After months of closures, there are simple steps swimming pool operators can take to protect their assets, avoid further downtime and keep welcoming swimmers through their doors. Here, Hannah Dyke, aquatics sales specialist at Evoqua Water Technologies, explains.
As the UK emerges from lockdown, the nation can take to the water once again in its much-loved swimming pools. While water lovers will no longer take the opportunity for a dip for granted, pool operators can’t take for granted that Covid-19 will be their only threat when it comes to downtime.
During lockdown, operators fell into one of two camps. They either kept pools running at a reduced flow, or super-chlorinated the water before shutting down the circulation system. In both scenarios it is likely that routine maintenance will have been scaled back or put on pause and service schedules delayed. For many, this will mean that some assets aren’t operating at maximum efficiency. The worst-case scenario is that potential faults or parts that are coming to the end of their life won’t have been picked up and this can lead to parts failure and downtime.
We are also seeing more swimming pool operators extending the life of systems, when they would have previously invested in more reliable, efficient and economical upgrades, due to the impact closures have had on their profits. With this increase in ageing assets, and systems that have had a lack of servicing and maintenance, it’s more important than ever to protect and preserve the life of equipment to maximise its use.
Now swimming pool doors are open, it goes without saying that owners and operators can’t risk the budget implications of further downtime. The good news is that risk of system outages can be mitigated, through following good practice and proactive maintenance.
Operators who are using ageing assets can minimise their risk of downtime through a two-stage approach:
- Routine maintenance and servicing – set in place a comprehensive regular servicing and maintenance programme to maximise the life of existing systems and identify issues before they become a problem. It is also vital to ensure any maintenance carried out on systems is done to the highest quality and by approved suppliers, to not only avoid risking the health of assets but to protect warranties that are in place.
- Proactive planning of future upgrades – work with your technology provider to establish a schedule for when you will need to upgrade systems. This will ensure you carry out upgrades in the best possible order to strike the right balance between maximising the life of existing assets and replacing them before maintenance and operation is no longer cost effective.
Through following these best practice steps, checking and protecting assets, operators can maximise the life of their systems, better manage budget constraints and, importantly, keep their doors open.