Is it time to reline your pool?

Written by The Hydrocare Pool & Spa Editor on . Posted in Pool & Spa News Blog

swimming-pool-replacement-linerSwimming pool liners add the most for the look of your pool. More importantly, they keep the water in the pool!

A new pool liner and a few nice liner accessories can completely renovate any tired looking vinyl pool.

Hydrocare has supplied and installed thousands of pool liners to homeowners just like you. Choose from a wide variety of colors and patterns in several thicknesses. A thicker pool liner is less likely to puncture, hides uneven pool floor areas better, and may have a longer life span. Darker pool liners and swirl patterns tend to hide dirt and debris better than solid blue liners, and may have a small solar benefit.

Contact us to schedule a new pool liner install.


When to open your pool.

Written by The Hydrocare Pool & Spa Editor on . Posted in Pool & Spa News Blog

snow-covered-poolIt is always better to open earlier rather than later.

The recommended time to open up your pool is when temperatures in your area consistently reaches 70 degrees. 70 degrees is not exactly swim weather, these temperatures can promote algae growth. This can be a problem if you use a mesh pool cover that brings sunlight to the water.

Another thing to keep in mind as is pollen.  As the weather warms into the growing season, our allergies and your pool are affected by pollen.

Schedule a pool opening and we can help prevent algae growth and pollen collection, making sure your pool stays a pool instead of turning into a backyard swamp.

Click here to schedule a pool opening.

Watch the Weather

You don't want to open your pool after a few days of warm weather, only to receive heavy snowfall the next day. We've already seen temperatures rise for a day or two and then plummet here in Connecticut.  Keep an eye on your local weather forecast to help determine the right time to open your pool.

Put history on your side as well by noting the average temperatures in your region by month. If the averages temperature for a certain time of year is 55 degrees, yet it has surpassed 70 for the last week, it's best to avoid assuming that the great weather is there to stay.

A fever activates your immune system

Written by The Hydrocare Pool & Spa Editor on . Posted in Pool & Spa News Blog

You can create your own fever by subjecting your body to a very warm environment.  You get a fever with the flu because it is your body's response to activate the immune response.

Hot Tub do not get you all the way there, but warming up in one is a start.  You can then put very warm towels around your neck to help with the immune response.

This is NOT medical advise and you need to consult your physician.

Below is a video from a doctor talking about fevers and its effect on COVID-19.


COVID-19 and Stress Level

Written by The Hydrocare Pool & Spa Editor on . Posted in Pool & Spa News Blog

485 deaths since June 1, 2020 from COVID-19 vs 757 deaths from seasonal flu in 2018.

Although COVID-19 is bad for the elderly (over 70) and those with co-morbidities, the chances for you to die of COVID-19 if you are 50 and under and you are healthy is LESS than the seasonal flu.  The big number in the beginning of the year are mostly elderly people that were in poor health.  We greive for those lost souls and will keep them in our memories. 

Then from the June - July timeframe, COVID-19 became more of a normal flu problem.

So, take a splash, enjoy your hot tub, sweat in your sauna and relax!

covid-deaths-ctSince June 1, 2020 the COVID-19 Deaths are the same as seasonal flu.


Health Tips, COVID & Your Pool or Spa

Written by The Hydrocare Pool & Spa Editor on . Posted in Pool & Spa News Blog

Swimming-Pool-And-Medical-Prot-366876295Swimming, relaxing in your spa and other water-related activities are excellent ways to get the physical activity and improve your immune response to COVID-19. 

According to the CDC, "Physical activity helps you feel better, function better, and sleep better."  And, "Adults with excess weight are at even greater risk during the COVID-19 pandemic."

It is importanct to maintain physical activity during the COVID-19 pandemic, and how you can continue to exercise effectively and safely

  • Measures taken to reduce the spread of COVID-19 are causing changes in everyday schedules are disrupting workout routines for many Americans.
  • Exercise is especially important now because it can reduce stress, prevent weight gain, boost the immune system, and improve sleep.
  • You can safely engage in physical activity by exercising with family and getting outdoors.
  • Relaxation and sleep are important for your immune system

Although it might be tempting to skip your workout during these challenging times, public health officials say that exercise — while undoubtedly crucial under normal circumstances — is essential to your physical health and mental well-being during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Tips for Tile Cleaning and Maintenance

Written by Cameron Honeyager on . Posted in Pool & Spa News Blog

Here are some simple tips to help with keeping your pool tiles clean and maintained. 

1. Clean and brush the tiles. 
The first thing you'll want to do is clean off any dirt, leaves, bugs etc that could be seen easily on the tiles. Then you can take a stiff brush to scrub off any calcium build ups. Depending on how small the area is that you're cleaning you can use a tooth brush for a better clean. 

2. Use a cleaner. 
If you have only small amounts of dirt,scale,or grime you can use a cleaning solution such as water and vinegar. 

Reasons to Own a Hot Tub

Written by Cameron Honeyager on . Posted in Pool & Spa News Blog

Here are some of the main benefits to owning your Hot Tub! 

1. This one is pretty straight forward, Relaxation. A soak a day keeps the bad vibes away! 

2. Improved Sleep: increased circulation and relaxed muscles can help you easily fall asleep at night.

3. Privacy: No need to go to a hotel or gym for a soak; do it in the privacy of your own backyard!

4. Hot Tub Parties!: Themed parties: there’s plenty of ways to party with a hot tub! Holidays, birthdays, etc

5. Winter Warmth: Still enjoy the outdoors even when the air is so cold it stings your face.

Give us a call for more information on how you can get your hot tub today! 860-601-8147

Fun Facts about Swimming Pools

Written by Cameron Honeyager on . Posted in Pool & Spa News Blog

Here are some fun facts about swimming pools to help get you ready for summer!  

