Florida Guide > Hints and Tips
Enjoying the pool safely
Most vacation homes have a private pool for the exclusive use of your party. This is one of the reasons homes are so popular. But there are some safety aspects that should be considered as well as the fun ones.
Here are some tips for enjoying your pool safely.
Firstly there should be no diving. The pools are not deep enough to dive into. As a general rule most pools will be 3 feet deep at the shallow end and around 5 or 6 feet at the deep end.
If there is a solar cover for the pool available it is a good idea to use it when the pool is not in use and at night. During the cooler months it can help keep the temperature around 15 degree’s higher than a similar pool without a cover. This can make a tremendous difference if you have paid for pool heating.
Children should never be left in the pool area alone. All pool homes must have adequate safety precautions in order to obtain their license and these should be used at all times if you have children in your party. Homes are required to have at least one of the following: Audible door alarms on every door leading out to the pool area. These will give out a very loud warning that your child may have got out without you noticing. If fitted, these must be switched on at all times and there is a fine of up to $5000 if they are found to have been tampered with. They are there to protect your children.
You may also find your pool home fitted with a safety fence. Homes must have either door alarms or a safety fence, and many homes have both. The fence is at the legally required height and will prevent children getting too near the pool. If you are worried about your children’s safety even when out on the deck you can leave the fence up and jus unclip it when needed.
Pool covers are a real boon to keeping the water warm but very dangerous and attractive to children, who seem to think they can walk on them. If your vacation home has a pool cover be extra vigilant.
No glass or crockery should be used on the pool deck or near the pool. Broken glass can be notoriously difficult to clear up, and may even cause the pool equipment to stop working and warrant a costly repair, which you will be liable for. All homes will provide suitable plastic glasses and dinnerware for the deck area.
Please do not add anything to the water in the pool or Spa as these may interfere with the working of the pool. Pools are maintained on a weekly basis by a qualified technician, who will always ensure the pool is safe to use. Anything added by guests could cause the pool to be out of use for some considerable time.
If you have requested pool heating this will be switched on for your arrival. Pool heating is designed to take the chill off the water and when heated the temperature should rise to between 75 and 85 degrees. A lot of pools are heated by an electric heat exchanger which compresses heat from the atmosphere. If the air temperature during the day falls below around 50 degrees (a rare occurrence) then the pump will switch off until the temperature rises. Please be aware that it is not possible to guarantee the temperature of the pool, which is partially dependant on the local weather conditions. Gas heated pools generally heat up quicker and are not subject to climate fluctuations.
Pool heating is expensive to run and a separate charge is normally made for this.
Many homes have pool toys available for your enjoyment. It is worth checking before buying your own. Also check with your owner if they provide pool towels and if necessary bring your own.
Finally, a pool home is a luxury many of us don’t have at home, so enjoy it but make sure you are safe doing it.
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Page added on: 4 August 2005
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