Supplement Feature - February 2020
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A Deep Dive Into Aquatic Facility Trends

By Emily Tipping


Respondents from schools were the most likely to report that they are currently using some form of secondary disinfection. Some 47.1% of school respondents said they use secondary disinfection at their facilities. They were followed by parks and Ys (39.3% of each group uses secondary disinfection), and colleges (39.1%). Camp respondents were the least likely to indicate that they use secondary disinfection, with just 10% indicating they do so. (See Figure 14.)

Respondents whose facilities have higher average operating costs are more likely to report that they use secondary disinfection than those with lower costs. A majority (63.9%) of those whose operating costs average more than $500,000 said they currently use secondary disinfection, up from 50.5% in 2018. For those whose operating costs average between $250,000 and $500,000, 33.9% currently use secondary disinfection. And for those whose costs average less than $250,000, 25.8% currently use secondary disinfection.

Respondents who have indoor pools only are much more likely to rely on secondary disinfection than those who have outdoor pools only. Some 39.1% of indoor pool respondents said they currently use secondary disinfection, compared with just 12.2% of those with outdoor pools. UV is by far the most common method used, with one-third (33%) of indoor pool respondents using UV, and 6.1% of outdoor pool respondents using UV as their secondary disinfection method.

Looking forward, among the 14.7% of respondents who are planning to make additions at their pools over the next few years, 46.7% plan to add UV systems (up from 37.1% in 2018), and 15.2% plan to add ozone (down from 18.2%). Another 14.3% said they are planning to add AOP systems.

Pool automation systems were very common among survey respondents and have seen growing usage over the past couple of years. Some 79.9% of respondents said they currently use chemical controllers, up from 76.8% in 2018. Another 77% currently use a chemical feed pump (up from 73.7), while 40.4% use a backwash controller (up from 36.8%). (See Figure 15.)

When it comes to conservation of resources, a majority of respondents (71%) said they currently have strategies and tools in place to conserve energy, chemicals, water and more. More than half said they currently use strategies and tools to conserve energy (53.6%, up from 52.6% in 2018) and chemicals (52.3%, up from 51.6% in 2018). Another 43.4% said they aim to conserve water, down slightly from 44.8% in 2018.

Respondents from recreation centers were the most likely to report that they currently aim to conserve energy, chemicals and water. Some 74.2% of these respondents said they have conservation strategies and tools in place. They were followed by respondents from Ys (73.8%), parks (72.3%) and schools (70.6%). Camp respondents were the least likely to have conservation strategies and tools, though the percentage who do so grew from 46.9% in 2018 to 60.7% in 2019. They were followed by colleges, 66.2% of whom said they currently aim to conserve energy, chemicals and water.