February 2022

February 2022 • Florida Pool Prosm 13 COMMERCIAL CONNECTION Water is looking to find balance, just like so many of us are in life. The items we fill our lives with and the people/things we place around us will affect us either positively or negatively. The same with water. In the world of pools we are constantly adjusting the levels of the water to be safe to swim, most importantly, and hopefully we are also adjusting the more seldom checked items, like calcium and alkalinity, to protect the surface and equipment of the pools we maintain and build. I have come across many pools lately that have been way out of balance. The most recent was a commercial pool that was being maintained for almost a year by the local staff who had a CPO certificate. When we arrived on site to begin the takeover process, we found the LSI was -3.5 wow! That is not a typo, the pool had a pH level that was so yellow we had to perform a base demand test that took an insane amount of drops to get to the correct level, the alkalinity was 0, and calcium was 700. This is just one example of a bad example, and I am sure there are many more that others can share. The point here is that the local staff was only checking the chlorine and pH levels, as that was the only requirement of them by the local governing body. The new surface is only a year old and because the LSI was in a state of major etching, the pool already needs to be resurfaced, which will be a financial burden on the new facility. Commercial pools in Florida are governed by the Florida Department of Health and are required to be tested to verify that the chlorine and pH levels are within range every day that the pool is open, with only a few exceptions to that rule. This allows for safety concerns to be minimized for two of the more volatile and corrosive items in the pool water, but is that where our responsibility as pool professionals stops? No, LSI takes more items into account than just pH, including calcium, temperature, alkalinity, cyanuric acid (stabilizer), and TDS. The levels of the listed items are then input into an LSI calculator and the range should be between -0.3 and +0.3. If the LSI is too high or too low then the pool water will be either scaling or etching, neither is good, but at the very least scaling is normally treatable if it hasn’t been neglected for too long. Etching is causing permanent damage to the pool surface and if the The balance between water and plaster By Jonathan Mosher, Signet Pool / jon@signetpool.com