Is it too early to think about going swimming yet? We’ve certainly earned warm weather after a snowy, chilly start to spring. Swimming season can’t be far away!
But if you own a backyard pool, whether of the in-ground or above-ground variety, you know that before the fun starts there’s some work to do. Your pool needs to be in swimsuit-shape, too!
A call to your local swimming pool service will do some of the work for you – their trained technicians can clean, fill, and maintain your pool. But there are a host of issues involved with pool ownership that you, the pool owner, will need to consider.
Some of those issues regard insurance. If you’ve just installed a new swimming pool or purchased your first property with a swimming pool, you might not be aware of the implications of swimming pool ownership.
Familiarize yourself with local standards regarding swimming pools to make sure you are in compliance. Certain municipalities may require fencing, locked gates, decks, and accessible pool safety equipment.
You’re also going to need insurance. Call your local insurance agent and ask her to lay out the different kinds of insurance available. Swimming pools are considered an “attractive nuisance” by the insurance industry and they will increase your liability. So upping your liability insurance is generally a good idea. Consider an umbrella liability policy for extended coverage. Make sure your coverage includes the cost to repair or replace the swimming pool should it be damaged in a natural disaster.
There are simple steps you can take to make your swimming pool safer and reduce your risk. Create a barrier to prevent unauthorized access to your pool. A wall, a fence, locked gates, alarms on doors leading to the pool – all of these measures will help to dissuade uninvited guests from taking a quick dip.
It’s also good to know some details about your swimming pool. Know how to remove and change pool filters, and how to shut the pumps off in an emergency. Know how to install, clean, and maintain drain covers. Enroll yourself and your family members in a water safety class and teach your children to swim as soon as possible.
There’s lots of good suggestions regarding pool safety out there. Here’s a good place to start: PoolSafety.gov. Also, The National Swimming Pool Foundation offers a reasonably-priced 2-hour online training on Home Pool Essentials that comes with a 30-page guide.