1. The oldest known swimming pool is in Pakistan. The world’s oldest known swimming pool is The Great Bath, located in Mohenjo-Daro, Pakistan. Situated amongst the ruins of the ancient Indus Valley Civilization, this pool is estimated to date all the way back to the 3rd millennium BC.

2. An Olympic-sized pool can hold up to 850,000 gallons of water. Olympic-sized pools are always 50 meters long, but they can have widths of either 25 yards or 25 meters. That’s enough water to fill more than 9,400 bathtubs!

3. Swimming is one of the best forms of exercise. It’s a great cardiovascular workout, strengthening both the heart and the lungs. Burning more calories than walking or biking, swimming uses every major muscle group in the body, making it an ideal activity to keep you in shape.

4.The United States has an estimated 10.4 million residential swimming pools. Additionally, there are approximately 309,000 public swimming pools. This means that the U.S. has about one pool for every 31 people!

5. Half of Americans can’t swim or perform basic safety skills. According to a survey conducted by the Red Cross, more than 50% of Americans either can’t swim or don’t contain basic “water competency” skills. With eight out of 10 Americans planning to swim in the pool or beach this summer, enrolling your children in swim lessons or safety courses becomes critical.

6. Chlorine can kill bacteria, such as E. coli, in as little as one minute. But, it can’t kill all illness-causing germs that quickly. Other viruses and parasites can take anywhere from 15 minutes to 10 days to be eradicated. To avoid acquiring a recreational water illness, make sure to regularly check your chlorine and pH levels.

7. The largest swimming pool in the world is in Chile. In Algarroba, Chile, the San Alfonso del Mar resort is home to the world’s largest swimming pool. A Guinness Book of World Records holder, the pool has an area of 19.77 acres and can hold 66 million gallons of water.

With these fun facts your summer pool party is sure to be a hit! While we may not have the largest pool in the world, we'll be able help find what you're looking for!

Will My Sauna Stop COVID-19?

Written by Spa & Sauna Expert on . Posted in Pool & Spa News Blog

While a sauna cannot prevent contracting COVID-19 it can help boost your immune system.  

There is evidence the heat from a sauna can reduce the occurrence of colds and viruses.  If you do happen to get a cold or the common flu the use of a sauna can not only help alleviate symptoms it may actually speed recovery by promoting drainage of nasal passages and reducing inflamation.  It is speculated this helps with respiratory viruses as well.  The theory being the heat relieves congestion in the lungs and improves ventilation.  Also, sauna therapy has been shown to release toxins stored in fat cells such as heavy metals.
How often should you practice sauna therapy?

While there is no hard fast rule most studies show using your sauna for 30-45 minutes 3-4 times a week may have health benefits.


Can you get COVID-19 from a Swimming Pool?

Written by The Hydrocare Pool & Spa Editor on . Posted in Pool & Spa News Blog

The good news: There is no evidence that the Coronavirus Disease 2019, COVID-19, can be spread to humans through the use of pools and hot tubs, states the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

But there is a caveat: "Proper operation, maintenance, and disinfection (e.g., with chlorine and bromine) of pools and hot tubs should remove or inactivate the virus that causes COVID-19."

The COVID-19 virus has not been detected in drinking water, the CDC adds. "Conventional water treatment methods that use filtration and disinfection, such as those in most municipal drinking water systems, should remove or inactivate the virus that causes COVID-19," the CDC says.

Nonetheless, both adults and kids at private or public pool gatherings should maintain "social distancing" practices, particularly staying away from people who are coughing and sneezing.

In addition to making sure kids are well-supervised when in the water, the CDC reminds pool operators about potentially unseen health hazards. Chemicals like chlorine are added to pool water to kill germs and stop them from spreading. However, mishandling pool chemicals can cause injuries, the CDC states.

Operators of public pools, hot tubs/spas, or water playgrounds — and owners of residential pools or hot tubs/spas — can take steps to prevent pool chemical injuries, such as reading and following directions on product labels of pool chemicals before using them, the agency emphasizes.

"When swimmers don't shower before getting in pools, hot tubs/spas, or water playgrounds — or pee in the water — free chlorine (the form of chlorine that kills germs) combines with pee, poop, sweat, dirt, and personal care products," states the CDC. "This means there is less free chlorine to kill germs and (as a result) unwanted chemical compounds are produced."

One of those unwanted chemical compounds is a group of irritants called chloramines, which can makes eyes red and sting, skin irritation and rashes, and respiratory problems, the agency states. These chloramines are different from the type of chloramine that is sometimes used to treat our drinking water.

Tips for Healthy Swimming

As far as public pools, hot tubs and spas are concerned, here are tips from the CDC:

  • Check out the latest inspection score assigned to a public pool or hot tub/spa. You can typically find inspection scores online or on-site.
  • Do your own mini-inspection. Use test strips to check disinfectant (chlorine or bromine) level and pH before getting in the water. Most superstores, hardware stores, and pool-supply stores sell test strips.
  • Shower before you get in the water. Rinsing off in the shower for just one minute helps get rid of most stuff that might be on swimmer's body.
  • Check yourself! Keep the pee, poop, sweat, blood, and dirt out of the water.
  • Don't swim or let children swim when sick with diarrhea.
  • Don't swallow the water. Just one mouthful of water with diarrhea germs can make you sick for up to 3 weeks.


Sauna Tips for Your Health

Written by The Hydrocare Pool & Spa Editor on . Posted in Pool & Spa News Blog

health-benefits-from-a-saunaNope - no au natural photo here.You may be aware of the health benefits from sauna use.  There are, however, a few steps to maximize your health benefits.

