Hot tubs offer a simple “getaway” in your backyard. However, when you’re ready to go on a vacation it’s important to make sure your hot tub is taken care of properly. These tips will ensure you hot tub stays in the best shape possible when you return.
First, test the water for proper pH levels to ensure the best plumbing. If your kit shows levels are too low, add chemicals to get your water to reach the correct level.
Next, know your hometown forecast before leaving. If there will be freezing temperatures while you’re gone, don’t turn your hot tub off! Keep your hot tub running with warm water to make sure the pipes don’t freeze. Feel free to turn down the temperature about 10 degrees cooler than normal to save on heating bills. We don’t recommend doing this for everyday use but it’s fine to turn down your hot tub temperature for an extended amount of time.
If your hometown weather shows it will be warm while you’re away, be mindful of algae. Add shock to the water and allow the jets to run for half an hour. Afterwards, unplug the heater, pump and power source. There is no possibility of your pipes freezing during the warmer months so your hot tub does not need to keep running.
Finally, if you’re not in the habit of putting the cover on your hot tub every night, make sure to do it before you leave! The last thing you want is to come home from a beautiful vacation to a hot tub full of dirt and debris.
If it helps put your mind at ease, ask a neighbor or friend check on your hot tub every few days while you are away to ensure safety and proper care. Otherwise, relax and enjoy your well-deserved vacation!
Have a question? Please use the “Contact Section” to submit a question about your pool or hot tub.
It’s impossible to have every season in one week – unless you live in Indiana. We experience unpredictable weather that may be hot and sunny one day, then cold and snowy the next. While unpredictable weather may seem like a challenge, don’t let that stop you from having the pool of your dreams. Pools can be great in any type of weather.
Having a pool in the spring: While we never know exactly when the weather will become nice, you can guarantee as soon as it does, your pool will be waiting for you. Until it does, simply work on keeping your pool and surrounding area clean and in good shape. Outdoor pool and patio spaces serve as natural gathering places for families looking to break spring fever. The spring is also the perfect time to begin construction on your new pool.
Having a pool in summer: This one is a no brainer because having a pool during Indiana summers is the best! The hot temperatures and humidity make a dip in the pool the perfect way to cool off. From barbeques to holidays, pools are a great focal point of every party and keeps the kids entertained.
Having a pool in fall: There are some unexpectedly hot days often lingering during the autumn months. This gives you an opportunity to enjoy the last tastes of the warm weather.
Having a pool in winter: As we get to the traditionally colder months, winterizing your pool and preparing it to withstand snow are very important. If you still want to swim in the winter months, there is good news as hot tubs can be used in any type of weather!
Whatever the weather, pools make for a great time year-round — even in Indiana.
Whether you want to give your family a surprise for Christmas, or have been planning a pool installation for years, now is the time to schedule your build. For a limited time, Mud Slingers is offering you special savings on the pool of your dreams.
Thinking about installing a traditional vinyl pool, or want a Gunite concrete pool designed just for you and your family? Mud Slingers is offering big incentives to those who book their 2016 pool installations this month. If you have a signed contract and deposit in our hands by December 31, 2015, we will offer you up to $1,000 off all equipment packages and up to $500 off an automatic pool cover! Savings will be based off of our 2016 prices.
The clock is ticking, so contact Mud Slingers today! Call us at (317) 550-2552 or fill out the form below to get the installation of your dream pool in the books and the extra savings in your pocket.
Everyone judges a book by its cover and a good way to think about your pool is the deck is the cover of the book. Choosing the right style of concrete pool deck for your home can seem a bit overwhelming, so here is a simple guide to picking one of the three most common types of concrete pool decking – standard broom finish, colored and cut, and stamped or exposed aggregate.
The most common type of pool deck is standard grey concrete broom finish that is just like a sidewalk or driveway. This style is the tried and true and most economical way to have a long lasting, low maintenance pool deck. Normal maintenance consists of pressure washing and sealing. We recommend resealing your deck a minimum of every other year (fall). There is really no disadvantage to this style of pool deck other than it is very common.
Colored concrete is becoming increasingly popular. Colored concrete allows you to choose a color that matches your house or other outdoor decor. Color can really make your deck pop and with some decorative cuts (such as diamond), you can make a beautiful deck that is only incrementally more of an investment than the standard grey. One challenge with coloring is blending color if you need to make repairs. Sticking with a particular brand of coloring such as Butterfield will help create consistent look and color. Maintenance is similar to standard concrete, but it is imperative to seal soon so the color will not fade.
Decorative concrete such as stamped or exposed aggregate is the third option. These styles are very beautiful finishes for a pool deck. They are more expensive than standard finish, but definitely add a pop to your deck that can create a completely customized look. Stamped concrete can create a paver look that is much more economical than actual pavers. Custom patterns and styles can create an amazing look to complement your landscaping. Options are virtually endless. Maintenance is more imperative with decorative concrete so we recommend sealing every year or even twice per year. Your location and the harshness of winters (salt or chemicals to de-ice) will dictate your maintenance schedule.
What to expect:
The most common question asked is how long to until my concrete cracks? There is no definite timeline, but just know that it will eventually crack. If cracking happens within the first 30 days or even immediately after the pour is complete, be sure the concrete from the manufacturer was correct. With concrete, the installer has only 10% of the outcome of the concrete cracking, the correct psi, mix design, and preparation account for the other 90% . The ACI (American Concrete Institute) set parameters for this and require testing and reporting to make sure concrete is made properly. At Mudslingers, we recommend a pool deck have a 4000 psi or stronger mix design, also with a minimum of 3.5-4″ in thickness. A wire mesh of three feet from water’s edge is required for pool bonding (this can be installed around entire pool of desired) and is required to pass electrical inspection, but this will also give it added strength. Ask your pool company about all of the options to ensure you are getting the best mix design for your budget. The next check is the type of crack – most likely just looking at a small surface crack, probably from hot temperatures and wind drying the surface quicker than the rest of the slab. Surface cracks will not affect the integrity of the pool deck. You simply caulk or seal the crack to keep water out and prevent it from getting bigger. If you have decorative concrete you can add some color to the sealer which will help conceal the crack even better.
