When living in paradise we have learned to take the good with the bad. We don’t have a lot of bad. But when we do, it gets Pretty Heavy fast!
So this is a short (not all inclusive!) primer on what to do with the pool at hurricane time.
The first thing to remember is that Your safety and that of your Family comes first. If it’s time to evacuate and you haven’t dealt with the pool yet…. GO! It will all sort itself out in the end, and your family can’t be replaced!
So one myth about this subject is that: You should drain the pool at least partially; This is very wrong.
Leave all of the water in the pool. It will overflow. It doesn’t matter. You aren’t adding any more water to your property, than the storm would without a pool being there. However….. If you drain the pool, the water that the storm brings can raise the water table underground. This can cause the pool to be lifted out of the ground like a boat on a lake. If it’s full, the extra thousands of pounds counteract the lift, and keep the pool safely where it belongs. Remember this; It only takes 2 psi underneath a pool to lift it up!
So leave the water in the pool.
Next, to prepare everything for wind, surge and power outages.
Wind: Remove all of your deck furniture, umbrellas, portable grills, tables, and pool poles. Try and store them in a garage or outbuilding. Almost everything but the grill can be tossed into the pool if there is no storage available. The wind can’t send it through the back window if it’s 4 feet under water!
Surge and power outages: Turn off all breakers to the equipment. This will prevent any shorts and possible fires should the surge rip things loose. It also allows for a systematic power up when the electricity is restored. This will prevent the grid from being overloaded. Shut off gas supply to heaters. There is always a cutoff valve near the heater for emergency shutoff.
Close all valves to and from the pool. Should the surge be intense, pumps, filters, heaters and plumbing can be snapped off and washed away. Especially if you have a flooded system where the equipment is below the level of the pool. Returning home to an empty pool is not high on the list!
Finally, don’t worry too much about the chemicals ruining things if the pool overflows. Everything is going to get really diluted, and rain going into the pool is also going into every other inch of your property. So dilution will be high. The chances of the chemicals causing an issue are pretty low.
Stay tuned for what to do when the all clear is sounded and you can come home.