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Myth Busted! Poll Finds Most Parents Believe Pool Urine Detecting Dye Myth Is True

From The Paramus Post

Like anything else that is extremely popular, swimming pools and their enthusiastic usage by the public has some urban tales and myths associated with it.  Almost everyone who grew up swimming in a pool has heard the canard that there is a chemical that can be added to a swimming pool that can turn red, blue, or green when a child pees in it.  This would presumably cause great embarrassment for the child, and ultimately act as a deterrent to the kids peeing in the pool.  Well, like many other tall tales and urban legends, this is untrue.  This post from Paramus Post explains why, and also gives some other popular myths and legends surrounding swimming pools, and the real truth behind them.  The explanations might surprise you!

Here is an excerpt from the post:

Myth – Chlorine turns hair green.

Truth – The survey by the Water Quality and Health Council discovered that nearly half of respondents believe that chorine is responsible for turning hair green. In fact, the presence of copper in swimming pool water is to blame. Copper may be introduced to pool water in several ways, including metal plumbing or algaecide.

Myth – Swimmer "red eye" is caused by too much chlorine in the pool.

Truth – 87 percent of respondents to the Water Quality and Health Council survey believed that chlorine in pools makes swimmers' eyes red and irritated. In reality, when nitrogen, found in urine and sweat, is combined with chlorine, irritants called chloramines are formed. It is these chloramines, not the chlorine itself, that irritate the eyes, skin and respiratory system. In this case, more chlorine may actually need to be added to pool water in order to reduce the formation of chloramines.

Myth – When it comes to pool water, clarity means cleanliness.

Truth – Even when swimming pool water is clear, microorganisms too small to be seen with the naked eye can be present. While chlorine destroys bacteria that could put swimmers at risk for disease, it takes time to work. Most germs are killed within seconds in a properly treated pool, but some (such as Cryptosporidium) can survive for days and require more aggressive treatment.

Myth – The strong odor of chemicals indicates a clean, well-treated pool.

Truth – A faint smell is expected, but a strong scent of chemicals could mean trouble. When irritating chloramines are formed by the mixture of chlorine and pool contaminants, such as urine, body oils and other substances brought into the pool by swimmers, a strong smell is released. A healthy pool is one with little to no odor.

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Creating an Escape at Home: Splash Pads

From Apartment Therapy

If your backyard space doesn't allow for a swimming pool, and you are tired of the "Slip n' slide" or garden hose to cool off your kids in the hot summer months, consider the splash pad.  The splash pad consists of a relatively flat area with some type of water feature and recirculation system, and can be cheaper, more efficient, and believe it or not, beautiful.  This post from Apartment Therapy gives some great ideas and even a DIY kit for building one's own Splash Pad in the backyard.

Here is an excerpt from the post:

Actually, splash pads can be beautiful and make efficient use of space and resources. Marcos and Amanda's gorgeous splash pad (first photo) was completely DIY. If you have DIY ambitions but need some help on the technical end then you can look into DIY kits. If you're already looking at professional hardscaping then your contractor should be able to integrate splash pad function and design with your plan, creating a multipurpose space that works for your family long-term.

Private splash pads have been growing in popularity for a number of reasons; they are a great small space solution for major outdoor fun (they can be as small as 100 sf), and are cheaper, safer, and far more water efficient than maintaining a private pool. We frequent a public splash pad, but got major splash pad envy when we saw these:

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Summer Water Safety

7 Safe swimming tips for kids

From Daily Delights

Summer is half over, and you have probably already been to your local municipal pool, water park, or backyard inground swimming pool already.  Unfortunately, in all of the splashing fun, the most important thing to remember as parents sometimes gets forgotten: Safety around a swimming pool.  In this post from Daily Delights, 7 Safe and easy tips for swimming pool safety are presented as a reminder to protect your children from the ever-present drowning hazards around any body of water.

Here is an excerpt from the post:

It's summertime and there's no better way to beat the heat than a day at the beach or local pool. By learning some important safe swimming tips, you can keep the whole family safe, while still having a great time.

Follow the rules

Always obey all rules when swimming in both lakes and pools. Water safety rules are there to protect you and your children. If you model good behavior, your children will learn to respect the rules as well. Here are a few swimming no-no's:

Never dive into shallow water.

