Friday, June 24, 2016


Aquaknot Pools, Inc.: COMMON MYTHS ABOUT CHLORINE: If there was ever a pool product that received an unfair bad rap, it is chlorine.  First discovered in 1774, Chlorine has been used t...


If there was ever a pool product that received an unfair bad rap, it is chlorine.  First discovered in 1774, Chlorine has been used to sanitize pools since approximately 1910.  While chlorine has continued to be a staple in pool sanitizing, as our world evolves, people are always looking to see if there is something better that has come along.  As a result we often receive calls at our office from pool customers looking for chlorine alternatives.  The reasons for their inquiries almost always are due to misinformation about Chlorine so here we are to debunk some of those myths.

1.  Chlorine makes the pool smell of chemicals

Ever walk into a hotel pool area and think, "wow, I can smell the chlorine."  Well, that isn't chlorine you are smelling.  Ever heard the expression that if fish smells, it is bad?  Well, it can be applied to chlorinated pools as well.  That smell you are smelling is actually the smell of chloramines in the air.  What are chloramines?  To explMain what chloramines are, let's go back a few steps.  Large pool places often have to super chlorinate pools in between swim sessions to ensure bacteria is killed but oftentimes they don't ensure regular chlorine balancing between shocking.  This means that the pool is not adequately sanitized and when that happens, the chlorine breaks down and what is left are chloramines.  Chloramines can cause rashes, red eyes, and even asthma events.  This is why it is always important to ensure that your swimming pool maintains proper chlorine levels at all times.

2.  A lot of people are allergic to chlorine

So you or maybe your child, spouse, or other family member has a rash after swimming.  Before you deem you or someone else as having an allergy to chlorine, keep in mind that many thing issues can be the culprit of a reaction after swimming.  While we know there are people out there that have chlorine sensitivity, oftentimes the rash is due to poor water treatment.  In fact, when a customer calls about red eyes, my first question is always "what is your PH level" or when someone calls and says that their child has a rash, it is not that there is chlorine in the pool but what is the level of chlorine.  Rashes are often caused by too much or too little chlorine in a pool.

3.  We heard salt is better

This myth is always fascinating to us.  Today, salt pools are the rage.  Many people people are confused, however, about how salt works in your pool.  The salt generator actually turns salt into chlorine of your pool which means a salt pool is not a chlorine free pool.  In fact, a properly functioning salt pool will actually have  the same chlorine level as a regular chlorine based pool Also, there is no better, faster way to get your pool sparkling blue than chlorine so even a salt pool will first run on chlorine until it clears in the spring.  Additionally, it will still need regular dosages of chlorine (in addition to that generated by the sale) as the season goes.  

4.  Chlorine is expensive

Chlorine is actually one of the cheapest ways to sanitize your pool.  Oftentimes,  you will hear that salt saves you money on chlorine, but ask about how much the salt costs and you will likely be quite surprised by the cost.  Other choices such as Baquacil are very expensive and not always as effective.

The simple of it is, whether it be sticks, pucks, or liquid, or used in conjunction with salt, chlorine is the best way that a homeowner can keep their pool looking blue and clear and their swimmers safe.  

                                                                                               Have a wonderful weekend,

                                                                                               The Staff at Aquaknot Pools, Inc.

Thursday, June 16, 2016


Whether you are a new pool owner or a seasoned one, I bet a least once, you have had someone tell you that pool "chlorine is chlorine" and suggest you hit the local discount superstore.  Maybe you have been the one to say it to someone else.  Perhaps your pool is a simple above ground and so to you, it is not a big deal to purchase your chemicals on discount at a superstore, but what if your pool is a gunite, inground vinyl liner, or a fiberglass pool?  Any of those three are a real investment and one that you want to protect; so, to answer the question, is there a difference between those pool products purchased in a discount store and those purchased at a specialty pool company?  The answer is emphatically yes and here is why.  

1.  Shelf Life

You may see your high end pool products at one of those discount stores from time to time, but have you ever stopped to look at the age?  Most likely those chemicals have been sitting for many years in some warehouse before reaching the shelves.  Like many products, pool products also have a shelf life; therefore, while you may be saving some money, you will likely not receive the same level of quality and may ended up having balancing problems as a result.  In addition to balancing problems, more important is that issues such as rashes and red eyes are the result of imbalanced pool water which can also make using expired pool products a health issue for your family and friends.  

2.  Additives 

There is a lot out there about additives in food, but additives in your swimming pool products can also be problematic.  Often discount store swimming pool products will contain additives that may throw off the balance of other chemicals in your pool.  So, for example, you may be purchasing a product to balance your PH, but there could be an additive that effects your alkalinity or chlorine levels, leaving you constantly trying to balance your water.  A word of caution, oftentimes those additives are not included in the ingredient list for your pool products.      

3.  Active Ingredients

So the algae inhibitor ingredients are the same so what is the big deal? Well, is it?  Always good to check the percentage of active ingredient in any product for your swimming pool.  Maybe the bottle is cheaper, but do you need to add twice as much to get the same result?  

