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Hey, I’m not a doctor and I didn’t even play one on television, so don’t take anything I say as medical advice. That being said, with the spread of Monkeypox there are questions and concerns about swimming pool safety and the virus. Just as there was at the beginning of the COVID pandemic folks wonder whether or not this virus can be spread in the swimming pool or spa.

The short answer is, probably not.

The longer answer is, be ensure your hot tub and swimming pool safety is to maintain your water chemistry and keep your water areas clean. This includes changing our filters when needed and brushing the sides of your pool. This is true whether or not we are in a pandemic situation.

Experts say that because the monkeypox virus is not waterborne, it is unlikely that it would be spread in a swimming pool (or hottub), particularly one that is well-maintained with proper chlorine levels.


Check with your doctor if you have more questions about monkeypox or other viruses.

If you need help maintaining your pool or spa, or are not sure what the proper chemistry should be in order to keep your family safe, then give us a call at 831-438-0882 to schedule an appointment.

Aptos Sunset

June is here and we are approaching the start of summer here in the Santa Cruz mountains. It is the perfect time to remind our water loving friends and clients to keep water safety in mind now, and all season long.

Consider Swimming Lessons

kid learning to swim

If you are one of our clients who owns a pool, be sure that you and every guest can enjoy their time safely. Every one can have more fun in the water if they know how to swim, so encourage all your guests to take lessons if they haven’t already.

Swimming lessons are available for all ages, from infants to adults of all ages. Adults will often benefit from finding an instructor who specializes in working with grown ups, or at least has experience working with adults. Some instructors will help you achieve water safety, whether to comfortable playing in the pool with the grandkids or being on a boat. Others can help you fine tune your stroke so you get more fitness from your pool time. And for anyone who has a fear of the water, swimming lessons with a good, qualified instructor are the best way to cure that!

Even if you don’t own a pool, swimming lessons are a great idea for everyone. Keep in mind we are on the coast, and there are also lakes and other pools around!

Flotation Devices

kid relaxing in pool

Ah…floating in the water is so relaxing, right? But some of us don’t seem to float as well as others. Maybe we want to use a raft or pool noodle or some other floaties to help keep us up, or even mostly out of the water. That’s cool, but don’t use them as a replacement for learning to swim. And, especially if you have little kids around, be sure that you can always see under the pool float in case someone gets in trouble. It can be scary to feel trapped under water–and even if it seems like an easy thing to move out of the way, it might not feel that way if you are trying to get to the surface.

Keep an Eye on the Kids and Pets

pool safety for pets

With, or without flotation devices, we need to keep an eye on people in the pool, again, especially little kids. Make sure your pool is secure from curious little ones when you aren’t there to supervise.

Everyone should be accounted for, and someone in particular should keep an eye on the kids when you are in and around the swimming pool. And don’t forget the family pets–be sure your dogs have a way to get out of the pool in case they fall in.

Have More Fun with the Sun

Up On The Roof

By keeping water safety in mind, we can have tons of fun in our backyard pool, and that is what it is all about.

Since summer is just starting, your pool may feel a bit chilly. If you decide you want to extend your swimming season to have more fun in the sun time, you might consider adding solar heat to your backyard oasis. Many of our clients from Avila to Santa Cruz, from near the ocean to up in the hills, have found that solar heating really adds to their enjoyment of their pool.

If you are thinking about solar, give us a call!

swimming pool equipment maintenance: filter clean on left, dirty on right
The dirty filter on the right was the reason our customer’s pool was not getting clean!

The Problem: Dirty Pool

Recently I got a call from a customer (who does not use our cleaning service). They couldn’t understand why their pool was dirty. They asked if I could come check out their “broken” pool ASAP. So we scheduled a visit.

When I got there, sure enough their pool was pretty dirty, despite their efforts at sweeping etc.

Well, I checked out the swimming pool equipment and quickly discovered the problem.

