become synonymous with childhood summers. Who doesn’t remember falling asleep after a long day at the pool with the smell of chlorine still radiating from their hair? But recent studies in the U.S., Canada, Norway, Australia and Belgium have caused concerns over whether exposure to chlorine is safe for children. With fears of asthma, lung damage, and cancer looming, many pool owners are looking for a safe alternative to chlorine. Most often that alternative is ozone.

Ozone for Pool Sanitation

Ozone naturally sanitizes and purifies pool water, killing harmful bacteria and viruses and oxidizing oil, make-up and other contaminates for a beautifully clear and safe swimming environment. The benefits of ozone over chlorine are numerous. It’s safer for swimmers, odorless, and does not corrode pool equipment, extending the life of your pool system. So while the initial investment is higher, the long term benefits make it more cost effective over time.

Making the Switch is Easy

Making the switch from chlorine to ozone is easy. By installing an A&A QuikPure 3 ozone oxidation system in your pool, you can reduce your use of chlorine and bromine by roughly 90%. The longer your ozone system is running, the less chlorine you will have to use. While you will probably always maintain some level of chlorine and bromine in your pool to ensure around the clock sanitation, ozone removes the unpleasant and harmful effects of chlorine, making pool water gentler on swimmers and on your pool system. No more noxious fumes, itchy skin or red eyes!

Installing a QuikPure3 ozone system is quick and easy. Give us a call to discuss pricing or schedule an installation- you could be enjoying the benefits of an ozone pool this weekend!

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A&A Manufacturing QuikPure3

Keep Leaves from Becoming a Problem This Fall

With fall around the corner and windy days ahead, pool maintenance can become a real hassle. Leaves blown into your pool water can clog your skimmer, introduce algae into your pool water and create an unattractive nuisance for swimmers. But there are steps you can take to keep leaves from becoming a problem.

Pool Cover

The most effective option is a pool cover. This creates a physical barrier to protect your pool from falling debris and will help to keep the water clean and clear. But for most pool owners, this option isn’t a good one. Early autumn temperatures are often warm enough for swimming, and they just aren’t ready to cover their beautiful pool yet. On top of that, the hassle of uncovering for swims and covering again takes too much time. So if you’re not ready to bring out the pool cover just yet, there are other options.

Frequent Skimming

Regular skimming of your pool’s surface will remove leaves before they have a chance to create problems. By the end of the summer, depending on the amount of trees you have nearby, this will probably have to be done every morning and evening. If you don’t do this frequently enough you run the risk of developing algae problems, cloudy water, and clogged skimmer baskets.

Empty Skimmer Baskets Regularly

At this time of the year it’s important to empty your skimmer baskets often. Leaves can clog up skimmer baskets and compromise the circulation of your pool water which can cause a range of water chemistry problems and put undo strain on your pool pump.

Install a LeafVac

If all of this sounds like too much hassle, we recommend installing an A&A LeafVac. This product is installed at your equipment instead of on your pool deck, making for an easy and more affordable installation process. The LeafVac uses high water flow and a large basket to effectively remove leaf debris from your pool surface. It’s basket has been specially designed to accommodate a higher capacity of debris without clogging, so you don’t have to empty it as often and you don’t have the added worry of burning out your pool pump. With the LeafVac, leaves are no longer a concern so you can spend more time enjoying your pool and less time maintaining it

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A&A Manufacturing LeafVac

Improve Pool Circulation for Better Heating and Water Chemistry

When thinking about how to keep you pool a safe and healthy place for family fun, be sure to factor circulation systems into your pool building plan. Circulation is a critical part of keeping your pool sanitized, and can be made a lot easier with the help of A&A Manufacturing’s QuikFresh system. 

An effective circulation device insures that clean water is continually flowing through each and every zone of your swimming pool and prevents the development of “dead spots” or other problem areas. The QuikFresh system is made up of patented, flush-mounted circulation heads that are placed throughout your pool floor. At regularly timed intervals, the heads will disperse clean, sanitized water and circulate it through your swimming pool. A healthy alternative to increasing your usage of pool chemicals, A&A Manufacturing’s QuikFresh circulation system is a perfect complement to the A&A in-floor cleaning system.

Extend the Swimming Season!

In addition to creating a safe swimming environment, QuikFresh is also able to heat you pool or spa. Taking advantage of maximized energy efficiency, the QuikFresh system disperses heated water throughout the bottom of your swimming pool to cleanly heat your pool. Your whole family can enjoy an extended swimming season with the help of A&A Manufacturing’s QuikFresh in-floor circulation system.

Call us today to discuss pricing or to schedule an installation! 

quickfresh

A&A Manufacturing

Keep Environmental Debris from Becoming a Problem in Your Cypress Pool

Environmental debris can be a real hassle to pool owners. Leaves, insects and twigs, to name a few, fall or get blown into pools every day. But if left to sink to the bottom of the pool, they can create a variety of issues. The most common problem is algae. Spores are introduced into the pool water through environmental debris. When the debris lingers in the water or sinks to the bottom, the spores have a chance to multiply and spread throughout the pool environment, clinging to surfaces or creating floating algae blooms. Once you have an algae problem, it takes a lot of effort, and chemicals, to eradicate it. The best approach is prevention.

A Pool Skimmer That Removes Even Large Debris

Why wait for something to become a problem if you can prevent it in the first place? We recommend the QuikSkim. This Venturi-powered quick skimmer was created by A&A Manufacturing, a leader in pool maintenance innovation, to capture and remove environmental debris before it has a chance to sink to the bottom. Powered by cutting edge Venturi technology, this unique skimmer provides the power and efficiency of two pumps while only using one so you save on energy costs while enjoying a cleaner pool.

The QuikSkim runs by continually recycling its own energy, which results in increased energy efficiency and increased savings for you! A perfect complement to our A&A Manufacturing in-floor cleaning system, the QuikSkim is another product that takes the hassle out of being a pool owner and gives your more time to enjoy backyard living with your family. 

Like many of our other products, the QuikSkim was designed with safety in mind. The only skimmer on the market with a patented anti-entrapment feature, A&A Manufacturing’s QuikSkim gives you piece of mind knowing that if the device should become blocked by an entrapment, the swimmer will always be quickly and safely released. For an added layer of safety, the QuikSkim can be used in conjunction with our Anti Vortex Single Channel (AVSC) or Powerful Debris Removing (PDR) drains. 

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A&A Manufacturing QuickSkim