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Customer Spotlight: Blue Moon Pools and the Orenda Startup

April 26, 2018
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Blue Moon Pools is on the cutting edge of Pool Plastering

We had the privilege of spending two days in the greater San Diego area with a quality plastering company, Blue Moon Pools. Early on, it became clear to us that Blue Moon Pools is on the cutting edge of pool plastering. We do not say that lightly; they do things to ensure successful outcomes prior to the contract being signed with a homeowner. Here are just three of the things that Blue Moon Pools chooses to do, that we view as above and beyond.

1. Test every homeowner's tap water chemistry

test fill water, tap water, tap water chemistry, pool chemistry, orenda pool, orenda chemicalsEven prior to a quote being given to a builder or homeowner, Blue Moon Pools has a representative at the home with a test kit. They test calcium, pH and alkalinity of the tap water. Why? Because according to Lupe, the President of Blue Moon Pools, something like 80% of problems can be prevented by addressing water chemistry on day one.

This fits exactly with the Orenda startup protocol--and Blue Moon was doing it before we were. Their best practices were born out of painful experiences in the past. So by the time we were visiting Lupe, he had been testing customers' fill water for years. To him, it's essential to success. We cannot agree more.

2. Bring calcium to every job, and add it while the pool is filling

Blue Moon Pools knows that adding calcium earlier than later is a good thing for plaster. Plaster is curing, and if the water is aggressive--according to the LSI--it will be hungry for calcium. The entire phenomenon of "plaster dust" is evidence that aggressive water steals calcium from plaster. We at Orenda have been preaching about the LSI since we learned about it. Sadly, like so many in the pool business, did not appreciate the critical importance of the LSI until 2016.

The LSI is so important, we have invested heavily in building an LSI calculator app for the industry to use.

 

calcium pool startup, adding calcium to a pool, orenda startup, blue moon pools Blue Moon Pools adds calcium to the pool while it is filling up.

 

Water wants to be in equilibrium. You can either give the water the calcium saturation it craves, or it will steal it from anywhere it can; in a plaster pool, the easiest source is the calcium-rich plaster itself. Blue Moon Pools knows that to prevent plaster dust (and more importantly, the underlying problem causing it), they need to add calcium to the water before the pool is even full. So they have bags and bags of calcium powder on every truck, ready to be pre-dissolved and added to the water while it's filling.  Just a few pounds of calcium go a long way in helping a pool start up cleanly.

Here's video proof from Blue Moon Pools that adding calcium and SC-1000 to the pool while it's filling can make a dramatic difference:

 
 
 
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The Orenda App has improved calcium dosing

calcium powder, sc-1000, calcium startup, orenda startup, orenda start up, blue moon poolsPrior to meeting us, Lupe and Blue Moon Pools were adding a few pounds of calcium at a time, in an effort to get the calcium levels up to 230ppm, ideally. They would pre-dissolve the calcium in buckets and pour it into the pool when it had approximately 200-300 gallons in the bottom. But is 230 ppm really the ideal level? As it turns out, the LSI has 6 factors that all matter, and the ideal calcium level depends on the other factors. The Orenda LSI Calculator App does all the math, so Blue Moon Pools is now able to know exactly how much calcium to add on day one.

Speaking of knowing exactly how much to add, the calculator allows you to email the results. Now, Blue Moon Pools can keep track of cost, and know exactly how much calcium was added to any given pool. It fits right in with the fact that Blue Moon Pools...

3. Document and photograph everything

pool plaster documentation, plaster photos, blue moon pools, orenda start up, orenda startupThis is the single biggest differentiator we saw with Blue Moon Pools. Lupe showed us his computer, which has a folder for every job they have done in the past 16 years or so. Every folder has photos of the pool before, during, and after. Not just a few photos, but photos from multiple angles. Photos of the field survey that his employees fill out. Measurements, pre-existing conditions (like broken tile, or a cracked concrete deck), and anything else is documented thoroughly. This way, Blue Moon Pools has a record of every job, front to back.

When we got to the job site prior to filming our interview with Lupe, his supervisor was there taking pictures and writing notes on a clipboard. That's incredible, and we strongly encourage it.

Documenting everything allows Lupe to control his costs, be more accurate in quoting customers pools, and more efficiently schedule his plaster crews. If they know the variables before they arrive, they will be better and faster on the job site. His people know what to look for, and can identify problems before its too late. Sure, it takes more time and effort up front, but it has dramatically reduced warranty work and call-backs.

Customer Spotlight

Blue Moon Pools was the first of our Customer Spotlight series. They are located in the greater San Diego area and can be contacted via their website. If you would like to be featured in our Customer Spotlight series, contact us, or request a training. Thank you!

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