The Solution: Clean the Filters

So sometimes people don’t remember, or maybe they were never taught, your pool filters need to be cleaned, too! The pool filter captures the dirt in your pool–up to a point. But when the filter is dirty and it can’t take up any more then the pool just doesn’t get clean.

The filters in the photo above show the importance of swimming pool equipment maintenance. The one on the right is how the filter looked when I took it out. The filter on the left is all new and squeaky clean. Regularly cleaning your pool filters extends their life and saves you money.

If you don’t have the time or energy to keep your pool equipment properly maintained so your swimming pool is sparkling clean and inviting, then hire someone for regular cleaning services. They will make sure your filters are clean and that your chemistry is all in balance. You will still want to do some light brushing and skimming leaves, but by letting us do a regular cleaning your work is kept to a minimum and your enjoyment is totally max’ed!

COVID affects hot tub sales

NOPE, probably not what you expect to read. It isn’t COVID INfects hot tubs–this is NOT saying that there is a problem with safely using your hot tub because of COVID. But COVID affects hot tubs in terms of sales, pricing, and availability.

Consider this–more and more people are spending an increased percentage of their time at home. And they are less able to go on vacations, whether long or short.

That means we are seeing people “nesting”. They are doing things to improve their home and making it the stay-cation dream spot.

Hot tub wood deck photo by Atlanta Decking and Fencing Company

For a lot of people that means taking that vacation budget and buying, or upgrading, their hot tub, spa or swimming pool. We sure get that!

However, if you are in that camp, and think you will be able to have that wonderful addition done quickly and easily, then you just might have another think coming.

Especially if you are looking for a brand new spa, you will find longer lead times and higher costs.

Supply and demand? In part, sure. But we are also finding that COVID affects hot tubs because of supply chains and factory shut downs.

Surf City Pool Spa and Solar owner, Michael Hall

That makes maintaining your current system even more important. It also makes refurbished spas and hot tubs even more appealing for people looking to get their first or a replacement unit. They are often available at a lower price with a shorter wait.

So if you are in the Santa Cruz area and are interested in buying a spa or upgrading your spa or pool equipment, give us a call. We’ll discuss your goals and dreams and see what we can come up with to fulfill them.

4 Examples in Santa Cruz County of Swimming Pool Solar Heating Solutions

Here in Santa Cruz County we love our swimming pools and spas. And spas are great year-round, but heating a pool here can be quite costly.

Here Comes the Sun…

Fortunately, thanks to our beautiful sunshine, as the following four clients’ pools demonstrate, we can greatly extend the swimming season with solar heating systems.

Ground Mounted Solar Heating System

Ground mount pool solar heating system installed in Pasatiempo, Santa Cruz

This solar heating system may look strange to you. That is because we are used to seeing them installed on rooftops. But for this Pasatiempo, Santa Cruz family it was more practical to mount their system on the ground.

Beth and James have two boys who swim on the Santa Cruz High School team. During the summer the boys would practice at home to get in shape for the upcoming season. You may well imagine that the cost to heat their pool was pretty high–and you would be right!

Sky High or Free Heat?

They were spending $300 and up, every month to heat the pool. I suggested they consider adding a solar heating system to maintain their swimming pools heat all summer–and even into the fall. I ran the numbers for them, comparing their current all gas system and one with the added solar array. The return on their investment will be as little as 2 summers. After that, the solar heating is free!

Happy Clients. Happy Kids.

Keeping the Neighborhood Kids Warm with Solar Heated Pool

Soquel CA swimming pool solar heating system

Up the road a bit, in Soquel, the Jaimanson’s love the fact that all the neighborhood kids enjoy hanging at their house. Their pool is “the” place for all of them to congregate in the summer.

They gave me a call and I recognized a familiar look in their eyes. Would rising fuel costs mean cutting back on the pool temp–and freezing out the fun? Or could a new swimming pool solar heating system keep the kids warm and also protect their cash?

Happily for them, the sun shines just about every day in the hills of Soquel. They are now able to heat their pool with all that free sunshine!

Happy Clients. Happy Kids. (recognize a theme here?)

