Shangri-La in Your Own Backyard

Picture yourself luxuriating in the pool at an exotic resort. The soothing water permeates through your flesh as it melodiously courses through exquisite rock formations illuminated by an array of sparkling lights.

When it’s finally time to leave this Shangri-La, there is no need to pack up your bags, go through the checkout procedures and make your way to the airport. Instead, you simply hop out of the pool, open the back door and you’re at home.

Advanced technologies and landscape expertise can transform the backyard pool into a veritable oasis; its overall design only limited by budget, space and your imagination.

With more options, however, come more things to take into consideration. As it is with any home construction or renovation, it is vital to have a contractor with whom you can communicate with and respect his/her knowledge on the matter.

Among the established pool contractors in the Dufferin/ Caledon area is Tri County Pools. Owner Dave Hall has been in the business for 33 years and learned the trade from his father, Bruce Hall. The family affair has continued to this day. Dave’s wife, Sheila, is involved in the business and his grandson, Nicholas, has been with the company for 5 years and now Dave’s son, Clinton, is set to join the Tri County staff this year.

There is a concern that might prevent a potential pool owner, and that is the concern that the tasks associated with maintaining a pool could outweigh its benefits. When such questions arise, it is a good thing to talk to an expert who can answer them.

Over the years, it has become entrenched in the minds of some people that the recreational benefits of owning a pool are neutralized by the tasks of maintaining it. It should be pointed out, however, that new pool-keeping technologies have made maintenance a less onerous task.

For example, the introduction of salt water chlorinators has made it much less difficult to keep the pool clean. Prior to their introduction, pool owners needed to meticulously measure and apply the proper amounts of chlorine.

Saltwater chlorinators go a long way towards eliminating the need for storage and manual application of chlorine. They also prevent itchy eyes and “green hair” by regulating the chlorine levels. Technically speaking, pool chlorine combines free available chlorine (FAC) and combined available chlorine (CAC). While the FAC sanitizes the water, the CAC includes chloramines which occur when FAC reacts with amines that are introduced into the pool by human perspiration, saliva, mucus, etc.

In saltwater pools, the generator uses electrolysis to continuously produce free chlorine. It also burns off chloramines in the same manner as the traditional shock method. Dave explains that, thanks to this technology, “pools are much easier to maintain.” He does caution, though, that the saltwater application does not free the owner of all monitoring responsibilities. “You still have to check the chemical levels each week.”

Another thing that lessens the labour associated with pool ownership has been the introduction of electronic auto fills that monitor the water level of the swimming pool and automatically adds water to the pool when needed.

Colored LED and fiber optic lights are both energy efficient and attractive. The outdoor lights bring a romantic mood. In addition, a well-lit pool and patio area, surrounded by fiber optic spot lights, will add charm and beauty to a yard landscape at night.

Landscaping surrounding a residential pool has become more relevant. The addition of ornamental stonework and, perhaps a waterfall, will provide an air of both tranquility and beauty. One could go as far as to incorporate aggregate finishes that include pebbles and colored glass that create a sparkling, festive atmosphere.

These accoutrements do come at a cost, however, and may not fit into the budget. Yet, Dave reminds us that a home pool can evolve over time. After all, it is pretty close to being a permanent fixture.

Less expensive concrete might not be as ornate, but it can still be attractive. There is no law saying you cannot install such aesthetic upgrades as coping stone or interlock at a later date. “You don’t have to do everything, right away,” Dave points out. “You can still do it, down the road.”

When planning their new pool, clients can consider the option of glass roofs and transparent swimming pool enclosure that can accommodate pool usage on rainy and cold days.

In the end, a client’s vision is the focal point of a pool. Experienced and reputable contractors like Tri-County Pools will provide the means to make it a reality, as well as sound and practical advice.

Written By: Dan Pelton

Author: LivingSpaces

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