What is a Venturi Skimmer?

To begin, I want to give a bit of background information to help aid in the understanding of how a Venturi Skimmer works.  The Venturi Skimmer utilizes the natural phenomenon known as the “Venturi Effect.”  This phenomenon occurs when a fluid that is flowing through a pipe is forced through a narrow section.  The result is a decrease in pressure and an increase in velocity.  That is the best explanation without getting too technical.  It was named after the man who discovered it, an Italian Physicist named Giovanni Batista Venturi.  Now that that’s out of the way, let’s get into how it applies to swimming pool skimmers.
I have been in the swimming pool industry for almost ten years, and I have never seen a pool that is without a skimmer.  This is because a skimmer plays an important role in the pool cleaning process.  It is a part of the filtration system in which water is pulled from the pool by the pump, sent through the filter which removes fine particles of debris and other small things that you wouldn’t necessarily want in your swimming pool.
 Then, the water is either sent through the heater, or heat pump if you have one, and returned to the pool to start the cycle over again.  In addition to that, the skimmer strains the water passing through of all the larger debris that might be floating on the pool’s surface.  This includes leaves, sticks, grass clippings, fuzz, and the occasional frog, toad, newt, etc.  Without a skimmer, all of that stuff would remain floating around in the pool until it is physically removed by you, the pool’s owner.  A skimmer also allows for the sweeping of the pool.  Whether or not you have a pool, most people are familiar with the image of a typical “pool boy” with a long pole in his hand, cleaning the pool.  He is most likely sweeping the pool.  For that, he would take a long, specially designed hose and attach it to the port in the skimmer that is pulling the water to the pump.
The other end of that hose would be attached to a vac head which is also attached to the pole in his hand.  This allows him to effectively remove dirt and debris that has settled on the pool walls and floor without having to physically enter the water.  That is the basic skimmer function, and it requires the suction of the pump to do so.  With the Venturi Skimmer, however, it is a little different.
To begin, let’s look at a plumbing diagram.  You can see that it functions like a standard skimmer, because it draws water from the pool to the pump.  This process will remove the debris from the surface of the pool.
However, unlike a standard skimmer, some of the water coming back to the pool from the pump is sent back through the bottom of the skimmer through the narrower Venturi tube and back to the pool.  This action creates an additional cycle, bringing water in through the mouth of the skimmer and sending it directly back to the pool.  What this does is double the skimming power without increasing the amount of energy used.  In addition to that, another benefit of this type of skimmer is that you could actually shut the suction from the pump to the skimmer completely off.
 This would allow the full suction of the pump to go to the main drains, and because the water is being returned to the pool through the skimmer, the Venturi action would still take place allowing the skimmer to still effectively remove debris.  This would benefit an In-floor cleaning system that relies on the main drain to remove debris from the pool.  By having full suction to the main drain, it would maximize its cleaning ability, and you would still get the benefits of the skimmer removing debris from the surface.  On top of all that, this type of skimmer works very well with low flow, variable speed, or two speed pumps.  Regardless of what setting those pumps might be running on, the Venturi action would still allow for exceptional debris removal by the skimmer.
To see this type of skimmer in action, check out this link Venturi Youtube video, from there you can see other related videos.
You can also get more information specifically about Waterway’s Renegade Venturi Skimmer here Waterway Renegade Venturi Skimmer
UV spectrum

How To Have Your Vinyl Liner In-Ground Pool Clean Itself – Part 3

This is the third and final part to my “How To Have Your Vinyl Liner In-Ground Swimming Pool Clean Itself” series.  In the previous two parts, I went into detail on how the Paramount in-floor cleaning system works and how having a Venturi skimmer benefits the in-floor cleaning system.  This post will outline the benefits and features of UV water sanitation, and Ozone water sanitation.  Coupling these two products with the Paramount in-floor cleaning system and Venturi skimmer will make your pool virtually maintenance free, allowing you to spend more time enjoying you pool.  Let’s get started.
In today’s swimming pool industry, there are many new and fascinating products available to the consumer.  So much so, that it may be overwhelming to some.  They encompass every corner of the swimming pool industry from colors of foam noodle toys to water sanitation and everything in between.  I am going to focus this post on water sanitation and, more specifically, on the use of Ultra Violet light to clean pool water.  I am sure to some of you the idea of using UV rays seems far fetched, science fiction, or even dangerous. We stress the importance of UV protection to our kids.  It’s even built into our sunglasses.  So, why would anyone want to use a UV system on their pool?  UV rays are powerful and with the technology we have today they can be harnessed and utilized to provide very significant benefits to the sanitation process of swimming pool water.
UV rays can be used to provide an additional layer of protection beyond the capability of chlorine, or salt based chlorine generators in swimming pools.  So, how does this happen?

