Here are some commonly asked questions ... if you have any others, please feel free to email or call us at 805.640.1288, we'd love to hear from you.
Can these be built where I live?
California BioNova systems are custom tailored to the Central and Southern California climate where it is installed. Our pools have been built in the hot, tropical climates of northern Australia, the hot, dry areas of southern Italy and France, the temperate regions of central Europe, and the cool altitudes of the Alps and the cold climate of northern Sweden. Central and Southern California provide an excellent climate for our Natural Swimming Pools.
Are mosquitoes a problem?
Natural Swimming Pools are not breeding grounds for mosquitoes. The water in an NSP is constantly in motion making it an undesirable location for the egg-laying females.
Can we have fish in the pool?
Fish are not allowed within the NSP. Fish put an undesirable biological load on the system and are not permitted under BioNova standards.
Can we heat the pool?
Yes: how much you can heat it depends on the area-specific climate and the time of the year. BioNova Natural Pools tend to be naturally warmer than traditional pools because the regeneration zone is relatively shallow and acts as a passive solar collector.
We have freezing weather, what about winterization?
In cold climates, the NSP needs to be treated just like any other pool, i.e., the plumbing lines need to be winterized, and the pump and filter drained. The swimming zone can be covered with a winter cover and the regeneration zone can be covered with a BioNova mesh cover to prevent leaves and other debris from entering.
How is the water treated?
The water is treated biologically. There are no chemicals used, nor are there any devices used that would disinfect or sterilize the water. The movement of the water through the biological filter, the action of the aerobic and anaerobic bacteria in the filter and regeneration zone, as well as the plants feeding hydroponically on the water is how the water is cleaned. This is pure Mother Nature cleaning and clarifying water. We are simply building an environment that allows her to do what is natural – and – enhancing that environment with design techniques and energy-efficient technology.
How big does the regeneration zone need to be?
There are technically 5 different "types" of NSPs and they differ depending on the exact design of the swimming zone and the regeneration zone, however a good rule of thumb is that the regeneration zone should be approximately equal in size to the swimming zone.
Do these pools cost more than traditional pools?
In general yes. Our natural swimming pools cost about the same per square foot as a traditional chemical pool but because these pools are larger and require our patented technology they tend to cost more, typically starting out in the high five figure range. Additionally, natural pools need to have the aquatic plants acquired and installed, however on-going operational costs are lower over the years as no chemicals are needed and energy consumption is much lower than for a chemical pool. Finally, it should be considered that the NSP is both a swimming pool AND a water garden.
Will there be algae?
Yes, algae is a natural plant and an NSP will always have some algae in it. Algae is not harmful, it is simply a single cell plant and a small amount of algae in the regeneration zone of the system is actually necessary. We control algae by using the correct aquatic plants for the climate to insure that these plants out compete with the algae for the available nutrients in the pool water. Algae is typically relegated to the regeneration zone and is vacuumed out of the swimming zone with a pool vacuum or automatic pool cleaning system.
What kind of maintenance is required?
Some maintenance is the same as for a traditional, chemical pool. We need to periodically empty and clean skimmer baskets, empty and clean pump baskets, vacuum the pool and clean the filter. Water garden maintenance is also necessary – removing unwanted plants, trimming and maintaining existing plants and cutting them back at the end of the season
What is the minimum size for an NSP?
We do not recommend NSP’s smaller than 535 square feet in total. Consult California BioNova® for details on correctly sizing an NSP.
Who designs and builds my pool?
California BioNova does the actual design, implementation and maintenance. See our experience and bios.