Do you know how long you should be in a sauna or how frequent you should sauna? How to get the most out of your sauna:
  • Maintain a regular schedule and routine
  • Exfoliate and boost circulation to the skin
  • Stay hydrated
  • Shower before and after using your sauna
  • Maximize skin exposure to heat
  • Stretch out or lay down

1. Shower before and after taking a sauna
2. No clothing is best
3. Max 15 minutes
4. Exfoliate
5. Stretch


Above Ground Pool Maintenance

Written by The Hydrocare Pool & Spa Editor on . Posted in Pool & Spa News Blog

above-ground-pool-maintenance-guide-for-texansAbove ground pool care and maintenance is just as much work as cleaning your in-ground pool. Tools are all the same as are the steps.  You will need to do some brushing, skimming and vacuuming. Your wall skimmer will catch most of the floating debris. A bag type of leaf rake will work best if you have lots of leaves.  It can also handle scooping debris from the pool floor.

Step 1

The pump and filter is the most important piece of equipment. Pumps provide the force to circulate the water and push it through the filter. The pump should circulate all the water within an eight hour time period. The best time to run your pump is during the day, usually for 8 - 12 hours at a time. Water in motion makes it harder for bacteria and algae to take hold and also directs more debris to your skimmer where it can be captured by your filter.

Indoor VS Outdoor Hot Tubs

Written by Spa & Sauna Expert on . Posted in Pool & Spa News Blog

Both indoor and outdoor settings have benefits.  Most importantly are the health benefits and comaraderie a new hot tub brings to the family.  But there are some other things to consider that will help you get the most out of your new hot tub

Indoor Pros

  • Privacy - depending on who is planning to use the hot tub the most this may be the very first consideration

  • No worries about the weather with an indoor tub. Your enviroment and temperature is completely under your control

  • Create your own paradise getaway in a spare room of the house with an indoor tub without worrying about getting things put away quickly to avoid rain or wind damage

Outdoor Pros

  • Ventilation can be a huge probelem with indoor hot tubs but not so outdoors. The wind and weather will naturally help regulate moisture levels which helps with mildew and mold

  • It's much easier to have an outside hot tub installed and run electric and water sources

  • If you have a beautiful natural setting out the back door then an outside paradise may be for you

Indoor OR Outdoor

Hot tubs provide relaxation and fun for the whole family!


Hot Tub Party Ideas

Written by Spa & Sauna Expert on . Posted in Pool & Spa News Blog

Hot tubs provide the perfect excuse to have a party for no real reason..Who doesn't love a good hot tub party?

Of course any good party starts with a clean slate to work with so don't forget your normal hot tub maintenance and cleaning beforehand.

Then check off these basic party must haves

Decorations - Decide if you will be hosting a theme party such as Hot Tub Tiki Bar or an Open For Interpretation party (decorating with whatever seems to work together). Either way, there's some majors in this category to consider. Possibly the biggest being lighting. Since hot tub parties are often at night you'll want to consider the weather and the durability of the lighting you choose. For example: party lights can be a closed string of LED lights or an open strand with decorative lanterns hanging throughout. Another way to add color and fun is adding illuminated floaties.

Everyone's Included - Make sure to stock up on a variety of types and sizes of swimsuits and towels. Take a look at your invite list and try to get a few that will work if someone forgets their suit. Speaking of invite list, be mindful of how many people can be in the tub at once and how much in and out traffic you'll get with a bigger crowd.

Fun Outside the Tub - Offer some fun things to do on dry land too. Games, music, snacks (including plenty of water and non alcoholic beverages).

Most Important: Chill Out and Have Fun!


Keep Rodents and Animals Out of Your Spa

Written by Spa & Sauna Expert on . Posted in Pool & Spa News Blog

Many rodents such as mice, squirrels, and snakes like to cozy up to the heat of your hot tub. There are some simple steps to curb them from intruding your personal soaking space.

1) Do not feed squirrels and other small animals near your hot tub area. The food may attract larger animals as well which could be more than a nuisance and cause serious damage.

2) Make sure to seal all small cracks in the siding. Many new hot tubs are vinyl siding but some of the wood plank spas can get small open areas. These are perfect for little mice to warm up and build nests in. A simple solution is some inexpensive spray foam.

3) It's amazing how medium size critters like racoons, deer, and even the family dog can get hot tub covers completely off. Not only does this cause damage to the cover it creates an unsafe enviroment- especially if small children are close by. The solution is as easy as investing in a heavy duty cover that small animals will not be able to nudge off and some solid wind straps.

Stress free soaking is what it's all about!

Opening your pool after winter.

Written by The Hydrocare Pool & Spa Editor on . Posted in Pool & Spa News Blog

franks-pool-outdoorSo after this cold Winter, you can expect to spend in the range $175-$300. 

You can save money by doing some of the work yourself or by contacting us (use our Get a Quote form).

Call HydroCare Pools and we can help open your pool.

1. Remove the Winter Cover. Make sure there isn't dirt or debris on the pool cover. Drain the water sleeves and remove them. Once the water sleeves are clear, untie and remove the tie-downs, then the cover itself.

What are the health benefits to hot tubs?

Written by The Hydrocare Pool & Spa Editor on . Posted in Pool & Spa News Blog

bigstockphoto Wellness Girl 3675270Hot Tubs - Relaxation

They could be the same words.  Although the don't occur together in the Thesaurus, there many benefits to sitting in an hot tub.  You don't need a research study to understand the health benefits to a good soak in a spa. 

Muscles and joints

Ask any athlete in training -  Hydrotherapy is a staple in the training room.  One magazine article in Tennis Magazine said it best: “Your skin and muscles loosen and relax from the increased blood circulation” adding that, if muscles are injured: "Soaking in a hot tub with a whirlpool increases blood flow to the injured area, bringing nutrients to help repair the damage."