4.  It's a texture thing

I was talking with one of our servicemen recently about the difference in quality pool products verses the discount store and he explained that one of the biggest issues he finds with the discount pool products is the texture.  Discount pool products, have a very different consistency and while that may not seem like a big issue, such differences can cause havoc on your filter system.  He explained how the products do not break down well and can get stuck in the filtrating system, ultimately diminishing the lifespan of your equipment.  

Aquaknot Pools has been an authorized dealer of Bioguard products for almost three decades. Bioguard stands out among its competitors for its commitment to providing the highest quality products. All products are tested to ensure quality and performance and Bioguard dealers are highly trained in swimming pool chemistry.  Bioguard dealers offer free, start of the art water testing to all customers which provides our customers with accurate water chemistry analysis to ensure your pool remains properly balanced throughout the season.  Come in today to get your free water analysis and balancing chemicals.

Friday, June 10, 2016

Aquaknot Pools, Inc.: Making Your Pool Unique

Aquaknot Pools, Inc.: Making Your Pool Unique: MAKING YOUR POOL UNIQUE TO YOU The swimming pool industry has changed over the years and today, the options out there for our custo...

Making Your Pool Unique


The swimming pool industry has changed over the years and today, the options out there for our customers to create a modern, sleek and gorgeous backyard oasis are only limited by one's imagination.  From lighting to accents, we can offer our customers so much more today that wasn't even thinkable only a few years ago.   Here are some of the more popular options out there for those thinking of having a new pool installed or maybe you want to spruce up your existing pool.


I'm not talking about those classic white pool lights.  LED Lighting is one of the best ways to wow your guests.  Having an evening party?  You can set the lighting to multiple colors and speeds.  We offer two different brands of this product, both are sure to WOW you.

Both Hayward and Pentair carry LED lights for pool and spa with a multiple color options.  Whether the lighting is added to the pool itself or to the water features of the pool, or both, the colorful lighting can create various moods for any occasion.  

Photo courtesy of Pentair

These lights can often be made to remain one solid color or several colors.

Photo courtesy of Hayward


Fire bowls, fire pits, fire tables, it is safe to say that fire is a hot ticket item right now.  There are so many options available to dress up your pool and landscape with fire, you are truly only limited by your imagination.  One personal favorite is the fire bowl fountain.  You get the beautiful flames above and gorgeous fountain effect below.  


Fountains are a classic water feature that adds serenity and class to any swimming pool.  As seen above with the LED lighting and the fire bowls, fountains can be dressed up but are beautiful just on their own.  There are several options to adding fountain features to your pool, whether it is a simple thing water stream (again as shown with the LED lighting or here a wider cascade of water, such as is pictured to the left.  


We love the look of the natural stone, whether it is being used as a wall for one edge of a free form pool, or used as part of a cascading waterfall, natural stonework is absolutely beautiful.  


One popular way to make your own is to add a spa.  Spas are very popular add ons to pools today. Whether attached or detached, a beautiful gunite spa can add beauty and provide many health benefits as well.  Today, there are so many options to customize a spa to your liking.  Here are a few of our favorite, from detached, to oversized, to one with a waterfall effect.

These are just a few of the many ways we can customize your pool to make it fit your vision.  Call us today learn about what we can do for you.

Thursday, June 2, 2016


Aquaknot Pools, Inc.: PREPARING TO MEET WITH A SWIMMING POOL BUILDER: HOW TO PREPARE FOR YOUR FIRST MEETING So you are taking the plunge (pun intended) and going forward with the installation of a swim...



So you are taking the plunge (pun intended) and going forward with the installation of a swimming pool.  Maybe you have been doing research for some time now and know exactly what you want or maybe this is your first step.  Today we sit with Aquaknot Pool's sales and design manager, Kristine Uhlman, who will answer many questions you may have while you are preparing for your first meeting. 

As some background, Kristine Uhlman, has been with Aquaknot Pools for 28 years, beginning first in the retail store as a teenager.  Kristine has over two decades of experience in design and sale of residential in-ground, gunite swimming pools for the company.  

I sat down for a question and answer session with Kristine this week to put together popular questions going through homeowner's minds as they prepare to meet with swimming pool builders.  

Q.  What should I do to prepare for meeting with you to discuss installing a pool?

A.  Look at lots of pictures.  Check out pinterest and websites and magazines.  Having an idea of what you are looking for is always helpful.   If you have copies of plot plans for your home, you should have those accessible, same goes for if you are on septic - you have the septic plans accessible.  If you know of any restrictions on your property, such as easements or conservation, it is good to let me know that as well.  

As a family, it is also good to talk in advance whether you want a diving board or do you want a deep pool or a shallow pool.  

Probably one of the most important advance discussions to have as a family is about budget.  While I cannot give you an exact number on the telephone, I try to tell people a range when they call and make their appointment.  It is important to understand the costs that a homeowner is going to incur for a swimming pool installation.  You can also inquire of our financing option as well.  I am happy to direct you to a link to get pre-approved for our exclusive financing company.  

