All posts by Jackie Gambill

pool automation

Skin Cancer Awareness

May is Skin Cancer Awareness Month and Probity Pools offers up tips to keeping your sun safe from harmful sun rays. According to the American Academy of Dermatology, skin cancer is the most common form of cancer, and it is estimated that one person dies from melanoma every hour.

Certain skin types are at greater risk for developing skin cancer. That is why prevention and monthly self-examinations are so important.

The Skin Cancer Foundation has recommended using a sunscreen with an SPF 15 or higher as one part of a preventative regimen. However, sunscreen is not enough.

The Skin Cancer Foundation recommends the following tips to reduce risk of skin cancer:

•Seek the shade between 10 AM and 4PM
•Avoid tanning and UV tanning beds
•Cover up with clothing, a wide brimmed hat and UV-blocking sunglasses.
•Use a broad spectrum (UVA/UVB) sunscreen every day. For extended outdoor activity, use a water-resistant sunscreen with an SPF 30 or higher.
•Apply 1 ounce of sunscreen every 30 minutes before going outside and reapply every two hours or immediately after swimming in a swimming pool or excessive sweating.
•Keep newborns out of the sun.
•Examine your skin head-to-toe every month
•See a physician every year for a professional skin exam

When individuals conduct a self-exam of their skin, they should make sure to know their ABCDEs.

•Asymmetry: one half of mole doesn’t match the other
•Border: irregularity
•Color: that is not uniform
•Diameter: greater than 6 mm (about the size of a pencil eraser)
•Evolving: size, shape or color

A mistake many homeowners make is that they think their pool enclosure will help shield them from the sun, not so much. It may make you feel cooler while enjoying your backyard swimming pool, however, the sun’s rays still can burn you. Apply that sunscreen liberally if you are lounging in your pool inside your pool enclosure.

Florida residents should take heed of these tips to help prevent the risk of skin cancer while they are outside and swimming in their backyard cholorine or salt water pool, swimming in lakes or enjoying the beach. The proper precautions can offer Floridians an opportunity to beat skin cancer and continue to enjoy the great outdoor weather Florida has to offer!

child swimming in pool

Water Safety In May

Probity Pools, a Longwood, Florida pool service company, celebrates water safety month!

The CDC reports that from 2005-2014, there were an average of 3,536 fatal unintentional drownings (non-boating related) annually, and about one in five people who died from drowning are children ages 14 and younger. Drowning is responsible for more deaths among children ages 1-4 than any other cause except congenital anomalies (birth defects).1 Among those children ages 1-14, fatal drowning remains the second-leading cause of unintentional injury-related death behind motor vehicle crashes. Water safety, and pool safety are very important to Probity Pools and we want to make sure Florida residents who own a swimming pool or go swimming, know the risk factors for drowning and how to prevent drowning from occurring.

Our team here at Probity Pools takes top pool maintenance, pool service and water safety very seriously and we want to do our part to help prevent death and injury from pool-related drowning incidents by sharing important water safety tips to Florida residents.

Risk factors for drowning are:

Lack of swimming ability
Lack of barriers (pool fencing)
Lack of close supervision
Alcohol use
Inadequate safety devices that are easily accessible (i.e. life preserver, U.S. Coast Guard approved life jacket)

There are several things that people can do to reduce the risk of drowning and prevent drowning accidents.

Formal swimming lessons can help protect young kids from drowning. However, even with swimming lessons, barriers and supervision are still important.

If consumers have an inground swimming pool or spa at home, make sure to install four-sided fencing. The fence should be four feet high (at least) with a self-latching gate. According to the Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews, a four-sided isolation fence (separating the pool area from the house and yard) reduces a child’s risk of drowning by 83% compared to three-sided property-line fencing.

