I’m not sure about you, but the appeal of having my own swimming pool arises from the idea of having my own backyard oasis – resort-style living at home. I picture sunshine, fun-times, and pure relaxation. What doesn’t immediately spring to mind is the weekly (sometimes daily) tasks that go hand in hand with keeping pool water clean, healthy, and safe to swim in.
A big part of having a healthy pool (that doesn’t go green and doesn’t give you sore ears after swimming) comes down to how well the water is circulated and filtered throughout the day. Unfortunately, maximising circulation is something that is often overlooked by salespeople and customers alike during the initial pool planning and set-up phases.
To put it simply, a well-planned circulation system can be the difference between a pool that you love to own and a pool that risks becoming just another household chore to look after. If you stop and think about it, if water is moving regularly it tends to be healthier. If a stream loses its ability to flow it quickly becomes stagnant. It’s the same with pool water.
Experts (and Aus/NZ pool standards for that matter) suggest that the entire volume of water within your pool needs to be pumped out, filtered, sanitised, and then returned to your pool at least once every single day. Traditionally circulated pools certainly have the ability to move this much water, but the problem is they tend to only move a small portion of the water over and over again.
A traditional pool is run using what is known as an eye-ball and skimmer system. Essentially, a skimmer box removes surface water using a pump. That water is then pushed through a filter and then returned to the pool through jets on the wall opposite the skimmer. These jets or ‘eyeballs’ are typically located in the top 1-2ft of water.
It doesn’t take much imagination to see that the top 1-2ft of water moves regularly while the deeper parts of the pool are left to sit still- a perfect breeding ground for algae and bacteria!
If you want your pool water to be as healthy as possible you should really consider ways to ensure bottom-to-top circulation. Again, the more the water moves, the harder it becomes for algae and bacteria to grow.
It’s this knowledge which has helped shape the way we build pools. Compass customers get the choice of two additional revolutionary circulation systems. Our most popular option (vantage) is well known as the ‘self-cleaning pool’ option, but arguably the best benefit is its ability to dramatically improve pool circulation. Vantage removes water from the pool floor using a special ‘main drain’ and returns water through a series of perfectly-timed, fully-automated jets on the pool floor too. This ensures that a huge amount of movement occurs in the depths of the pool while the eyeball and skimmer system moves the top!
Vantage has been shown to reduce chemical inputs, increase heat-pump efficiency, maximise distribution of sanitising pool chemicals and let’s not forget that it also cleans your pool at the same time. So, as well as saving on operating costs you also get to eliminate the needs for expensive pool cleaning equipment and you don’t have to lift a finger to keep your pool looking tidy!
The Compass Logic™ system offers another great alternative to traditional circulation (the standard eyeball and skimmer approach). Logic works on similar principles to Vantage in the sense that it focuses on creating circulation in the depths of the pool (which is typically a problem area for most pools).
We start by removing water from the deep end of the pool using two drains which are strategically placed 2/3rds down the pool wall. We then return the water using special swing jets which are designed to push freshly-filtered water toward the bottom of the pool. The swing jets also change direction each time they switch on working to maximise chemical distribution, evenly spread warm water which has been heated by the sun, and move water in as much of the pool as possible.
The Logic™ system can even be enhanced to create a dramatic reduction in power consumption. These days it’s common for people to use ‘energy efficient pumps’. In simple terms an energy efficient pump runs at high speed for a short period of time and then shifts back a gear to run at low speeds for most of your filtration cycle. The problem with this when you have a traditional pool is that when running at low speeds your low-flow pump further reduces water mixing and movement in your pool.
To combat this issue we use a supercharged skimmer unit which requires little-to-no suction from the pool pump. Then we re-direct pump suction to focus mainly on the wall drains. This means we can fit an energy efficient pump to the pool set-up without sacrificing and water movement. Using an energy efficient pump in this way will mean you can dramatically cut power (to the tune over $600 per year) without worrying about your pool turning green.
When it comes to owning a pool, much of the effort that is required comes from the need to keep your water balanced, clean and healthy to swim in. The question is how does that fit into your dream of being a pool owner. With the correct set-up from the get-go you can make life much easier.
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