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  • Anyone know about swimming pool maintenence?
  • Premier Icon mattyfez
    Free Member

    Long story short, my old man passed away in April, in Spain where he was a resident.
    He had a house which I am essentially the sole beneficiary of. The house has a swimming pool, about 5×12 meters, 2 meters deep at the deep end.

    Basically, things are taking a long time to sort out with covid and brexit, and let’s be honest the Spanish system is;nt exactly speedy at the best of times.

    In the meantime, I’m basically having to cover the costs of the house out of my own pocket, local tax, insurance etc, so i’m looking to minimise costs untill things are sorted out as I can barely afford to keep up with it.

    I have a pool maintenence guy who comes twice a week in summer, and once a week in winter to keep the pool in good condition.

    But i’m thinking of maybe draining the pool to save some outlay in the short to medium term.
    Aside from the water bill to fill it back up, is there anything else to consider? for example could there be subsidence or structural integrity issues is such a big hole is left empty for a ‘while’ without the huge weight of the water in it?

    The pool was professionally built and I have a folder of schematics and stuff, but it doesnt mean much to me.


    Premier Icon franksinatra
    Full Member

    Have you worked out how much it would cost to refill? There is a Chad’s this cost more than keeping things ticking over during the winter

    Premier Icon poolman
    Free Member

    I wouldn’t drain it down as long periods with no water can cause the structure to crack, the pool is used to having c 50 tonnes of weight in there. Also the sun even in winter can cause your tiles to pop off.

    What I would do is dose it up with a strong algicide, it’s about 20e a bottle and will treat the whole pool. Keep your ph in range and dose up with Cloro, drop the pump down to 1 hr per day.

    Ask a friendly neighbour to keep an eye on water level.

    Hope it helps, I just left my pool for 6 weeks while away using above technique, crystal clear on return.

    If you re selling the house buyers will want to see the pool properly maintined so may be a false economy sacking off your poolman.

    Sorry for your loss btw.

    Premier Icon cchris2lou
    Full Member

    Cover it up and leave the water. It will turn a bit green but will come back with a shock treatment.

    With a good filter system, you should not need someone to look after it.

    Premier Icon mattyfez
    Free Member

    Thanks all, thats some usefull insights.

    I figured draining it would potentailly cause structural issues.

    It has to be toped up manually by hose pipe, but it has a ‘pump house enclosure’ for the filters and stuff. I dont recal seeing a timer on it though.

    Think I might tell the pool maintenence company to only come once a fortnight or something.

    Premier Icon mattyfez
    Free Member

    I thought about getting a cover, but I’m in the UK so I’ll need to look into that.

    Biggest issue in the summer is evaporation, and the biggest issue in winter is keeping it in good condition.

    I’m not in a position to do anything with the house yet, and of course it will be more complicated after January with brexit.

    So I’m just trying to balance keepting it in good shape Vs draining it.

    Premier Icon RoterStern
    Free Member

    Some pool designs require the water to keep the integrity of the side walls. As others have said you can let the water go green over the winter and as soon as you start the pump and chlorine treatment the water becomes clear again in a few days. I don’t know of it is an issue in that part of Spain but you have to make sure the filter and pump system is completely clear of water in case of frosts which can destroy a pump. That is of course if the pump house is not heated.Covering the pool is a good idea as it is much easier to clean the pool in the spring if it’s not full of leaves.

    Premier Icon poolman
    Free Member

    You could knock up a pool cover with old bed sheets sewn together, held down with bricks on the surrounding stone.

    There will be a timer on the pool pump, only needs daily 1 hour min to get some filtration.

    Pool co may do deal to visit monthly, but see winter as a way to subsidise summer, as you pay flat rate pcm all year. Summer they lose money, winter they earn.

    Where in Spain is the house, if near denia I could help but I am rather enjoying my retirement from pools…should change my username to ex poolman.

    Premier Icon kevs
    Free Member

    I drain my pool to just below any pipe work (about 10” below full) then disconnect and thoroughly drain the pump and heater.

    The water will go green and look like a swamp, I shocked it once at the start of this season and it was crystal clear again 48hours later.

    Premier Icon muddyjames
    Free Member

    If you’re not there it’s going to be difficult to do too much.

    Draining is a bad idea as others have said. Depending on where your water table is you might find the pool floats. If it is vinyl it will cause the liner to shift out of shape, and depending on age will stretch it irreparably.

    I would suggest getting the pool guy to “winterise” the pool and cover it and ideally give you a guarantee on this such that if they don’t do it right and the pump or filter are damaged by frost you have some come back. Winterising is basically what Kevs says but also blowing out the water from the pipes to and from the pool and then plugging them. You then don’t need them until you want to open it up again.

    Copper based algaecide is not a great idea – it’s what turns your hair green. Better to deal with the green swamp as Kev says.

    Depending on your sanitation method, Pools need regular (Daily) maintenance. The cornerstone of which is a good test kit. Test strips are called guess strips for a reason. Taylor’s (Shipped from the us) seem to be the gold standard. Lovibond do some fairly good photometers but they aren’t cheap.

    If you need ultimate convenience then you’re probably stuck with a pool service.

    If you’re going to run the pool it’s worth getting yourself familiar with what chemicals do what and what the optimum levels are. The pool service probably just puts in chlorine ‘tablets’ which are basically a recipe for needing replace all of the water in a reasonably short period of time.

    Maintenance is fairly straight forward but you do need to invest some time to learn what’s needed. And as above need a Decent test kit.

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