According to the Arthritis Foundation "Hydrotherapy is one method of using water to help treat arthritis. The soothing warmth and buoyancy of the water makes it a safe, ideal environment for relieving arthritis pain. Using a spa adds another component to the therapy - massage."

Headaches, Stress, and Sleep

A hot tub can stimulate the release of our stress reducing endorphins. A hot tub’s hydrotherapy jets also dilate blood vessels to help prevent headaches. And when it comes to falling asleep faster and getting a deep night's sleep, the National Sleep Foundation clearly states, "soaking in hot water, such as a hot tub or bath, before retiring to bed can ease the transition into a deeper sleep." 

Keep Your Skin and Hair Beautiful when Tubbing

Written by The Hydrocare Pool & Spa Editor on . Posted in Pool & Spa News Blog

Hair-Care-Products Hot tubbing is so relaxing and has wonderful health benefits but our hair and skin can suffer if we don't implement so me basic skin and hair care steps.

It might not be a good idea to have lotion on before you jump in however a slathering of lotion after will keep your skin cells plumped up minimizing the appearance of dipply skin.  Some products around the house work wonderfully such as olive oil and cold pressed coconut oil.

Using a quality leave in hair conditioner is key to keeping those locks moisturized. Also, make sure to pin up your hair so it isn't soaking up those chemicals.

Alway stay hydrated before and afer your hot tub soaks.  Drink plenty of water. Adding lemon slices makes it tasty and refreshing.

Lip balm is one often forgotton skin care product.  Peeling and dry lips are not so attratctive or comfortable.

Last, you may want to condider purchasing a water conditioning product to help offset the effects of the chemicals.

Keep pests out of your hot tub

Written by The Hydrocare Pool & Spa Editor on . Posted in Pool & Spa News Blog

raccoon-family-in-a-hot-tubHow to keep unwanted pests out of your hot tub

Soaking in a spa is very relaxing and attract people - your friends and family. Owning a hot tub means that people will always want to come over and enjoy the soothing and healing powers of the heated water.

Like hot tubs attract people, they may also attract unwanted bugs and varmints.  Here are some of the more common tips on preventing them from becoming a drain on time, money, and resources.

Clear the area of food

You are likely to attract pests with food left around your hot tub area.   When you go camping, use the same motto, "Leave no trace."  Rats, raccoons will dine on crumbs and fool left out.

Guidelines for Residential Swimming Pools, Spas and Hot Tubs

Written by The Hydrocare Pool & Spa Editor on . Posted in Pool & Spa News Blog

Government-red-tape-and-regulationsWhen you put in a swimming pool, spa or hot tub in Connecticut there are certain state codes you must follow.  Hydrocare Pools & Spas know the state-wide regulations and any local requirements.

Below are some useful information from the state's Department of Public Safety - Office of State Building Inspector.

An outdoor swimming pool, including an in-ground,
above-ground or on-ground pool, hot tub or spa shall be surrounded by a barrier which shall
comply with the following:

There are ten total and you must be aware of them all.

AG105.3 Indoor swimming pool. Walls surrounding an indoor swimming pool shall comply
with item 9 of Section AG105.2.

AG105.4 Prohibited locations. Barriers shall be located to prohibit permanent structures,
equipment or similar objects from being used to climb them.

AG105.5 Barrier exceptions. Spas or hot tubs with a safety cover which complies with ASTM
F 1346 shall be exempt from the provisions of this appendix.

AG105.6 Temporary enclosure. A temporary enclosure shall be installed prior to the
electrical bonding inspection of any in-ground swimming pool unless the permanent barrier
specified in Section AG105.2 is in place prior to the commencement of the installation. The
temporary enclosure shall be a minimum of 4 feet in height, shall have no openings that
will allow passage of a 4-inch sphere and shall be equipped with a positive latching device on
any openings.

AG105.7 Pool alarm

It goes on and on for 10 pages!

When you buy from us, we go through the regulations and make sure you don't have to.

Please download these, review them, then call us so you can not worry about them - that's our job.



Pool Closing Tips

Written by The Hydrocare Pool & Spa Editor on . Posted in Pool & Spa News Blog

swimming-pool-cover-and-closing-in-conneticutWe are ready and able to help you close your pool for the Winter.  Contact us or get a quote.

1. Balance the water chemistry:

About a week prior to closing the pool, adjust your water balance within the ranges below:

Alkalinity: 80 - 120 ppm
Calcium Hardness: 180 - 220 ppm
pH: 7.2 - 7.4

Several days before closing, shock the pool with a chlorine shock or non-chlorine shock, at least 2lb per 10,000 gallons (follow package directions). Allow the chlorine level to return to 1.0 - 3.0 ppm before adding any winter algaecide and your pool cover. Very high chlorine tends to break down both algaecides and pool covers. Never add chlorine shock and algaecide at the same time and not right before covering it. At the very least, shock the night before you plan to close the pool, and run the filter all night long.

How to service your Hot Tub after a flood

Written by The Hydrocare Pool & Spa Editor on . Posted in Pool & Spa News Blog

Click Here to Support Houston & Florida Disaster Relief (link to Red Cross)

flooded-back-yardTake Pictures and Prepare Insurance Information

Email these photos to your insurance agent.  Take photos of the spa from all angles.

Be sure the Power is Off

Turn off the power to the unit. Turn off the circuit breaker. If the spa is 120v, unplug it from the outlet.  Then if you have any questions or concerns, contact a professional electrician.

Assess the Damage

Check for burn marks and places that may show corrision. Replace anything that looks damaged. Contact us to complete any repair - we have access to all parts no matter the make or model.
Here is a list of parts that can be affected by water damage:
  • Spa Packs
  • Pumps
  • Blowers
  • Ozonator

Dry the Hot Tub

zep-mold-stain-and-mildew-removerBefore you even think about turning on the power, all the equipment must be completely dry.

