Monthly Archives: January 2015

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Above Ground Hot Tub Vs. In Ground Hot Tub!

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Above Ground Hot Tub Vs. In Ground Hot Tub !

Hot tubs are great for cold nights (if you use it regularly, otherwise consider winterization) and they’re also very soothing and relaxing year-round. If you’re considering installing a hot tub at any time (especially with Spring coming right around the corner, with Summer right behind) read further and decide which type is best for you.

Above Ground Hot Tub :

Above Ground Hot Tub

  • Initial cost of an above ground hot tub ranges from $3,000 to $12,000 with a monthly cost ranging from $20-$30 (meaning very little effort involved in maintenance).
  • 30-70 jets and ergonomic seating for maximum comfort.
  • This style of hot tub is usually placed close to the home (usually within close proximity of a door) which means in states with mild weather, users are more likely to use it year round. Also, they are not uncommon for homes with small yard space (not enough space for a full pool and in-ground spa).
  • Warranties for parts and labor can last for up to 5 years.
  • No preheating needed for most units.
  • Covers are usually large and heavy, meaning some users may have trouble lifting on their own.

In Ground Hot Tub :

  • Initial cost ranges between $5,000 and $25,000. They tend to be high maintenance and can easily cost more than $30/month to run.
  • Fewer jets and usually simple seating options with minimal “ergonomic” designs.
  • Usually placed next to (if not nearly connected to) a pool, so the distance between the house and hot tub is usually further than above ground units, leading to a greater need to winterize the unit. They can be placed closer to the home, but it is unusual since most owners of an in ground hot tub also have a pool.
  • Warranties for parts and labor are usually for one year only (so ask about extended warranties when possible).
  • These units often need to be preheated, further adding to the desire to winterize the unit because the hassle of using it year round.
  • Covers often operate using an attached bar with a level system—very easy to remove.

Overall, above ground hot tub are often chosen by clients wanting something to use year-round due to the lower initial cost and the lower monthly costs and greater default warranties. Those who choose the in ground units often just want an extra water feature to use periodically and are not interested in the large number of jets provided in above ground units. Those seeking therapeutic usage of a hot tub may want to consider an above ground unit.

Regardless of what type of hot tub you want, Pool Daddy can help you maintain it (and possibly even be involved in the installation process). If you’re seeking assistance with weekly maintenance or you’ve got a problem with your hot tub, call us and we’ll keep all of your pools, hot tubs, and Jacuzzi’s running smoothly.

Related Topics about Above Ground Hot Tub:

Above Ground Jacuzzi Prices
Best Above Ground Hot Tubs
Above Ground Spa Prices
Above Ground Jacuzzi Outdoor
Above Ground Spa

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Pool Pumps: Choosing What’s Right For You

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Pool Pumps

Pentair WhisperFlo 1.5HP Single Speed Pool Pump 11581

Pool Pumps

There are 3 main types of pumps for pool owners: single speed, two-speed, and variable speed pumps. Today we’re going to help you decide which one to use and how they are maintained.

Single Speed: These pool pumps are tried and true, they’ve been used the longest by pool owners. They tend to be the cheapest option to purchase and install. Despite cheap initial cost, they can cost up to $2,000 per year to operate and they are very noisy and inefficient compared to the competition. It used an induction style motor and can last 3-8 years.

Pool Pumps

Pentair OptiFlo 2HP Above Ground 2-Speed Pool Pump 340077

Two-Speed (or Dual-Speed): Similarly to the Single-Speed option, this pool pumps uses an induction style motor and lasts 3-8 years. It has two speed options, as the name suggests, and increases the efficiency. Having the option to run at low speed decreased the energy used. High speed is often used when vacuuming the pool, running heaters, or during times of high debris collection to blow the debris to the skimmers. They cost more in initial costs ($500-$800 for the pump and control unit combined) but save up to 70% in energy costs compared to the Single-Speed variety. These are much more preferred than the Single-Speed options. Like the other option, these can be noisy, especially when run at high speed.

