For many Canadians, summer days are spent swimming and relaxing in a backyard pool or spa. If you have a swimming pool or spa at home, make sure to regularly test and sanitize the water to avoid getting sick, suggests Health Canada.
Pools and spas are good places for microorganisms like bacteria and viruses to grow and live. Even if the water looks clean, it could be contaminated. Swimming or bathing in water that hasn’t been properly sanitized can cause ear and stomach infections, and skin rashes. So make sure you test the water every day that your pool or spa is used.
What you should do
- Always maintain the proper water balance in all types of pools and spas. Test your water balance daily for sanitizer levels, pH, total alkalinity, and calcium hardness using a good quality test kit from a store that sells pool and spa equipment. You can also have your water tested by a pool and spa dealer.
- Empty and clean inflatable and kiddie pools regularly, since the water is not usually treated.
- Control algae levels. Algae can make pool and spa surfaces slippery and can reduce the effectiveness of sanitizers.
- For ALL types of pools and spas, it is important to follow the directions when using swimming pool and spa chemicals. The label tells you how much of the product to use and how to handle the product safely, including the use of proper protective equipment.
- All pool and spa products (chemicals and devices) used to control microorganisms and algae must be registered by Health Canada’s Pest Management Regulatory Agency. To check for the most recent product information, use Health Canada’s new pesticide label search mobile app.
- Swimming pool and spa devices that generate or dispense a sanitizer have detailed instructions in the user’s manual, on the package, and on the device itself. Always read the label and the user’s manual before installing and using a device.
- Always wash your hands after handling any chemical.
- Keep all pool and spa chemicals away from children and pets to prevent accidental exposure.
Report health and safety concerns
Report any adverse events from a pest control product to the manufacturer, who is required by law to report it to Health Canada. You may also report an incident directly to Health Canada by completing an incident report form. – CNW