Never run near the edge of a pool.

Never swim in a pool that does not have a lifeguard.

Never swim alone.

Never swim in places that are not meant for swimming.

Never leave children unattended near any body of water.

Prevent drowning

It's hard to imagine if you haven't witnessed drowning up close, but drowning is actually a very quiet and shockingly undramatic experience. People who are drowning are not physically or psychologically able to call for help. This is why drowning is the number two cause of accidental death in children under the age of 15 -- and half of the children who drown are within 25 yards of a parent or another adult.

You can learn more about how to recognize and rescue a drowning person in a swimming safety class. And of course, make sure to stay close to your children and pay close attention to them at all times when they are playing in or near the water.

Learn CPR

In case of emergency, it's always good to be prepared. Classes in CPR and life-saving rescue techniques are available for swimmers of every level. Check with the American Red Cross for a class near you.

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30 Beautiful Backyard Ponds And Water Garden Ideas

From Architecture Art Designs

The lagoon-style swimming pool with its natural curves and style made to blend in with nature has been gaining popularity for many years.  Using boulders and more rustic elements gives the feel of a natural lagoon or water garden in place of a traditional rectangle swimming pool, and provides a haven for relaxation in one's own yard.  This post from Architecture Art Designs gives 30 amazing designs for the lagoon style or backyard pond style freeform swimming pool.

Here is an excerpt from the post:

Giving life to your backyard can be achieved by doing a lot of things such as planting a lot of trees and plants and arranging it to look as natural as possible.

But there's one thing that will most definitely give life to your backyard both in terms of looks and sound. And that, of course, is a pond or a nice fountain.

The water from the fountain or pond will bring your backyard or garden to life by adding a really natural and fresh look to it, as well as the sound that it will produce from the water falling down the rocks from your fountain.

For that reason, we have made this collection of 30 beautiful backyard ponds and water garden ideas with which we hope to supply you with a lot of creative ideas and hopefully spark a little wish in your mind to create something similar in your own backyard.

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Monday, 21 July 2014 13:26

The Bellagio Water Show in your own backyard?

Written by

Choreographing the Water: Show Control Systems

From Aqua

Many people have stood and marveled at the Belaggio automated dancing waters show.  The nozzles throwing amazing bursts of colored water into the air in perfect synchronization with the music never fails to draw "oohs" and "aahs" from the dazzled crowd.  Accomplishing these automated shows take a variety of sophisticated intelligent control systems, which previously were only available to the deepest of pockets, i.e. someone like a Las Vegas Casino.  As this article from Aqua explains, however, innovations in control system technology is now available to have complicated water shows in one's own outdoor living space, and around their own inground swimming pool and hot tub.

Here is an excerpt from the post:

As backyard and commercial water features have grown more sophisticated, so have their coordination and control. This article explores the technology of "show" controls, from basic to complex, which attempt to choreograph water movement with music and lights.

For most pools and spas and water features, simple, mainstream-market controls are sufficient to meet customer needs and desires. But with the ever increasing demand for automation, remote control (think Smartphone), and more sophisticated and controllable LED lighting and effects, a proper show control system can meet a lot of client desires (at a cost appropriate for the project budget)!

The Essentials – Switches, Timers and Relays

Even the simplest single pump fountain needs to be powered up. Of course this can be done manually with the flip of a circuit breaker or light switch, but the core of what can be considered automated show control incorporates one or more timer. Almost everyone is familiar with timers, from those rotary things you stick plastic pins into to neat digital displays with battery backup, so this probably does not need explaining.

The next step up in timer automation is with the use of relays...a timer activates a relay, which in turn, powers a device or subsystem. This too is pretty self-explanatory and traditional.


PLC stands for Programmable Logic Controller. PLCs are vintage technology, having their roots in industrial automation. Today's PLCs have evolved programming interfaces that are user-friendlier than the days of eye-straining Ladder Logic flowcharts, but they are best handled by those with everyday experience programming them. For a small-scale project, incorporating a PLC and hiring a PLC programmer may not make sense to the overall budget. From a creative content producer's (show programmer) perspective, PLCs are so 20th Century and best relegated to low level controls for medium to large installation sanitation/filtration control and monitoring.

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