Eco-friendly tips for maintaining pools and hot tubs in Burlington

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Published July 29, 2022 at 10:08 am

Take Action Burlington is reminding residents of the importance of following basic environmentally-friendly actions this summer.

With summer in full swing and people taking staycations, more people may be using pools and hot tubs.


As a result, Take Action Burlington is reminding residents that good eco-friendly pool, spa and hot tub maintenance begins with knowing about sanitary and storm sewers.

A sanitary sewer is where all the water inside a home or business ends up after it has been used.

This includes water from toilets, sinks, showers, dishwashers and washing machines which flows to a wastewater treatment plant (WWTP). From there, it is then cleaned and tested prior to being released back into Burlington Bay or Lake Ontario.

A storm sewer, on the other hand, collects rain and melted snow through large grates on the street. These are known as catch basins.

This water then flows directly into a local creek or water body without being treated. This untreated water in Halton Region eventually flows into Lake Ontario or Burlington Bay.

Pool water contains chlorine, which helps to keep the pool clean.

If released directly into the storm sewer, however, pool water can have a severe impact on the microorganisms, plants and fish in the ecosystem.

Backwash water is created when rinsing the filter with clean water and contains both sediment and chemicals.

This water must be filtered and dechlorinated if it is going to be released into the storm sewer.

If not, it must be released into the sanitary sewer or across the lawn on a property.

Those with a chlorine or bromine pool should dechlorinate the water by letting the pool water sit for approximately a week under sunny conditions.

Those with a saltwater pool may let its water sit as it will not alter the salt levels within the water. They must be slowly emptied into the sanitary sewer connected to the home or removed by an approved waste hauler.

For more information and eco-friendly tips on maintaining pools, hot tubs and spas this summer, click here.

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