Building a Pool: Things to Look For

I just want to touch on a couple of things today regarding what to look for when you are having an inground vinyl liner pool installed.

As I have said before, this type of pool is becoming more and more popular due to the fact that you are able to have the high end look of a concrete pool without the high end cost of one.  In addition to that, the time it takes to install a vinyl liner inground swimming pool is substantially less than that of a concrete pool.  There are some things that you as a homeowner can and should look for during the building process.  One is making sure that the builder has all the permits that he or she needs for the pool.  Without proper permits, the building inspectors can postpone the build until proper permits are acquired.  This could potentially cause a lot of stress for you as the owner.  That being said, it is also a good idea to check out the companies in your area that do vinyl liner installs.  There are a lot of “companies” that will agree to do the job but their work may be questionable.  A good place to start is finding out if the company has a store front.  This may seem irrelevant to some, but the truth is that a company with a store front is likely to be more reliable than the guy working out of an old barn and rusty pick up truck.  Think of it this way: if they are responsible enough to maintain and run a store, then they will likely have that same mentality when it comes to building your pool.  I also recommend arranging a meeting with the owner prior to making any arrangements to break ground.  I always like to know who is working on my projects well before any plans are made to start.  By doing this, you will also have the opportunity to meet and assess their character.  I know we are taught to not judge a book by its cover, but when you are potentially spending a significant amount of money on something it is perfectly okay to want to get to know the guy who is going to be in charge.  In addition to that, be aware that a lot of companies contract out certain parts of the build to other companies.  It would be wise to find out who they sub the work out to ahead of time to allow you to check that company out.  You can find out all kinds of information online these days and often find reviews of companies done by customers who have used them in the past.  I know that this all may seem like common sense to some, but think about all the people who have been burned by a company in the past.

In addition to getting the proper permits, make sure your builder is getting all the inspections done that are required in your area.  The rules and guidelines to be followed differ from state to state and county to county.  So it is important that your builder is getting the required inspections for the area in which you live.  Most places will require a plumbing inspection as well as a bonding inspection.  This brings me to my next point: in many places it is required to have every piece of metal around your pool properly bonded.  This includes the wall panels of the pool (if they are steel), the coping around the pool (if it is metal), and the rebar around the pool that will be encased in the concrete sidewalks.  During this process you will see a copper wire running around the perimeter of the pool tying all of the metal components together.  This is a must in most locations.

Coping not covered

Speaking of the concrete around the pool and the coping,  most builders will cover the coping of the pool with something (usually plastic) before they pour the concrete around it.  This is a protective measure to keep the concrete off of the coping to ensure that it stays nice and neat.  If the builder does not cover the coping, then you could end up with concrete on the coping and nobody wants that as the finished product.  Another thing that this does is protect the coping from the sealer that they will use on the concrete.  When you have metal coping, it is usually painted or sometimes powder coated.  The sealer used on the concrete can actually eat through the paint on the coping.  When you have a brand new pool, you do not want the coping to be insufficient.  Once the coping is on the pool and the concrete deck is poured, the only way to fix the coping is either to strip off the old paint and re-paint it or bust up the concrete deck and replace the coping all together.  Neither one of these solutions is ideal, especially if the pool is brand new.  So, make sure that the builder is covering the coping prior to pouring the concrete.

Bad Pool Plumbing

The final thing I want to touch on is the plumbing lines.  Again, the code may be different from place to place, but usually they are to be buried at least 18 inches down.  This is to keep them from potentially freezing during the winter months.  If they are under concrete, I think it is a little different in that the concrete itself offers some protection to the pipes.  However, if you have your filter pad located a good distance from the pool, which most people do, make sure that the pipes in that stretch from the pool to the pad are below the frost line.

These are just some essentials to watch out for while your pool is being built.  I urge you as the homeowner to be aware of the project going on in your backyard.  Knowing what to expect could potentially save you from expensive repairs later on.

One Comment

  1. Great tips for pool building. I have been wanting a pool for quite some time now. We live in the desert and have found that having a pool would actually save water over our current situation of having lush grass.

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