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A swimming pool in your own backyard is a great addition to any home - find out what to look for to ensure the best outcome.

What to Look For When Buying Swimming Pools

By Romain Levesque

If you've always wanted a pool for the backyard but weren't sure where to begin, you're not alone. Millions of households worldwide own swimming pools so it's no wonder that it is such a booming business. If you are in the market for a pool of your own, there are several factors you will want to consider. First and foremost, decide on how large your backyard is. You don't want to purchase a pool too large for the yard and then realize you've run out of places for the kids and the dog to play. Measure the square footage of your yard, then decide on a pool that will be big enough to enjoy but not so big that it takes up the entire back yard.

When shopping for swimming pools, decide on whether or not you want an in-ground pool or an above ground one. In most cases above ground pools are much less expensive than in ground pools. This is because you don't need to factor in costs such as concrete, labor and many other things. An above ground pool is usually round and has a wall around it made of a fiberglass material. The depth of the pool is typically the same throughout the above ground pool, but larger models may allow for a shallow end and a deep end. In ground pools require the help of professionals to come dig up the yard, lay the concrete, and create the pool.

All swimming pools require some form of maintenance. You must use a filter that will help remove debris such as grass and leaves, and then you must ensure that the filter stays clean. You also need to add chlorine treatments to the pool to keep the water clean. A pool cover is another great accessory that will help keep it clean in the winter and when you're not using it. You can supplement swimming pools with things like slides and waterfalls to give it a fun effect. No matter what you do, pools make summer time a whole lot of fun and provide relaxation for the entire family.

If you are looking for some great summer fun for the family, consider the avenues that would be opened with the installation of a pool. I have some great information on pools located here:http://www.details4life.comHave a safe and fun summer!!

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Romain_Levesque

Above Ground Swimming Pools

In-ground swimming pools are great however they also have some drawbacks.

They are much more expensive than above ground pools and one of the major expenses of building a swimming pool is digging the hole. In in-ground pool also takes anywhere from a few days to a few months for the contractor to complete.

In-ground swimming pools are also permanent. You can't take the pool with you when you move. By purchasing an above ground pool, you can have a pool that is much less expensive and usable right away that can go with you anywhere.

Above ground pools today are well made.  They're made from sturdy, well-coated galvanized steel that won't rust for decades. They're made in ribbed designs that will stand up not only to static water pressure of thousands of gallons, but anything the kids can dish out too.

The interior material used in above ground pools has advanced equally as far. With modern composite resins, they are unlikely to puncture. They're attractive and stand up extremely well to pool maintenance chemicals, like pool shock. Super strong 3-ply PVC liners are safe and indestructible and the inner material is also easy to scrub free of algae and dirt.

Above ground pools offer many extra accessories that make swimming that much easier and fun.

Resin decks and ladders are very sturdy. They also rarely rust like even well-plated chrome ladders can inside in-ground pools. They can be combined with a slide that adds tons of fun to the adventure.

In-pool ladders make getting out of the pool a breeze. Made of sturdy plastic, they won't rust or break.

Liners for above ground pools are colorful and come with mechanisms that make closing the pool a snap. Some are large round tarps similar to the sunshade you use inside your car. Others are large rectangular covers that wind up on a rod and deploy easily with a reel. Automatic versions can make it even easier. All you do is press a button and the cover winds onto the rod. Solar covers make heating the pool inexpensive and keep out leaves and debris, too.

Once upon a time a filter for an above ground pool was unknown. Today, it's easy to add a motor-driven filtering system to your pool. Sitting out of the way on the ground, a slender hose threads into the pool that pumps water through the filter. Maintenance is simple as well.

You can even get an automatic cleaner that will run around a large above ground pool the same way it would clean an in-ground pool. No need to spend hours running a manual vacuum cleaner over the bottom.

While in-ground pools are a great choice, above ground pools offer an alternative that suits the lifestyles of millions.

Swimming Pool Supplies - Opening Your Pool, Tips and Accessories

Jumping right in the water the day after your pool cover comes off isn't a good idea. So what should you do?

Taking the cover off is the first step, of course. But if it's a solar blanket and you've winterized your pool well when you closed it, it might be a good idea to wait a few extra days and let the sun do its job of heating to save your electricity bill.

