How does a natural swimming pool work? 🙂 Natural swimming pools are the newest pool design trend. In the 1980s, a group of Austrian researchers was credited with starting a campaign to replace chlorinated swimming pools with natural swimming pools and swimming ponds.
How does a natural swimming pool work? The concept of swimming in a pool that welcomed nature rather than standard rectangular, chlorine-filled pools quickly gained traction, first in Germany and then throughout Europe. Natural pools, which were slow to take hold in North America first, are now becoming more common.
Perennial plants and water flora aid natural pools by keeping them clean. The pools were inspired by the beauty and fun of swimming in highland lakes, with rocks, waterfalls, and boulders thrown in for good measure.
REQUIREMENT FOR A NATURAL SWIMMING POOL
Several natural pool system designs are available on the market, including some that were pioneered by European pool builders in the 1980s. If you’re thinking about creating a natural pool, look into which design firms employ a system that works with your microclimate.
A natural pool is built in the same way as any other pool. To help the pool fit in their backyard, homeowners can choose whatever design and water elements they choose. The only stipulation is that natural pools provide a regeneration area. This is a distinct, visible body of water lying adjacent to the main pool. Plants that feed on water grow in the regeneration zone.
Online and on the websites of pool installation firms, some DIY kits and e-books address land size and depth requirements, supplies, design ideas, and ballpark prices for building and maintaining a natural swimming pool. The expenditures are comparable to putting in a typical in-ground concrete pool.
HOW NATURAL SWIMMING POOLS WORK
In the last several years, we’ve noticed an increase in the number of homeowners opting for natural pools. Natural pools are environmentally friendly and chemical-free, which makes them a popular choice. Many individuals, on the other hand, are suspicious of the utility of a natural pool when they first hear about it. Everything you need to know about how a natural swimming pool operates can be found in the sections below.
So, how can a chlorine-free pool deliver a natural swimming experience with water quality that meets or exceeds your community’s bathing water standards? Filters and moving water perform all the heavy labor in natural pools. The soil and silt are kept out of natural pools by walls or membranes. They can be built from the ground up or converted from an in-ground pool system.
These pools employ biological filters (such as natural shale) to absorb phosphates and encourage the growth of “good” bacteria that consume algae and bad bacteria. Next to the main swimming area, a “regeneration zone” featuring plant life is being constructed. Here’s where the water enters either a gravel filter or a manmade wetland with plants to filter the water from the swimming area. This then circulates in and out of the plant life and can be utilized in conjunction with a specialized pump or skimmer system. The water is constantly moving, which aids in the prevention of the growth of undesired organic material. The natural pool and its regeneration zone form a miniature habitat that evolves, and animals and insects are frequently drawn to the region (but not to the pool, which lacks the environment they seek).
At least 50% of the surface area of an NSP must be allocated to plant life to maximize this natural filtration process. In other words, the plant zone should be the same size as the swimming area.
Natural filter elements may be installed in the pool itself in warmer areas, and hydroponic plants help with the filtration system while also looking attractive.
PLANTS USED IN NATURAL SWIMMING POOLS
How does a natural swimming pool work? Several types of plants will be used in natural pools to provide oxygen and aid in water filtration. Inside the natural pool environment, plants are divided into three categories: emergent, deep water-rooted, and floating plants. Water lilies, perennial grasses such as Sparganium or cattails, pond sedge, swamp hibiscus, and others are some of the most widely used plants in natural pools in temperate areas.
Natural swimming pools have separate zones for swimming and water purification, emulating the biodiversity and function of the natural environment. The suggested sizes and ratios, as well as the styles, can vary. The minimum pool size recommended is 30 to 50 square meters, but we’ve seen many relatively small pools that work just fine.
Swimming zones typically take up 50 to 70 percent of the total water surface area, with the remainder dedicated to filtration. Water is piped to shallow places with lots of plant life and debris, which act as natural filters and keep the water clean and clear. Plants are an important part of a natural swimming pool, and the best species will vary depending on the environment. Water lilies, duckweed, and Potamogeton are the most commonly used plants. Hornwort and elodea are reliable submerged plants with a high oxygen output. A solid mix of surface and submerged plant life can help you get the most bang for your buck. pH levels should be kept between 5.5 and 7 for plants to grow.
Algae is a common sight in natural swimming pools. However, by simply introducing the correct mix of flora, this single-celled plant can be banished to the plant zone, depriving the algae of the nutrients it requires to thrive. If this isn’t feasible, an automatic pool cleaning system or a pool vacuum can be utilized to remove any unwanted algae from the swimming area.
The pool will need less upkeep than a traditional pool if it is well-designed and situated.
- Surface area: The less probable a pool is to develop an algal problem, the larger (and deeper) it is. For a hygienic pool, a landmass of 45 to 50 square meters is advised.