Variable Speed: These use a permanent magnet motor like those found in electric and hybrid cars, which is much more efficient than the induction style motor. Owners can choose the exact flow rate for the pool, allowing for slower rated to improve pool circulation. Less circulation leads to less friction, ultimately leading to higher efficiency. These pool pumps run smoother, quieter and cooler than other pumps. They also last longer while being up to 90% more efficient than single- and two-speed pumps, meaning annual running costs around $400 or less in most areas. While these units are more expensive than two-speed pumps, they may only cost a small amount more. Many complete systems go for around $860, including built in controller. Due to the high efficiency, local utility companies may offer rebates for specific variable speed pumps being installed.

No matter the type of  pool pumps you choose, Pool Daddy is here to help you install and maintain the unit. We recommend the Variable Speed unit because it will benefit you in the long run (and short run as well). If you have any questions about using your pool speed pumps, contact us and we can help you out. Don’t forget to ask about our weekly pool services to keep your pool clean and running smoothly so you don’t have to replace a pump due to neglect or misuse. Contact us today about your pool needs and we’ll have your pool up and running before Spring or Summer hits!


Related Topics:

Pool Pumps Motors for Inground Pools
Pool Cover Pumps
Above Ground Pool Pumps
Swimming Pool Pump Motor
Inground Pool Pumps for Sale

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Pool Lights: Repairs and Checks

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Pool Lights: Repairs and Checks

Pool Lights

Whether you’re installing some brand new lights or you’ve just installed a pool and you need lights in general, there are specific steps to follow and some warnings. Today we’ll discuss pool lights installation, replacement, and checking.

WARNING: Before working on pool lights, regardless of the water level, turn off the power at the main circuit breaker and keep it off until finished. Do not allow the breaker to be on while whoever is working on the lights is touching water or the lights.

Before you start: Once the breaker is off, you need to make sure the breaker is not tripped. If it is, you need to check the GFCI (Ground Fault Circuit Interrupter) and you can read detailed instructions about the GFCI process here. If you turn on the pool lights switch and the GFCI trips you should not proceed; seek professional help.

  1. Ensure the breaker, GFCI, and pool lights switch are all off.
  2. Remove the pilot screws holding in the fixture. Vinyl liner pools have additional screws around the light to keep it in tact—do not remove these. Some lights do not have pilot screws and need to be pried out with a flat-head screwdriver. NOTE: Most styles of lights contain water in the niche holding the fixture to keep the light cool, also allowing you to pull the light out with water still in the pool, reducing damage.
  3. Remove the light, place on the deck. If the chord is not long enough you may need to go to the junction box connecting the light, inside the dive stand. Disconnect the light chord at the junction box. It may be helpful to attach some wire or a string to allow you to move the wire back to replace the light in the fixture.
  4. Open the fixture. You will either find many screws in the back of the unit rim or one screw holding on a band clamp. Remove screws or clamps and pry open the fixture if needed. Be careful and use appropriate tools to avoid breaking lenses.
  5. If the GFCI was tripping, you may find water in the unit. If this happens, dry out the unit with a towel or hair dryer. Remove bulb and continue drying all parts. DO NOT touch halogen bulbs with your bare hands. The oils in your skin can mess the bulb up. If the bulb is burned out, replace the bulb.
  6. Once bulbs are replaced, turn the unit on for a few seconds. Due to the need to be water cooled, do not allow the unit to be on for more than a few seconds out of the water. If the bulb does not work and you were testing for a GFCI trip, replace the bulb.Pool Lights
  7. While GFCI, light switch, and breaker are still off, reassemble the fixture. Now may be the perfect time to also replace the light gasket. Ensure all screws are back in place and tightened evenly to maintain seals and prevent damage. If you are dealing with the clamp style, tap around the unit to ensure even pressure.
  8. Immerge the fixture in water and check for air bubbles escaping around the gasket. If seen, reopen, dry, and reassemble.
  9. Place the unit back into the niche in the pool wall. Screw in the pilot screw or snap it back in place.
  10. Pull the chord back to the junction box if the chord was too short (from step 3).
  11. Turn breakers and GFCI back on to check the light. Enjoy your new or repaired lights.

