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FAQs: Buying an Above Ground Pool

Faqs: buying an above ground pool

So, you’re thinking of buying an above ground swimming pool for you and your family. But, you have some questions? Here at Outside Play we have years of experience in supplying garden swimming pools, so we thought it would be useful to share that knowledge with you!

Here is a selection of the most frequently asked questions we receive from potential customers who are considering buying an above ground pool!

One of the most frequently asked questions by our customers is, do I need a filter for my pool? The short answer is, yes! Buying an above ground pool without a filter will soon turn into a total mess that will take time and money to rectify. If you’re investing money in buying an above ground pool, it only makes sense to keep it clean – a clean pool is a happy pool.

Dirty Above Ground Pool Water Buying an above ground pool
Yuck!!! Dirty Above Ground Pool Water

Pool filters are necessary to keep your pool healthy and clean. It is an essential component that keeps the water clean by filtering out all the dirt, debris, clothing fibres and organic material that makes its way into your above ground swimming pool water.  Without a filter, your above ground swimming pool will quickly grow algae and bacteria, as well as turn an unsightly colour!

There are a range of different filters available, and here at Outside Play we can help you to choose the correct filter when buying an above ground pool, depending on its size and the room around your pool for add-ons. This could be from our range of sand filters or cartridge filters. In fact, many of the pools we sell come with a filter included. This, of course, brings us on to our next question…

Q. What Type of Filter Do I Need?

Another popular customer query when buying an above ground pool – so, you know you need a filter for your pool. But, which filter is the right one when buying an above ground pool? Well, the first step to knowing which filter you need is to know what options are available. Let’s take a look:

Filter and Cartridge

Filter Cartridge Being Placed into Pool Filter Buying an above ground pool
Filter Cartridge Being Placed into Pool Filter

A filter cartridge contains a plastic cylinder surrounded by a pleated polyester filter materical and is capped on each end. Pool water flows into the tank and through the pleats. Debris as small as 10 microns is captured in the filter, then clean water heads back into the pool.

Cartridges are energy efficient and inexpensive. As the filter collects contaminants, it’ll need cleaning. Rather than backwashing, you’ll simply remove the cartridge from the tank, and spray it with a hose to remove debris and dirt. It is recommended that filter cartridges are changed on a monthly basis when your pool is in use.

Sand Filter

Pool Filter Silica Sand Buying an above ground pool
Pool Filter Silica Sand

Sand filters work by allowing water to cycle through a canister that contains sand. The water flows through the sand with ease, but larger particles are unable to pass through. Once the debris and other particles have been filtered out by the sand, a pump moves the clean water back into the pool.  In order to ensure consistency and make sure that most if not all of the debris that might be in your pool water is filtered out, sand of a specific makeup and grain size is used.

Sand filters use #20 silica sand with grains that fall within the 45 to 55 millimeter range.

Sand Filter and Filtration Balls

Bestway polysphere flowclear 58475 filtration balls
Bestway polysphere flowclear 58475 filtration balls

Another option is to use Pool Filtration Balls in your sand filter, instead of silica sand (filtration balls or sand are not compatible with catridge filters). Pool filter balls are made from polyethylene fiber weave and highly resistant to pool chemicals, high temperatures, alkalis, and acids, which makes them virtually indestructible. 1.5 lbs pool filter ball is equivalent (approximately) to 50lbs pool filter sand. It is recommended that filtration balls are changed every 1-3 months depending on the use of your pool and the amount of debri in your water.

So, which filter is best when buying an above ground pool? Generally, sand filters are the best option to ensure a naturally and thoroughly clean pool. Filters are certainly easier to manage and a lot less ‘faff’ but they can be a more expensive option given the frequency of replacing them. Filtration balls are 100% recyclable, easy to use and offer excellent porosity, but again can be expensive. We have a range of options available at Outside Play and our team are always on hand to offer advice.

Q. What Surface Can I Put My Pool On?

Bestway Flowclear interlocking pool floor tiles green Buying an above ground pool
Bestway FlowClear Interlocking Floor Tiles

If you’re buying an above ground pool, your pool needs to be on a flat and solid surface. One thing to keep in mind is that the natural surface of your garden (e.g grass) is not the most stable foundation and can quickly shift when it rains. If the surface beneath the pool shifts or is uneven, your swimming pool is at risk of getting damaged or spilling over. While concrete is generally considered the best option for an above ground pool base, we understand that you might not want to re-landscape your beloved garden!

