Tips and Tricks

atttech-2

Bronze Supporter
TFP Guide
Jul 24, 2015
1,187
Central Valley CA
Still have to get your arm wet up to the elbow to get the test water, but only once!
I am sure this will be a re-post as it is not my idea but I don't want to look back to give credit but to avoid getting wet get a PVC pipe and a couple end caps drill a small hole in each cap and press fit onto the pipe. Stick the PVC in the water let the pipe fill then cap the other end with your finger and pull out to fill your sample bottle. Same thing you did with your soda straw when you were a kid. Works great.
 

chiefwej

LifeTime Supporter
TFP Guide
Jun 12, 2011
3,511
Tucson
Snip off the spout on the sample water bottle to the level required for the test. Squirt a bit more water than required, then just invert the bottle to suck off the excess. With a lab test type sample bottle you can glue a washer to the spout so that it goes into the vial to the correct depth for the same effect. That's what I did before SampleSizer. Worked pretty well.
 

richie0701

Active member
May 29, 2017
37
Boxford, MA
What a great thread. Ordering hairnets next.

A couple leaf blower tips from me.

I have a lot of maples around my property. I usually open before those stupid helicopters finish falling. But typically I have loads of leaves and other junk on the cover before it comes off and will get a couple big dumps of helicopters on the water after it's off.

I use a 8ft 4" drain pipe (not a sh40 - too heavy the light ones) over the end of the leaf blower to clean the cover before I take it off, it reaches right in to the middle, typically it takes just a quick hose wash afterwards.

For big leaf/helicopter dumps in the water after opening I use a leaf blower to quickly blow them in to one corner then scoop them out on masse.

I'll also use the leaf blower to blow debris in to the corner for quick skimming if it's been a few days and there's a lot of insects.

If you buy a Hayward navigator and don't get the one specifically for vinyl, be sure to buy some cork feet, works 10x better than the stock feet.
 

appstategrad

Well-known member
Jul 12, 2014
171
Hickory, NC

ashtonfitzgerald

Well-known member
Sep 27, 2016
259
Oshawa, ON, Canada
What about this one. It holds enough for all tests (100cc), and you don't even have to bend over to fill it.

https://www.amazon.com/100ml-Syringe-plastic-tubing-Aketek/dp/B00N2EMZB8/ref=sr_1_20?s=industrial&ie=UTF8&qid=1498000215&sr=1-20&keywords=syringe
I rigged one of these up to help me find my liner leak this year. 4ft of aquarium airline tubing, an aquarium check valve, a large 50cc syringe, and 2 ft of 1/2" PVC gave me a good reach. I could inject the dye near the bottom with minimal agitation of the water. Airline attached to the syringe, run through the PVC and attached at the end to the check valve. The dye then could flow out, but pool water wouldn't flow in. I had to disconnect the syringe to refill, but it worked a charm!

Didn't think I could use it to pull water for testing too! Brilliant!
 

spinPHD

Well-known member
Apr 20, 2017
501
Phoenix
I went out of town on business this week, so it was first time I left pool care in the hands of my significant other. Since we regularly find bugs/scorpions in pool, she really didn't want to put her hand in the skimmer basket to clean it out (quite frankly, I don't really care for it either). So what I did was tie string to each side of the basket (making it like a handle). I left string long enough to loop it over the skimmer cover so the top of string stays dry. So now she just takes skimmer cover off, pulls the string and basket comes out for dumping.

I was was considering using a wire hanger to rig it as a handle, but wasn't sure if the wire hanger would add some metal to water.

Also, I know they make devices specifically for this, and I will probably get one once the string breaks but for now this was good cheap DIY solution.
 

sbcpool

Well-known member
Mar 10, 2015
584
Upland, CA
Re: A couple of tips I thought everybody knew. Anybody got some

The cheapest and BEST skimmer socks yet! And they only cost $6 per 100. Everybody should be using these!

Amazon.com: Disposable Hair Net, Spun-Bonded Polypropylene, White, 100 per Bag: Office Products
I tried these and found that in terms of filtering capability they are inferior to paint strainers. They are more convenient, though.

- - - Updated - - -

Take your water sample from 2 feet under without getting your arm wet or bending over.

Using a 3/4" pvc pipe, about 4' long, hold your hand on the top of the pipe to prevent water from entering (air from escaping), sink the pipe about 2' down and then remove your hand (pipe fills up). Replace your hand and remove the pipe and put over your water sample cup that you have placed on the coping. Slowly let air enter and dispense the water into the cup.

