Pool School


Salt Water VS Chlorine? What’s the difference?

One of the common questions that we receive from our customers here at Secard Pools & Spas throughout Southern California is what the difference between a salt pool and a chlorine pool is. A chlorine pool traditionally uses chlorine tablets to maintain chlorine levels in your swimming pool. A salt pool with a chlorine generator, generates chlorine from salt.

A common misconception is that a salt water pool doesn’t use chlorine at all. If you remember those science classes from school, salt is made up of NaCl or sodium chloride. The salt system separates the two and generates natural chlorine. The two combine again back into salt for the process to repeat again. The advantage here is that there are no additional chemicals added to your pool which can cause all the usual complaints about chlorine such as dry skin, strong odor, discoloration of hair and irritated eyes.

From our customers in LA County to the Inland Empire we have had customers complain about eye irritation, itchy skin and light hair turning green from chlorine. None of these common complaints are actually from chlorine at all. They come from the added chemicals used to produce chlorine into a tablet or powdered form. Because the salt system is generating pure chlorine, your pool water will feel softer on the skin and you won’t have the complaints about eye irritation or strong odor

Salt water pools and traditional chlorine pools both use chlorine to keep the pool clean. The chlorine made from salt water generators is a natural process; and therefore, it’s softer on the skin. It doesn’t matter whether you live in the High Desert or Riverside county, you’ll still love the feel of salt water pools.

Aside from the misconception that a salt water pool does not use chlorine, a salt system is a natural version of making the water softer on your skin without losing its sanitation quality. In California, most of us try to live our life the healthiest way possible. Adding a salt system to your pool will help you do just that. If you have more questions, we will be happy to help you at any one of our many retail stores.

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When is the pool temp just right?

Don’t ask members of the Polar Bear Club how warm it has to be to swim. These winter swimmers plunge into the Atlantic Ocean every Sunday from November until April and revel in the chill. Swimming temperatures are a matter of preference — some people can tolerate much colder temperatures than others.

According to The United States Water Fitness Association, water temperatures for younger children and the elderly will generally need warmer temperatures ranging from 84 to 94 degrees Fahrenheit, while a comfortable pool temperature for adults is 85 to 89 degrees. If you are swimming for fitness, cooler temperatures of 78 to 84 degrees are recommended.

Furthermore, according to USA swimming the following are some general water temperature guidelines:

82 degree water (and lower)

  • Competitive swim team training
  • Adult aerobic lap swimming
  • High intensity vertical water exercise

Note: The ideal air temperature for these activities is 78-80 degrees; never higher than 82 degrees. The more aerobic the activity, the lower the air temperature needs to be.

86 – 88 degree water

  • Learn-to-swim
  • Moderate vertical water exercise and water walking
  • Younger age (10-under) swim training
  • Low intensity lap swimming
  • Synchronized swimming
  • Recreational swimming

Note: The ideal air temperature for these activities is 82-84 degrees; never higher than 84 degrees and slightly lower is OK.

90 – 92 degree water

  • Aquatic therapy
  • AiChi
  • Learn-to-swim for children

Note: The ideal air temperature for these activities is 84 degrees; never higher than 84 degrees and slightly lower is OK.

While there seems to be a very small range of optimal temperatures for swimming, aquatic exercise and aquatic therapy, the good news is that our bodies can adapt to temperatures quickly.

As far as warm water goes, the preparation for handling it isn’t as well researched, but it’s best to keep warm water for lounging around in.

If you’re looking for a perfect pool temperature, not too hot, not too cold, 77 – 82 degrees (25 – 28°C) may be the way to go according to most recreational swimmers.

Keep it cool for competitions

In most cases, pools should be comfortable, and the average swimmer will agree with this. However, there are times where swimmers aren’t interested in how the water feels. Instead, they’re interested in going as fast as humanly possible.

Competitive swimmers require different conditions than the average participant. According to USA Swimming, competitive swimmers are one of the few categories where lower water temps are preferred for best results. Lower water temperatures equal to or lesser than 82 degrees are generally cold enough for athletes competing or training. Any warmer, and swimmers may overheat in the water and their performance may suffer. Temperatures in the low 80s and high 70s are also recommended for adult aerobic lap swimming and any other high intensity water exercises.

