As a kid, when I went swimming I had three rules to abide by:
- After the pool, I had to use the shampoo meant to cleanse my blonde hair from chlorine’s greenish undertones.
- If I was going to eat a PB and J, I had to wait thirty minutes before jumping back in. (Although I usually only waited ten minutes. What a rebel.)
- And finally, out swim the Polaris! It was always coming to get me!
Now, the last one was more so my rule than my mom’s, but nonetheless just as important. There were many myths associated with swimming that I don’t think my mom ever bothered to fact check. Heck, even I never bothered to fact check them until just now.
9 myths about swimming pools you should know:
1. Don’t swim for at least half an hour after you eat.
While yes, swimming on a full stomach may cause some discomfort, but most likely you won’t be sinking to the bottom of your pool after a big lunch.
This myth had good intentions and even came with “supportive” facts: After you eat a meal, blood supply to the digestive system increases. So because your digestion now takes your body’s focus, technically you do have less blood supply left for your muscles.
However, there is still enough blood supply to keep you swimming. The only reaction you might feel from the lack of blood supply is some cramping.
2. Pools have a chemical reactant to warn of someone, well, urinating in the pool.
I am sure that most pool owners wish this myth to be true. However, as of right now, there has been no chemical development to indicate of pool urination (but don’t tell your kids that).
For the sake of public pools everywhere, let’s keep this myth alive. Urinating in a pool can be very unhygienic not to mention just the idea of swimming in someone’s, well, waste is appalling.
Urinating in pools just adds to your pool’s need of chlorine. This is why public pools and water parks use such a higher percentage of chlorine in their water. Gross! But we’re thankful!
3. Chlorine can leave a greenish tint to your hair.
The short answer is no, technically chlorine does not make your hair green. It is actually the copper we add to pools that causes the greenish tints to temporarily dye our hair. Why is there copper in pools? Copper is added to pool water to keep algae away.
Now you can protect your hair from unwanted coloring and damage by doing a few things. You can wear a swimmer’s cap, you can wash your hair with shampoo designed to rid the presence of copper in hair, or you could even lather your hair in some coconut oil before a swim!
4. An intense chemical odor from the pool is an indicator of high levels of chlorine.
Pools that are regularly sanitized and maintained with chlorine actually should not have an intense smell.
Public pools and water parks tend to have stronger smells because they are the most susceptible to germs from oil, cosmetic, sweat, even urine. The smell comes from the interaction between these contaminants and the chlorine. This combination can also result in skin and eye irritation.
But just so you know, a clean pool should not have a strong odor of chlorine. You need to test your pool and you’d have to shock it in order to properly clean it.
5. A pool that looks clear is safe.
We all know just because the naked eyes can’t see all the parasites and bacteria does not mean they are not there. Unless the pool is effectively sanitized and its pH level is properly maintained, it is difficult to conclusively say that it is safe. It is therefore imperative that whenever you go for a swim, especially in a public pool, make sure they either use a clarifier or UV system to kill the parasites. Also, always take a shower after you come out of the pool.
6. Taking a shower before swimming is a waste of time.
Actually, yes, but not necessarily for the reason you’d think. Yes, showering before going for a swim doesn’t necessarily protect you directly. It does, however, affect your pool’s cleanliness. By washing yourself of organic compounds, (oil, urine, cosmetics and perspiration) you protect your pool from having to kill that bacteria.
So cleaning yourself before jumping in the pool actually has an indirect effect on you!
7. It is okay to swallow water if the pool is disinfected.
The water we drink in our home also actually contains chlorine, but its level is much higher in a swimming pool. Chlorine is used to kill germs, bacteria, and parasites but it should come as no surprise that it doesn’t kill 100% of them. With that said, spare yourself from sipping on not only germs but also chemicals. Gross!
8. Growing grass has nothing to do with pools.
Actually, this myth might be a little funny. If you think you’ve just gotten lucky with a spot of newly grown grass near your pool, you might have actually just gotten unlucky. A new spot of grass near your pool might indicate an underground leak. Most lawn care professionals might not understand the root of the problem. However, pool professionals like Certified Leak Detection can come out and determine if there is a leak.
Ignoring signs of a leak may lead to further damage. This can include noticing new patches of grass or seeing your water level drop by a couple of inches or so on a daily basis. We know you look new grass growth, but honesty, just go to Lowes and buy a new patch of grass.
9. Pool guys are very expensive so you just do your pool’s maintenance yourself.
Stop! Having professionals to monitor things you are unfamiliar in will only help you avoid larger problems down the road. Now, just like any other industry, there are good and bad providers. With proper research, you can find licensed, certified, bonded, and professionally well-equipped experts. These experts can help with maintain your pool’s chemical balance, monitoring leak threats, and solutions to either problems.
It is cheaper to invest in a professional now than have to pay out big time in the future.
If you find a mysterious grass patch, or in case your pool levels continuously drop, you should immediately call in the experts. If you are in and around Orange County, Orlando, Kissimmee, Altamonte Springs, Winter Garden, Winter Park, Apopka, Maitland, Seminole County, Oviedo, Longwood, Winter Springs, Brevard County, Osceola County, Volusia County or Lake County, contact Certified Leak Detection, specialists in locating and repairing leaks of all kinds.
For maintaining a healthy pool round the year call Certified Leak Detection now and rest assured that they will take care of all your pool needs