Friday, May 06, 2011

Venting Ventilation

Today I received an email through the Texas Public Pool Council Group requesting assistance with ventilation issues from an associated network member in Kansas. This concern repeats itself over and over again in the print and electronic media, social networks and blogs. The ventilation issue is so prevalent that the CDC has assigned the issue to one of it's dedicated Model Aquatic Health Code development committees, the Ventilation & Air Quality Committee. They have recently posted their module abstract for public comment, which can be accessed at http://www.cdc.gov/healthywater/swimming/pools/mahc/structure-content/. In sorting out this whole air quality issue in my mind I can't help but think that somewhere along the way we have missed the source of the concern, the water. In light of that, I thought I would post the content of my reply email, which brings the issue back around to basic chlorination. What do you think?

This is my reply:

Here is another article that addresses your concern written by Richard Young and published in the Pumproom Press, a periodical of the Professional Pool Operators of America.

Tired of Chloramine Odor?

Read down to "So what can be done?" and please take note of the solution to poor air and water quality offered - PREVENTION. That paragraph ends with, "Most pools can preclude the formation of chloramine residuals through diligent chlorination with wisely-chosen, constantly maintained break point." I know that this sounds easier than it generally proves out in practice, but it can be readily accomplished. The key to prevention and critical component that is usually missing when attempting to hold "continuous breakpoint" as defined in the AFO Manual (not the 10 x combined chlorine treatment that is known as "breakpoint chlorination") is "properly sized feeders". As stated by Kent Williams in his article, Controller Concepts: The #1 Rule (sited below), "chemical feed systems must be big, big, big!". Feeders that are sized to meet a pools' gpd requirement cannot meet the minute to minute demand of heavily used indoor pools. Feed systems must be over sized to enable your controller to hold an ORP set point that will continuously exceed demand. Chloramine development can be effectively prevented in most cases without remedial treatments or secondary systems designed for that purpose when this is accomplished.

Two helpful supportive articles can be found at www.ppoa.org; (1) http://bit.ly/9nhWz6ppoa and (2) http://bit.ly/bRCc3uppoa. Both of these were posted in my comment to the 2nd Athletic Business article you sited in your email inquiry. (Article sited: http://athleticbusiness.com/articles/article.aspx?articleid=3598&zoneid=20)

As an Aquatics Manager and Pool Operator for over 20 years, I have a sincere concern for those working every day to provide a safe and healthy environment for their guests. I would be glad to support you in this effort. Please let me know what you think!

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

SureWater's Profiles in Purity

As an experienced pool operator, you can pretty much tell if your water is right just by looking at it. The appearance of the water alone says a lot about it's level of purity, chemistry not withstanding. Recreational water that is balanced, contained within a well kept vessel, and is holding an ORP consistently ahead of the organic load has a certain look. Words can describe it, but a picture does it better.

In future months we will be profiling our customer's "pristine waters". Here's the first of many "Profiles in Purity": Geauga Lake's Wildwater Kingdom


Tidal Wave Bay

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

AOL Undercover: You Got Inspected!

Here's a recurring sign of the times and likely a scenario that will continue into the future. AOL Travel reporters recently made unannounced visits to five popular water parks across the US to check for the presence of bacteria in their swimming pools during regular park hours. The results were both a direct reflection on the operators within each of the parks and the water quality standards by which they maintain their facilities, and the industry as a whole.

More later on advocacy for the swimmers' health with some thoughts on how operators might get a leg up on this developing standard of care. In the mean time, check out What's Living in Your Water Park? and don't forget to take the reader's poll at the bottom.

Congrats to SureWater customers Raging Waters San Dimas and Wet 'N Wild Orlando as well as all of the parks and operators involved in this study. You make us all proud!

Be Sure!

Thursday, February 11, 2010

A Chloramine Prevention Precursor:
Are You "Practicing" Healthy Swimming at Your Pool?

I am a believer in the benefits of social media and find it in its' various forms to be an increasingly invaluable tool to me in business. I have maintained a company page that many of you are aware of at twitter.com/sureh2o for some time now. Through that site I follow a number of other sites ("Tweeps"), some news related, some business and of course some related to swimming. It has been interesting to follow some well known swimmers like @daratorresswims, @NatalieCoughlin, @G_WeberGale, and @goldmedalmel (Mel Stewart), all of whom are past or current US Olympic Swim Team members and gold medal winners. Recently, I spotted a post on Mel Stewart's Twitter page (twitter.com/goldmedalmel) linked to a post on his blog entitled Chlorine and Pee Can Kill You, which got my attention. After reading his post and the referenced article, KEY Health Facts You Need to Know if You Have or Use a Pool, and a follow up post that provides the unique perspective of a competitive swimmers' urination on the "fly" experiences, Peeing in the Pool (with Video), I felt compelled to post a comment in reply.

