Before you try out a novel new party trick or design idea in or around your pool, stop and think it through carefully. Ask yourself if the idea poses a potential safety hazard or if it may damage your pool. We’ve already explored how adding or taking away certain substances in your pool water can cause major problems (see Parts 1, 2 & 3). Next, we considered the potential risks of using items in or around your pool in an unsafe way (see Part 4). Now we’ll turn our attention to a couple of Do-It-Yourself pool projects you should avoid.
Don’t Install a Diving Board on Your Own
What could be more fun than springing into the pool off of your very own diving board? If you have a pool that was designed specifically for a diving board and you plan to have one installed by an expert, go for it! Dive, jump and cannonball your way into the summer season. But if your pool wasn’t made to accommodate a diving board and you don’t have any experience putting one in, don’t take the plunge into installing a diving board on your own. It’s way too risky of a project for you to just rely on internet Do-It-Yourself videos.
Unfortunately for those who love to dive, most backyard pools aren’t safe for diving boards. They’re either too shallow and/or their long slope is too close to the platform. Perhaps you’ve thought about putting one in and just telling your family to jump into the pool feet first or only make shallow dives. Don’t ever do this! All it takes is for one kid to forget that they’re not supposed to do a straight in headfirst dive, and you’re looking at life long paralysis or death. People who dive into shallow water are the most likely of anyone to suffer a debilitating or life-threatening diving injury. There’s a reason safety standards for public pools with diving boards are in place. Residential pool owners need to be aware of and heed those regulations in their own pools as well.
What if you’re one of the fortunate people who has an in-ground pool that is actually deep enough for a diving board? It’s still not a wise idea to install it yourself. Wedge anchoring a diving board into an existing pool deck isn’t likely to hold up, especially if adults or older teens are likely to use the board. A professional installer will have the necessary equipment and know the right methods of securing the diving board so that it will stay in place even with heavy use.
Don’t Turn Your Pool Into a Skating Rink
As fun as it sounds to have a private skating rink in your backyard in the winter, don’t use your pool to create one. Pools simply aren’t designed to hold that much-frozen water. Frozen water can cause serious damage such as cracking of the pool’s interior, pool equipment, or liner. Skating on the surface could also cause a drowning risk if it breaks and you were to fall through the ice.
Novel ideas for your pool can seem fun and exciting, but they aren’t always smart. You can have all sorts of creative fun in your pool without trying something crazy. Hopefully, this list of things to avoid will save you from hurting yourself or others or causing serious damage to your pool.
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