- What kind of options are there in swimming pools?
First, it is decided whether the swimming pool will be installed on the ground or whether it will be sunk into the ground. Surface installation is understandably much cheaper, but not very impressive. The frame can be made of steel, fiberglass, EPS casting blocks or concrete blocks. In steel, EPS and concrete pools, a pool bag made of PVC plastic is usually used as waterproofing with lifeguard class near me.
The water pressure squeezes the pool bag tightly to the bottom and sides of the pool, so the impression is not “bag-like” at all. Ceramic tiling, familiar from swimming pools, is attractive but expensive in outdoor pools. In Finland’s climate, it is a rather rare solution.
- How does water circulate?
The water in the swimming pool is purified by circulating it through filters. There are three workarounds:
The surface valve is at the top of the pool, half under water. Through it, water is sucked to the filter pump. There is a coarse sieve inside the valve, where the floating debris is filtered. The filtered water is returned to the pool from the inlet nozzle. This is the most common structure in home pools.
The overflowing structure is the most effective for cleaning, attractive and expensive. It also requires more space. The water flows over the edge into a gutter that goes around the entire pool and from there into a separate tank, the volume of which is about 15 percent of the pool’s volume. After filtering, the water from the tank is returned to the swimming pool. Covering an overflow pool is more difficult than one with a surface valve.
In the infinity pool, the water surface is higher than the surface of the surrounding terrace on one or more sides. The operating principle is the same as for an overflow basin. In Finland, such a solution is rare. For demanding fitness enthusiasts, there are also so-called counter-current pools, which are usually between the size of a swimming pool and a pool. A powerful pump makes the water flow from one end to the other. In the pool, you can swim even at Olympic speed while staying still.
- Is heating needed or not?
Nowadays, the water in swimming pools is mostly heated by air source heat pumps. The most affordable option is heating the water with solar collectors. In the collectors, the pool water is recycled directly, so a separate heat exchanger is not needed. External energy is only needed to run the circulation pump. The temperatures of tropical waters can only be reached with this method during the hottest periods of heat. There are also wood and electrically heated pools, but heat pumps have replaced other forms of heating as they are easy to use and the cheapest in terms of operating costs.
If the pool is not actively heated, a solar cover can be of some help. The cover, which looks like a roll of bubble wrap, is spread directly over the water. It lets the sun’s heat into the water and slows down the heat’s escape. Regardless of the heating method, the swimming pool should always be covered after use.
- How is the foundation work done?
A surface-mounted pool only requires a flat, load-bearing base. Of course, frost protection must be done in the same way as when building the foundations of a house. A smooth concrete pour is made on the bottom of the submersible pool, or often a very flat gravel bed is also sufficient. Both pool models must have capacity. The water in a moderately sized pool weighs tens of thousands of kilograms. When building, you must also take into account the draining of the pool, culverts and rainwater drainage.
- How much do the swimming pools cost?
The price difference is big. At the most affordable end, there is an eight-meter pool package with a steel frame and a pool bag, which costs around 3,000 euros. When you go up the luxury scale, a 7.5-meter fiberglass pool package with a convex polycarbonate roof already costs around 16,000 euros. The price of installation varies. Earthmoving, priming, insulation, electrical work and landscaping usually cost clearly.
- Do I need to obtain a building permit for the swimming pool?
A building permit is usually sufficient to build an outdoor pool, but some municipalities require a building permit. If any part of the pool is less than four meters from the plot boundary, the neighbor’s consent must be obtained for construction.
- How is the pool maintained?
Cleaning of the filter basket of the surface valve or the gutter of the overflow basin is done once a week. Garbage, hair, pollen and algae are rinsed from the sand in the sand filter by countercurrent rinsing every couple of weeks. Quartz sand is used in the filter, which, if necessary, is reinforced with hydro anthracite and/or activated carbon.
Ice hockey-sized chlorine tablets are placed in a floating dispenser. The tablets dissolve in water within about a week. There are also multi-purpose tablets on the market that contain water softener and algae remover in addition to chlorine.
When the pool is put into use, the first chlorination is the so-called shock chlorination, where rapidly dissolving granular chlorine is thrown directly into the water. Shock chlorination is also done when there have been more swimmers than usual in the pool or when the water in the pool has become cloudy.