In defense of filling swimming pools during drought

Tue, 05/06/2008 - 3:59pm
By: Letters to the ...

This letter is in response to the one written by A. Russell in last week’s paper regarding the filling of a swimming pool vs. washing a car.

Being a pool owner, with one in very sad shape at this moment, I had to respond. Yes, the writer was right. It is a lot of water. It is roughly 30,000 gallons. BUT, there are a few factors the writer did not take into consideration:

1. If a pool is being filled, it is because the pool is either new or in distress. In our case, our pool is in distress. We have an in-ground pool with a liner — as most are in this area — and the liner ripped during the winter, leaving us no alternative than to have a new liner installed and then refill the pool.

2. There is no other alternative to filling a pool. You either turn on your hose and fill it or you don’t. If you choose the latter, then you are facing a large empty hole in your yard, which has a whole set of other problems.

Whereas with a car, you may want to wash your car at your home, but if necessary, you can take it to the car wash, the automated service at the gas station, or go to the self-help car washes and wash it for under $5.

3. Those of us who are in a position to have to fill their pool will pay dearly for it. I expect to have a water bill of a few hundred dollars from the water company to pay for that water use.

4. And the most important thing that was overlooked — when you fill a pool, it stays filled until you have an issue with your liner again. With the exception of the water that gets splashed out, or evaporates, that same water stays in the pool year after year after year.

I’ve been in my home for 13 years. This will be the first time we’ve ever refilled the pool. I believe the prior owner replaced the liner eight years before we purchased our home, so I believe the pool has not been drained and refilled in 21 years.

There are no two households that use the same water consumption. One may have a pool, but another may have five children, taking more showers, more dishes, more laundry. Some may take full advantage of the 25 minutes on the designated days, and others don’t use that water at all.

In my household, there are now only two of us, so [there are] minimal laundry and dishes and five-minute showers. We also do not take advantage of the 25-minute watering — my lawn relies on the occasional rain — and I keep a bucket in my shower and use that water to water all my container plants.

So please, don’t get too angry at those of us with a pool. We’re all still doing everything we can to conserve — in one way or another.

Debbie Pitts

Peachtree City, Ga.

login to post comments