The school year is finished, and your kids are looking forward to a summer of fun. But because disrupted schedules and adventurous spirits can also make our lives a bit more chaotic, accidents are more common during these months. These tips can help to keep your child safe this summer, especially with regard to outdoor activities and pool safety.
Keep your car doors locked. Each summer, dozens of kids across the country die in hot cars. Since cars can seem like tempting hiding spots during outdoor games of hide n seek, keep the doors locked.
Reapply sunscreen regularly. Sunscreen does wear off after a hour or two, especially when swimming. And since swimming exposes more skin to the sun (particularly areas of the body not accustomed to exposure), you should be extra vigilant about sunscreen when your kids are using the pool.
Remember to hydrate. Even as your kids splash and play in the pool, they can become dehydrated if they aren’t actually drinking water. Learn the signs of heat exposure and heat stroke, and head indoors if your child begins to look or feel ill.
Remind kids of pool safety rules. Post a list of pool rules, and enforce strict consequences for failure to follow them.
Don’t let kids swim unattended. Even adults are safer swimming with a buddy, but kids definitely shouldn’t be left unattended around swimming pools. This is true even for the strongest swimmers; set a rule that an adult must be present at all times.
Keep the gate locked. Your pool should be enclosed by a fence, and the gate should remain locked at all times. Choose a lock that is difficult for young children to figure out, and install it high on the gate.
Put away all pool toys after swimming. A toy floating in the pool is just too tempting for young ones, who might lean toward the pool to grab it. In fact, pool toys are frequently the culprit behind pool accidents.
Consider a pool alarm. This alarm notifies you immediately when the surface of the water is disrupted, saving you crucial moments if a child does fall into the pool.
For more information on devices that can safeguard your kids (or neighborhood children) around your pool, give us a call. We can review pool safety with you, and help you evaluate your options.
Many of us use our pools daily at this time of year, which means maintenance becomes a more pressing concern. As you continue to enjoy your backyard oasis this summer, follow these pool maintenance tips to keep it clean.
- Check the pool chemistry. Once or twice per week, check to be sure your water’s pH stays between 7.2 and 7.8. Keeping it on the lower end of that spectrum will mean you need less chlorine.
- Maintain the water level. If water is too low, your pump will run dry and potentially burn up. If it’s too high, the skimmer door won’t work properly.
- Clean the skimmer basket. Clean it weekly, and you’ll see less debris in your pool.
- Clean the lint pot. About every other week, turn off the pump and release the pressure on the system. Then clean out the lint pot as needed.
- Clean pool filters. These should be checked and cleaned every few months, so perform this step at least once this summer. Soak dirty filters in muriatic acid or a solution of trisodium phosphate, then rinse clean.
- Check your chlorinator. Make sure chlorine tablets are loaded properly and nothing is clogged.
- Check your Ozonator. If you use an Ozonator, look to be sure the light is on. As long as it’s working properly, your Ozonator can reduce the amount of chlorine your pool needs.
- Maintain your chlorine generator. If you have one, a chlorine generator produces chlorine so that you never need to buy, store, or handle it. But you will need to clean the generator cell and maintain your pool’s pH even more closely.
- Observe your pool and water for clarity, debris, odor, and damage to the pool itself. If you see (or smell) anything that concerns you, make the necessary adjustments or call a professional for assistance.
And remember, if you aren’t so keen on performing all of these steps on a regular basis, the simplest solution is to hire someone to do it for you! Give us a call, and we’ll help you enjoy a carefree summer, without all the hassle of pool maintenance.