If some of the electrical equipment is wet, a power surge can damage it further. Use a shop vac to remove any excess water in any of the compartments. Immediately spray the insides with a Mold and Mildew remover.

Leave the door to the equipment area open with a fan blowing inside during dry days to allow moisture to evaporate, and prevent mildew. After it is dry, spray it again with mildew remover - and dry again.

Sauna Maintenance Tips

Written by The Hydrocare Pool & Spa Editor on . Posted in Pool & Spa News Blog

hydrocare-sauna-maintenance-tipsThese easy-to-perform maintenance routines will keep your sauna inviting, fresh and enjoyable.

Tip #1:

Keep a brush near the sauna door; a small hand brush works best.  When the last person leaves the sauna, dip the brush in the water bucket, and do a quick scrub of the benches, walls, and backrests.  This quick and simple step keeps the sauna looking great. 
If you do not follow this tip regularly consider using a sauna wood cleaning kit with Bacterinol, or paraffin oil.

Hot Tubs Can Freeze

Written by Spa & Sauna Expert on . Posted in Pool & Spa News Blog

If you don't use your hot tub in the winter the best plan is drain and winterize your tub.  However, if you enjoy  soaking on a cold winter night then here are a few things to keep in mind.

  • Temperatures can dip fast and uncirculated water can freeze fast-Keep the water circulating
  • Keep the cover snug
  • Make sure your water stays between 100-104 degrees
  • Hot water can last 2-3 day if covered tightly
  • Check your insulation in the cover and around the tub panels before the first big freeze

Patio's Make Great Living Spaces

Written by Spa & Sauna Expert on . Posted in Pool & Spa News Blog

Extend your home's beauty and functionality by making your patio an additional living space. Below are a few tips that, combined, will be a sure fire way to take your patio from drab to fab.

First ask yourself a few questions:

  • Will your patio be for beautiful summer evening dinner parties with family and friends?
  • Will your dining be followed with relaxing by the fire? Is that fire focal point a fireplace or a group of chairs resting casually around a fire pit?
  • What type of lighting do you envision? Tall freestanding oil torches? Strands of classic party lights? Candle lanterns?

That covers the evening entertainment but what happens during the day?
  • How about a comfy spot to sit in the sun?
  • Do you want a shaded retreat?
  • What about music?

As you can see a lot of thought goes into basic functionality. Once you decide the use of the space its time to carve out those different areas.

Think atmosphere: fun, classic, indoor decor spilling out

Furniture, plants and lighting can all be used to create borders between spaces

Make it comfortable and inviting with rugs, fabrics, and pillows

No matter how you choose to use your outdoor living space Hot Tub will be the perfet completion to the end of the day.  Contact Hydrocare Pools and Spas for a quote.

Should you tile your pool or spa?

Written by The Hydrocare Pool & Spa Editor on . Posted in Pool & Spa News Blog

pool-tile-installation-and-repair-ctWhat are the Benefits of Tiles?

If you are looking for a high end look to your pool, adding tiles is the way to go. Tiles are a premium upgrade becaus of their durability and appearance.  Also, if you compare tiles to vinyl, tiles are more durable and easier to clean and require less maintenance.

There are two types of tiles used as pool tiles.  There are ceramic and glass tiles.  They are usually under 100mm in size. They have a mesh backing forming a sheet around 300 x 300mm in size. Over the past 15 years, glass have gained in popularity.  Because they are made from glass, there are no pores as do ceramic tiles.  This means the manufacturers need to include latex additives so they stick to the pool.  Because of the added manufacturing processes, they are more expensive then ceramic pool tiles.

When do you need a new pool liner?

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A vinyl pool liner lasts about 9 to 11 years given proper care and maintenance.  Over time, weather and chemicals will cause deterioration.  Pool liners can be expensive to replace.  But with Hydrocare, we minimize your expense.

Repair vs Replace

Often, if caught in time, damage to a pool liner can be repaired.  It does depend on a a few factors.  With liners under 3 years old, repair should be considered.  Consider where the pool liner is damaged.  If there is a leak or damage near cutouts (e.g. around a skimmer or return jet), these are not usually repairable. Damage near the liner's bead or plastic fittings are difficult to repair.

When to buy a used hot tub.

Written by The Hydrocare Pool & Spa Editor on . Posted in Pool & Spa News Blog

If you are looking to purchase a hot tub, should you look at buying a used hot tub?

Know the person or dealer you are buying from...

2 out of 3 people would buy a used tub, especially if they knew the person. You'll find used spas and hot tubs on craigslist and local papers by dealers and home owners.  Of course we are here to help - if you have any question about a tub, Contact Us.

Buy from a Friend you Trust

If you have a friend who is generally "clean" it may be worth while to look into their used spa. Some people suggest never doing business with friends if you want them to stay that way.  But, if you trust them,  you will help them out and get a hot tub at a good price.

Buy from Some Guy Online

This is risky.  CraigsList ads are from dealers and not someone trying to dump their tub.  Check them out.  If you are close, take a look at the spa, and if it looks good call Northcoast Spa & Hot Tub and we'll do a systems check on spa.  We can also schedule a move and set up or any repairs if needed.

How much will a used hot tub cost?

For tubs under 10 years old, you should expect to pay about 50% of the retail cost - maybe more for a newer model.  If any of the systems (i.e. cover, shell, skirt, pumps, blowers) look worn, take another 15% off what they are offering.

Can a Hot Tub purchase be deducted from my tax bill?

Written by The Hydrocare Pool & Spa Editor on . Posted in Pool & Spa News Blog

IRS-buildingIt is never too late or too early to think about taxes.