What is the best water temp for beginners?

According to the United States Water Fitness Association, most pools across the country rest between 86 and 88 degrees. This is the temperature that most people find comfortable when first learning how to swim. Some age groups may benefit from slightly more targeted temperature ranges, such as 3- to 5-year-olds at 86 to 90 degrees and 6- to 13-year-olds at 84 to 86 degrees, but no serious injuries will result from a pool that hovers around the high 80s.

This temperature is also perfect for recreational swimming activities, synchronized swimming, diving, water walking and low-intensity lap swimming. You should also note that water and air temperature are two sides of the patron safety coin. Activities that cause swimmers to breathe harder require cooler air, and a pool between 86 and 88 degrees should never have air higher than 84 degrees around it. Slightly lower air temperatures don’t cause immediate problems either.

Higher temperatures are beneficial for Aquatic therapy

If cooler pools are better suited for high-intensity activities such as competitive swimming and athletic training, While pools should be never above 95 degrees, anywhere in the 90-92 degree range creates a comfortable, yet therapeutically warm environment for older swimmers or infants and toddlers learning how to swim or preforming aquatic therapy and exercise. Higher temperatures stimulate blood flow to the muscles and can reduce joint pain.

Find the sweet spot

Odds are that your pool will host more than just one of the above types of swimming activities. Is there a single temperature that you can set your pool at to keep every type of swimmer happy?

According to the Washington Post, that answer is yes – 85 degrees. Donny Wensinger, manager of Virginia’s Great Waves Waterpark, told the news source that 2014’s mild summer caused him to experiment with his temperatures. Above 85 degrees, Wensigner had packed parking lots, long lines and crowded pools. Below that number, the people disappeared.

We can help!

For help regulating your pool’s water temperature, contact or visit Secard Pools at one of our 7 locations for information on our heating options.

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How to winterize your above ground pool in California

Above-ground pools tend to be relatively inexpensive, can be located practically anywhere and are loads of fun. However, they, just like any other pool, must be cared for properly. Winter is especially tough on some pools, so certain precautions must be taken to get your pool through the cooler months.

Climate Makes a Difference

Here in the Golden State, we have a wide range of climatic conditions. Near the coast in the southern section, leaving your pool filled and operating (while following a few precautions) should not be a problem. Temperatures at or below freezing in Southern California are rare. Even when they occur, 32 degree cold snaps don’t last very long here. In other parts of the state you can see a plunge in temperatures that can last for a few days or even longer. In this article, we will discuss the best practices when winterizing your above ground pool in both climate scenarios.
What you will need:

  • (4) 1 lb bags of shock
  • 1 – 2 quarts of 3 month algaecide
  • 3” chlorine tablets
  • 1 chlorine floater
  • Winter cover and air pillows

Mild Climate Winterizing

Even though the southern part of the state may see occasional cold temperatures. The infrequent occurrence of this should not be a concern for most pool owners. Taking the proper steps to protect the pool will keep everything in optimal condition and save a great deal of work for the owner when warmer weather returns. Preparing the pool for the off season consists of the following steps:

Step 1) Remove any debris from the surface of the water and brush loose any algae that may be adhering to the sides or bottom of the pool. Leaving debris in the pool over the winter will stain your liner.

Step 2) With the pump running, empty all 4 bags of shock into the skimmer. Be sure to do this slowly to avoid clogging the filtration equipment.

Step 3) Pour Algaecide directly into the pool evenly throughout. Follow the guidelines on the bottle to determine how much algaecide to use.

Step 4) Fill the floater with tablets and put it into the pool.

Step 5) Run your pump continuously for 24 hours.

Step 6) Let the pool settle and turn off the equipment for 24 hours.

Step 7) Vacuum your pool and thoroughly clean your filter grids or cartridge.

Step 8) Reduce your filtration time to 1 hour a day. Setting a timer is the best way to ensure regular filtration.

