Watching the footage of ex-Tropical Cyclone Debbie’s destruction has certainly been heartbreaking, and our thoughts are with the thousands of people affected by the devastating floods and heavy rains across Queensland and northern New South Wales.
If you live in these areas and own a swimming pool, chances are you’re now faced with water that’s filled with phosphates, contains dirt and debris, is chemically unbalanced, and has started showing signs of algal blooms. In the extreme cases Swimart’s pool professionals have seen, many pools are filled with thick mud and sediment, while others have been damaged beyond repair.
If your pool is suffering from the effects of the cyclone, storm or flooding, here are some tips from Swimart’s pool technicians that will help bring your pool water back into balance, and mitigate further damage to your investment.
Swimart’s tips for owners of pools affected by floods and heavy rain:
- Walk around the perimeter of your pool to determine whether fencing is intact to prevent children from accessing the pool area. If you have glass fencing, carefully remove broken panels and dispose of responsibly
- Secure or restrict access to the pool area if possible, particularly if fences have been damaged or debris has made the area dangerous. A rope or tarp would suffice
- Before checking filtration and sanitation equipment, be mindful that snakes, spiders and other wildlife might have sought refuge in the pump house
- Remove all debris from the pool including leaves, branches and dirt as this organic matter will lead to algae blooms
- Have a licensed electrician check the circuits and electrical fittings of your pump, timer and any electrical equipment. This may need to be done in consultation with a pool technician in case electrical components need to be replaced
- Consult with a pool technician on how to ‘flocculate’ the pool water. Aluminium sulphate, a flocculent, will cause suspended solids in the water to congeal into a filterable mass and settle to the bottom of your pool. The flocculated material should be vacuumed to waste and not filtered, as it will rapidly clog the filter
- Take a water sample from elbow deep to your local Swimart store for testing and advice. Alternatively, test the water’s pH level and adjust to the recommended range of 7.2 to 7.6
- If your pool is full of water but can’t be restored immediately, check it daily for evidence of mosquitoes. If mosquitoes or lava is detected, speak to a pool technician about how to remove them
- Consult your local Swimart store if your pool water has started turning green as this means an algal bloom is has already developed
- Only turn your filter back on once water quality has been restored and an electrician has checked your equipment
- Do not empty your pool, as the ground water may have become saturated and the pool could pop or crack. Experienced pool technicians should only empty pool water in extreme cases and when it’s deemed hydraulically safe
If you’re feeling overwhelmed by the amount of post-storm clean-up you still need to do, or are unsure how to get your pool sparkling clean again, call your local Swimart store and we’ll do the work for you.