As a pool owner, there are a number of ways in which you can reduce your environmental impact.
We bet “swimming pool” wasn’t the first thing that came to your mind when considering how you can be more environmentally conscious, but it makes sense the more you consider it: pools require water, energy to maintain and chemicals to reduce algae growth. Handled incorrectly, your pool maintenance could have a negative affect on the environment.
Thankfully, turning your pool into a more environmentally-friendly swimming area doesn’t involve a major renovation; in fact, this will likely only require switching the products you use for regular pool maintenance! Below are five steps you can take to help reduce your pool’s environmental impact.
1. Switch to environmentally-friendly pool cleaning solutions
While you can’t skip pool cleaning solutions (unless you don’t mind swimming with algae and contracting diseases), you can choose products that aren’t as harsh. Two options to consider are ozone pool cleaning systems and ultraviolet pool cleaners.
Ozone pool cleaning systems work by reducing the amount of chlorine needed in your swimming pool by destroying unwanted contaminants.
Ultraviolet pool cleaners, like ozone pool cleaning systems, reduce the amount of chlorine you need in your pool. Unlike the ozone systems, these solutions use the power of ultraviolet light and clean contaminated particles as water flows through it.
2. Use less chlorine
Chlorine plays an important role in keeping your pool clean and safe, but that doesn’t mean it’s great for the planet – especially if you’re using lots of it. So, how can you use less?
For starters, rely on an automatic pool cleaner. These will keep your pool at a consistent level of cleanliness, reducing the need to add extra chlorine to your pool when it is dirtier-than-normal.
You should also clean your skimmer basket and other cleaning supplies frequently. Any leftover debris stuck to these supplies will go straight back into your pool when you use them, increasing the amount of cleaning that needs to be done.
Finally, keep the area surrounding your pool clean! It’s easy to forget about your pool deck when you’re thinking about the cleanliness of your pool water, but debris like leaves that find their way onto your deck will likely end up in your pool.
3. Make sure your pool isn’t leaking
The lining and pipes of your pool could be leaking water without you even knowing it! A leak will cause you to add water back to your pool much more frequently than should be necessary.
So how can you tell if your pool is leaking? Switch off everything on your property that uses water – indoors and out. Then, check your water meter. If you don’t have a leak, it won’t be running. However, if the meter is still running, it’s a sign that water is still flowing somewhere. You’ll want to call your pool maintenance company to have them check and repair your leak if you do find something.
4. Use less energy
Energy may not be your top environmental concern when it comes to your swimming pool, but it’s an area where you can easily make improvements in. You can use less energy with your swimming pool by:
- Updating the lighting used in and near your pool to low-voltage bulbs
- Using a filter that is capable of removing debris faster, reducing time running the filter
- Heating your pool differently: consider switching to an energy-efficient heat pump or solar heating system
- Rescheduling when your filter is run: by running it early in the morning or during the night, you can reduce the amount of demand on the electrical grid. Reducing the demand on the grid helps decrease the likelihood that your energy provider will need to rely on back-up power and waste energy.
5. Consider water conservation
Did you know that the average in-ground swimming pool requires 13,500 gallons of water? That’s a lot of H20! Luckily, you can conserve water without reducing the amount of water your pool holds (because who wants to dive into a half-full pool?).
Some filtration systems dump water through a process of backwashing. Updating your filtration system to one that does not backwash can help keep pool water in your pool.
You should also make sure your pool water is properly balanced. An unbalanced pool requires larger doses of chemicals or even water discharge, but a properly balanced pool will not require these extra efforts.
Finally, always cover your pool when it’s not in use. Why? Protecting your pool from the sunlight will significantly reduce the amount of water that is evaporated, thus reducing the amount that will need to be added back in.
Whether you choose to take one or all of the steps listed above, you can feel good that you’re taking direct action to help reduce your impact on the environment.