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Tips to prepare your pool for hurricanes

And why you don't want to drain the water

JACKSONVILLE, Fla – When the next storm threatens greater Jacksonville, don't forget to get the pool area ready for the wind and heavy rain.

If you are concerned about rain overflowing your pool be sure to clean out your pool deck drains so spillover will channel away and minimize flooding.  Properly built pools are equipped with overflows that will drain excess water.

Never drain the pool completely because it could cause the shell to pop out of the ground. Heavy rain saturating the ground forces the pool upward and the weight of water inside the pool counteracts this phenomenon.
 
Pool chemistry matters before the storm hits. 


Power outages can last for weeks after the storm so be sure to double shock the system and run the pump before it hits. Just remember to shut off electric power to the pump at the circuit breakers. 

Pool water chemistry will get out of balance. Keep extra chlorine handy and be prepared to boost the pool's pH due to the slightly extra acidic properties of rainwater.  

Everything that blows in on the wind or washes in from the rain will raise your Total Dissolved Solids level. High TDS  levels can make pool chemicals less effective over 2000 ppm corroding the metal parts of pool equipment. 

Prevent pool enclosure damage 

Protecting your pool enclosure begins with keeping it well maintained.  Enclosures are designed to hold up to wind speed ratings if the structure is not corroded.
 
Check to make sure the fasteners and bolts are not rusted. If they need to be replaced use aluminum, stainless steel, hot-dip or electro-galvanized steel fasteners or double cadmium plated steel bolts.

Screens can bring down the aluminum supports by catching too much wind. 
 
Smaller mesh works well blocking bugs but also holds more wind behaving like a sail. To avoid wind drag choose 18-by-14 mesh over the denser 20-by-20 threads per square inch. 


Dangers of pool furniture 

Remember to get your pool deck ready for hurricanes. Take the time to remove flower pots and pool accessories early before the arrival of high winds. 

It a good idea to toss furniture into the pool before the storm as long as you take some precautions. 
 
The pool can be used as storage for outdoor furniture in many situations but you need to consider metal furniture will cause rust stains on the plaster. 

Place furniture carefully in the water and be especially careful if you have a vinyl lined pool bottoms which could tear.

Also, clearing out mulch can prevent some types of wood chips from staining the plaster if they get blown into your pool.  


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