Dealing with Fallout from Backburning in Australia

You've probably heard of the age-old Australian tradition of backburning, a crucial practice for managing bushfires. While it helps keep our beautiful country safe from wildfires, did you know that it can also have an impact on the crystal-clear waters of your swimming pool? But first…

What is Backburning?

Backburning is exactly what it sounds like, burning something back. Backburning is a common practice in Australia to manage bushfires. It involves intentionally starting fires under controlled conditions to reduce the amount of flammable vegetation and prevent the spread of bushfires. It is basically a controlled burn done ahead of the hot season to prevent uncontrolled fires down the line.

Impact of Backburning on Swimming Pools

The ash and debris from backburning can end up in swimming pools, affecting the clarity and cleanliness of the water. This debris can include burnt leaves, wood particles, and other remnants from the fire. These materials can introduce additional organic matter into the pool, which can affect the chemical balance of the water and potentially lead to issues such as algae growth.

How Backburning affects your pool’s pH Levels

You know the ash from backburning? Yeah, it can mess with your pool’s pH levels. The ash and soot are alkaline, meaning they can increase the alkalinity of your pool water.

This can cause your pH levels to rise. You want to keep your pool’s pH between 7.2 and 7.6. If it goes beyond this, you might see cloudy water, less effective chlorine, and even damage to your pool equipment.

Pool Chemical Treatment during and after Backburning

During and after backburning, it’s important to rebalance the chemical levels in your pool. Here are some chemicals you might need:

Chlorine: There’s no avoiding this one, backburning or not, you’ll always need chlorine in your pool to keep it safe from any biological baddies, unless of course, you have a saltwater chlorinator.

pH and Alkalinity shifters: These will raise or lower the pH or alkalinity of the pool, ensuring everything is normal5. Ideal pH levels in a pool should be between 7.4-7.6. In the case of backburning, a good chemical to always have on hand is the Water TechniX pH down to get those pH levels in check.

Calcium Chloride: Your pool requires a minimum level of calcium hardness before molecules start to look elsewhere for its minerals and eat away at your tile and metal. Other people tend to ignore calcium levels because they’re so focused on pH but this is not the way to go. The alkalinity in the soot and the ash will indirectly affect your pool’s calcium levels so always be sure to have some Water TechniX Calcium up on hand.

Phosphate Remover and Algaecide:  You know the ash from backburning? It can actually bring phosphates into your pool. Phosphates are organic stuff that can come from things like dead leaves, lawn fertilizer, and yep, you guessed it, ash from backburning.

Now, here’s the kicker. If there’s too much phosphate in your pool, it can feed algae and turn your pool water green and cloudy. Not a pretty sight, right? Plus, high phosphate levels can use up your chlorine real quick, making it harder to kill the algae and keep your pool clean.

So after backburning, it’s a good idea to check your pool’s phosphate levels and adjust them if needed. Regular check-ups can help keep your pool clean and ready for a swim. Cheers! 🏊‍♂️

Cleaning Tools useful during Backburning

In addition to chemicals, certain tools can be very helpful in cleaning your pool after backburning:

Leaf Skimmer: This tool looks like a tennis racket and is used to skim the top of the water to remove leaves, bugs, and other floating things you don’t want in your swimming pool.

Pool Vacuum: A good vacuum attachment can remove the dirt and debris that end up on the bottom of the swimming pool.

Pool Brush: A good brush head attachment that also attaches to a pole. The brush is used to brush the steps and walls of the swimming pool, as well as the pool floor.

Skimmer Socks: Backburning or not, it's always good to have an extra level of filtration for your pool and the best way to do that is to add skimmer socks to your skimmer baskets. Not only do they catch particles that can cloud up your pool, but they also extend the life of your filter cartridges as well!

Grab a discounted 5-pack of skimmer socks here.

Quick ways to clean your pool from backburning fallout

Water TechniX SoniX Cordless Robotic Pool Cleaner

This thing works like a charm, especially during backburning season. You just charge it up, chuck it in the water, and off it goes. It scoops up all the ash and soot from the bottom of your pool.

The best part? It’s got its own filter. So all that gunk from backburning won’t clog up your pool filters. Instead, it gets trapped in the cleaner’s filter, which you can easily clean out.

And of course it does all of the other things expected of a robotic pool cleaner, like scrub your pool surfaces, hit all of the pool corners, and even make sure that your waterlines are free of those annoying calcium lines!

Water TechniX MatriX Automatic Pool Cleaner

One of our newest pool cleaners is also quickly becoming one of our new best sellers. Blurring the line between robotic pool cleaners and automatic pool cleaners, the Matrix has features that put many low-end robotic pool cleaners to shame.

Price-wise, it's at the middle of the pack but with features that will make you go wow! If you're looking for an amazing feature set but not yet ready to pull the trigger on a robot cleaner then the MatriX is the one for you.

Water TechniX Rapid Automatic Pool Cleaner

Time-tested and with an iron-clad design, the Rapid has been the go-to for many pool owners for over a decade. If you're looking for something to keep your pool pristine during backburning without burning a hole in your pocket then the Rapid is a very good choice.

By using these tools and chemicals effectively, you can ensure that your pool remains clean and safe for use even after backburning events. Remember, regular maintenance is key to keeping your pool in top condition!

Please note that this information is intended as a general guide. For more specific advice you can reach out to our customer service team for a more tailored recommendation for your pool.

Do you have any questions about this topic or the featured products? No worries, we're here to help! Drop us a question down below and we'll get back to you ASAP.

Happy swimming :)

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