2019 Forecast: How to Prepare Your Backyard and Pool for the New Year!

According to the Farmer’s Almanac, mid-February will be COLD, especially in the following zones: Northeast/New England, Great Lakes, Ohio Valley, Midwest, and Southeast. If you’re lacking a pool heater, make sure you take the proper steps to winterize your pool.

With this harsher winter, Spring could arrive a bit late this year! Mid-March could be stormy for the country, bringing snow, sleet, and/or rain as well as strong and gusty winds to many areas. In particular, the Farmer’s Almanac says to watch for March 20-23 for a potent East Coast storm that could deliver a wide variety of wintry precipitation just as we are making the transition from winter to spring. We recommend a pool heater and/or a solar cover on your pool to keep it warm until the temperatures start rising back up! Stop by our store to learn more.

Extending the Season

Winter hits everywhere in the country eventually, including the Sunshine State. When the temperatures drop, you may be tempted to shut down your pool for a while. But when you stop to consider how big of an investment your pool was and how much you love it, do you really want to go without using it? 

Your pool CAN still be enjoyed in cooler temperature as long as you follow a few extra “pool rules”. Essentially, as long as you reduce heat loss and keep your pool warm, your fun times in the pool never have to end! 

Let’s focus on heat retention. The easiest way to keep the heat is to put a solar cover on your pool when it is not in use. A solar cover reduces pool heat loss by 75%. So, by using a solar cover, your pool heats 75% more efficiently, staying warm longer!

Another way to improve heat retention and reduce heat loss is to install a wind blocking enclosure around your pool. This type of enclosure will insulate your entire pool area, block out cold gusts of wind, and – as an added bonus – will keep debris out of your water! 

None of the above are entirely foolproof ways to make sure your pool water stays at a warm and comfortable enough temperature to swim in. For this security, you should invest in a type of heater. A pool heat pump is a great choice. Pool heat pumps only cost about one-third of the monthly expense of gas heaters, making them the most cost-effective on-demand heating available. Instead of physically generating heat like gas and electric heaters do, pool heat pumps work by harvesting natural heat! 

Of course, if you’d prefer a gas or electric heater instead – that is entirely your choice to make! Get in touch with our staff at Blue Ribbon Pools and we’ll go through all your options to make sure you get the most out of your pool all year round!

Let’s Light Up the Night!

Lighting is an essential tool for not only enhancing the visual appeal of your pool, but for increasing the efficiency of your pool. Why limit your pool time to only daylight hours? You’re not utilizing your investment fully that way! We recommend installing some LED lighting. LED lights can not only add the WOW factor to your pool with their appearance, but they can also save energy and money in the long run! 

Here are some reasons why LED lighting is the best choice for your pool: 

1. LEDs have so many appealing special features!

This is the most aesthetically appealing reason to install LED lighting. These lights come in a variety of neon colors, some with the technology to switch between a few different colors if you don’t want to commit to just one! Color changing LED lights can help set the mood for your party (consider red and green lights for Christmastime, for instance) in addition to making your pool accessible essentially 24/7.

2. LEDs require less energy and emit less heat! 

LEDs have the unique ability to be very, very bright all while requiring just a portion of the energy that incandescent bulbs do. For instance, a 30-watt LED pool light can produce the same brightness as a 200-watt incandescent bulb, without the high energy usage or the potentially dangerous heat.

A bonus perk: the reduced heat actually lessens the need for frequent gasket maintenance! 

3. LEDs will LAST.

LED bulbs are not only designed to be quite durable but to “shine on” for a long time! Many LEDs have a rated lifespan of up to 50,000 hours or more. This means that if they operate for 12 hours a day, LEDs could last 12 years before needing replacement! 


Earlier we talked about how LEDs require less energy to run than incandescent bulbs. Well, thanks to that lower average wattage, an LED pool can cost only a few cents per day to operate, compared to the estimated dollar-a-day that you spend with an incandescent bulb! So while LEDs are a bigger monetary investment initially, think of all the money you will be saving for the next 12-15 years!

If you’re ready to try lighting up your night with LED lights, contact Blue Ribbon Pools today to talk with our knowledgeable staff!

What Not to Wear

Ever been at a party with someone who thinks it’s funny to throw party-goers into the pool no matter what they’re wearing? Ever wanted to swim with your friends but forgot your swim trunks? Or maybe you’ve thought to yourself during the cooler months that changing into a swimsuit might not seem like a pleasant option, even if your pool is heated. Whether unexpected or planned, chances are you’ve been in a situation where jumping into the pool with your normal street clothes on seemed to be a good option. However, is this really a good option? 

The short answer is actually no! You may not think there’s a big difference between just wearing your street clothes or your swimsuit, but actually, swimsuits are designed with specific functions in mind. Did you know that wearing street clothes in your pool could actually have a negative impact on your water? The street clothes could even clog your drains, filters, and pipes!

Research shows that street wear, cotton in particular, can transport airborne and ultimately water-borne contaminants into the pool. Cotton and similar materials can absorb the chemicals in the water, causing the water to become less effective at maintaining the proper chemical balance or may cloud the water. Another hazard to look out for is the heavy dye that some clothing contains. Do you know how sometimes you can do your laundry, and one article of clothing seems to rub color off on all your white shirts? This can also happen in the pool! Chlorine interacts with these dyes on the fabrics, which causes them to bleed into the water, giving off a darkened appearance in the water. While not inherently harmful, especially if your pool is being cleaned regularly, it may discourage swimmers from wanting to swim with the dye in the water!

Cotton fibers can also retain bacteria and fiber for longer periods of time, as opposed to your swimsuit. It is also important to keep in mind that swimsuits are specifically designed to keep your comfort in mind while swimming or in water. They’re designed to get wet and can withstand the chlorine. Wearing the proper attire will not only make you feel more comfortable, but it’ll also protect you and others from bacteria-borne illnesses.  

While the occasional dip in your street wear might not ruin the pool initially, the consequences over time will build up! Stick to the swimsuit.