Solar Heating for Home Therapy Pool

roof mount solar heating for therapy pool

Kids aren’t the only ones who like swimming pools in Santa Cruz. While young at heart, Russel and Kathy are an older couple. They use their pool for therapy.

There are so many great ways that you can get therapeutic benefits from your pool. Kathy has a physical trainer that helps her with low impact pool workouts for her arthritis.

I will never forget Cathy telling me that she is a “tough gal, but a cold pool is just no fun.” When I finished this job I received flowers and a beautiful Thank You note.

I’d say she is having fun again! No more cold pool. Happy Clients.

Pool Therapy for Pets, too

Solar heating panels for dog therapy pool in Aptos, CA

Cindy and Beth are a beautiful couple with 5 dogs. In addition to that, they run a pet therapy business out of the home in Aptos, California. They provide warm water therapy for their four legged clients who have had surgery or have hip dysplasia.

They are on propane, and the cost to keep their pet therapy pool at the right temp was taking a bite out of their business cash.

The cost effective solution for these business owners? Solar heating for their pet therapy pool mounted on the roof, where as you can see, it gets plenty of sunshine.

Repeat after me: Happy Clients Happy Pets.

new spas cost big bucks

You may THINK your spa needs to be replaced. But what if we could save you a boatload (or spa-load) of cash and still bring your beloved spa to like new condition?

Many times I am called out to check on a hot tub that is 10 years old, or more. The owners frequently are concerned that getting a new spa is beyond their budget, but have no idea how they could live without their personal hot tub.

Frankly, most folks do not have the available cash to replace a tub!

I am so happy that I am able to provide my customers with a solution. And it isn’t a “quick fix” or “make-do” solution either.

Take this spa, for example, located in beautiful Santa Cruz County.

spa equipment died new spa needed?

It was clear that these clients use their hot tub daily. Stepping into the spa area, it was obvious the amount of love this couple has for their private oasis.

No Virginia, Spa Equipment Doesn’t Last Forever

Yes, it is true. Spa equipment does have a “useful life” after which it just doesn’t work well, or may quit working entirely. This was the case here. But that does not mean that you automatically have to replace a hot tub that fits your needs. Rather than removing their retreat and selling them a new spa, I told them about a great, money-saving option.

new spa cost avoided with refurbished spa equipment

Upgrading spa equipment can be the perfect solution. Replacing the controls for the spa is the most cost effective way to bring an older spa back to like new condition.

Here’s to a new life, and another 10 years of pleasure in the oasis.

So whether you are looking to buy a new spa or hot tub, replace an existing unit, or need some help with getting your private oasis working like new again, give us a call.

Capitola Swimming Pool Solar Heat installation July 2019

In much of Santa Cruz County, California it is often foggy in the morning. That doesn’t mean your swimming pool heating costs have to go through the roof.

Instead of going THROUGH the roof, let you heating costs plummet when you put in solar heating ON the roof.

With swimming pool solar heating you can do away with high fuel costs.

Take advantage of your roof as these Capitola clients did this week.

Solar heat is free heat!

Your Old Swimming Pool Filtration System May Cost You Big Bucks!

Santa Cruz County swimming pool filtration system updating to save customer money

Is your swimming pool filtration system more than 10 years old? You may be throwing away money every day.

The owners of this Scotts Valley swimming pool contacted us when they realized their pool equipment needed some help. Now they are set to have fun in their newly upgraded pool without having to worry about wasting money or chemicals.

Don’t worry, be happy!

Don’t let the wind carry away your hard earned cash!

old inefficient swimming pool filtration system is like throwing your money to the wind

By upgrading your system you can save the cost of the install in the first couple of years in energy costs.

Making your spa or pool filtration system more efficient reduces the amount of time it has to run. That in turn means you actually use fewer chemicals and make for a happier pool–not to mention pool owner and user!

If your pool is in Santa Cruz County then be sure to contact us about how we can help save you money and increase your time in the water. We have pool equipment options that will fit just about any budget.

