Many homeowners dream of having a pool. But when the day finally comes that they move into a new home that has one or they have their own constructed, they might not be ready to properly care for it or take responsible safety precautions.
Inexperience often leads to mistakes. When a pool is involved, those mistakes can be very expensive and even put your children and pets at risk. If you’re a new pool owner, here are four common mistakes you should avoid.
1. Failing to protect the pool with a pool fence or cover
The first mistake is the most serious of all. A swimming pool may be the site of fun in the sun with family and friends. However, when the water is left accessible to anyone who might wander to the pool area without responsible supervision, a pool can also become the site of a tragedy. Thousands of small children and pets are seriously injured or drowned in pools every year.
In addition to causing great sadness and stress, you may be held liable. For example, if the victim’s family were to file a successful wrongful death suit, homeowners insurance could have a significant judgment to pay, which may exceed the insurance cap and/or cause premiums to rise.
A quality safety barrier, such as a mesh pool fence or pool net, makes the pool area difficult to access by children and pets and significantly reduces the chance of all kinds of accidents. Most pool fences and safety nets are designed to be installed or removed in just a few minutes, making it easy to secure them in place on short notice.
Make sure you contact your insurance agent. Your insurance company may require a fence around the pool for coverage to apply.
2. Waiting to care for your pool when it’s out of shape
So, you’ve had your pool for a few months now and all has been well. Then you notice something amiss, maybe it’s an algae bloom, discoloration, or cloudy water. “No worries,” you say to yourself, “we’re going on vacation for a week, and will sort it all out when we get back.”
In just about all cases relating to pool care, leaving the problem for longer will cause it to get worse and more expensive to fix! This is especially true with algae, which will grow almost exponentially once the right conditions are met. It’s much better to shock the pool now than wait to try and fix it before the next time you want to use it.
3. Too much DIY
There are many things you can do yourself in your backyard, but when it comes to a pool, sometimes it’s better to leave things like cover installation to the experts. The industry standard for safety is mesh pool covers which anchor to your pool deck. Installing them requires drilling the anchors directly into the cement or other pool deck surfaces. If this isn’t done by a professional, it’s very likely that the surface will crack.
This is a HUGE mistake for two reasons. First, is the expense. Bringing a crew back out to restore the pool deck to the point where it looks nice will almost certainly cost hundreds of dollars. If it involves pouring new cement, that section may also look different from the rest of the pool deck. It’ll be a few years before the color settles in to match.
The second reason is the big one. Until it’s fixed, the structural integrity of your pool cover will be at risk. The anchor may pop out and the cover will not provide the protection it’s designed for. This can put your family and pets at serious risk.
4. Over-economizing when choosing pool safety solutions
Installing a pool isn’t a small investment. After making such a large financial addition to your property, it’s only natural to want a highly economical pool safety solution. While it’s entirely possible to choose a great solution that’s also economical, the effectiveness of the solution, and not its price, should take precedent.
In reality, the price difference between pool safety products of mediocre quality and superior quality isn’t that great, especially considering the tragic situations that the solutions are designed to help prevent. While you should always try to get the best deal, be sure that the products you choose are ultimately chosen for the superior protection they provide. This includes the projected lifespan of the products, as well as whether they are designed to provide all-season protection.
Prevent mistakes to save money and lives.
A swimming pool can be a wonderful, fun-filled addition to a home. However, the simple fact that it’s filled with feet of water makes it a safety concern, especially for children, the elderly, and adults living with disabilities. This is why it’s essential for swimming pool owners to install a high-quality pool fence or safety cover that helps prevent drowning accidents immediately after the pool is finished and ready for use.
If you have a home swimming pool that needs a pool fence or safety cover, remember to avoid these mistakes. Doing your homework on pool ownership and reaching out to professionals for advice will help you avoid mistakes and save money and even lives.