Never be afraid to ask for professional help. If you want to ensure it’s done correctly the first time in as little time as possible, our technicians would be happy to do this. If you’re a customer paying for weekly services we may even be able to spot problems lights before you do.

Related Topics about Pool Lights:

Swimming Pool Lights Underwater Replacement
Pool Lights Inground Replacement
Best Floating Pool Lights
Underwater Pool Lights
Above Ground Pool Lights
Pool Table Lights
Pool LED Light
Inground Pool Lighting


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Salt Water Pool Maintenance

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Salt Water PoolSalt Water Pool Maintenance

Salt water pool have grown in popularity for many reasons, mostly health-based benefits and the fact that not a lot of people like the smell or feeling of chlorine on their skin. Today we’ll talk a little about the care of salt water pool. If you’re debating about going with chlorine or salt water pool systems, check out our blog posting regarding that conundrum.

Some sales persons try to push salt water systems by claiming they are “maintenance free,” but that is a load of bologna. No pool is completely maintenance free, but salt water pools are considered lower maintenance often because the salt is creating the chlorine, so there’s usually no need to add more salt to the system. Just like a chlorine pool, levels and machines need to be checked for full functionality. If this is something you want to think very little about, our weekly pool cleaning services would be perfect for you.

Salt levels: One of the most important—if not most important– parts of maintaining a salt water pool is keeping an eye on the salt levels. Chlorine is produced from the automatic chlorine generator, but it cannot do this without the proper salt levels. Yes, salt water pool still deal with chlorine, but it’s created instead of pumped in. Limited or no chlorine will cause your pool to collect growth and not function properly, so keep this in check. Your weekly pool maintenance technicians can check this periodically for you, but it can be done on your own. Salt levels can be affected by different parts of the pool, but most are easy fixes and are avoidable with regular checking and maintenance.

pH levels: The pH level of a salt water pool should be higher than that of a traditional chlorinated pool. At least once a week (preferably twice) it is wise to test the pH levels and add muriatic acid when needed to maintain a level between 7.4 and 7.8. These tests can be performed on your own, but our weekly pool services usually include checking and maintaining levels.

Stabalizer Levels: Sunlight can damage chlorine, so Cyanuric acid is used to stabilize and/or condition the water and chlorine to prevent damage. Keeping this stable prevents extra work to maintain salt and pH levels. Unlike pH levels, this only needs to be checked every few months, keeping the levels between 20 and 60 ppm. This should be an easy step in pool maintenance and the wide range gives some wiggle room between placement of the stabilizers, allowing you, as the pool owner, to worry less.

Filtration Time: Chlorine is only created when the filters are running, so some owners try to reduce the cost of electricity and longevity of filters by turning the filters off when the pool is not in use (like when no one is in the pool). This is not wise because it can lower the chlorine levels and allow mildew and other contaminants to grow in your pool. Reducing the time the filter is functioning could cost you more in repairs and cleaning than the electricity to run the filter.

Salt Water PoolCleaning Salt Cells: The salt chlorinator cell is an important part of your salt water pool. It is important to check for calcium build up and deposits on the cell places. If calcium is found, clean the cell as per the owner’s manual instructions. Dirty cells will alter the salt level of your pool. Our technicians can check and clean your salt cells for you with our weekly pool services.

Related Topics about Salt Water Pool:

Salt Water Pool Equipment
Salt Water Pools for Sale
Salt Water Pool Cell
Salt Water Hot Tubs
Salt Water Systems for Above Ground Pools
Inground Saltwater Pool Prices

Yepp! Give us a call when you are looking for professionalism in all your pool needs.