Ultra Violet rays can be used in two ways to benefit the sanitation of pool water. First, they can be used directly to inactivate bacteria, viruses, fungi, algae and microorganisms that naturally thrive in water.  Second, they can be utilized to make ozone which is then injected into the pool’s filtration system to actively break down non-living waste products like urine, perspiration, oils and organic matter. If these products are left untreated, they could combine with the pool’s chlorine and create unhealthy byproducts called Trihalomethanes that can irritate the skin and potentially cause or have a negative effect on Asthma and other ailments.  The incredible thing about these two types of systems is that they can be used together to create an incredibly clean and safe swimming pool environment.

Let’s focus on the use of UV rays directly to sanitize water.  As previously stated, this type of system inactivates 99.9% of the harmful bacteria, viruses, fungi, and algae in the water.  Basically, the UV radiation disrupts the DNA of said organisms which consequently leaves them unable to perform vital cellular functions.  So, the UV rays don’t kill them necessarily, it just makes them harmless.  This process also enables another important benefit.  With the use of this type of UV system, it will reduce the amount of chemicals needed to maintain an adequate amount of residual sanitizer.  Therefore, the pool would need less harmful chemicals (a reduction of up to 50%) which saves the pool owner money in the long run.
This type of system would get plumbed into the filtration system of the pool.  It allows the water to flow through a chamber where the UV light is emitted, inactivating the harmful elements previously listed.  This system is designed to have minimal required maintenance.  The only thing that typically requires attention is the bulb.  From time to time, the bulb would need to be replaced.  However, these bulbs typically have a fairly long lifespan.  Some last up to 13000 operating hours, and have a flow switch installed so pool owners don’t even have to worry about turning the system on.  It turns on when the water is flowing through it.  This system offers a cleaner, clearer swimming environment with no harmful byproducts.

Now lets look at the system that produces ozone to sanitize the water.  This system uses the ultraviolet light to make ozone which is then injected into the filtration system.  The ozone then actively breaks down non-living waste in the water and dramatically reduces the exposure to harmful Trihalomethanes in addition to prolonging the life of the other filtration elements by removing these chlorinated compounds.  This process provides a more environmentally sensitive solution to pool sanitation, and the only byproduct is Oxygen.  In addition to that, this system again reduces the chemical requirement by up to 70% and allows the chlorine in the pool to work more effectively as a disinfectant.  Some of these systems are also very user friendly with easy to read meters.  The only expected maintenance is replacing the bulb.  This system differs in that respect as well, because its bulb is what produces the ozone.  The ability to produce this ozone slows overtime to the point where it won’t produce enough to adequately treat the water.  Because of that, it is recommended that the bulb be replaced every three years, whether or not it is still on.

There are many products available for swimming pools and swimming pool sanitation.  If you are looking to get a pool, it would pay off to use one or both of these systems to  help sanitize your pool water.  I think you will find that your pool environment will be much happier and healthier.  In my opinion, one of the biggest benefits of having a UV system on your pool is that while you enjoy your clean healthy water, you will be enjoying the lower cost of maintaining your pools sanitation.  With the use of UV and ozone along with the Venturi Skimmer, and The Paramount in-floor cleaning system you will find that your pool will actively maintain itself.  With the in-floor cleaning system removing debris from your pool, the Venturi Skimmer allowing the full power of the pump to go to the main drains to remove the debris, and the UV and Ozone sanitation effectively cleaning the water, all you will have to do is sit back and enjoy your pool.