IRS regulations allow you to deduct your hot tub only if your doctor recommends or prescribes it for a medical condition.

Many customers tell us the reason for installing one of our Hot Tubs is for a medical condition.  People that suffer from RLS, Fibromyalgia, back pain, Arthritis learn that soaking in Hot Water helps. There are certain medical conditions that can be used to justify a hot tub purchase from Northcoast Spa & Hot Tub.

Be sure you have a doctor's prescription to turn your hot tub into a deductible medical equipment.  But be sure that it meets the IRS's conditions.

Be sure you have a written recommendation from your doctor.

Pick up the IRS Publication 502; it covers medical expenses. From the Publication 502, medical expenses are the costs of diagnosis, cure, mitigation, treatment, or prevention of disease, and the costs for treatments affecting any part or function of the body. These include the costs of equipment, supplies, and diagnostic devices needed for these purposes. However, the medical expenses must be to alleviate or prevent a physical or mental illness, not as a benefit to general health.

The time to start preparing is now - when ever now falls on the calendar.  Keep the receipt we give you after we install your Hot Tub.

Sauna Safety Tips

Written by The Hydrocare Pool & Spa Editor on . Posted in Pool & Spa News Blog

sauna-couple-relaxingThe benefits of the sauna

Sweating eliminates toxins from the body. Normally heat helps heal your body's tissues.  This is the natural way your body defends itself against a virus - a fever.  A warmer body encourages circulation and can releive joint and muscle pain.

How hot is too hot?

How long is too long?

In 2010 Vladimir Ladyzhenskiy of Russia died during the World Sauna Championship in Finland.  He was in the sauna for only 6 minutes (the sauna was at 225 degrees farenheight).  They have discontinued the event.

So what safety rules apply to sitting in a sauna?

Rules for sauna safety

  1. Time - keep your stay to 15 to 20 minutes at a time.  If you are sensitive to heat, start off with a short stay.
  2. Heart - A warmer body means a faster heart beat.  If you have heart problems, consult your physician
  3. Toasting - Do not drink alcohol in the sauna. Yes, thats a period.
  4. Take a Break - Let your body recuperate for at least 10 minutes between sessions
  5. Drink - not alcohol, but water.  Rehydrate with plenty of water before and after.
  6. Buddy System - Like swimming have a friend or family member either join you or be aware, or around when you sauna.  
  7. Cool down – the nordic way is to jump in the snow after sitting in a sauna.  you can also take a cool shower.
  8. How do you feel - If you begin feel dizzy, a headache, or nauseous, get out. The purpose of a sauna is to feel better not worse.


Cleaning Your Pool Tile

Written by The Hydrocare Pool & Spa Editor on . Posted in Pool & Spa News Blog

00100 1046aThe sping time is the best time to clean your pool tile.  You will need to drain your pool some to remove those seemingly impossible stains.

There are biodegradable cleaners available but they may change your pool chemistry and require costly and time consuming balancing.

It is recommend to wait until pool closing to do a thorough cleaning.  A well balanced pool is the best way to avoid stains or calcium buildup.

1.  Purchase Necessary Cleaning Supplies

2.  Lower Water Line

3.  Pool Tile Cleaner Application

4.  Scrub with Pumice Stone


What are the proper chemical ranges for a hot tub?

Written by The Hydrocare Pool & Spa Editor on . Posted in Pool & Spa News Blog

Chemical Ranges for Your Hot Tub

These are the guidelines from the National Swimming Pool Foundation.  When testing your hot tub, used these.  If you have a question, contact HydroCare Pools & Spas.





Free Chlorine, ppm




Combined Chlorine, ppm




Total Bromine, ppm








Total Alkalinity, ppm


80-100* 100-120**


Total Dissolved Solids, ppm



1,500 over start-up

Calcium Hardness, ppm as CaCO3




Heavy Metals




Visible Algae







Local code

Cyanuric Acid, ppm (if used)




Temperature, °F

Personal preference


Ozone, ppm

0.1 over 8-hr.
time wtd. avg.

* For spas sanitized with calcium hypochlorite, lithium hypochlorite, or sodium hypochlorite
** For spas sanitized with sodium dichlor, trichlor, BCDMH, or chlorine gas
*** Dictated by state or local codes. Typically 100 ppm. (Some codes higher, others lower.)

Electrical Problems with Your Spa

Written by The Hydrocare Pool & Spa Editor on . Posted in Pool & Spa News Blog

Short-CircuitIf you have an electrical problem with your Hot Tub or Spa, more than likely your GFCI trips when you turn on the power

If you have a new hot tub, it was probably installed incorrectly. Call your hot tub dealer and have them take a look at it.

Here are some steps to take if you are experiencing electrical problems with your Spa.

Isolate the problem

Turn off the power and unplug the heater from the control box. You may also need to remove the wires leading to the heating element.

Jetted Tub - Buying Tips

Written by The Hydrocare Pool & Spa Editor on . Posted in Pool & Spa News Blog

jetted-tub-modern-bathroomBefore you make the final purchase of your whirlpool tub (jetted tub) be sure you ask (and answer) the following questions. 

And remember, if you already have a whirlpool tub and it needs repair, give us a call.

What are the most important features?

  • Tub Dimensions
  • Adjustable Jet Flow
  • Number of Jets
  • Color Options
  • Control Types (manual, Electrical)
  • Heater
  • Jet Type (air, water, both)
  • Lighting
  • Number of Occupants
  • Material (Fiberglass, acrylic, other)

Cool Off In Your Hot Tub

Written by The Hydrocare Pool & Spa Editor on . Posted in Pool & Spa News Blog

Staying-cool-in-a-hot-tubMost needlessly stop using their Hot Tub when the summer temperatures rise.

