How To Properly Maintain The Water In Your Pool

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Pool water maintenance is crucial to help ensure the water stays clean and healthy. If you are not aware of what you need to do, follow these tips to learn how to maintain your water.

Materials And Tools
Before you get started, gather the following items to help you maintain and clean your pool water.

  • Pool vacuum
  • Skimming Net
  • Pool brush
  • Water shock
  • Algaecide
  • Water test strips
  • Balancing The Water

You will need to constantly test your swimming pool’s water so you can be sure that it has the proper chlorine levels. While you should test at least two times a week, you will also want to test after heavy usage of the pool, which can cause the chlorine to be unbalanced.
Thankfully, there are test strips that take care of all the guesswork for you. Simply dip the test strip into the pool water, and it will change colors accordingly. You will know within a minute what your chlorine levels are, and the color of the strip will tell you how much chlorine you need to add to the water.

Without proper chlorine levels, your pool will become a breeding ground for bacteria and algae.

Killing Bacteria
If you tested your water and have discovered low chlorine levels, chances are you now have some bacteria in the water. The best way to get rid of it is to add a chemical called water shock. It is a preventative measure that adds a high concentration of chlorine, and will kill most bacteria that may be living in the water. Since bacteria can grow due to low chlorine levels, use water shock when the chlorine levels are at their lowest, such as after a large rainfall.

Using water shock is as simple as following the directions. You will want to add the proper amount to the water in the evening or the early morning, as sunlight can actually make your chlorine levels unstable. When finished, test the water to make sure the chlorine has gone back to the proper levels before using the pool again.

Removing Algae
You will need to clean your pool regularly using a pool brush to get rid of any algae that may be growing in your pool. Algae will be slick and oily, and typically grow on the bottom or sides of your pool. Loose algae can be skimmed off the surface of the water with a net, or removed with a pool vacuum.

It also helps to use an algaecide as a regular part of your pool maintenance routine. It is a chemical that is added to your water, and stops the algae spores that enter your water from growing. Be sure to follow the manufacture’s directions for how much algaecide to use for the size of your swimming pool.

Now that you are aware of how to perform some basic water maintenance for your pool, you should have no problem keeping your water safe and clean for your friends and family.

SEO Maintenance Contracts

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SEO Maintenance Contracts are an integral part of optimizing a website for search engines and maintaining search engine rankings. Unless you intend to do it all yourself, you will need an SEO maintenance contract to keep someone with advanced SEO expertise involved in contributing to the content and technical strategy for your website.

Who needs SEO maintenance contracts?

Website SEO is not for the faint of heart, which is why an SEO maintenance contract is so important for most website owners. Search engine optimization requires an intimate knowledge of search engine policies and behavior: of what works and what doesn’t. Some website owners are capable of keeping up with changing technologies and SEO techniques, but most are not.

Real estate agents are experts at real estate issues; web developers and SEO professionals are expert in search engine optimization issues. If your core business is not website development and SEO, you probably need an SEO maintenance contract with an experienced professional.

SEO tasks to include in a maintenance contract

There are a number of important SEO tasks that should be included in the average SEO maintenance contract:

  • Technical SEO evaluation
  • Home page copywriting and editing
  • Article copywriting and editing
  • External link building
  • Internal link building
  • Social bookmarking
  • Search engine PR
  • Technical SEO evaluation

First, no SEO services should be contracted long term without obtaining a technical evaluation of the website itself, including the content management system (if any) and other platform related issues. Based on this evaluation, it may be a waste of resources to invest in SEO services on a website platform if it is not search engine friendly in the first place. That would be like buying ice cream without having a working freezer to put it in when you get home.

Before expending any money on ongoing SEO services, it’s best to determine if your website platform is even capable of gaining good search engine traction. Some Flash and Javascript navigations are notoriously invisible to Google and other search engines. If your site has one of the critical flaws, it is best to consider migrating your website to a content management system that is capable of performing well on the search engines.

A technical SEO evaluation should include a close look at these key issues and more:

  • Search Engine Friendly (SEF) URLs
  • URLs should look like this:
  • /keyword-category/title-of-article.html
  • /index.php?id=1

No Javascript navigation
Search engines don’t follow Javascript links. If you turn off Javascript in your browser preferences, and your website navigation menus disappear, search engine may not be crawling much of your site.

