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Do You Need a Screened Pool in Florida?

Pool screens are becoming a popular trend in the United States, especially in Florida. A pool screen can transform your pool from an ordinary one to a climate-controlled tropical oasis. 

While pool screens are not a requirement everywhere, they are mandated in some places.

Do you need a screened pool in Florida?

Screened pools in Florida are common due to the pool safety requirements. Florida has the highest drowning rates for children aged 1 to 4 in the United States. Drowning is actually the leading cause of death amongst children of this age range.

Hence, pool screens and other pool barriers have become a necessity in the state of Florida.

In this article, we discuss why pools in Florida are screened in. We also talk about sunbathing in a screened pool and the maintenance requirement of a pool screen. 

Screened Pool

Why Are Many Florida Pools Screened In?

Aside from being a requirement, here are a few reasons why pools in Florida are screened in:

Blocks Unwanted Debris, Leaves, and Insects

A screened pool provides security from insects, dirt, debris, and unwanted visitors like snakes.

The screen keeps insects and other tiny animals away from your swimming pool. This way, you are safe from any harm such pests might bring your way.

Also, by preventing dirt from accumulating in your swimming pool, you spend less time and effort while cleaning.

Easy Maintenance

Most people with screen enclosures installed will tell you how easy it is to clean the pool. You will not have to do much since the pool will be clean more times than not.

Sunlight Protection

Florida is called the sunshine state because of its hot sunny days.

Although most people enjoy sunbathing, it is best to keep direct sunlight exposure to a minimum. An enclosed pool will ensure you enjoy swimming without worrying about the harsh UV rays.

Reduces Chemical and Water Evaporation

Screening your pool can also help save you money. The loss of pool chemicals and water by evaporation contributes significantly to the cost of having a swimming pool.

But with your pool screened, the rate of evaporation will fall.

Consequently, you will lose less water and pool chemical to evaporation.

Reduces Energy Bill

Another cost that comes with owning a swimming pool is pool heating. The average swimming pool can hold between 24,000 and 30,000 gallons of water. Keeping this amount of water at the perfect temperature can be expensive.

With a pool screen installed, you can trap some heat. This way, the energy cost of keeping the pool warm will drop. It saves you money, and reduces the impact on the environment.

Reduces Algae Growth

Although algae may look pretty in the sea, it is an unwelcome guest in your swimming pool. With an enclosed screen, algae growth in your swimming pool will decrease significantly.

Are Bugs Really That Bad In Florida?

According to a national survey, Florida is the state with the worst bug infestation problem in the United States. 

There are thousands of insect species in Florida, including land-dwelling arthropods like ticks, spiders, centipedes, and mites. 

One reason why Florida has so many bugs is the climate of the state – warm and humid. Warm and humid places around the world tend to encourage natural arthropod and insect diversity. 

Another reason is that Florida is a popular tourist destination. The high level of human activities encourages the introduction of bugs from other places. 

Is It Required by Law to Have a Pool Screen in Florida?

A pool screen enclosure is required by law in Florida. 

The residential swimming pool safety act mandates that a residential swimming pool must have a safety feature that meets the barrier requirements of a swimming pool. The safety feature must isolate the home from the swimming pool by enclosing the pool.

Some of the barrier requirements include the following:

  • The outer part of the barrier must be at least 4 feet high.
  • It must have no openings, protrusions, gaps, indentations, or structural components that will allow a young child to climb over, crawl under, or squeeze through.
  • The barrier must be built around the pool’s perimeter and separated from any wall, fence, or other enclosures surrounding the yard.
  • It must be placed away from the pool’s edge to prevent children or an elderly person from falling into the water immediately after penetrating the barrier. 

A pool screen meets the barrier requirements outlined above. Hence it is required by law in Florida.

woman sunbathing

Can You Still Get a Tan Under a Pool Screen?

A pool screen might not seem like the ideal option for tanning because it keeps the sun out to an extent. Nonetheless, you can get a tan under a pool screen.

Here are some tips on how to get a tan under a pool screen: 

  • Choose the Perfect Time of Day

The rays from the sun become more active between noon and 3 pm. It is best to get tanned in the morning or evening.

Light-skinned individuals tan faster, so knowing your skin type is essential when tanning under a pool screen. 

  • Wear a Sunscreen

Pool screens do not have any protection from UV rays, so you need sunscreen to protect your skin from the effects of sunlight exposure. Use sunscreens that provide broad-spectrum protection from UV rays. 

  • Change Your Position as Often as Possible

When you stay under a pool screen, do not maintain one position. Try to change your position as often as possible. If you stay in one spot, you may tan unevenly.

So, ensure you sit up and walk around. Lastly, do not fall asleep while you tan under a pool screen to avoid damaging your skin. 

  • Drink Plenty of Water

Fluids like juice, water, and tea keep your body hydrated while you tan. Taking fluids keeps you moisturized, soothed, and hydrated from the inside.

Keeping the body hydrated ensures your skin gets the best tanning effect. 

Although alcohol is considered a fluid, do not drink alcohol while you tan beneath a pool screen. Drinking alcohol can make your skin vulnerable to sunburn.

  • Get Your Skin Ready

To ensure your tan lasts longer, you need to prepare your skin before tanning beneath a pool screen. Skin exfoliation is essential before you tan. 

You may also apply some aloe vera to your skin as it helps the tan last longer. When the gel gets absorbed into the skin, it soothes the skin and gives it a glow.

beautiful screened pool

How Much Does It Cost to Install a Screened Pool Enclosure?

Depending on your budget, your screened pool enclosure can be low to the ground and small. This type will cover just the pool. Alternatively, it can be large enough to cover both your pool and deck. 

Pool enclosures are built from different materials, with each having its price points. The national average cost for installing a screened pool enclosure ranges between $10,000 and $30,000. 

Most people choose to spend $18,000 on a polycarbonate enclosure. It is tall enough to enclose the pool deck and walk beneath. A pool enclosure covering the pool and extending to the house can cost as low as $5,000. 

A fully retractable polycarbonate enclosure covering both the pool and deck can cost as much as $60,000. 

What Maintenance Is Required for Pool Screens?

Although pool screens keep dirt and debris from your pool, they should not replace regular pool cleaning. You still have to monitor the pH of the pool and ensure the water quality is top-notch.

Improper maintenance of your pool may affect the integrity and cleanliness of your pool screen.

When cleaning a pool screen, use a soft bristle brush with a mixture of chlorine bleach and water. You can also use a mixture of white vinegar and water as an alternative. 

If you are unsure about cleaning it yourself, call a qualified and skilled company well-versed in enclosure and pool maintenance and cleaning.

Final Thoughts

The rate of child drowning in Florida is pretty high. For this reason, the Florida residential swimming pool act necessitates the use of pool barriers.

One type of barrier that meets the requirements outlined by the law is a pool screen. Beyond the mandate by the law, pool screens are beneficial since they help reduce energy costs, shield the pool from foreign objects, and reduce pool chemical costs.