I have commented on many articles in the past, but none with the response that my comments received from Mel Stewart. He received them with open arms, posting them verbatim in a follow up post on his blog (see my comments @ Chlorine and Urine can Kill, Part II). Mel didn't stop there. In the interest of his readers' personal knowledge and health, he invited me to write up a list of steps that can be employed at their facilities to help prevent the formation of chloramines to be included on his blog as a "guest post". The link for this post, what I called a "Chloramine Prevention Precursor", was posted on his blog in full at Chlorine and Human Secretions, THE FACTS. Take a quick look! You are probably already incorporating many, if not all of these steps into your operation, but how far are we going as Operators to cooperatively establish workable prevention protocol with the competitive groups that are using our facilities. Here's where relationship plays a vital role in assuring the "best practices" are not just in place, but are being PRACTICED. On behalf of Mel Stewart, I would encourage you to share his posts with your swim, water polo, synchro and other team coaches and parents in a cooperative effort to provide the healthiest environment possible for the participants and staff of your facility.

I want to publicly thank Mel for his commitment to swimmers and to healthful swimming by shedding light on the issue of chloramines and for presenting the opportunity for me to link the Pool Operator community with the Competitive Swimming world in an effort to inform and ensure the "practice" of healthy swimming in all of our facilities. Be Sure!

Tuesday, February 02, 2010

"Sliding" Into Home

This vid gives new meaning to the title expression and shows just how adaptable, and fun a tube slide can be as a vehicle for mass transit.
A must share!

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Solutions "On-Line"
New York Sports Clubs


The following post was recently provided by Clemente Rivera, a long-term user of SureWater Technologies products, who is currently serving as a Regional Pool Manager with New York Sports Clubs. Clemente has integrated "The Solution X-2" into several of the facilities he is responsible for with great success in the area of water chemistry management and specifically with the control of combined chlorine. Should you want to discuss his results with him further, please email me at robert@sureh2o.com and I will forward his contact info to you. I'll step out of the way now and let him describe his experience.

[Clemente] I just wanted to say that I’m very happy with the progress of the X-2 Installations in the New York Sports Clubs. We have a Dual System in Butler, NJ (pictured), a system running a Pool and Spa in Ramsey, NJ, and a X-2 Chlorinator install in Deer Park, NY.

The Systems are running very well. I have gotten very positive feedback from staff, and members alike. Most members think we don’t use chlorine! “We cant smell it”, is their surprising response…”you must be using Salt…”, when I tell them that is not the case, they still look dumbfounded. I love it!

After about a month tweaking them all, I found one trend that is very exciting…There is in fact a “sweet spot” in dosing, that you can set any pool to obtain the appropriate amount of sanitation to offset organic demand, AND chloramine buildup. After dealing with 3 pools of approximately the same size, with varying degrees of usage, I have found that a feed setting of no more than 11ppm per hour is needed to achieve the proper sanitation levels in your pool – in conjunction with a maintained chlorine level of about 2.5-3.0 ppm. At this level, My logs have been flawless in showing Combined Chlorine readings of no more than 0.2 ppm!!! Before that, I had to maintain these pools at 4ppm, and they still yielded chloramine levels of 1.0ppm and above…

How to achieve these results:
For the X-2 Feeder:
1. Calculate Pool Volume: L x W x Avg Depth X 7.5 = Pool gallons
2. Divide that volume by 10,000, then multiply it by 117.7
3. Take that number and divide by 128. This is your GALLONS per HOUR. Set your X-2 feeder accordingly.

For The Solution – since it reads chlorine flow in gpm – divide the above result by 60, for your Solution setting.

This setting will provide the sanitation level you need to feed Bleach into your pool.

Now – slowly set your ORP upwards, until you are maintaining 2.5-3.0 ppm, with a pH of 7.4, and you're set! (PPM controllers: simply set your PPM to the same range). Do this with a pool with high chloramines, and let me know how fast the chloramines drop…My record is 2 weeks (the pool had 2.0ppm chloramines in it before I started, and it went down to 0.2 ppm - without shocking!) – within the month – the room actually smells like the rest of the club!

