hot tubs and spas
Town & Country Pool Builders answer the age old question…
When should you open your swimming pool?
Is there a specific date on the calendar to open your swimming pool? In the DC metro, Virginia and Maryland area, you can’t always schedule your swimming pool opening by a date on the calendar. Instead you need to rely on the weather and what your local meteorologist says. Most people are anxious to have an open swimming pool as soon as the sun starts to shine and thesnow has melted, but you may need to take more precautions than that.
Pool Opening Schedule Depends on the Weather
When to schedule your pool contractor from Town and Country Pools to open your swimming pool really does depend on the weather – and the type of pool you have. Cool weather should not be a deterrent. If you have a pool with an ajoining hot tub, you will get use out of an open swimming pool far earlier than a swimming pool without a spa.
A pool heater or solar cover can help warm the water enough to swim in until there are several weeks of above freezing temperatures and nights that remain warm. Warm night air is more important to getting the water to a safe swimming temperature than warm days are. Spring days in the 70’s still, in some cases, lead to nights that are barely above freezing. However, an open swimming pool can be a nice place to gather until the water is warm enough to swim.
Do not wait for the winter weather to break to schedule your pool opening. If you do, you will be very disappointed that the next available appointment is in four to six weeks! For many pool owners, Memorial Day is the absolute latest you will want an open swimming pool. For most however, it is a personal preference. Make sure you plan accordingly when deciding when to schedule your pool opening.
When should you close your swimming pool?
As for when you will close the pool; it is typically done when the nights start cooling off and the days are no longer as warm. This however, should be before a freeze is predicted. If you’re running the heater frequently, this is a sign for many pool owners that the time is near to close the pool. Falling leaves can also lead to both algae growth and potential damage to your filters and pumps if they clog it up. Always listen to the weather forecast because both you and your pool contractor will want the pool closed before the first frost hits the area. Ask your contractor if he has a cut off date for a pool closing as he will not want to be out there working on it in freezing conditions. Frozen pipes can lead to broken pipes and that could be expensive to repair.
Your swimming pool contractor should be your go-to source for pool opening services and closings as this is his area of expertise and he has the knowledge to know the best time for both openings and closings.
Virginia, DC & Maryland pool builders from Town & Country Pools offer pet pool safety tips
Sun and fun and swimming pools don’t have to be just the realm of the humans in your family! If you plan and prepare, your pets can enjoy the water with you — if they want to. A swimming pool as you know is about fun and sun but it is, most importantly about providing safety to those who use it. Swimming pools can also be a place you can spend time with your pet if you do it wisely.
Keep in mind that even though you may love the pool, your dog may not be as enthusiastic and he may not even be a good swimmer; not all dogs can swim or enjoy swimming. If your dog is drawn to the water, here are tips from the swimming pool contractors from Town & Country Pools on how you can help him or her enjoy it safely:
- Treat your dog as you would your child; never leave the dog in or around the swimming pool unattended.
- Always keep the safety fence locked when there isn’t an adult in attendance. This is likely required by law as well.
- Keep the toys away from the swimming pool. These could tempt your pet to jump in and try and retrieve them.
- Leaving more than one dog in the pool area unsupervised is a risk. Roughhousing dogs could fall into the pool.
- Understand dog first aid and pet CPR. Become familiar with reviving a dog that has drowned. Have vet and emergency vet numbers handy.
- Teach the dog to swim, and do it enough until the dog doesn’t panic in water. Swimming looks different than panic. If your dog simply doesn’t like the water, don’t force her to swim, let her enjoy the family time from the sideline.
- Have a visual target for the dog which is near the steps leading out of the water. Train your dog to notice it and get in and out using the steps or ramp.
- A dog that isn’t fit can’t swim any better than a human that isn’t in shape.
- Don’t overly exhaust the dog while swimming or they will go under.
- Preplan your pool construction with the idea that the dog needs sufficient footing to climb out of the pool. Small dogs, especially, can’t make it up and out using the big steps of most pools. You may want to consider a beach entrance or a dog specific removable ramp.
If you’re determined to spend time with your dog in the pool, take some precautions to make it happen and it can be another way to spend time together (and get your pet some exercise as well!). Talk with your pool contractor and let him know this is a possibility as he may have safety measures for you to implement and he can also offer suggestions on safety equipment such as dog life vests and more.
Town & Country Pool builders, serving DC. Maryland & Virginia offer pool construction prep tips
The swimming pool construction season has likely been underway for several weeks now, or months, depending on where you live. If you have been wondering if you should make the leap into swimming pool ownership, now is the time to talk with the swimming pool builders from Town & Country Pools to get the ball rolling so that you may be able to have your pool constructed in time to swim this season.
If you’re planning to have a swimming pool constructed and have talked with pool contractors, but haven’t signed on the dotted line yet, here are a few items to consider when you’re at the point of making the investment into the best vacation spot in town — your own backyard!