Step 9) Place the air pillows (or large beach balls) into your pool and install the winter cover. This will prevent water from pooling on top of the cover during the rainy season. Frequently checking the cover to ensure it is tightly secured to the pool will help your cover last.

  • It is very important that you check your floater at least once a month and add tablets as needed. Not doing so can result in an algae filled pool upon opening in the spring. Additionally, if you plan on winterizing your pool for more than three months, we suggest that at the end of the third month you add another bottle of algaecide to your pool.


Cold and Freezing Climate Winterizing

 In the colder parts of the region winterizing your pool essentially means putting it into hibernation. Steps need to be taken to prevent freezing water from damaging fittings, plumbing, equipment and the pool itself. Following these steps should prove to make reopening your pool in springtime a breeze.

Step 1) Remove any debris from the surface of the water and brush loose any algae that may be adhering to the sides of bottom of the pool. Leaving debris in the pool over the winter will stain your liner.

Step 2) With the pump running, empty all 4 bags of shock into the skimmer. Be sure to do this slowly to avoid clogging the filtration equipment.

Step 3) Pour Algaecide directly into the pool evenly throughout.

Step 4) Fill floater with tablets and put into pool.

Step 5) Run your pump for 24 hours.

Step 6) Let the pool settle and turn off the equipment for 24 hours.

Step 7) Vacuum your pool and thoroughly clean your filter grids or cartridge.

Step 8) Shut off the gate valves on your pool or cap the lines from inside and drain your pool below the skimmer and return. Empty the water from your pump, filter & hoses and store away for the winter. Also remove any ladders, toys or accessories.

Step 9) Place the air pillows (or large beach balls) into your pool and install the winter cover. This will prevent water from pooling on top of the cover during the rainy season. Frequently checking the cover to ensure it is tightly secured to the pool will help your cover last.

  • It is very important that you check your floater at least once a month and add tablets as needed. Not doing so can result in an algae filled pool upon opening in the spring. Additionally, if you plan on winterizing your pool for more than three months, we suggest that at the end of the third month you add another bottle of algaecide to your pool.

Be sure and visit your local Secard Pools & Spas for all of your winterizing supplies or for advice on the procedures for your area.

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The Pool Installation Process: Inground Vinyl Lined Pools

With the typical Islander pool construction, Secard Pools can provide service for virtually every aspect of your pool project. Whether it would be the acquisition of city permits, providing the required electrical to the pool equipment area, removal and/ or replacement of access fences, gates and walls, hardscape and concrete decks, we can accommodate any request.

However, some customers may opt to do some of these items themselves to save costs. For example, a customer can pull the permit themselves, hire their own electrician, provide the required access for our excavation equipment, or even dig their own pool.

Whether you’re the hands on type or just want to relax and watch us do what we do, we’ll work with you towards your vision. Our design experts can help you determine what, if any, items you wish to tackle yourself and our construction department will work with you to coordinate your project.

The Islander Pool Installation Process

Typical pool construction is completed in phases. The basic phases are excavation (digging), wall assembly (building) and liner installation. If additional features are part of the scope of work, these will be completed throughout the phase process.

Phase 0: Planning

Prior to commencement, we will contact and coordinate a service called Dig Alert. This service is required by any company doing excavation work such as your pool. Dig Alert will come out and mark any known public utilities. These utilities are usually marked where they enter your property, typically along the street. If an old or unknown utility was to interfere with the pool area and were undetected the utility can be relocated or the pool area can be redesigned, if necessary.

Phase 1: Digging

The first phase consists of the excavation of the pool and grading of the pool area. We include up to 6″ of grading in the pool area. Excavation usually can be completed in one day. Additional days may be required due to access issues or the use of smaller equipment. The access path must be clear and any fences and/ or gates should be removed to provide the access.

Our standard tractor (aka Bobcat) is 64″ (5′-4″) wide. Smaller 56″ (4′-8″) and even smaller 36″ (3′) version are available for narrower access conditions. Small steps or planters can be driven over that may be in the access path. Keep in mind that some damage may occur to existing concrete, pavers, tile, etc. that are in the access path that has to be driven over. Grass will get damaged when it’s in the access path but is typically easily replaced with seed or sod.