After the first 2 weeks, recheck your ORP settings…you may find that the Initial ORP setting now makes for too low of a chlorine reading; this is due to the organic loads being overcome by the chlorine, resulting in less chlorine needed to achieve the ORP setting. Bring up your setting to the appropriate setting to maintain the 2.5 – 3.0 chlorine level, and you guarantee the most sterile water possible. Your sensors will not need acid cleanings, as the organics will be negligible at this point, and you will enjoy the sweet smell of ultra low chloramines; without the use of UV, using BLEACH!

If any of your constituents need any advice, or want to show me what they have done, please feel free to pass my info to them. I'm working on a useful calculation for X-2 pH feed shortly.

Clemente Rivera – Regional Pool Manager – NYSC
Town Sports International

Wednesday, December 02, 2009

Cudos to the Avant-Garde

Is there a particular reason that we keep seeing our users in the news for top performance recognition? Is it just chance that these facilities keep scoring accolades for their organizations. I'm not suggesting that it is because they are using SureWater products that they are garnering recognition, but there is an interesting correlation. SureWater users tend to operate within the realm of the avant-garde. Innovation is the hallmark of these people who search for the "best" answer to an issue, not just any answer. People who are motivated to go above and beyond in seeking solutions for the future, not just to get through to tomorrow. Courageous people, who strive to open pathways through political and industrial bureaucratic terrain for their peers to follow.

Wikipedia took this definition of avant-garde from encyclopedia.com and I love how it frames the innovators in our industry. The term, "avant-garde", was originally used to describe the foremost part of an army advancing into battle (also called the vanguard) and now applies to any group that considers itself innovative and ahead of the majority. It goes on, the vanguard, a small troop of highly skilled soldiers, explores the terrain ahead of a large advancing army and plots a course for the army to follow. Great word picture! This is exactly what the avant-garde in the recreational water industry are doing every day in their respective work places and industry networks. They apply this attitude to every aspect of their jobs. This is why you will not only find them employing cutting edge technologies in their pump rooms, but you will also find innovation uniquely present in every element of their operation. Does everyone who operates in the realm of the avant-garde receive recognition for this attribute? Not hardly! But recognition is superfluous to the avant-garde. Above all is service. Service to their industry, service to their employer, and service to themselves. Nothing more, nothing less will do.

I see it as part of my job to high light some of the successes of our users that might otherwise and unfortunately go unnoticed. Congratulations to the Fox Valley Park District in Aurora, IL for receiving theGold Medal Award (Class II) for Excellence in Park and Recreation Management presented by the American Academy for Park and Recreation Administration at the recent NRPA Congress in Salt Lake City, UT. Special cudos goes out to the Fox Valley Aquatics Staff for their leadership and dedication to innovation in the field of Aquatic Facility Management. A long term user of SureWater Technologies feed systems, Fox Valley very successfully utilizes both "The Solution" for disinfection purposes and "The Solution X-2" for pH control in all of their indoor and outdoor swimming pools.

Fox Valley's Splash Country Waterpark



Congratulations are also in order for the Chaos Waterpark Resort in Eau Claire, WI for being selected by Aquatics International Magazine as the Best Waterpark Resort in their 2009 Best of Aquatics Competition. Chaos Waterpark, an exiting new themed attraction of the Metropolis Resort, employs SureWater High Capacity Feed Systems as an integral component of their innovative "green-friendly" strategy to facility management and resource conservation. Special thanks and congrats to Barry Thompson of the Metropolis Resort and Al Neumann of AJ Contract Services in Wausau for their avant-garde approach to water quality and facility management!

Chaos Waterpark Resort



Who will be the next wave in the Aquatics Avant-Garde? Forge on people!

Thursday, October 08, 2009

SureWater Users Among World's
"Top Waterparks" in 2009


Aquatics International released it's list of the 25 Top Waterparks in the world for 2009 and once again it includes several users of SureWater Technologies Feed Systems. The parks, ranked by their 2008 estimated attendance, include five long-term users of "The Solution" High Capacity Vacuum Induction Sodium Hypochlorite Feed System. In addition to the four parks repeating (see 2008 AI Top 20 Waterparks), one additional user, Wild Wadi in Dubai, UAE has made the list in the #11 position.

Congratulations to all of this year's Aquatics International Top Waterparks for your tremendous efforts. To our users, thanks for choosing "The Solution" to Be Sure for your guests!

Friday, August 07, 2009

Showcase Alive!

Have a look at some more of your fellow High Capacity Feed user installations in our latest Showcase Alive slide video.

High Capacity Feed...How Supply Meets Demand!