Here are a few items to talk with a potential pool builder about, including:
- The way you light both the pool and your outdoor living space. Fiber optic and LED lights burn efficiently and are long lasting and this makes them a popular choice for both in-pool installation and deck lighting. In-pool lighting serves a dual purpose – enhancing safety when using the pool after the sun has gone down and setting the mood for parties.
- Will you have a deck around the pool? As a money saving measure some pool owners opt out of this but find that they regret that choice later. While there is no reason you can’t do a remodeling project and install a deck area, doing it all at once might be more cost effective. Go big and install an outdoor kitchen or a pool house!
- Think about the water features you may want installed such as a slide or a diving board fountains, rock waterfalls or sun shelves.
- A spa or hot tub built into one end of the swimming pool. You can have a separate hot tub or have a “swim up” spa which means you can go right from the pool to the spa without leaving the water.
In addition to choosing the most experienced contractor that you can, you will also want to be aware of any and all options available to you for your project as it will be an investment your family will enjoy for decades!
Pool contractors serving DC, Maryland & Virginia offer pool construction advice
You’re doing it! This is the year you will become the envy of your friends and family and own your own swimming pool! Great! Now what?! You will want to look for a pool contractor who will perform the construction for you and that will take some time and research.
When you’re talking with the swimming pool contractors from Town & Country Pools, you will want to bring up these following five items:
- Where will the pool go? Your pool contractor will help you determine the perfect site for your swimming pool and that will involve myriad factors including: ease of access, underground wires, access to electricity and plumbing, landscaping and the lay of your land. The zoning laws in your area of the country may also help determine where the pool may be able to be placed due to set backs and property line issues.
- The right contractor is one who can construct the pool that you want, within your budget guidelines. They are also experienced, bring referrals with them for past service and are someone with whom you feel comfortable.
- Talk with more than one contractor to get a written estimate for your potential pool project. Your contractor will come to the house to do a survey of the land as well as gather the information on the type of pool you want so be prepared to spend time with them to make sure they understand the dream you have in your mind for your family’s pool.
- Make sure you ask for an estimate on ongoing pool maintenance charges. This will be something you will need to budget for as part of the overall pool project.
- The nitty gritty on the pool project will also include its size and shape and the building material you will want to use. You can choose from fiberglass, gunite or vinyl liner and these each bring different price tags and care and upkeep differences. Keep in mind too that your yard’s current layout and placement of trees and gardens may be a factor in where the pool sits, how large it is and what style or building material you choose.
Making a decision on a swimming pool is not one to take lightly. Spend time with potential pool contractors until you find one who can help you realize your dream.
Choosing a swimming pool contractor in DC, Virginia or Maryland for your project
The swimming pool contractors from Town & Country Pools understand that all of the decisions that go into the decision-making process for a swimming pool construction project are daunting. One of the first decisions you need to make — after you have your budget firmly in place — is to choose the swimming pool contractor to bring your pool dreams to fruition.
You will want to interview and meet with at least three contractors before you even decide which one to choose for your pool project and its estimate. Of the pool contractors you interview, you will want to ask them for estimates on the type of swimming pool you will want to have constructed in your backyard. Begin your research for a pool contractor by asking friends and family for recommendations then take to the Internet to look at the websites of potential contractors.
- Having an idea of the type of swimming pool you want will help you narrow down your choice of pool contractors. For example if you want a vanishing edge pool and a contractor you’re planning to meet with doesn’t have that listed as one of the styles he is experienced in, you may want to opt for a different contractor — one who has built the type of pool you’re seeking.
- Does your pool builder or his staff have CSP (Certified Service Professional) on staff. Check out if he has undergone training and his technical staff are certified service professionals.
- View the photo gallery on your potential pool builder’s site to see if he has models you could see yourself owning. Most pool websites have a page dedicated to the pools they have constructed.
- Ask for estimates from three contractors. Make an appointment with them.
- Ask for names and contact information for other clients with whom they have worked. They should be happy to offer this information.
- When you receive estimates from a couple of contractors, make sure you’re comparing apples to apples in the estimates. If you notice differences between the estimates you receive you will want to talk to the contractor and have him explain. A difference in equipment or building material could lead to this and if one is offering different equipment, you will want to understand why and if there are benefits as compared to other types of equipment or construction materials.
Never sign a contract until you are satisfied with the terms and conditions, the price and any other items that are of concern to you. It’s a typical part of a contract to pay a portion of the overall price up front but be wary of any pool contractor who asks for the entire price of the project in one up front payment as this is not a usual method of work.
Your swimming pool is a long-term — decades long — commitment and because of that you will want to take your time and put a lot of research into both the style and type pool you want as well as the contractor with whom you will work.
Don’t negate that “gut feeling” you get when you meet a potential contractor. If you feel like you can talk with him and have a “good feeling” about it, that may be the deciding factor if all other items are equal.