At Outside Play we stock foam pool floor tiles that, provided they are used on the most even and solid area available to you, provide a cost-effective base for your pool. We also stock pool ground sheets to add an extra layer of protection to both your garden and your pool.

Q. How Many Floor Tiles Do I Need?

Bestway Flowclear interlocking pool floor tiles green Buying an above ground pool
Bestway Pool Floor Tiles

Our packs of floor tiles Consist of nine square tiles with an interlocking system that covers 5.47 square metres. So, factoring in the size of your pool, you can calculate the number of tiles you need. For example, the Bestway 56441 Power Steel is 401cm long and 201cm wide, covering an area of 8.12 square metres. So, you would need two packs of pool floor tiles!

Q. What Pool Chemicals Do I Need?

Blue horizons splasher pool starter kit
Blue horizons splasher pool starter kit

This is an interesting question that we get asked all the time from those who are considering buying an above ground pool. There are two types of pool chemicals available; Chlorine and Bromine. Chlorine is your traditional pool chemical that has the recognisable smell and you will find this in most public swimming baths. Once chlorine is poured into a pool, a chemical reaction occurs and the solution breaks down to sanitize the pool for a certain amount of time. Pool chlorine comes in different forms like tablets and liquids, but it all does the same job in protecting your water from germs.

Bromine is the number one alternative to chlorine. This chemical is known to be a sanitizer, oxidizer, and algaecide for swimming pools. The reason why spa and hot tub owners prefer bromine over chlorine is that it works better in warmer temperatures. Unlike Chlorine, Bromine doesn’t have a strong chemical smell and it isn’t as harsh on your eyes, your skin or the inside of your poool – which makes it a popular alternative to Chlorine.

So, which one should you buy? Chlorine is essentially the cheaper alternative, easily accessible and is a tried and trusted solution. On the other hand, Bromine does not have an overpowering smell, it’s much kinder to our skin, yet it still does a great job keeping pools clean, and works well with vinyl pool liners. But this option is more expensive than chlorine, has less oxidation power, and does not work as well in sunlight.

Pool chemicals come in either a tablet form, which can be placed in a floating dispenser, or granular form which needs to be dissolved in water and added directly to your pool water.

Q. How Do I Test the PH of My Pool Water?

Blue Horizons 6 Way PH Test Strips Bromine and Chlorine Buying an above ground pool
Blue Horizons 6 Way Chlorine and Bromine PH Test Strips

So, now that you have added pool chemicals to your pool, you’re going to need to ensure that the PH level of your pool is happy! When testing pH, what you are really measuring is how acidic or how alkaline the pool water is. A pH level of 7 means that water is neutral; above 7 means the water is alkaline, while below 7 indicates acidity. Aim for a pH level of between 7 and 7.6. If the water pH is higher than 8, anyone who swims in the pool is at risk of skin rashes, while a pH of lower than 7 can sting swimmers’ eyes.

Of course, the ideal PH level will depend on your water source and its original PH level before adding chemicals, so do take this into account.

In order to test your PH levels, you will need to have some PH test strips. These are available for both Chlorine and Bromine treated pools, or at Outside Play we stock multi-chemical test strtips.

We hope that this blog has helped to answer some important questions you may have prior to Buying an above ground pool – have more questions? Drop us a message on our social media pages or email us at [email protected]! Our team are always happy to help and offer advice.

If you’re planning on Buying an Above Ground Pool, why not take a look at our current range of garden swimming pools? With the latest models and plenty of styles and sizes to choose from, you and the whole family can enjoy some outdoor fun this year.

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Outside Play is the perfect brand to go to for above ground pools in the UK. We supply and stock an incredible list of products suitable for all ages from small paddling pools right up the way up to 31ft garden swimming pools. We have taken the time to research and source the most popular, sought after products. Particularly taking care to ensure that quality and safety is at the top of our priority list.

Beginning our journey with supplying and distributing products to companies nationwide. We decided to take the leap into retail ourselves. We are fully confident in our products and their sources. This means that we will only ever provide the best quality pools and outdoor play equipment for you and your children. Our background means that we are able to provide you and your family with everything you need and an extensive knowledge of the products to help you enjoy them.

Want to learn more? Visit out website: www.outsideplay.co.uk

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