Hurricane’s and Swimming Pools
The 2012 Hurricane season has formally begun. In the Rio Grande Valley the season stretches from June through October with August and September being most active.
With over 60 years of experience in the pool and hurricane pool damage business we have a few pointers and tips we hope may help you prepare for “storm day”.
Before Storm Day
- Never drain your pool before or after a hurricane. Most pools have the capacity to hold 3″ to 6″ of rain before they overflow. If you want to lower a couple of inches to add to your capacity, ok but be sure you turn the auto leveler off and make sure the skimmers are still operating properly.
- It may be smarter to go ahead and turn off your pool equipment at the breaker right before the storm hits. There is no point in having your motor running during the heavy down pours and this may also help protect it against possible lightening damage.
- If your pump is in a known flood area, you may want to consider having it removed. If you are unable to do that and the motor is off when it goes under water, be sure and wait a couple of days after the water recedes before turning it back on. If the motor windings had a chance to dry out it may restart fine but you should anticipate the life of the motor has been shortened.
- Remove all loose items from the pool area, especially pot plants. It is not advisable to throw patio furniture into the pool due to possible damage to the plaster finish or pool furniture itself.
- Have extra powder chlorine, acid and DE on hand. Shock the pool before the storm and do the same after. we never know how long power will be down and additional shocks could make a big difference in minimizing the cost of clean up.
After Storm Day
- DO NOT EMPTY YOUR POOL. A swimming pool can act like a big concrete boat and if the storm caused an increase in the water table under your pool, it is at risk of “floating”. There are many other ways to deal with the clean up of the pool if it is a mess from the storm.
- Remove as much debris from the pool as possible.
- Make sure your water leveler is on and lower the water level in the pool back to the middle of the tile. We do not recommend leaving the water level above the tile line for an extended period of time if it can be avoided. The joint between the tile and deck is not water proof so you want to minimize leakage of water thru this joint when possible.
- Shock the pool and rebalance the water.
- If the debris load is extreme, you may want to consider a portable pump to vacuum debris onto the ground instead of filtering it out. If it is not to bad, go ahead and filter, you may need to increase the time setting your pump runs until its CBS. Be prepared for multiple backwashes during the cleanup process.
- Once the pool is clear, blue and sparkling or CBS as Hamlin Pools refers to it, you should do a filter cleaning regardless of how recently it was previously done.
Hopefully these tips were of help.