Nothing works like a good test to prove a company’s mettle. For Berggren Pool and Spa Services, such a trial also illustrated the true power of top-notch customer service.

In 2017, wildfires swept through North Central Washington, destroying hundreds of thousands of acres. Little was spared, including the swimming pools and spas in the region.

As ash and soot blanketed the area like snow, and the sky turned to an eerie yellow, the company identified an increase in phosphates in their customer’s pools. “We were finding phosphates were actually in the 5,000 parts per billion range and above,” explains owner Michael Berggren.

Unfortunately, his drop tests could not read above 1,500 parts per billion. This prompted the East Wenatchee, Wash.-based company to rethink its approach.

“We needed a way to remove the phosphates caused from the fires and to prevent staining, without adding to the total phosphate load in the water,” Berggren explains.

In a quest to help his customers, Berggren did some research. Among other things, he found that certain brands of scale and stain sequestrants added to the ortho phosphate issue because they are made from phosphonic acid. After learning about other phosphate contributors, he searched for alternatives and selected a new method. To combat these high levels, the company switched to safe and non-toxic chemicals that comply with NSF-50 and NSF-60.

With these adjustments, the quality of the water drastically improved. So did the company’s customer service, Berggren says.

“This has positively affected our business, and we have become known as pool gurus and The Pool Whisperers,” he says.

The company’s response to the compounding issue made perfect sense. After all, Berggren founded the company in 2010 on the principle that “swimming pools should be a fun and safe environment,” he says.

“Our customers appreciated the extra attention to detail after the fires of 2017, because we were able to keep their pool water safe to swim in all while saving water,” he concludes.