Phase 2: Pool Building

After excavation, heavy equipment will no longer be required into the pool area. Everything else is brought in by hand and the largest piece of equipment that will be used is a wheel barrel. The wall assembly consists of the building of the pool structure with our prefabricated wall panels. While the footings are prepped for the inspection and left empty, they will later be filled with concrete upon the inspector’s approval. The plumbing trenches are also inspected and are filled in upon approval.

During this phase, the pool equipment is installed in your desired location and according to the plans that have been developed for the pool site. If the customer is providing the electrical, it can be completed at this time. After the equipment is installed, it is clear where the electrical needs to be provided.

Phase 3: Vinyl Liner Installation

Liner installation is the final phase. The pool floor is prepared with a sand or a hard bottom (a special hard shell) before the liner is put in place. This treatment provides a smooth surface on the pool floor, filling any voids that are found in the excavated area. When the liner is installed, the pool is filled with water immediately. Filling the pool may take 1-2 days, depending on water pressure. Once the pool is full, we will complete a detail process to finish off all aspects of the pool.

As the phases are to be completed, our construction office will call to schedule the various site visits well in advance. Additionally, we will always call you the day before a scheduled visit to confirm an arrival time and remind you of the visit. You don’t have to be home for any of these visits unless we advise you otherwise. It is requested that access to the pool area, an electrical outlet and a water source is provided and additionally any pets are put away for the safety of them and our crew. If a phase payment is due, you will be notified by the construction office in advance. Payments can be made to the crew, to your sales office, or with a credit card kept on file.

Installing a pool can be a fun process as you watch your dream back yard take shape and we are here to work through it with you. We put our best foot forward on every project and make every attempt to keep our customers informed and engaged in the process.

Remember: The more involved and accessible the customer (you) is, the smoother things typically go.

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What to expect when buying a pool or spa from big box stores

So you’re ready to reward yourself with a little slice of luxury. You want that portable spa or pool that you and the family have been eyeing for a long time. The big box stores and membership wharehouses have it on sale, now is the time to strike. They have the purchasing power and now have it down to where it’s easily within reach. Before you pack up and make the trip down to their huge facility, slow down and look at what you may — or may not — be getting for your investment.

Who’s The Expert?

  • When you go to select your model, you’re sure to have some questions. A big box store often has revolving door issues with various departments. If Don or Donna is employed in that particular department, just how much do they know about the product you are about to invest your hard-earned money into?
  • With the box store, you may have spoken to one person on Tuesday who gave you information. On Friday, they’re off and you’re speaking with someone else. Realistically, neither Don nor Donna may be there and your salesperson has been pulled from the curtain and blinds or paint department to help you with your purchase. Even on a good day, how much training has the salesperson had. How long have they worked in that department?
  • When it’s delivered, you want it as near as possible to the area where it will be permanently located. The box stores have a clear delivery policy. You can choose from curbside delivery or delivery at curbside. From there, you’re on your own.
  • Was the warranty information explained thoroughly? Is there a warranty after it’s delivered? If the merchandise is flawed, the box stores do not have service technicians to come to your home.
  • Who installs your prized possession? If it becomes damaged during installation, what recourse do you have? Who takes ownership of the problem? You?

Certified Experts

  • Big box stores thrive and survive on sales. Secard Pools thrives on customer relationships. When you’re a customer instead of a sale, the experience can change — dramatically.
  • Pricing from your local big box store  can sometimes be a misconceived value. While you may be able to save on cereal or saw blades, portable pools and spas are not their forte. Not only are the products from Secard Pools far more superior, you may be surprised to know that they cannot beat our prices.
  • You can expect your salesperson at the local Secard Pools to be knowledgeable. This is what they do; this is their area of expertise. They don’t sell paint, blinds or storm doors. Their training is from the factory and years of experience. They are proud of their product and they want you to know all about it.
  • With proper access, delivery is made to your specifications. Your spa or pool comes to your home and is placed where you want it. A home visit for a problem is simply a call away.
  • Secard Pools can easily provide installation. We know the proper installation methods and, should there be a problem, it becomes our problem, not yours.
  • At Secard Pools, we explain and support all aspects of warranties that apply. Your protection extends past the sale. Secard Pools takes ownership of our product and your satisfaction.
  • Any water chemistry issues can be handled by your local Secard Pools retail location. Bring a water sample to us for free analysis and a quick resolution of your problem. The box store is not equipped to handle such issues.