Q.  Do I need to know where my lot lines are before you come out to my house?

While it is not absolutely necessary, it is helpful.

Q.  Why do you want to come to my home instead of me meeting you at your office?

A.  When I give you an estimate for your pool, I want to give as accurate an estimate as possible.  To do so, it is important for me to be able to see where you want to build the pool.  Conditions such as ledge and elevation can have an impact on the cost of installation.  

Q.  Do I have to pull the permits for my pool?

While I cannot speak for other pool companies, Aquaknot Pools is a licensed builder and a registered home improvement contractor.  We sign for all permits for your swimming pool construction.  We caution our customers to be wary if a company requires the homeowner to sign for their own permit because it may be due to their being unlicensed.

Q.  Why is important to me that your company is licensed and registered as a home improvement contractor?

A.  There are a few reasons why this is important to a homeowner.  On the liability side of things, by signing for your permit, we accept responsibility of your project in the eyes of your town/city.  We are responsible to ensure that your pool is built to comply with all federal, state, and town laws.  In addition to liability, for your convenience, our registration as a home improvement contractor means that our knowledge goes beyond just swimming pool construction and we are able to give you guidance on your project as a whole, not just the pool itself.

Q.  Are there certain questions that I should ask anyone who I meet with to discuss installing a pool?

A.  Again, it is important to ask anyone who you interview about whether they are licensed and are they registered as a home improvement contractor.  You also want to ask them about their services after the pool is built and how they handle warranty needs.  When reviewing the estimates of any company, you should ask about how they deal with unknown conditions that may arise, especially if the unknown means more money.  

To protect yourself, you should also ask if the contractor carries liability insurance and worker's compensation insurance.  

Q.  I am not good at visualizing, will someone be able to help me pick things like color and tile?

I assist our customers to the extent that they need me.  I am happy to sit with you and help you pick out every detail of your swimming pool.  We have an abundance of samples of tile and surface in store for you to review.  

Q.  How long does the process take?

The process generally takes about 8 to 12 weeks under what we call normal conditions.  What I mean by that is that there are no special orders or custom finishes, both of which can delay the project and are outside of our control. While it does not happen often, extreme weather can also be an issue at times.  Certain processes require dry weather and extreme heat can also be an issue.  Provided that the adverse weather conditions are short-term, it usually will not cause significant delays, but if we have a month of rain, it can impact our construction schedule.  

Q.  If we sign with you,  how quickly can we start construction?

I talked a little about weather issues and special orders that may cause delays in the pool process.  But there can be delays before the shovel even hits the ground due to conservation, permitting and inspections.  A lot of time we are ready to break ground but your town hasn't issued a permit yet.  

To understand why the permitting can delay things, it is important to understand how the permitting process works. We prepare the permit application for the town and we generally must include a certified plot plan with the pool, fence, and pool equipment clearly located.  Once it is submitted, the plan must typically be signed off by many other departments before it reaches the building department.

The health department must sign off after reviewing fence heights, self-closing and self-latching gates, door alarms, when required, and distance from the septic tank or field.  

The conservation department has jurisdiction if the pool will be within 100 ft of a wetland, or within 200 ft of a river/body of water.  Conservation issues is really a topic to be discussed on its own.  What I will say is that we help you through the conservation process from start to finish. 

The permit application usually also must be signed off on by the water and sewer department and the tax department.  

Two issues that can come up in the permitting stage, aside from conservation, is the issue of easements (a pool cannot be built on one) and corner lots, which can have issues with regard to setbacks. 

Once all of the above has been satisfied, the permit application is sent to the building department.  The building department has thirty working days to approve or deny the project.  

Q.  Once you build the pool, do I have to find someone else to help me take care of it?

Aquaknot Pools is a one stop shop for all your pool needs.  You will have access to service, maintenance, and chemicals through Aquaknot Pools.  In addition, we will take care of all warranty related issues as well.

Q.  What makes Aquaknot Pools stand out from other pool builders in the area?

There are a few things that I think make us stand out from other pool companies.  One of the most important things to us is that we feel it is important that you, as the customer, have one point of contact. That is why from start to finish, you have direct communication with me.  You are not passed around to various people.  From the moment you sign the contract, you will know that you can call me anytime.  I provide you with my cellphone number and my email and I will be there to answer your questions throughout the process.  

Another important quality that I feel Aquaknot provides is our ability to service customers for the life of their pool. We provide services for opening and closing, weekly maintenance, water testing, and chemicals.  Many companies build the pool and then you are on your own to find someone to provide service or maintenance.  When you are built by Aquaknot, we remain there to assist for the life of your pool.  We also keep records for you so if you sell your house down the road, you will also be able to tell potential buyers, with confidence, that they can contact us and we can inform them of the health of your pool.  

Q.  Will you provide me names of other customers that I can talk to or see your work?

A.  Yes, if you wish to speak with our prior customers, or see swimming pools that we have constructed, we will provide you references.

While we have provided you a short summary of some questions that may be running through your head as you start the process, all of these questions, and more, are answered often before being asked when you meet with Kristine. 

Contact us today to schedule your free in-home estimate.