Caryl’s Pool and Spa offers full service pool repair and maintenance services. We are qualified to handle all of your swimming pool care and spa needs. Our professional and knowledgeable technicians are capable of dealing with everything from simple plumbing repairs, pump repairs, to complete equipment installations. We guarantee a professional job from start to finish.
Our service department can repair any make of pump, motor, filter, or heater. We also have immediate access to the brand and size you need. In the store, we keep Hayward pumps, filters, and motors on hand. We like Hayward because they are the world’s largest supplier of pool equipment, reasonably priced, and very easy to get replacement parts for. They are great for both aboveground and inground pools. We have cut-away display models in the store, so that if you need a part or service, we can look inside the equipment and give you step-by-step instructions on care and repair.
We sell and can repair all pool pumps and motors. The biggest problem we usually see is motors going out. You will hear a loud shrill noise (pretty hard to miss!) which means the bearings are gone. This doesn’t mean the entire pump needs replaced, just the motor. Are mark-up on pumps and motors are low because pumps and motors bought online have no warranty or if they do it’s almost impossible to obtain. Beware!
There all three different types of filters for swimming pools:
Sand Filters are the most common is this area, because they are the easiest to use. These filters need to backwashed approximately once a week. They are the least efficient for catching smaller particles. When backwashed none of the sand is lost and does not need to be recharged. We have a cut-away sand filter in the store to show you the actual operation of one of these. Depending upon the chemicals you use in the this filter, the sand needs to be changed approximately every five years and cleaned at least once every year.
Cartridge Filters are on some of the pools in this area. They are a little more labor intensive, because they can’t be backwashed. They must be taken apart and the fiber core is washed out with a garden hose. These filters pick up finer debris and no water is lost from the pool because you don’t backwash. This filter is in all spas, but we see less and less of them in pools because of the labor involved with cleaning it out.
DE Filters use a fine powdery substance to coat the grids inside of them to trap debris. These are the most expensive filters on the market, but the quality of the water clarity is amazing. We use this filter as a temporary substitute on pools that MUST be crystal clear in a short period of time. Beside the cost, the fact that these filters must be recharged after every backwash with powder, makes them of less interest to the average pool owner. To truly clean one these filters, they must be taken apart and the grids inside which are stretched with fabric, must be taken apart and cleaned individually. Putting the grids back in position can be challenging task until you get the hang of it.
A final word on filters is that there now is a substitute for sand in sand filters. Caryl’s Pool & Spa is the first store in the area to carry GLASS media for sand filters. At first glance it sounds a little crazy, but the polished glass never needs to be replaced as does sand in a sand filter. Debris can not cling to glass and eliminates clogging up the filter. Best of all, it changes a regular sand filter (no alterations to the equipment) into the quality of a DE filter. The clarity of the water is so crystal clear that we have customers who have described their pool water as “invisible”. This in turn leads to less backwashing (loss of pool water) and lowers the need for extra chemicals.
Our part of the country usually has a good length of time for swim season, but to make it last longer heaters and heat pumps can take the chill out the water in early Spring and late Fall. Either one needs to be used with a solar blanket or solar liquid (in the form of a pill put in your skimmer) to trap the heat produced by the heater in the pool instead of evaporating as the evenings are cooler.
A heater is a piece of equipment as we said to warm the water. It is run by natural or propane gas. Heaters can be installed long after the pool is built. Our preferred brand is the Raypak Rheem Heater. We find it is made of the highest quality of material, but reasonably priced. Care is needed to keep pool water balanced, but especially true with a heater with it metal interior. Low pH can dissolve the metal in the heater and produce staining problems. Because salt pools are more caustic, Rheem has designed a heater especially made for salt pools. The new heaters are digitally controlled and the desired temperature of the water can be set on the heater and then this equipment automatically turns on until that temperature is met. A gas line must be installed by the local gas company to supply the gas needed to warm the water.
Heat Pumps act very much the same was as heaters, however they are run with electricity. A heat pump is about double in price of a heater, but it more than makes up for the extra initial expense by not using gas. Another issue with heat pumps is that they will not work at temperatures around the mid 40’s or lower. If you don’t belong to the Polar Bear Club, a heat pump is a great investment.
For pools using 3” chlorine tabs as their source of sanitation, chlorinators make life a lot easier. These can be installed after the pool is built and should be the last piece of equipment put on before the plumbing goes back into the pool. NEVER install a chlorinator before the pump and especially never before a heater. A chlorinator is a holding tank for chlorine tabs that has a control to adjust the amount of chlorine going into the pool. A trick that most people don’t know is to never fill the chlorinator to the top. Inside there must be room for the chlorine gas it produces to excape. If this doesn’t happen, the o-ring in the top of the chlorinator lid is destroyed several times in a season adding to the expense of the pool. NEVER EVER add chlorine shock to a chlorinator or we just might find you blown away to the next county.
