A pool barrier isn’t just a smart choice. In many areas of the country, it’s a requirement for pool owners. A pool safety barrier may be mandated by municipal regulations, homeowners association (HOA) rules, or your insurance carrier. Not all barriers are created equally, however, and choosing the wrong one could leave your pool without proper protection, and you financially exposed to fines, civil penalties, and potentially large replacement bills. Here’s what to take into account when you are adding a barrier to your pool.
- Compliance Is Key – While you can always choose to go above and beyond the safety standards required of you, ensuring you are at least meeting that standard is the first step in choosing how to protect your pool. That means knowing, understanding, and following your city’s pool code, which (in much of our area) is governed by the Southern Nevada Amendments to the 2018 International Swimming Pool and Spa Code (ISPSC). This code and the Southern Nevada amendments were created by safety specialists and builders to help create safer pools.
These regulations set the requirements for acceptable pool barriers. Many of their specifications focus on preventing unauthorized and unattended access to pools by children, but they can also prevent accidental entry into the pool area by pets and adults. Provisions address fencing, safety covers, and how to handle exterior doors of your home that may open directly into the pool area. Working with an experienced pool safety installer can help ensure you stay compliant with these requirements.
- Choose Your Pool Barrier Type – You have options when it comes to deciding which kind of pool safety barrier fits your property’s aesthetics. The days of being stuck with ugly chain link fencing or an expensive wrought-iron fence that gets blazing hot in the sun are over. Modern pool safety fences are less intrusive, easier to use, and far more cost-effective. They use anchored poles and a tightly-woven, extremely strong mesh to give you great protection that doesn’t mar your pool area’s beauty.
Pool safety covers provide another pool barrier option that many pool owners enjoy. Unlike floating covers, which can ensnare people who fall into the pool, safety covers are anchored to rails and made of a tear-resistant material that keeps victims separated from the water underneath. They can then crawl or be helped to the edge of the pool and safety in the event of a stumble or fall. These sturdy covers can support hundreds of pounds of weight, making them strong enough to protect even full-grown adults.
For maximum protection, however, some owners choose to install both a safety cover and safety fencing. This gives them absolute peace of mind that, even if someone makes it through the fence, they’re protected from accidentally entering the water.
- Determine Who You’re Protecting – Many people think of pool barriers as a way to ensure kids don’t escape supervision and become victims of accidental drowning, but your barrier can be tailored to fit your likely needs. Fences, poles, mesh types, and gates can be adjusted within regulations for a better fit for your property, and covers can be equipped with locking mechanisms that prevent even the most adept of escape artists from getting through.
One common example is the presence of pets on a property. Pet fencing is available, which resists damage from both claws and teeth to keep out both chewers and scratchers. Premier poles are stronger than regular poles and can help ensure that even large, motivated dogs are kept out of the pool area.
Another consideration is if you are concerned that larger children or adults may try to access the pool when they are unable to be responsible for themselves. Whether this is out of concern for a family member with developmental disabilities, advanced age, or substance abuse problems, or just children that are large for their age, taller, stronger fencing could be an option that helps keep them safe. Be sure you bring up any special considerations to your installation professional when discussing pool barrier options.
- Ease Of Use – When you’re ready to swim, you want to be able to swim. Likewise, either you or a third party will need regular access to the pool for cleaning and maintenance, so any pool safety barrier you get will need to balance security and efficiency of operation. With fences, this may be fairly straightforward, as pool fences are self-closing and self-latching. You’ll simply need to have the key handy, or make it available to workers when needed so they can get through your pool’s gate.
Pool safety covers have several opening and closing options available, and if a lock is installed, a key may still be necessary. Manually operated covers generally take two people to close by pulling equally on either side of the cover. Opening it can be accomplished with a hand-operated winch. Automatic covers make a user-friendly safety barrier, as simple controls allow a motor to open or close your pool for you.
- Experienced Installers – Unless you’re a professional, installing a pool barrier isn’t a DIY project. Experienced installers can help ensure your barrier is compliant. They’ll also make sure it’s properly anchored, show you how to use it properly, and help you understand the best way to care for and maintain your barrier system to maximize its service life.
The Las Vegas Area Experts
If you’re ready for a pool safety barrier that helps you ensure your pool stays safe, fun, and injury-free, we’re ready to help. Call us at (702) 254-8450, and one of our specialists will set an appointment to come visit with you about your pool area, needs, and what options are available to you. Then they’ll help you understand how affordable peace of mind can be with a no-obligation estimate on your new pool barrier. Contact the pros at Aqua-Safe Unlimited today.