Before you start up the filter, heat pump, or any other electric device, make sure all equipment is in working order. Ensure that the filters are cleaned, that all the hoses are clear, and that your sand or diatomaceous earth is well stocked.  Lubricate any parts that need it as autumn and winter dry out oils and make rubber parts go stiff.

If the water level is low, fill it up until about 3/4 of the skimmer is covered. Then give it a good brush and vacuuming, either manually or using your automatic pool cleaner.

If your pool was closed properly, algae should be a minor problem at worst. But if some have developed anyway, now is a good time to use algaecides. A brush will remove some, and the filter will eliminate a portion however polyquats or other algaecide compounds will get rid of any remaining stains and can help prevent its return.

Make sure the water is prepared properly ensuring the healthiest environment for swimming.  Make sure all the right elements are present in the proper amounts. Measure the pH to ensure it's between 7.2-7.6. Measure the chlorine level and add pool shock if necessary. If you use bromine instead, perform the same procedure.

Add sanitizer to ensure that bacteria are kept under the safety threshold. There is always some bacteria present, but it can be harmless if the pool is well maintained. Now you can balance your pool water.

Once that's done, stabilizer can help keep your chlorine or bromine levels at the right number, between 2-4 ppm (parts per million) Cl or Br. Tablets, sticks, or granules are available to do this. Bromine typically comes only in tablet form and requires an automatic dispenser.

A clarifier can be a great aid. It's difficult to get those other chemicals' levels exactly right and any excess can cause clouding of the water.

Complete pool opening kits make it easy to take any guesswork out of preparing your pool for use. Whether pre-measured or in bulk, you can't go wrong if you follow the directions.

It will take an extra day, or even a few, to get your pool ready for use however the effort will be well worth it. The results will be a healthy pool with well-functioning filters and pumps that require little ongoing maintenance.

Now just jump in and enjoy!

Swimming Pool Supplies - Closing Your Swimming Pool, Tips and Accessories

There are very few climates around the world that allow you to use your swimming pool all year round.  Even in those that do, there are times when holidays and other events provide situations that lead you to close up your pool.  But some ways for closing your pool are better than others, along with some tools that make it easy.

A swimming pool cover is the first and most basic 'line of defense' when you want to close your pool.  Just rolling or tossing a cover over the top is only the beginning.  The other aspects don't have to be expensive or too difficult, but they are useful.

Very few covers will seal perfectly. Wind is an especially difficult thing to deal with in autumn and winter.  Openings around the edge leave space for the entry of tree leaves, dirt, and wind-blown algae.

One easy way to solve the problem is through the use of strips which seal the cover down and weighted bags that help keep the cover from being lifted by wind.  Strips can close any gap between the pool and the pool cover.  Sand or water-filled bags that tie at points around the edge complete the job by ensuring that the cover stays in place and down on the water.

Preparing the pipes for winter is critical in some climates.  Those areas that get freezing temperatures can present a real risk of breakage or rupture to pipes and interfere with the pool’s drains.  There are several ways to deal with this potential problem.

One simple way is to lower the water level slightly.  By lowering the water it moves water away from components that are up high, like filters and pumps.  Draining them by opening in-built drain plugs installed for that purpose helps tremendously.

It can however be tough to get water out of the entire system, especially in U-shaped sections. If this is the case, a simple non-toxic winterizing anti-freeze is a must.  This clever product lowers the freezing point just as it does in your car, preventing ice formation.  It's not just the small expansion of ice that puts pressure on pipes, but any air trapped in the pipes when the ice forms.  Anti-freeze keeps these spaces open.

Standard pool shock, algaecide, pH balancers, sanitizers, and others should be used before you close your pool for a period of time.  It might seem like a waste, since you don't intend to use it for a few months however it will make the job of opening your pool infinitely easier when the time comes.  Algae, bacteria, and other nasty things continue to develop in most temperatures and leaving them to grow freely for several months is not a good maintenance strategy.

Fortunately, whole kits of pool chemicals are available to take all the guesswork out of which ones to use and how to use them.  Just follow the directions and you'll be able to close your pool knowing it will be healthy and clear for the next swimming season.

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