Tips on Sealing
Your geographical location will impact the degree you need to worry about sealing. The midwest has extremely hot summers and very harsh winters. Extreme fluctuations in temperature can wreak havoc on your pool deck (especially in winter if you use salt or other chemicals to remove snow and ice). Normal erosion and ground movement could happen sooner and sealing will help prevent the cracks from expanding.
Choosing the right pool deck for your family can be a great experience. Consider your landscaping or future plans when choosing the style you are most comfortable with for the “cover of your book.” Your pool builder should be willing to offer suggestions and show examples of others for inspiration.
We are continually asked who makes the best pool equipment? When considering what equipment we would use in our own pools and would feel comfortable giving a 5 YEAR WARRANTY to our customers we considered the three main manufacturers of pool equipment: Pentair, Hayward, and Jandy. We considered the warranty, reputation, ease of use (automation), wear and tear, manufacturing, training, and cutting-edge technology.
Hayward Pool Products has been the leader in pool equipment and innovation for decades and is the clear choice for our customers.
Hayward offers complete pool automation systems, so everything on your equipment pad is made by Hayward and Mud Slingers Pool and Patio offers a 5 YEAR WARRANTY on all Hayward equipment. Some pool builders only offer a one or two year warranty, so make sure you ask your builder what they offer.
The most important part of a pool heater is the heat exchanger and on average to have replaced is $800-1000. The three types of heat exchangers are: copper, copper-nickel, and titanium. Copper can wear down in 3-5 years with normal water chemistry, copper-nickel is 8 times more resistant to chemical wear than plain copper so life expectancy is >25 years, titanium will never wear down from chemical use. All hayward gas heaters come standard with copper-nickel heat exchangers. Electric heat pumps come with titanium heat exchangers.
If you want a clear and clean pool, your filter is a critical component. Sand is the most common and has been around since the beginning. They are very easy to use and maintenance time is minimized by simply backwashing when dirty, but it only cleans to a 30 micron particle so the water isn’t the cleanest it can be. Cartridge filters are very good and clean to a 5 micron particle, so water is very clean but cleaning the cartridge filter is very time consuming. A DE filter is like a hybrid of cartridge and sand, it has grids on the inside that with the combination of crushed sea shells coating them is essentially a double filtration that cleans to 1 micron or the equivalent of a red blood cell – so ultra clean water. It also has the same backwash system as a sand filter, so you have the best of both worlds – ultra clean water and minimal maintenance time.
Single, dual or variable ? A single speed pump run on high speed 24 hours a day so it consumes a lot of unnecessary power. A dual speed or variable speed pump is going to be the best option as it is not necessary to run your pump on high speed all day. Set your pump on high speed during the day so you have optimal filtration while swimming in your pool. At night you can turn it (or program it) to low speed to keep water filtering and the heater running, but saving energy and money.
Pool Chemistry Automation
Itchy skin? Cloudy water? Red eyes? Water chemistry is the part of pool ownership most people will talk about. Older pools must be monitored daily to ensure proper chemistry and often wind up having ridiculous amounts of chemicals in them. Hayward has been a leader in this cutting edge technology for years. The Hayward Pro Logic and Gold Line controls have made pool water chemistry very inexpensive to operate and virtually automatic. Your time messing with chemicals is reduced to checking an Omni Logic touch screen to get the water chemistry correct. Simple.
The pool industry has come a long way and Hayward has been leading the pack by investing in technology that makes your pool automatic and nearly maintenance free. Gone are the days of lugging harsh chemicals and dipping sticks in the water. Now owning a pool means more time relaxing with your family.
You have probably not thought to ask your pool builder what type of plumbing pipe is the best for a pool. Why would you? Most people assume that because a pool is a big investment the pool builder will always use the best materials for the system. Unfortunately this is not the case and the pipe that is used to build your pool can determine the life of the equipment, the wear and tear on the system, and even how many costly repairs you will have to make.
The two most common types of pipe are rigid pipe (hard pipe) or flex pipe (commonly known in the industry as “termite pipe.”
Flex pipe was nicknamed “termite pipe” because it is not uncommon for termites to eat holes through it and cause air to get in the lines which can damage the pump and cause leaking. It becomes costly to replace because you generally have to tear out concrete to access it and then re-pour the deck. The cosmetic implications are a whole other issue.
The best plumbing pipe for your pool system is rigid pipe or hard pipe which comes in schedule 40 or 80. Both are very strong and durable with schedule 80 used primarily for commercial applications. At Mudslingers Pool & Patio, we only use rigid pipe for our customers’ pools. Once you ask your pool company what kind of plumbing pipe they use, it is also wise to ask what size of pipe will be used. Two inch pipe will create better water flow and increase your turnover rate which means the pool circulates faster and cleans faster. The increased flow also reduces the resistance to the pump motor which extends the life of the motor and uses less energy to run (saving you a lot of money to operate over the life of the pool).
A pool is a relatively simple system and if installed and maintained correctly can provide countless years of worry-free use, but it is important when hiring a pool company to ask some specific questions about the materials that will be used to build your family’s pool.