Would you rather be a customer or a sale? At Secard Pools, a customer is a long-term agreement between us and you. A sale is a short-term relationship and something big box stores thrive on. Once you’re gone, their only concern is the next sale.

Photo credit Patrick Hoesly

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Understanding Vinyl Pool Liner Thickness

When talking about the “mil” or “guage” of vinyl pool liners, you should first get a decent understanding of what these terms actually mean. The most common term for vinyl, “mil” (not to be confused with millimeter) is a unit of measurement equal to one thousandth of an inch. Therefore, a 20 mil liner thickness is equal to 20 thousandths of an inch. The term “gauge” (not to be confused with mil), is a bit more of a moving target. See, multiple industries measure items such as wire, shotgun barrels, sheet metal, photographic film and hypodermic needles by their gauge. This can be very confusing as in a case like shotgun barrels where the smaller the gauge, the larger the barrel. This is not the case when it comes to vinyl pool liners where the higher the gauge, the thicker the material.

When shopping for pool liners, it is very important that you are aware that gauge is not equal to mil. Some manufactures or retailers like to offer their liners in terms of gauges because they sound thicker than a true mil. To be technical, a 30 mil liner is equivalent to 0.0300 inches. A 30 gauge liner is equivalent to 0.0260 inches (26 mil). Therefore, if you see a liner advertised at 35 gauge, it is truly a 30 mil liner. To avoid this confusion, always make sure and purchase from a company that advertises in mil, versus gauge.

To give some additional perspective, here is the mil of some everyday items:

Item Thickness (in mils)
Standard sheet of paper 10 mil
Dime 49 mil
Human hair 2 mil

When deciding what’s best between the thicknesses of vinyl pool liners for in ground pools, a variety of factors should be considered. Such as the location of the pool in relation to sun exposure, how much time the pool will spend covered and the type of surface the liner will be laid on.

If the pool will experience longer exposure to direct sunlight throughout the year or when you’re dealing with a rougher surface material, such as a concrete or a sand and concrete mixture, the appropriate, preferred mil of vinyl pool liner would be the 28-30 mil. Although thicker material will typically cost you about 5 – 10% more, it is 29 – 32% thicker than 20 mil, and will no doubt provide adequate thickness and protection for its purpose.

With that being said, all pool liner material, no matter the thickness will boast the smooth nature vinyl is famous for, come in an array of patterns to choose from, and in most cases, carry the same warranty.

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Save time, the environment and money with salt chlorination

How often do you come across helpful information that will keep more money in your pocket? In this day and age it seems we all need to watch our budgets with a sharper eye for ways to reduce expenses and our home’s maintenance costs. What if your pool could automatically sanitize and balance itself, all while putting a few bucks in your pocket and saving mother nature all at the same time?

Cooling off in your swimming pool after work, doing a few laps to unwind, or relaxing in your spa with your family and friends are a few of the advantages of owning a pool or hot tub. Pool maintenance costs can add up quickly if you use conventional pool maintenance practices which rely on chlorine to keep the water clean. Freshwater pools need water testing weekly with chlorine added regularly for sanitary pool conditions and also to prevent algae. Chlorine is expensive and many find it harsh on their skin when used in the traditional freshwater pool. A traditional pool also requires quite an investment in time to maintain the proper chlorine level and to get the pool’s water to chemically balance.

You can ensure the pool’s maintenance is efficiently taken care of by automating your pool with a salt chlorinating system. It not only reduces your chemically produced chlorine use to zero, reduces costs but will also make your pool’s water feel good on your skin.