So stop throwing you money away, call Surf City today! 831-438-0882

Environmentally Friendly Pool Heating Keeps Kids at Home

swimming pool with ring toy

Mr and Mrs Smitt wanted their boys to stick around this summer and have their friends over to swim in their family swimming pool in Capitola.

Nice, right?

But no one would swim in the pool.

Why? It was cold!

Who wants to swim in a cold pool? No one.

Surf City Pool Spa and Solar suggested adding a solar heating system. Most systems in Santa Cruz County pay for themselves after the first year compared to using a gas heater alone. Plus with solar, we are not hurting the environment.

Solar heating panel installation by Michael Hall of Surf City Pool Spa and Solar
That’s Mike up on another roof!

The Smitt’s agreed and so this summer your going to find Trevor and Donovan in their pool with all of their friends. Oh, and Mom and Dad, too!

Now, that is cool–in a very good way!

Click to read more tips about solar heating for your Santa Cruz County swimming pool.

coastal fog in the Santa Cruz mountains, photo by Bill Swandaman

Cool evenings and coastal fog make Aptos a great place for a hot tub. Add in your active Santa Cruz lifestyle and the desire to cool off without the sand and salt, and you may be thinking about whether or not your pool and spa are up-to-date.

Whether you already have a swimming pool or are looking to add a hot tub to the mix, at Surf City Pool Spa and Solar we can help get you set up right. We can also make your Aptos oasis easy on your body, the environment, and your budget!

Although we are fully licensed swimming pool contractors, that is not what we do. We specialize in hot tubs and spas and also fixing up your existing swimming pool equipment. And of course, we also specialize in solar heating systems for your pool and hot tub.

Time to come in from the cold, Aptos!

We love the beach as much as anyone here in SC County, it is gorgeous, a lot of fun, and really refreshing on a hot day. But let’s be honest, most of the time, for most of us mere mortals (as opposed to those seal-human hybrids who can be seen surfing year round) the water is just a bit…shall we say, brisk? OK, it is down right cold!

Santa Cruz County surfing in COLD water

So if you are not interested in surfing and tired of having sand in your suit, you might be thinking about spending more time in the swimming pool. We can make your swimming pool more environmentally friendly (not to mention budget-friendly) by setting you up with a solar heating system. Yes, even with our fog, we do get enough sunshine that we can heat a pool that way, extending the swimming pool season so it is much longer than beach swimming weather.

Some of the other things to consider are your filtration system and your purification system. Since you are probably inviting the entire city of Aptos to your backyard pool, you don’t need to chlorinate your pool to the same level that a public pool would. In fact, you don’t actually have to use chlorine at all. You can instead have a saltwater pool!

Saltwater Pools are Gentler on Your Body

saltwater pool is not like diving in the ocean

While it is called a saltwater pool, don’t think you will be swimming in an aquarium. You won’t be able to keep your fish in the pool with you, and you won’t be growing other sea creatures and vegetation either.

It is true that saltwater purification systems don’t use chlorine. However “salt” is converted to chlorine as part of the process. But it is still much gentler on your body, your hair, and your eyes–and your swimming suit. Most people find they can swim in a saltwater pool without needing goggles–if they typically use goggles to protect from the chlorine.

We can also discuss various options for keeping your Aptos hot tub or spa sparkling clean as well.

Whether we are installing a spa for you, upgrading your current swimming pool pumps, motors, heaters, or filters, we are happy to discuss options to help save you money. With our decades of experience, we can often either refurbish your equipment or find other spas we can refurbish and install for you.

Santa Cruz hot tub selection

In the end, the decision will always be yours. We won’t push you one way or the other. For some people having the most modern spa with all the “bells & whistles” is super important. For other people, a basic hot tub that works really well and will last them for many years is the way to go.

Aptos California beach at sunset, perfect time to get in a hot tub

While you might not be able to see the concrete ship from your backyard, don’t you think it is time to kick back and watch the stars from your own hot tub?