Concerns about pool safety bring to mind fences and people who watch over children, but safety measure start much earlier and are handled by professionals who consistently provide peace of mind.

Your pool may look fine, so you suspect you've added the proper amount of chlorine and spent enough time checking the pH. But if you've ever wondered how clean your pool water really is or whether it meets city and state codes, you need only contact a Phoenix pool services professional who will inspect your pool and let you know for sure, with no obligation or pressure.

The point is to give you peace of mind and put an end to worries. Without professional guidance and help, there may be much to worry about: Swimming pools, even private ones like yours, can host a number of dangers. It's important to know the facts.

Recreational water illnesses
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention refers to them as recreational water illnesses, which are caused by chemicals and germs found in our swimming pools – as well as hot tubs and other water-based recreational activities. They are induced by chemicals or microbes in or evaporating from the water and can be spread by breathing in mists and swallowing or coming in contact with contaminated water.

While these illness can be as easily treated as diarrhea, they can also be more serious, causing skin rashes and eye and ear infections and infecting any open cuts. Diarrhea is commonly caused by a variety of germs, including Cryptosporidium – known as Crypto – that is resistant to chlorine. The CDC reported that from 2004-2008, the number of Crypto cases that were reported soared by more than 200 percent.

The chlorine cure
While keeping chlorine at recommended levels will kill a number of germs, it's not the superstar that many people believe it is. For one thing, it won't kill all germs instantly – some, only recently discovered to be toxic to humans, may live for days before the chlorine works, and swallowing just a tiny amount can make you sick.

What's more, the do-it-yourself chlorine cure is not recommended by pool maintenance experts. According to the Professional Pool Operators of America (PPOA), the smell of chlorine doesn't indicate cleanliness – just the opposite. The "chlorine smell" is actually caused by chloramines, a result of decomposing organic matter along with sweat and bodily fluids, while active free chlorine has no scent and no tendency to irritate skin. What it means is that there's not been enough chlorine in the pool for some time, and what's happened is that ammonia-like substances were introduced into the water. 

Phoenix pool maintenance professionals know that you can preserve the pool's safety and keep water clear by using an appropriately higher, not lower, amount of free chlorine.

Pool-keeping mistakes
You ensure pool water balance with a combination of chlorine and pH, right? Wrong, say the pros from PPOA. Chlorine has no effect on the balance and other factors like temperature, pH, alkalinity, total dissolved solids and calcium hardness are what contribute to the Calcium Saturation Index, often mistakenly called the balance. That index helps predict technical issues such as water aggressiveness and scaling potential and the balance between the two.

Another incorrect notion is that high hardness causes pool water to become cloudy. The professionals refute this, saying that it would take an extremely high pH to precipitate calcium scale. 

Bring in a professional
To enjoy peace of mind as well as a clear, inviting and clean swimming pool, call Poolman, a local company that Phoenix residents have relied on to maintain their pools and keep them safe and enjoyable for more than 40 years.