Pool cleaners over the years have evolved from being either suction side or pressure side cleaners to the more efficient electric cleaners which can be purchased to clean a swimming pool after it has been built. The brand of cleaner Caryl’s sells is Maytronics Dolphin cleaners for inground pools. The unit is plugged into an outside electrical outlet and the power source steps down the voltage in the cleaner itself to a mere 12 volts, making it safe to have in the water regardless if you are in the pool at the same time it is cleaning or not. The Dolphins have a computer chip built into them that analyses the schematics of each pool so that is aware of all angles and depths to ensure a thoroughly cleaned pool. Each Dolphin has a top-loaded filter to make clean up easy. The unit runs for several hours (depending on the model) and then shuts itself off. This makes it convenient to throw in the pool in the evening after all the swimming for the day is complete. It has a 60 ft. cable to accommodate the largest residential pools and a patented detangler that prevents the cord from getting twisting, thus causing the cleaner to go in circles. The units can be programmed to go on automatically while you are out of town to eliminate the need to get neighbors involved in caring for your pool while you are away. The Dolphins have the longest warranty of any cleaner in the market and was voted #1 pool cleaner of 2015. Best of all, we are your warranty center for repairs. We have all needed parts in stock and usually can fix the cleaner in an hour with our diagnostic equipment. This is a huge plus because most cleaner manufacturers have you ship the damaged cleaner to them and are usually extremely slow at getting it back to you. We realize that once you have experienced one these cleaners, you never brush or vacuum your pool again and the prospect of being without it for several days or weeks is terrifying. The different models can be purchased with a caddy, remote control, and one unit is totally programmed by your smart phone. We offer a “TRY ME” program which for $50 allows you to take home a cleaner for 2 days and actually test drive it in your own pool to see for yourself how well they work. The $50 charged is applied to the price of the cleaner if it is purchased. Right now we have instant rebates for all models of this cleaner, which we keep in stock.
Salt pools have been around for a number of years and gained popularity because the water feels so soft and there is no chlorine odor.
How these units work is to buy a salt system (there several on the market and we prefer the Auto Pilot by Aqual Cal because it is the most user friendly system) have it installed into the existing plumbing of your pool. The unit comes with a “cell” that has titanium plates. Pure salt without any additives (cheap salt is heavy in metals that can easily stain your pool) is added directly to the pool depending on the number of gallons. As the salt water flows over the titanium plates, it breaks the molecule and produces free chlorine gas which sanitizes the water.
Like many pool products we have seen the popularity of salt pools waning in the last few years. The main reason for this is how caustic this system is to all aspects of the pool. Water chemistry needs to be check frequently to avoid the pH from getting to high. Decks need to be treated to avoid the concrete from pitting. Metal components of the pool tend to rust and lock themselves into place (i.e. handrails, ladders) due to the electric current. Other equipment tends to be ruined quicker especially if great care is not taken with water balance. The cell needs to be replaced every 4-6 years, and are costly. Do your homework before making the investment.
We sell 2 types of winter covers, the tarp style that uses water bags to anchor them (never use cinder blocks or bricks for this job) and safety covers. Tarp covers are inexpensive, but don’t last many winters. A pump is needed to drain excess water off the cover during the winter so it does not become too heavy and fall into the pool. Above ground pools can tuck an air pillow under the cover to pitch the cover up and allow excess water to drain to the edges of the pool. The advantage of both these covers is that they are solid and allow no water or sunlight to affect the pool water underneath. Pools in the Spring (if treated properly with chemicals in the Fall) open up crystal clear, but will need chemicals quickly.
Safety covers are the covers you have seen with the elephant standing on them. They are spring-loaded and attach to brass grommets that are drilled into the deck. These grommets are up when the cover is on, but lower flush with the deck when the cover is off to eliminate toe-stubbers. Safety covers come in two styles: mesh which allows water to pass through them or solid with intricately placed drain panels to allow water to drain into the pool, while blocking sunlight. Safety covers must exactly be the same shape as the pool to be considered a safety cover, making them attractive in the winter months. We recommend the mesh safety covers be taken off early in the pool season to avoid an algae bloom in the water before swimming season. Safety covers are one of the few things we sell that outlast their warranty. Prices have dropped in the past few years and more color selections have been added. We have samples of all the covers we sell in our store.
Our service department is available to open or close your pool for you. For either service we send 2 men and charge $110/hr. Most openings and closings take one hour unless additional work is requested. Especially having your pool professionally winterized is an excellent idea. We blow all of the water out of the lines, plug them off and use pool-grade antifreeze to protect the pipes. All equipment is winterized and covers are secured. With us closing your pool, we guarantee our work against any damage during the winter. Openings and closings get booked up quickly. We offer a 5 year program to schedule your exact date to quarantee the service will be performed when you want it. Pool openings and closings should be scheduled two months in advance to avoid waiting.
If your pool has not been opened for a couple of years or you have a big event coming up and the pool is pea soup, we offer this service: We bring a large pump and big DE filter to your site to run independently of your filtration system. As discussed before DE filters make short work of picking up fine particles that make the green pool water opaque. The cost of the system is $200 per day, plus a $220 service charge, plus the cost of needed chemicals. Water analysis is performed and the correct chemicals are added to eliminate possible weeks of you trying yourself to get the results you need. Every year we get at least one phone call that comes in on a Thursday, telling us the wedding reception is scheduled for Saturday and is to take place poolside…and of course, the pool is a mess. We come in and get it sparkling fast.
Especially for concrete pools, in the Spring many of them are drained and then we are called in to either acid wash or pressure wash the interior of the pool. This project takes 2 men at $110/hr, plus equipment. Acid washing/pressure washing are extremely caustic and should only be done by pool professionals. It removes most stains and makes the surface of the pool look new. This service can be done in the Fall or preferable in the Spring since the water table in our area is low.
We are #1 in the Triad for liner replacements. We have been doing liners for years and what we offer our clients is the extra special touches that make the liner of your choice a beautiful compliment for your backyard playground. The process begins with our service department coming to your pool and doing exact measurements of what the dimensions are. We have you pick out one of our beautiful patterns from the companies who manufacturer liners and schedule to put it in approximately two weeks later. Our service includes patching divots in the pool floor, sucking the liner down in place like a glove, replacing all face plates and drain covers. We add liner lock to track where the liner goes in to prevent it slipping out. Water can be either added by the truckload, fire hydrant, or slow filled. Check out the patterns we are currently using by going to: McEwenIndustries.com, premierswimmingpoolproducts.