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Monthly Archives: June 2016

Fire pit safety tips

Town & Country Pool Builders offer fire pit safety tips 

Fire pits are ideal additions to your outdoor living space. They add to the amount of time you can spend in the out of doors once the sun goes down and they also add beauty and atmosphere. A fire pit can also be used in the midst of a hot summer to allow you to cook or roast marshmallows on an open flame.

The swimming pool contractors from Town & Country Pool Builders in Virginia explain there are various types of fire pits from which to choose including pre-fabricated ones or custom designed. You will want to decide the type of fire pit you want, what you want to use it for and where you want it placed – then give us a call to help make it happen!

You will also want to make certain that a fire pit and open burning is allowed in the part of the country in which you live. Here are some decisions you will need to make on your fire pit prior to construction:

  1. What kind of fuel do you want to burn? Wood? Propane? Gas? Charcoal? The type wood you want to burn wFire Bowlill also determine the type of fire pit model you invest in. If you chose to burn wood you will want to use hard woods like oak or cedar.
  2. Decide where you will place the fire pit and make certain it is placed on a stable and fireproof floor. The area on which it’s placed needs to be fireproof in the event sparks or embers fly out. You can choose from granite, slate, flagstone or a cement slab to hold the fire pit.
  3. The fire pit should be situated away from overhanging trees and your home. A rule of thumb is to keep at least twelve feet of space between the fire pit and anything flammable – including outdoor furniture.
  4. Don’t use your fire pit in overly windy conditions. If it’s windy you will have a hard time getting the fire lit and to stay lit and there is also a greater possibility of embers flying out of the structure and burning someone or causing property damage.
  5. Use a mesh cover to keep the sparks contained. Using a mesh safety cover won’t impact the enjoyment you have around your fire pit as it will not impact the ambiance or the warmth generated.
  6. Always keep an eye on the fire pit. Just as you’d never leave anyone unattended in the swimming pool you should never leave your fire pit unattended. When you’re done with the fire at the end of the evening, make certain the fire is completely out.

If you’re looking for a way to spend more time around the pool in the evenings or when the nights are cooler, consider adding a fire pit.


Pool construction steps

Town & Country Pool builders explain pool construction steps

What happens when you decide that you want a swimming pool? Many potential swimming pool owners really don’t know what happens once the decisions have been made and the contracts have been signed. It’s a long way from contract to jumping into your pool and it’s best if you understand what happens when you’re on your way to swimming pool ownership.

Here’s what happens during your swimming pool construction project as explained by the swimming pool contractors from Town & Country Pools

  • Obtain building permits. Your contractor should help with this. 
  • The yard will be surveyed and the pool’s layout marked before excavation. The excavation involves heavy equipment being brought into to remove dirt to form the swimming pool.
  • Grading may need to be done, landscaping items may need to be removed and/or relocated during this phase.
  • Electrical and plumbing will be laid into the trenches specifically dug.
  • Return and water line features will be laid as well. This could take up to three days to complete and can be done either before or after the rebar has been installed.
  • The installation of rebar aka the pool steel that forms the shape of the pool is next.  Rebar could be completed in one day.
  • Following the rebar installation, the contractor starts to lay the concrete (if you’re having a gunite aka concrete pool).
  • The concrete will be spread to cover the walls and floor. You will need to spray the concrete with water for the next week to ten days to help the concrete cure.
  • Pool finishes such as rock waterfall accessories will be added after the concrete has cured.
  • The contractor works on the deck area.
  • Lights, pool equipment, filters, diving board, the heater and other equipment will be installed.
  • Electricity and plumbing will be run.
  • The pool plaster is added. After it’s done it is almost time for the water to be added.
  • Your pool contractor and crew begin the clean up. After this, the pool filling starts! Once the water is being added your pool contractor will test and run equipment to assure it’s functioning properly.
  • Once the pool is full, chemicals are added to kill bacteria. Your contractor will either show you how to test the water balances or he will come back to do it.
  • Once the chemical levels are deemed correct, it will be time to…
  • Jump into the pool!

Your contractor will give you time lines and deadlines for various parts of the project so you can follow along and know how close your project is to the finish line!




What is a liquid solar pool cover?

Virginia, DC and Maryland pool contractors explain liquid pool cover technology 

The contractors from Town & Country Pools in Virginia explain using a swimming pool cover is beneficial to the life of your pool. Did you know, though that there are “liquid solar pool covers” on the market? This has been available for many years, but not many pool owners are familiar with it. Fear of the unknown keeps many pool owners from taking the leap into this new technology.

What is a liquid solar cover?

This product is calcium hydroxide and that is a carrier and dispersing agent. The “cover” is one molecule thick and completely safe for use when swimmers are in the water as well. When you use a liquid solar cover and jump into the pool, the “cover” separates when the surface is disturbed and then “closes” up once the surface is unbroken.

The liquid solar cover is such a thin layer that no one who swims will feel that it is there.liquid pool cover

What are the benefits?

  1. It’s easy to use. You simply pour it onto the pool water.
  2. It helps conserve water. The cover floats on the surface of the pool and prevents water from evaporating.
  3. Keeps the water warm. If you use a heater and a liquid solar cover you will be able to trap the heat.

Is a liquid cover safe?

If you have a traditional swimming pool cover on your pool, you can’t swim, but with a liquid solar cover on you can. The covers are completely safe for swimmers including children and pets. You don’t want your children to gulp down mouthfuls of pool water with or without the liquid solar cover, so that remains unchanged.

When you use the liquid solar cover, it will remain on the surface of the pool and the water beneath will be circulated through the filtration system to keep the water clean and clear. The small amounts of liquid solar cover that make it into the filtration system won’t harm it.

Another benefit of using a liquid solar cover is that you will be more likely to use it if it’s easier than lifting off your traditional cover when you want to use the pool.

Pool water-saving tips

Town & Country Pool Builders provide water conservation tips for pool owners

Did you know that evaporation and loss of water from splashing can mean you’re filling your pool on a regular basis? Have you ever stopped to think about how much that is costing you? Chances are, when you first had your pool constructed and filled it, you had an idea of the impact either on your water bill or on how much it was going to cost to have water trucked in, but you may not have considered the on-going costs of keeping your pool filled.

The swimming pool contractors from Town & Country Pools provide these money- and water-saving tips for swimming pool owners:

  • If you don’t use a pool cover, the pool can lose up to half its water annually!evaporation  Using a cover means you can cut back on evaporation by up to 90%. Without a cover a swimming pool loses up to one inch of water a week. A pool cover also helps reduce algae growth and cuts back on the amount of chemicals you need to use.
  • Is the pool losing water because it’s leaking? There are ways to check. Try the bucket test to see if the water is evaporating at more than one inch a week. Is there standing water around the pool. With an inground pool your pool contractor can perform an inspection.
  • Keep the water at least an inch below the bottom of the top pool tile to prevent too much water from getting splashed out. Ask us for the ideal level to lower the water; if it’s too low you can damage the pool equipment.
  • Lowering the temperature a degree or two won’t mean that people who use it will suffer and you can realize a savings and cut back on evaporation.
  • Pool chemicals should be added at night so they don’t evaporate — that’s  more of a money-saving than a water-saving tip!

Talk with us for more ways to save money and water on your utility bills as there are myriad ways you can do that in your swimming pool!


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MD: 301-251-6661
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7540 Fullerton Ct. Springfield, Virginia 22153