Fine Tuning Equipment

February 2: We are working to fine tune the settings of the new equipment to create the best possible environment for a multi-purpose pool. Please keep in mind that the pool has programs for people of all ages, swim abilities and with various needs. We will work to find the best possible ‘middle ground’ that serves the wide range of programming that we offer. Our pool won’t qualify for an elite competition pool, nor will we attempt to be a ‘warm water therapy pool’. We hope to find that we can create an atmosphere that fits the needs of the Aquatic Program here at the YMCA.

Thanks for your patience.

Pool Equipment Installation is DONE!

January 28 Update: The installation of our new air handler is now complete. We will be fine tuning the settings to find what works best for our multi-purpose pool.

We appreciate your patience!

Rain Causing Delay

Announced January 23

The pool will be used on Saturday by the Boy Scouts and will open on Sunday at regular hours.

HOWEVER, due to the rain today (Friday) the installation is not complete and the ‘air temperature’ will be less than normal. This will make it uncomfortable for some. We fully expect the installation to be completed on Monday.

Pool Shutdown Set for Jan 19-23

New Air Handling Equipment Installation

Announced: Jan 12

We are planning on shutting down the swimming pool beginning Jan 19. We will be able to reopen the pool on January 24.

The new air handling equipment is en route and the contractors will actually be preparing for the equipment’s arrival and installation later this week.

During the week while that equipment is being installed, our crews will also be doing some much needed preventative maintenance on our pool filter, which also requires the pool to be closed. Taking advantage of this opportunity will hopefully prevent further maintenance issues later on this year with the filter.

Thank you for your patience. The entire pool environment will be much improved upon completion of the installation and balancing of the new equipment.

January 4-5 Update

We’ve had an equipment failure this weekend on the ‘back up’ boiler, leaving it inoperable. The temperature of the water has thus fallen to 81 degrees. We’ll be attempting to call program participants to alert you to the issue first thing Monday morning. We are hopeful this particular part can be located here locally, and replaced quickly on Monday.

Pool Area Progress Report

December Update

December 23

There is still no definitive word on the new equipment installation. The Evacuator has been off since a malfunction on December 12, but a temporary fix is scheduled any day now. We expect to have a firm schedule for the new Air Handler Equipment by January 5.

The pool temperatures seem to be settling down some. Our lifeguards are now recording pool temperatures taken 9 times per day. They are reporting to the Front Desk at each interval, so feel free to call before you come to get the latest. During the week of December 15, these are the average temperatures:

Monday – pm 86; Tuesday am 83, pm 85; Wednesday am 86, 85; Thursday am 87, pm 85; Friday 85 am, 86 pm.

This data suggests that the drastic swings we were experiencing are now under better control.

We want to thank you, our members for your patience. The new equipment will provide us a much better and more stable environment. Also, a special thanks to the Aquatic Staff and Lifeguards! They’ve had to deal with all of the drastic temperature swings, the stagnant air, and the difficult circumstances. Without the Life Guards on duty, we would not be able to open the pool.

Inconsistent Conditions

Nov 25 Update

We are very aware of the discouraging conditions in the swimming pool caused by our equipment failure. With this major equipment being inoperable, it has been a very difficult road to try and keep conditions (air flow, humidity and water temperature) consistent. We don’t have any air flow other than what we create with fans. We have no way to do anything with the air humidity. Our water temperature is only controlled by turning on and off the ‘back up boiler’. This lack of any automatic controls is what causes such inconsistencies. Our efforts include midnight visits throughout the week to check on the rising or dropping of the water temperature, as well as daytime monitoring of the temperature.  We can only react to what we can tell is movement in those temperatures. Remember, this is roughly 150,000 gallons of water!

Please be patient with us!

It isn’t going to be easy to maintain any consistency in the pool area under these circumstances. Gray Stallworth, YMCA Executive Director, stated “We know this is terribly frustrating for our members. You deserve better and we are committed to making these improvements as soon as possible. The end result will be a much better atmosphere in the pool area.”

Why is Air Circulation is So Important in the Pool Area

 Oct 20 Update

There has been a lot of chatter about the pool area and the ‘open doors’ and the use of fans.

At this time we are going through a period when the mechanical equipment in the pool area is mostly not operational. We have asked the lifeguards to open doors, use fans to circulate air and to take more frequent breaks to get fresh air.

Lifeguards

These steps are not for their ‘comfort’ so much as for their safety. The air in the pool area accumulates chlorine and makes it difficult to breathe if it’s not circulated and steps are not taken to control humidity. For the lifeguards who are on the deck for 3-4 hour shifts, this can be that much more critical.