- Depth: A deeper pool will have a cooler water temperature, which may result in a later start to your swimming season but a more relaxing dip in the summer heat. During the winter, a height of one to two meters will safeguard living organisms, and in classic Goldilocks form, it should be neither too hot nor too cold, but just perfect.
- Proportions of shade and sun: Because the sun encourages algae growth and photosynthesis, the less sun exposure the better. Floating leaves can be used to shade sunny areas, slowing algae growth and protecting aquatic life.
THE BENEFITS OF NATURAL SWIMMING POOLS
Natural pools come in a variety of shapes and sizes, and with sloped entry lined with stone, gravel, or clay instead of concrete, they can resemble the sight and feel of a lake or pond. Unlike a regular pool, the pool does not need to be covered, drained, or refilled when the seasons change.
Natural pools in cold climates can be utilized as little ice rinks in the winter (if frozen solidly), while pool owners in warm or tropical climates can build solar or different heating systems for year-round swimming.
Natural pools discourage pests because they are cleaned and cleaned by moving water, filter materials, and plant life.
Natural pools may attract snakes and frogs, but they rarely stay long because there is no stable source of food in the pool. Unwanted visitors may necessitate hand skimming of the natural pool on occasion.
Natural pools can be used in a variety of ways. Even though they conjure up images of a brown pond with sludge at the bottom, you may make your natural pool look practically identical to a standard pool. The stone filter can be tucked away underground. You can even go in the opposite direction and create a pool that resembles a pond or pool found in the woods, complete with rocks and boulders. In general, they have more design flexibility than standard pools.
Natural pools have the added benefit of being eco-friendly. Conventional pool chemicals, on the other hand, might be harmful to the environment.
Organic or natural pools require significantly less upkeep than traditional pools, and their annual expenditures are cheaper once construction is completed. They don’t need chlorine, chemical cleaning, pH balancing, or any of the other costs and tasks associated with maintaining a traditional pool. They should still be skimmed and free of debris, but that’s about all the pool maintenance you’ll need to do.
The reality that there are no chemicals in the water is the most significant advantage of a natural pool. This means that everyone, including those with sensitive skin, can enjoy the pool. Furthermore, the idea that the pool owner does not need to buy chemicals may aid to reduce maintenance costs. Many pool owners also discover that a natural pool consumes much less electricity than a regular pool.
THE DOWNSIDE OF NATURAL SWIMMING POOLS
How does a natural swimming pool work? Natural pools have a higher upfront outlay as a result of their low maintenance expenses. Constructing a natural pool can be extremely costly; keep in mind that a natural pool demands a separate pool for filtration. Because they’re rarer than regular pools, finding a reputable contractor to build one may be challenging. Hire a pool builder who specializes in this type of climate and can show you pools they’ve planned and built for an NSP that looks good and lasts.
The regeneration zone also means that constructing a natural pool necessitates additional land; the zone should be at least as large as the pool itself. If space is an issue, a typical pool, such as a lap pool, may be preferable to a natural pool with a regeneration zone that is half the size.
Some swimmers who are accustomed to clear, blue, chemically filtered water may be put off by the aesthetics of a natural pool. Depending on the prevalence of algae, organic water can take on a brownish color, and it’s impossible to eliminate debris and some life from the pool. Your natural pool may not seem as good as a Grecian, glittering blue classic pool, even though the water is safe to swim in.
They are less expensive in the long run than regular pools due to decreased maintenance expenses, but if you plan to sell your home in the next few years, you risk investing more on your natural pool (and not recouping your investment) than you would on a standard one.
Aquatic plants are good filters, but they can’t remove all toxins from the water. To keep the water as clean as possible, simple steps should be taken. To avoid accidents, infants and toddlers who have not been toilet-trained must wear appropriate swimwear, such as water diapers and rubber trousers. A natural swimming pool should not be entered by anyone who is unwell or has open wounds.
Natural swimming pools are typically used for recreational purposes at home, but commercial NSPs are becoming increasingly popular in North America. From the federal level to local health authorities, compliance with significantly more strict rules is required in a public setting. As a result, constructing a natural swimming pool on commercial property may necessitate a more involved permitting process. Municipalities, on the other hand, are becoming more familiar with NSPs, making it easier for towns, organizations, and corporations to opt for a natural pool over a regular one.
How does a natural swimming pool work? When done correctly, a natural swimming pool can provide a lovely swimming place that merges in with the surrounding nature while also reducing swimmers’ chemical exposure. Local experts can provide guidance and assistance.
- Lower year-to-year costs
- Adaptable and more flexible in design than traditional pools
- Less maintenance
- Work in all climates
- More environmentally friendly.
- Higher initial cost to build
- Requires more space
- May not look as clear and blue as a conventional pool
- Needs to be built by a contractor familiar with natural pools, which may be difficult to find.