Salt chlorination system installation

Installation of the system is quick and easy and does not replace any of your existing pool equipment. After a simple plumbing modification, just add the correct amount of salt and the chlorinating system does the rest. It works by first adding salt to your pool’s water at the rate of 3500 ppm salt content (equivalent to the salt content of the human body). The salinated water then goes through the chlorinating system, which uses electrolysis to break down the salt. The chemical reaction produces a chlorine gas. This chlorine gas prevents algae and purifies the water of your pool or spa. Chloramines are what give traditional pools the terrible smell and red, burning eyes. The electrolytic process oxidizes, or “burns off” these chloramines leaving your pool water clean, pure and luxuriously soft.

Salt doesn’t evaporate like chlorine does which is where the savings come in. Constantly adding chemicals is a thing of the past. No more mixing, measuring and hassling with harsh chlorine again. The savings are significant financially as well as freeing up the chunks of time you won’t be spending maintaining your pool. Say goodbye to itchy skin, strong chemical odors, faded bathing suits and red eyes forever.


Save money and go green

If saving the planet is your forte, you’re on the right track. A salt chlorination system will help you “go green” without your pool going “green”. Limiting the transportation to and from the pool store, reducing the introduction of harsh chemicals into the environment from your pool and cutting out the waste from chlorine packaging are all ways to reduce your carbon footprint.

Now there’s an easier, more efficient and cost effective way to maintain your home pool or spa. Keep your pool’s water sparkling clean, fresh and crystal clear at all times. An automatic chlorinating system is a wise choice for easier maintenance at a lower cost to you. It’s amazing what a little salt can do!

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Vinyl vs. Fiberglass vs. Plaster Pools, The match up:

When deciding on what type of in ground pool to install, it is essential to do the proper research before buying. The decision between vinyl, fiberglass or gunite (otherwise known as plaster) for in ground pool selection generally comes to down to factors such as installation costs, how long it will take to install, overall maintenance, and appearance. Everyone’s tastes are different but when it comes to cost and upkeep, vinyl is the clear winner. There’s no reason to be afraid of vinyl as this is not a new technology. Vinyl liner pools may be new to you, but they are certainly not new to Secard Pools.

Plaster pools do offer the most options in terms of design. Depending on your budget, you can design a plaster pool that is one of the most visually-pleasing spaces in your backyard, including those that feature grottos, rock slides, a waterfall or are lagoon-like in appearance. The shape of the pool itself, such as assorted asymmetrical designs, is another design option. Though asymmetrical shapes and water features are a possibility for vinyl pools as well, you are typically very limited when it comes to your options with fiberglass pool shapes and sizes.

Unlike vinyl pools, fiberglass and plaster pools are very expensive to install. The installation costs for a vinyl pool are about $11,000 to $25,000, while installing a plaster pool could cost you anywhere from $35,000 to a staggering $150,000 and fiberglass pools ranging from $20,000 to $40,000. The costs of installing a plaster pool could be even higher depending on how intricate your design plan is.

Not only are vinyl pools less expensive to install, they are also much quicker to install! Adding a vinyl pool to your property generally takes a few weeks, while installing a plaster pool can take anywhere from two to four months. Fiberglass pools tend to be on the shorter end of the scale for installation because you typically have to choose from a shell configuration that the installer has in stock.

While you generally have to replace your vinyl pool liner every 10 years, it is still much less expensive than resurfacing a plaster or fiberglass pool which needs to be done every 10 to 15 years. Additionally, vinyl pool liners and fiberglass shells are resistant to staining while the porous nature of a plaster design makes staining a frequent possibility. Plaster pools require more pool chemicals to keep the pool clean and stain-free. Vinyl pool liners and fiberglass shells are not only stain-resistant but are also algae-resistant. Many pool liners now feature thicker liners that are durable against wear and tear. You will therefore save money on pool chemicals and other maintenance costs if you choose a vinyl liner or fiberglass pool.

