Global warming, besides meaning longer hotter summers in our future, refers to the depletion of the protective atmospheric ozone layer as well as other issues generated primarily by the use of fossil fuels. Further increases in the cost of fossil fuels have prompted a renewed movement in the housing industry to go “green”. By green it refers to finding or rediscovering methods of construction and/or home management that, in one way or another, protect or best utilize the earth and our natural resources. A common example of this would be use of either geo-thermal or solar energy for home heating. By incorporating these systems into the construction of the home they utilize and/or conserve energy provided (for free) by either the sun or the ground. In this way use of electric or fossil fuel sources are greatly diminished thus helping to save the earth and another source of green – MONEY.

So how can this technology be applied to swimming pools today?

There are many methods to create “green” (earth friendly) pools along similar lines of heat retention and generation. These include use of energy efficient heat pumps, solar and geothermal heating and cooling systems, dark finishes that retain heat, manual and automated covers and even the insulation of the pool shell where it comes into contact with the ground. But twenty first century pools also offer alternative chemical treatments (chlorine or iodine are no longer considered the only real choices.), water conservative filtration systems, use of energy efficient pumps, lights and even computer technology that monitors everything from chemistry levels to freeze protection to remote controlled features. Although many of these “green” pool technologies have been around for years they have either been too expensive to consider or at a development stage that still had a few bugs.

Will going “green” mean more green (cash) out of pocket?

Naturally speaking you want to speak with someone who is up to date on the latest proven trends and has a proven track record of success in these areas.  After all most people, (especially pool people) are repulsed by the thought of a “green” pool. Going “green” will cost more up front in most cases. However, if you consider the costs of energy, chlorine or other traditional sanitizers and the longer haul with reference to these items going green will save $$$$$ over time and these savings are being realized far sooner than even a few short years ago.

Further national trends show families making more use of their outside living space more than ever before. This trend translates into more extensive landscapes, outdoor living areas such as decks, kitchens, shade and play structures, sport courts and of course swimming pools. Based upon fuel costs and security concerns making the most of home, inside and out, makes great cents.

Tim Coleman has been in the pool industry for nearly 35 years. He has built commercial and higher end residential pools all over the Mid-Atlantic and lives with his family here in Waynesboro, Va. He holds two degrees in recreation and is a member of APSP, BBB, The Augusta County Builders and Shenandoah Builders Associations, The Greater Augusta Chamber of Commerce for whom he has been a guest speaker for the past two years at the Daylily and Wine Festival.

By Tim Coleman – Managing Partner of Augusta Aquatics