I started using this method this winter when I no longer wanted to stick my arm in the cold pool. Now I continue doing it so I don't have to bend over. :wink:

When I tried this using about two feet of schedule 40 3/4" PVC the surface tension of the water was not enough to hold it in the pipe. As soon as I pulled it out of the pool the water just falls out. I even tried using an end cap in case I wasn't getting a seal with my thumb. Maybe water has more surface tension for you guys?
 

epro05

Bronze Supporter
Jun 5, 2014
307
Keller, Texas
Re: A couple of tips I thought everybody knew. Anybody got some

I used 1 inch PVC pipe and had the same problem. I added a top cap with a hole drilled in it. Easy to cover the hole with my thumb. To make the water stay in, I used some fittings to neck down the bottom end to a smaller diameter. Works Great now.

http://
 

mjlinss

Gold Supporter
Jun 2, 2017
88
Columbia, MO
This thread is pretty amazing! Just a side note from me on hairnets and skimmer baskets. It really is amazing how much a simple hairnet takes out of your water. One problem I was having was that if I turned my pump off to replace the basket (normally don't, but if I'm doing something else I will) everything that was in it started floating on the surface and while the weir door kept it out of the pool many times it made it's way to the pump basket after replacing the basket and turning the pump back on. I got tired of having to use my hands to push it all out of the water (didn't even think about an aquarium net, duh!) so I bought an extra skimmer basket off amazon for about $10. Now I have a hairnet and basket ready to go as soon as I pull the other out.
 

funandsun

Bronze Supporter
Jun 11, 2017
764
Bloomington Indiana
Re: A couple of tips I thought everybody knew. Anybody got some

If you hate vacuuming as much as I do, you'll do almost anything to avoid it. Since I would rather rake and sweep, I first would rake up any large pieces of debris from the bottom of the pool. Then I would brush the pool entirely, getting the fine particles into circulation and allowing the skimmer and intake ports to gather them in. Using a skimmer sock and cleaning it daily will also help reduce the amount of backwashing you'll have to do in a season. Using these methods I find I only backwash my sand filter three times in a four month season...twice on opening and once on closing.
Single Greatest purchase I have made for this pool was just this last spring.. I bought this

Vacuum Pro Series.jpg

Manual vacuuming is fast, effortless and productive. I don't mind it a bit now. Also learned how to prime my hose without assistance, with the hose attached to vacuum, insert the vacuum in the pool and begin feeding the hose vertically into the water and keep going until the other end is in your hand, water will start flowing out the hose now, attach to skimmer plate and vacuum away.

Solved my biggest headache.
 

chiefwej

LifeTime Supporter
TFP Guide
Jun 12, 2011
3,511
Tucson
I just switched my skimmer baskets to these. They fit my standard Hayward skimmers.

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B004SQSEF0/ref=oh_aui_detailpage_o00_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1

They work great with the hair nets. The center "tower" just unscrews. You then center the hair net over it, screw it in place then pull the elastic over the lip of the basket. I did have a problem with them floating when the pump was off, but I added some weights inside the tower, secured with zip ties, and problem solved. No more sticking your hand into the basket to remove, a full basket can never starve a pump, and the hair net is more secure than ever.


IMG_1194.jpg

Another option: if this basket won't fit your skimmer, you can buy the tower separately and add it to your existing skimmer basket.
SkimPro Tower Adapter for Above-Ground Pool Skimmer Baskets | SP-TA-AG
 
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chiefwej

LifeTime Supporter
TFP Guide
Jun 12, 2011
3,511
Tucson
I bought an inexpensive small leaf canister.

https://www.amazon.com/Kokido-Canister-Automatic-Swimming-K918CBX/dp/B00IT8U53M/ref=sr_1_7?ie=UTF8&qid=1499704843&sr=8-7&keywords=pool+leaf+canister

Two tricks
1. Remove the O-ring and reinstall it above the groove, instead of in it. It is much easier to open and still seals just as good.
2. The size of the basket allows you to line it with a hair net, but you do need to use a rubber band to hold it in place.
(If you have a larger leaf canister, just use knee high nylons in it)

Now, I never use my suction side cleaner or vacuum without it in place. Combined with hair nets in my skimmers, I almost never have to backwash my filter. Once a year break-down cleaning is about all it ever needs.
 
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pabeader

LifeTime Supporter
TFP Guide
May 14, 2015
4,349
Cartersville Ga
Re: A couple of tips I thought everybody knew. Anybody got some

Single Greatest purchase I have made for this pool was just this last spring.. I bought this

View attachment 64837

Manual vacuuming is fast, effortless and productive. I don't mind it a bit now. Also learned how to prime my hose without assistance, with the hose attached to vacuum, insert the vacuum in the pool and begin feeding the hose vertically into the water and keep going until the other end is in your hand, water will start flowing out the hose now, attach to skimmer plate and vacuum away.

Solved my biggest headache.
You could also, place the end over the return and let it fill the hose. Then float it over to the skimmer door.