No Flash navigation
Search engines do not follow Flash links reliably, and do not index them well. If you turn off Flash in your browser preferences, and your website navigation menus disappear, you may have a problem with crawl ability.

No Flash “splash” page
Your home page is the most important page of your website, and should have content on it in order to rank well. If the first page of your site opens up to a fancy slideshow that says “Skip Intro,” you can bet that search engines are devaluing the content on your website because it’s nowhere to be found on your home page. You can also bet that you’re losing human readers who are not interested in looking for the fine print to “Skip Intro.”

H1 tags
If your site is static HTML, did the designer make proper use of H1 tags around the headings of articles? If not, you’re giving away valuable search engine ranking. Similarly, if your content management system does not automatically put your content titles into H1 tags, consider changing content management systems. Unless you intend to become an SEO expert yourself, most website owners should have a content management system that does the routine SEO tasks for them automatically.

Matching Title tags
Similarly, your content management system (CMS) should automatically put the title of articles into the Title tag, matching the content of the H1 tag. This is the ultimate way to make sure Google knows what the content of the page is about. Consider Google’s index to be like one big recipe card file. If you titled all of your recipes “Recipe,” you wouldn’t be able to flip through them and easily distinguish chicken recipe from the brownie recipe. It’s the same with Google. The more clues you give them about what your page is about, the easier it will be for them to accurately index it.

Home page copy writing and editing

A good SEO consultant must be a decent writer. Since your home page is the most important page of your site, and since text content is what search engines are helping users search for, it makes sense that good copy writing is a valuable part of SEO maintenance. Don’t underestimate the value of copy writing for both SEO and marketing effectiveness. The written word has the power to move people into action. A good grasp of the written word along with technical SEO prowess makes a powerful combination for a website.

The services of a good copywriter is something worth investing in, because it will bring in search engine traffic and convert your traffic to leads and sales for years to come.

Article copy writing and editing

In order to succeed in getting ranked well on the search engines, you a regular part of any SEO maintenance contract should be article copy writing and editing. Your content is the most valuable asset on your website. It’s not the graphic design that has longevity and keeps people coming back; it’s the information they find and come back to visit after visit.

Every article you write, or have written for you, is another source of search engine traffic and sales for years to come.

External link building

A dramatic portion of your website’s search engine ranking comes from inbound links; external links pointing to your site. In the early days of search engines, it was not important where the link originated from, or what anchor text the link contained. A link to your site was considered a vote for your site.

Now, more care must be taken to avoid “bad neighborhoods,” but external link building remains an important part of a website’s SEO success. This can be done by link exchanges with other sites, although Google is increasingly devaluing reciprocal links in favor of one-way links. It is also frequently done by paid links, although this is a gray area, since paying for links technically violates Google’s Terms of Service (TOS). There is a fine line between a paid link and an advertisement or sponsorship, therefore there is much discussion among webmasters as to the fairness of Google’s TOS regarding paid links.

Three way links are also a gray area. Three way links are organized by arranging for Site A to link to Site B, Site B to link to Site C, and Site C to link to Site A. In this way, there is no reciprocal link.

In link building, the anchor text is extremely important. Ideally, you want other webmasters to link to your site using the keywords you are targeting for SEO purposes. This is not always possible or practical, but is the ideal situation. If your site is about ecommerce shipping, ideally, you want people to link to your site using the keywords ecommerce shipping. The more websites do this, the more “votes” your site gets for relevance to the keyword “ecommerce shipping.”

Internal link building

Internal link building is often ignored in SEO maintenance contracts, but it is a critical part of SEO. When you link to pages deep within your own site, these are valued by Google as clues as to the value of the deeper content of the site. It is important to provide not only “spider food” from your home page for Google to crawl, but for your articles to link to one another using relevant keywords. Referring back to our example, if you have an ecommerce website with articles about finding the best or free shipping software, you’ll want your articles to have internal links like ship software or shipping software free, linking back to other pages within your site. In this way, search engines add information to their index about what the pages on your site are about.