While we understand that the fans blowing across the water could cause some discomfort, we have to consider these safety issues as well.

 

Athletes

Head Swim Coach Tom Karel commented, “The movement of the air can and does cool the swimmers between sets.  If the body can’t cool itself outside the water then I have problems.  The continuous air movement evaporates the water from the skin and helps cool the swimmers who are sweating.  If we close all those doors and turn off all the fans then I don’t have a way to cool the swimmer’s bodies to prevent overheating. The swim team members churn up a lot of heat during the time they swim and having the air not moving can lead to heat related issues. Until the main equipment is replaced then I need that air movement for safety reasons.”

Senior Program Director and First Aid Instructor Janada Jay reminded our staff that heat related injuries can be very critical, including fatal if not handled properly.

 

Now That Outside Air Temperature Has Dropped

We are setting up a standard for going forward and the use of open doors and the big fans. For instance, when the outside temperature is below 60 degrees, we will close the double doors and simply use one big fan and one single open door. If the outside temperature falls below 50, we close that single door and cut off the big fan. At that point the smaller fans should be sufficient to circulate the air for ‘most’ of the day.

When the swim team is practicing, we will keep ‘at least’ the single door open and one big fan on to help prevent heat related issues for our swimmers.

 

Water Exercise Classes

We will also set the standard for use of the doors and fans during instructional classes. While classes are going on, all fans should be off ‘unless’ the instructor is stationed on the deck and desires for the small fan to be on to cool her off. The outside doors should remain closed during this time unless the outside air temperature is 70 degrees or above, and in that case the single door and the big fan can be used.

 

Sharing the Pool

There are times when swim teams and water exercise classes share the pool. Since safety is the primary concern, the standard will allow the single outside door to be open and a big fan to remain on during swim team practice times.

 

Thank You for Understanding

Your cooperation is appreciated. Safety of participants and staff must be the priority and during this transition time in the pool area, it’s critical that we all have patience and understanding. The best news – when the new equipment is installed in December, the pool environment will be so much more pleasant and we will be able to provide a consistent, safe, and comfortable atmosphere. We won’t have to worry about doors and fans!

 

Good News Regarding the Pool Air Handler Equipment

Sept 22 – The YMCA has many users in the pool throughout the week. Our activity schedule includes a little bit of everything: very strong swimmers who train for competition, young children learning to swim for the first time, adults who leisurely swim for some exercise, and seniors who can’t really exercise any other place but find water exercise extremely beneficial. Everyone deserves to have a healthy atmosphere, and one that is consistently meeting the proper specifications for a multipurpose pool.

Unfortunately, that has not been the case in our pool lately.

Complete Failure

Changes in the summer of 2013 to the equipment began to make a difference. Humidity was again under control after getting out of hand. By adjusting the equipment we were able to achieve a better balance of water temperature, humidity and air temperature.  Then during this past winter, we installed new equipment to improve the air quality by reducing the chlorine in the air. However this fall, just as we began to prepare for the winter season, the main air handler equipment began to fail. There was too much happening to make repairs a viable financial option.

This recent equipment failure in the pool area is very significant because this ‘air handler’ does three critical jobs –

• Circulates conditioned air throughout the pool area
• Takes moisture out of the air, reducing the ‘humidity’
• Pre-heats the pool water which is much more energy efficient

As you can see, this is not a minor part, but a major piece of equipment. When this is not functioning properly, it can (and has) made the pool area less than ideal for our members.

 

Getting It Right

Once it was determined that repair was just no longer an option, the Board of Directors tasked a committee to research replacing this 20 year old equipment and on Sept 15, the Board of Directors approved the purchase of the new equipment! The equipment will be customized at the factory specifically for our site, which means there will be a significant amount of time before we are able to install it. (Sometime in December!)

However, this “major capital investment” will be a) more energy efficient, and b) more reliable, thus creating a more consistent atmosphere in the pool area!

 

Creating a Safe Atmosphere in the Interim

In the meantime, for everyone’s safety, we are doing the following: a) rotating lifeguards more frequently so they can get more fresh air, b) allowing the outside doors to be opened as long as the outside temperature has not dropped too low, and c) running multiple fans (fewer during instructional periods) to keep air circulating. Our ‘back up’ boiler will maintain the water temperature.

 

Please be patient with us!

It isn’t going to be easy to maintain any consistency in the pool area under these circumstances. Gray Stallworth, YMCA Executive Director, stated “We know this is terribly frustrating for our members. You deserve better and we are committed to making these improvements as soon as possible. The end result will be a much better atmosphere in the pool area.”