Designate a responsible adult to watch all children playing in or around water. When supervising preschool children, the adult should provide “touch supervision” and be close enough to reach the child/ren at all times. It is also important that swimmers have a swim buddy and never swim alone. As alcohol use impairs judgement and motor skills, it is very important that adults do not mix alcohol and swimming, whether supervising children or swimming themselves. Often times a child’s birthday party can put children at risk. Parents typically are socializing and not watching their children in and around the pool deck. Designate a life guard, the party host may have to hire a life guard (college or high school student who can swim would suffice) to supervise the pool area.

Another drowning prevention tip is to learn CPR (Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation). In the time it takes paramedics to arrive, CPR skills can help save a life.

A mistake some inground pool owners or users make, is that they let their child/ren use “water wings,” “noodles,” or inner-tubes instead of a typical life jacket. These items are considered toys and are not designed to keep young children safe. Instead, swimmers should use a U.S. Coast Guard approved life jacket.

One last consideration when talking about pool safety is talking about dirty pools. It is important for homeowners that have salt water swimming pools or inground pools to make sure they are getting the best pool maintenance or pool cleaning service available in the metro Orlando, Florida area. If a pool is dirty, then it can be a risk factor if someone is unable to see young children that are swimming due from algae being in the water.

A mistake some inground pool owners or users make, is that they let their child/ren use “water wings,” “noodles,” or inner-tubes instead of a typical life jacket. These items are considered toys and are not designed to keep young children safe. Instead, swimmers should use a U.S. Coast Guard approved life jacket.

One last consideration when talking about pool safety is talking about dirty pools. It is important for homeowners that have salt water swimming pools or inground pools to make sure they are getting the best pool maintenance or pool cleaning service available in the metro Orlando, Florida area. If a pool is dirty, then it can be a risk factor if someone is unable to see young children that are swimming due from algae being in the water.

Our pool maintenance team at Probity Pools hopes Central Floridians enjoy their backyard oasis this summer while keeping safety in mind!

solar-pool-heater-systems-solar-panels-on-the-roof

Solar Heating in Your Pool

The arrival of Earth Day is an annual reminder to think about energy efficiency, but it really should be a topic to consider all year round.

One very effective and relatively easy way to recoup significant energy savings is to heat your swimming pool with a solar panel system – particularly if you compare the installation and operations costs (for solar, much of that is the former, then the system becomes self-sustaining over time; with propane, you’ll have less initial expense but an ongoing operation cost). Depending upon how much sun the panels get, you could have enough heat to raise pool water temperature by as much as 15-30 degrees.

Imagine a garden hose lying in the sun. When you turn the water on, the first blast is typically warm, if not actually hot, since heat has been accumulating in the plastic tubing. That’s the basic theory of solar heating, with a few other moving parts.

How Does Solar Heating Work?

It’s a simple proposition: Water is circulated from the pool into a solar collector (more on this next), where it is exposed to the sun’s energy. Once the water in the collector becomes warmer than the pool water, a valve releases it back into circulation in the pool, and this cycle continues as long as the water in the panels is warmer than the water in the pool.
solar-heating-system

Types of Solar Collectors

There are different kinds of solar collectors, and the type you’ll need depends mostly on two things: the specific use(s) for the system and the climate in your area.

For instance, if you’ll only be using your pool seasonally, an unglazed collector system is a likely choice. Unglazed collectors don’t include a glass covering (glazing); instead, they are constructed of heavy-duty rubber or plastic treated with an ultraviolet (UV) light inhibitor to extend the life of the panels. This is a simple design with inexpensive parts, so it’s less expensive than its glazed cousin.Solar heating panels near a poolMeanwhile, glazed collector systems are generally more complex – involving copper tubing on an aluminum plate with an iron-tempered glass covering – and are therefore more expensive. However, glazed collector systems typically capture solar heat more efficiently than unglazed systems, so they make more sense for colder weather areas where you hope to extend your pool season.solar heating panels on a roof poolsideFor additional information about solar swimming pool heaters, visit the Department of Energy website.