Part of having all the sweet parts of life, like a home and a pool, involves keeping them safe from corrosion and damage. But when it comes to your loved ones, safety is even more essential and urgent—when it comes to human life, money can’t always repair an accident. The amount of safety appliances in our homes can seem endless: fire alarms, carbon monoxide alarms, safety seals on bottles, safety outlets, the list goes on. But even if you’re stocked up on safety devices for inside the house, don’t make the mistake of overlooking safety in your backyard.
If you have a pool, it couldn’t be more important to the wellbeing of your family and others to install a pool alarm. I’ll explain the safety statistics, who and what a pool alarm helps to protect, briefly explain how pool alarms work, help you choose the right pool alarm for you, and go over additional safety measures to consider. This is essential and urgent stuff, so let’s get right into it.
It’s a Matter of Safety
Here on the blog, I talk a lot about the importance of staying on top of sanitizer levels in your pool. There’s no way around how important it is to keep the bacteria in your pool in check, since some strains could be potentially harmful to swimmers. But when it comes to keeping your pool safe, there are a few different measures that need to be taken. I’ll get into a few more later, but the best thing you can do right now is get a pool alarm.
Why is a pool alarm so essential to the safety of you and yours? Well, consider that the number one cause of death for children ages one to four is drowning. By signaling an alarm when there’s an accidental fall into your pool, this one simple and affordable device could determine the difference between life and death in your home. It doesn’t get more serious than that.
All pool owners should have pool alarms installed—even those who don’t currently have young children. That’s because the safety effects of your pool (or lack of safety) can ripple out beyond your own household. I’ll explain the groups that you’ll be protecting by installing a pool alarm—not including any party nights when someone can go a little too hard.
Already sure you need a pool alarm? The PoolWatch ASTM Certified Pool Alarm is the safest way to go—it’s certified by the global and rigorous standards organization ASTM International for security efficiency and reliability. It also comes with an electronic sensor loaded with patented features to detect entry into the pool—without false starts caused by weather or automatic cleaners.
Protect Your Children
Children are naturally curious and full of wonder—it’s one of the most endearing parts of their personalities. They’re constantly in a state of exploration, which is a necessary part of development. But if you’ve had children, you know that they don’t know much about the safety consequences of where they go and what they do. If they see something interesting at the pool’s bottom, or want to grab a floatie that’s resting in the center of the water, they’re going to jump in. You might be the most conscientious supervisor of your child, but all it takes is a few minutes for the worst to happen. A pool alarm could be the back-up device that saves lives.
Protect Neighborhood Children
Even if you don’t have children yourself, installing a pool alarm could help protect the children of others. If you have children in your neighborhood and they make it into your backyard, there could immediately be a dangerous situation. If you don’t usually have children in your neighborhood, but one of your neighbors have relatives or friends with children who come to visit, they could also make it into your yard. It’s better to have as many safety measures in place as possible than assume that other people who have children are going to act perfectly one hundred percent of the time. If you’ve had children before, you know just how quickly they can move.
Protect Your Pets
Pool alarms aren’t just for humans—they’re for pets, too. These devices can protect the whole family, including the members covered in fur. Sometimes, it can be difficult for our dogs and our cats to swim, or to locate the steps that lead out of the pool. If they jump or fall in, you’re going to want to make sure you’re in the know. That’s one tragic ending worth avoiding.
Protect Other Animals
Similar to the way pool alarms can protect both our children and the children of others, we can protect our own pets and other animals that don’t belong to us—or anyone, for that matter. One of the last things any pool owner wants to discover in their pool is an animal who has fallen in and hasn’t made it, whether they be a runaway or a stray.
Another Reason for a Pool Alarm: It Might Just Be the Law!
Depending on your state, having a pool alarm might just be the law. Sometimes, like is the case in Tennessee, these laws are named after young children who have had lethal accidents in pools without alarms. It’s also often the case that the pool alarms are required to have fulfilled the ASTM Standard F2208, which is the recognized “Standard Safety Specification for Residential Pool Alarms.” ASTM International is a standards organization that ensures the efficiency and quality of a wide range of goods, pool alarms included. Because it’s so important that a pool alarm work properly, state laws might require your alarm’s manufacturing to be certified under the ASTM Standard F2208.
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How Pool Alarms Work—Fast
Most pool alarms work by what is called surface wave detection. This means that while the alarm itself is mounted to the deck of the swimming pool, it has a sensor that extends to the top of the water. In some cases, the alarm even rests in the water itself. In either case, pool alarms of this type use their sensors to observe the pool’s surface and sound off when there are unusual ripples present in the water. The sound the alarm makes should be able to be heard throughout the home, often by a remote alarm that stays in the home itself. Upon sounding, it’s imperative that action is immediately taken. Once the situation is no longer deemed dangerous, the pool alarm can be reset for any future emergencies.
Choosing the Right Alarm for You
Ready to make your pool safer than ever? Unfortunately, not all pool alarms are created equally—and since their role is so important, how efficient yours is matters. Here are a few basic considerations to make sure that your pool alarm is failsafe, and that you and yours are protected. No cutting corners here.
Whatever pool alarm you get, it better be certified ASTM Standard F2208. Without this certification, you can only take your manufacturer’s word for it that the alarm has been tested in various environments and is reliable through them all. Since your manufacturer is also the entity trying to sell you something, their word for it is just not enough. There are also some incident lawyers that recommend this certification in case you’re a part of any liability suits in the future—this is a remote possibility, but worth noting that even in the legal realm the ASTM Standard F2208’s got clout.
Efficient—Without False Starts
The last thing you’re going to want here is a pool alarm that is the machine version of the Boy Who Cried Wolf story. Inefficient pool alarms can go off due to floating pool devices, changes in wind, and other various and nonsensical reasons. If you’re dealing with a ton of false alarms, you’re more likely to turn the pool alarm off, or ignore its warnings when there’s an actual accident occurring. Make sure that the pool alarm you choose has been designed to circumvent these issues.
It doesn’t matter how efficient a pool alarm is if it’s not reliably connected to power. Many pool alarms are battery-operated. In order to make sure that your pool alarm works when you need it, it’s important to get a model that signals through the remote (the piece that stays inside the house and alerts you to the alarm’s sounding) when it’s time for a battery change. The remote itself, while battery operated, should also have a plug for the wall in case its batteries die.
Looking for the pool alarm that fulfills all these requirements—and is the most economic on the market? Swim safely with the PoolWatch ASTM Certified Pool Alarm. It’s certified, has been designed to circumvent any false starts, comes with a genius remote, and won’t unexpectedly fail due to battery exhaustion.
Adding Other Safety Measures
Pool alarms are absolutely essential, but yours will work even better with extra safety measures in place. Consider getting another alarm for the gate that leads to your backyard or separates your pool area. Teach your children to swim as early as possible. Don’t leave pool toys in the water that might entice your children, the children of others, or any pets. And be sure to test your pool alarm on a weekly basis to be absolutely sure it’s going to fire itself up when you need it.
Good to Be Alarmed!
Scary stuff, but it’s better to prevent a tragedy than deal with one later. This is what the risks are as a pool owner—and thankfully, there’s technology on the market that can protect you and yours from the worst outcome. Once that alarm is properly chosen and installed, you’ll be feeling a lot better both in and out of the pool. So do what you can to stay safe—and enjoy. You’re making the right call.