If water features are important to your overall pool design, note that such features are now a possibility with all three pool types, though they were previously features for plaster pools only. Browse pool packages to find water features and other design items that work for your vision.

It’s hard to argue with the overwhelming pros of vinyl liner pool design as it costs relatively little to install, takes only a short time to install, is easy to maintain, and offers many of the same features as a plaster pool! If you want a pool for your property but don’t have hours upon hours to dedicate to the scrubbing of algae and other time-
consuming pool maintenance issues, then vinyl liner pools are the optimal design for you.

Take a look at the following chart comparison for the visual touchy-feely:
Compare Features Vinyl Fiberglass Plaster
Affordable No No
Short installation time No
City or county permits required
Tractor access required
No crane access required No
Customizable shape No
Customizable depth No
Unlimited shapes and sizes No
Can withstand an earthquake No No
Smooth surface No
No acid washing required No
Heater friendly
Salt water friendly
Low resurface cost No No
Easy to clean No
Easy to repair No No


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Pool Care for Vinyl Liner Pools

Water Chemistry

Your liners life and looks depends on an accurate water balance. Keeping proper pH levels will help maximize your chemical’s full potential such as the ability for chlorine to kill algae and bacteria.

Learning the proper technique for water testing is essential. Our sales staff will be glad to show you how and can supply you with the needed testing kits. Always follow the manufacturer’s documentation for your safety and the safety of your family and friends.

In-Season Chart

In-Season Chart
Factor Range Test Frequency Function
pH 7.2 – 7.60 Daily Allows other chemicals to operate properly
Free Chlorine Residule 1.0 – 1.5/ppm* Daily Kills bacteria
Total Alkalinity 60 – 125/ppm* Weekly Ability of pool to counteract change in pH
Cyanuric Acid 30 – 75/ppm* Monthly Stabilizes water chemistry
Calcium Hardness 175 – 250/ppm* Monthly To avoid corrosive conditions in pool systems

*ppm = parts per million

pH Level

pH Levels are the acidity or alkalinity of pool water on a scale of “0- 14”. The extreme acid is “0” and the extreme alkali is “14”. Proper pH range is 7.2-7.8. pH readings above 7.8 will lead to scaling on all pool surfaces and cloudy water, inefficient sanitizing, and swimmer discomfort. pH readings below 7.2 will lead to corrosion of metal parts such as heaters and ladders, wrinkled vinyl liners, and swimmer discomfort.


Chlorine will do the job of killing the bacteria in the water if the circulating range of 1.0 – 1.5 ppm is maintained. Anything above this range will attack the liner, bleaching it and shorten its life. Below this range may not kill the bacteria causing unhealthy conditions and possible unsightly staining to your investment.

Letting granular chlorine come into contact with the liner before it has fully dissolved will also damage your liner. To avoid this, dissolve it first in a bucket of water, and pour it in various locations around the pool. This technique is also used with liquid chlorine.

Never mix chemicals together as this may cause personal harm, instead add chemicals to the pool water separately and circulate throughout pool before adding second chemical. Circulation can be achieved by sweeping your pool.

Automatic Pool Sweeps and Maintenance Equipment

It is very important that you only use vacuum head, pool sweeps, brushes or other maintenance equipment that have specifically been designed for your vinyl liner pool. Never use the telescopic pole in the pool without the attachment, the pole is very sharp and may damage the liner.

Vinyl Liner Repair

Should your liner receive a cut or tear, it can usually be repaired using specialized products for vinyl pool liner repair. These adhesives are made to work above or below the water line. Ask your Secard Pool Sales consultant for correct repair procedure and products available.

Water Level

Always keep the water level up to allow your skimmer to operate as designed. Allowing you pool’s water level to fall below this can cause the liner to shrink causing tears and cracks. The water actually holds the liner in place. Never drain your pool, consult with your pool man first!

The Water Line

To reduce grime build up and ultra violet deterioration, a good, non-alcohol, non-petroleum based vinyl protective liquid applied to a clean vinyl surface will work. Please Ask one of our sales associates to help you select a product specially suited for this use.

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