Your hot tub can actually be the best place to cool-off during a heat wave.

Put your spa in cool-water mode, or just reduce the temperature setting to 85°F or less.  You can also turn the heater off.  With the cover off and air jets running, the water temperature will drop quickly.

To maintain a reduced water temperature, keep your hot tub covered during sunny days.  Then run the hot tub with the cover off. This will cool the water!  Because water heats slower than the outside air.

A Cool Hot Tub Saves Energy

Without the costs of the heater, your hot tub will only cost pennies a day. 

So when the temperature rises, use your valuable investment and enjoy your spa as a cool-down soak.


Ideas for your next pool party for the kids.

Written by The Hydrocare Pool & Spa Editor on . Posted in Pool & Spa News Blog

bright-beach-accessoriesPlan a Party for the Kids

Let the youngsters make a splash at a backyard bash complete with swimming, games, and delicious finger foods.

Spread the Word - Invite your guests to your watering hole with an aquatic theme.  Here is a simple idea? Write the party details in permanent marker on rubber swim caps.

Set aside small beach pails filled with an inflatable beach ball, a squirt gun, and Swedish Fish for party favors.

No pool? No problem. Set up an inflatable pool or a sprinkler for the kiddies to splash around in. But Hydrocare does not sell inflateable pools - no problem.

No Fuss Food - Make the menu is easy for you and simple for your guests.  Try finger foods:
  • Fish-shaped crackers
  • Chicken Fingers
  • Pigs in a Blanket
  • Ice Cream Sandwiches

And don't forget to plan a Party for the Adults

Call us today and get your pool started for the party to come.

Frogs in your pool?

Written by The Hydrocare Pool & Spa Editor on . Posted in Pool & Spa News Blog

How do you get rid of frogs in your pool?

Answer: Use use the pool skimmer to scoop them out.

Frogs are one of the least offensive amphibian. Kids love 'em, French restaurants love 'em.  But when they find residence in your pool they are not so cute.

Frogs have a permeable skin, and need to keep moist.  As a result they can become a nuisance as they quench their bodily thirst. Most homeowner with a decorative pond or pool can attest to their frog sanctuary.

Because small bodies of water bodies lack the frog's natural predators, they can over populate the watery hang-out.

The easiest way to get rid of frogs is to consider the reasons why the frogs are there in the first place. Lack of predators is the main factor why frogs overpopulate. Some cats will eat frogs.

Don't rely on Paws to control your frog issue.

Also consider the frog's food source - they are amphibians are carnivorous, eating small insects and invertebrates. Be sure your pump is working and may consider aerating it to prevent stagnation.

Add a waterfall or a fountain to keep the water circulating. If the water is moving, insects will not be successful when they attempt to lay eggs. Without an abundance of insects, frogs will be less likely to find residence in your pool.

If all else fails, hire a professional to exterminate the frogs.

Hot Tub Safety for Children

Written by The Hydrocare Pool & Spa Editor on . Posted in Pool & Spa News Blog

The-Hot-Tub-is-too-HotIn general, adult Supervision is imperative Hot Tub safety. There should always be an adult designated to maintain constant visual contact with children whenever they are near any body of water. Educating yourself on the potential dangers, and with adult supervision, you can relax and not worry with children around.

Hot tubs should be covered with a locked safety cover when not in use and children should be kept away unless there is constant adult supervision. From the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), drowning is the main hazard associated with hot tubs. The Consumer Product Safety Commission has recorded more than 800 deaths in spas since 1990. About four in twenty were children under the age of five.

  • Infants and toddlers should never be in a hot tub. Their thin skin makes them more susceptible to overheating. And of course their control over their bodily functions is nil - say no more.
  • If a child cannot stand in the tub and have their head entirely above water, they should not be in the hot tub. If they are tall enough, they should not be in the water for more than 5 minutes at a time (with the water temp. at 104).
  • Everyone, including children, should drink water while they're soaking. If any bather feels sick, dizzy and/or sleepy, they should leave the spa immediately.

The CPSC recommends following these safety precautions:

  • Have a professional like Northcoast Spa & Hot Tub check your spa or hot tub and make certain it is in safe operating condition. Use our Request for Service Form to contact us.
  • Keep young children away from hot tubs and spas unless there is constant adult supervision.
  • Make certain the spa has the dual drains and drain covers conforming to and required by current safety standards.
  • Make certain knows the location of the cut-off switch for the pump so that it can be turned off quickly in the event of an emergency.
  • Be aware that consuming alcohol while using a hot tub or spa could lead to drowning.
  • Keep water temperatures at or below 104°F.
  • Always use a locked safety cover when the hot tub is not in use.

The Rusty Scupper

Written by The Hydrocare Pool & Spa Editor on . Posted in Pool & Spa News Blog

skimmer-pvc...sounds like the name of a resturant near Miamonque Yacht Club...

Your Scupper or Pool Skimmer is a great time saver.  It reduces the amount of hand skimming you need during the Pool season.    Be sure it is ready for the Summer - here are some tips:
  • Check for freeze damage - your pool skimmer may be cracked
  • Check the sides - sometimes a pool skimmer may separate from the wall causing leaks
  • Flo or No Flo - if the skimmer is clogged with debris, you may not see any flow
  • The flapper gate (aka the Weir) may not close
Be sure to relace the skimmer if you see any cracks or obvious leaks and operating issues.  Contact Hydrocare to diagnose and visit your home.

Give us a call if you have any questions - one of our experts may have a quick fix idea for you.


Opening Your Pool - Is It Ready? - Any Leaks?