7 Secrets Of Tennis Court Construction

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Successful tennis court construction can be incredibly painless and stress free, but only if you learn the best way to keep away from typical mistakes.

You will discover countless tips online and in books, some are aimed at those individuals who wish to perform the work by themselves, and some aimed at those who wish to find the most reliable specialist. In this posting I will be focusing on the latter.

Try to resist the temptation of getting quotes from builders at first, it is a much better approach to begin by looking for a step-by-step process to follow. With this method you’re far more likely to be pleased with the end result.

The construction plan below is a tested methodology that absolutely should be adopted by anybody seeking to create a tennis court. Best of luck.

Step 1 – Determine Your Goals

Many people don’t implement this step at the very beginning, but it actually is imperative to do this prior to choosing a builder. Put in writing just what you expect the finished construction to end up like. What type of court are you interested in? Would you like a hard court, cushioned court, or soft court? Would you like to utilize the court throughout the year or simply once the weather is nice? Every one of these questions should be clarified in a single document you will reference all through the project.

Step 2 – Establish What Your Price Range Will Be For The Project

I believe its the toughest choice you are going to need to make. You cannot find any wrong or right way to decide, as every tennis player will have different requirements. To avoid leaving out something which is very important to your project, I would recommend you spend the necessary time on the preceding step to get perfectly clear about your individual needs. As an example, choosing a hard court to help you cut expenses would certainly be a poor choice for someone who needs cushioned surfaces to relieve knee troubles.

Step 3 – Determine If You’ll Be Working With A Consultant

It is actually a misconception that hiring a consultant is only recommended if you’ve got money to burn, when in fact, they normally help save money. The consultant can help to manage your project costs as a result of being familiar with the wants and needs of the client. A consultant can keep the focus on exactly where money should be spent. A consultant may take the form of an architect, an experienced tennis court contractor, or even an engineer. In the event that you choose to work with a consultant, make sure that they have years worth of experience, and you ought to review a selection of their finished  results to avoid any shock down the road.

Step 4 – Select A Suitable Site

Determining where the court is going to be built, the precise size of the court, and the orientation, should be done before you consider any design. The direction in which the court faces is an important factor if it’ll be played on often in the wintertime. You won’t want to get this wrong if you’re considering playing throughout the cold months of winter: the low sunlight can be very irritating when it rests directly behind your opponents. The type of soil and drainage are important factors that will need to be taken into consideration, as are any nearby trees, disapproving neighbors, etc.

Step 5 – Select The Type Of Surface

What I call the most important decision in tennis court construction, surface selection, should always be handled with appropriate consideration and requirements of the client. Issues such as the speed of a court, the maintenance costs, installation costs, and whether or not you are able to play while it is raining, all differ from one surface to the next.

The three primary types are as follows:-

A. Porous Type e.g. porous concrete, clay, grass, asphalt, artificial grass

B. Non-porous Type e.g. non-porous asphalt, post tension-ed concrete

C. Cushioned Non-porous Type e.g. polymer systems, carpet, artificial grass

Step 6 – Decide On Tennis Court Accessories and Amenities

At this point you’ll be ready to order some essentials… for instance a net, some posts, fencing, etc. Aside from that, there are several additional factors that can help improve the visual aesthetics of the court, for example a nice bench, a shade area, the surrounding paving or vegetation, and so on.

Step 7 – Select A Tennis Court Contractor To Complete The Project

Just as a commercial property owner would consult with a commercial window replacement contractor for it’s glass replacement needs, so should calling some industry association for court construction references really be your first step in choosing the best builder. This is an important first step. The next thing should be to get at least three bids, each with genuine referrals from other satisfied clients like private owners, tennis clubs, as well as schools.

If you can, contact a few previous clients to find out whether they would recommend their work as well as if the project ended up being completed on budget and on schedule. Try to get a feel for how happy they are with the finished court, and how well it has lasted over time.

Ask about the contractor’s experience and the number of years they have been building courts. Its important to choose someone with lots of experience. Ask about previous clients who have completed a court like the one you’re interested in.  Get a list of satisfied clients, and give them a call, or even better… visit the site if you’re able to.

I hope this simple tennis court construction guide has been of interest to you.