Written by The Hydrocare Pool & Spa Editor on . Posted in Pool & Spa News Blog

Hydrocare-Dripping-In-A-leaking-PoolA pool liner of vinyl has a sheet of vinyl between the water and the structure of the pool.  This layer is cutom made for the shape of the pool.  Generally speaking, the vinyl liner pool is less expensive than the gunite (aka concrete) pool.

Compare this to gunite or shotcrete that uses plaster to keep it waterproof.  By contrast and for a better seal, vinyl liners lock the top edge into a track on the bottom of the coping at deck level.

If you are experiencing a leak - call HydroCare to open your pool and check for any problems in your vinyl liner.

Eventhough vinyl liners are made 20 mil in thickness and are resistant to punctures - they will happen given enough time and usage.  If you are adding more than 1" of water to your pool on a weekly basis - you may have a leak.  There are many DIY aids and videos, but if you read or watch closely, there are many "Watch Outs" in them.  We recommend using a professional team - in the long run it is less expensive

Fortunately HydroCare can, find, and fix your leak.

If you need a new vinyl liner, click here to see all the options, colors and patterns available to you.

Winter is the best time to buy a hot tub

Written by The Hydrocare Pool & Spa Editor on . Posted in Pool & Spa News Blog

winter-Warrior-Hot-TubMost think the best time to purchase an outdoor hot tub is when the weather starts to get warm.

But the best time to take advantage of a "hot" tub's warm water is when it's cold outside.  Because winter is typically the slowest time of the year for some hot tub dealers, the consumer benefits and find good deals on spas and accessories.

According to Hydrocare, many people only begin consider purchasing a hot tub in early spring to be ready by  summer. A Hydrocare hot tub is great for summer parties, but hot tubbing in the cold months offer a  warm-water massage.   The benefits of hydrotherapy may be even more beneficial when the temperature dips below zero.  Most of us are less active and we spend more time indoors when it's cold outside. With a hot tub, you can get outside, stretch, and relax in the comfort of a warm water environment.

Hydrocare hot tubs help save on operating costs in winter.  Our models are equipped with sophisticated control panels that can be programmed for cold-weather energy-efficient settings, and the optional factory-installed insulation holds in heat to reduce energy consumption by as much as 20%.

While the classic hot tub is installed at a ski-in home or cottage in a resort area, Hydrocare hot tub owners who live in Connecticut use their outdoor hot tubs at home all winter. After cross country skiing, snowmobiling, sledding or any outdoor activities, the hydrotherapy in outdoor hot tubs is great for recovering faster, improving circulation, increasing energy levels, and promoting a good night's sleep.


How to handle Pool Tile Repair

Written by The Hydrocare Pool & Spa Editor on . Posted in Pool & Spa News Blog

fixing-pool-tilesWe recommend a professional to repair your Pool Tile - Like HydroCare.

Tiles from all over give us a wide variety of color, shapes and sizes.  Pool tiles are different from your bathroom tile because they are mede to handle frost.  Tile provides an appealing accent to the pool's edge.  This makes it easy to catch oil and dirt. Without using tiles, you'll have a hard to remove "bathtub ring."

Tile is cracked?

This may be caused by a cracked bond or from freezing surface water pressing against the tile.

Is your tile is falling off?

You could be experiencing bond failure of the "mud" that was used to set the tile in. Look behind the tile for a horizontal crack.  "Popped" tile could be the result of not having caulking in the expansion joint between the coping and the deck, allowing water to run behind the tile and freeze.  The tile may be temporarily regrouted back in place. Use waterproof tile grout or thinset mortar cement.

Do you see white deposits on the tile?

Efflorescence, or mineral salts may come out of the grout or setting mud and deposit on the front of the tile. It may also come from the pool water. The efflorescence can be scraped off, or removed with a tile acid wash.

Contact us at Hydrocare and we can spot the underlying problem and give you options.


Sauna Maintenance & Repair Costs

Written by The Hydrocare Pool & Spa Editor on . Posted in Pool & Spa News Blog

We recommend you have your sauna checked every 2 years.  It is not expensive for us to come out and give you the assurance that all is well.  It is more expensive to wait until there is a problem.

Your Conneticut Sauna does require maintenance on occasion.

Even with the proper maintenance, repairs may be necessary over the years to keep the sauna functioning properly. Because of its primary function, saunas get hot and humid.  With this mix of conditions, keeping up with maintenance avoids the risk of fire or other precarious conditions.

Common Sauna Repairs

The most common type of repair is electrical.  If your sauna does not turn on - its probably an electrical issue. Fortunately, these are the easiest and least expensive fixes.

national-sauna-repair-costsThe other common problem is the thermostat - if your sauna is not keeping or getting to the desired temperature, you may have a thermostat problem

Average Costs of Sauna Repair

The cost of most household sauna repairs ranges from about $96 to $1,850. The factors affecting the cost are:
  • Location of the sauna, the specific repair that needs to be done, and
  • The severity of the damage are all factors that can impact the overall cost
Fortunately we service all of Conneticut and can schedule a time to estimate your repair.


SwimEx Workout - Core Muscle Burn

Written by The Hydrocare Pool & Spa Editor on . Posted in Pool & Spa News Blog

Workout your core muscles with this SwimEx session.

HydroCare Pools & Spas sells and services SwimEx spas in all of Connecticut, surrounding states and as far away as Ohio.

SwimEx offers a series of swim-in-place pools, known as swim spas.  They give you a total body workout. Every SwimEx model features a unique paddlewheel propulsion system, delivering a deep, wide water flow that is perfect for an Hydrotherapy workout.

Hydrotherapy is excellent for rehabilitation. It allows extended range of motion, and easier weight bearing environment.   When you are submerged in water, gravity is greatly reduced and you are able to perform in new ways. Using a SwimEx pool will get you on your feet quicker than most other rehab methods.