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Thread: Owner / Builder Pool - Please Critique

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    Dparnell's Avatar
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    Owner / Builder Pool - Please Critique

    Hello,

    I am venturing down the road of an owner builder pool. I have a neighbor who successfully took this road earlier this year and has been a huge helps.

    A couple things I am uncertain about at this point:
    1. Not sure how to correctly calculate sqft, perimeter or volume of an irregular shape pool.
    2. Plumbing specs were taken from our neighbors plans since our pool designs and size are similar.
    3. Equipment - just put some ideas on paper, not set in stone. Recommendations welcome especiall with pumps. If I have 3 sheer descents, two bubblers on the baja reef, pool and spa. How many pumps do I need?


    I am looking for ideas, advice, suggestions and critiques from other pool owners on my design and plan. Would you change anything you see? If so, why?

    See attached and let me know what you think.

    Pool specs
    38' x 22'
    3.5' - 8' depth
    Skimmers - 2
    Returns - 5
    Interior material - pebble

    Spa specs
    9' diameter
    Depth 3.5'
    Returns - 10
    Interior material - pebble
    Multi-level seating

    Equipment specs
    Pool pump - Pentair variable speed
    Second pump for water features - ?
    Third pump is it needed?
    Filtration - cartridge filter
    Heater - 40K BTU


    Thanks in advance!

    pool.jpg
    20150904_100754.jpg
    20150904_100840.jpg
    pool 2.JPG

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    Helen203's Avatar
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    Re: Owner / Builder Pool - Please Critique

    Pool Volume Calculator | PENTAIR

    I like the straight wall in the back!
    My Pool Build (2015): inground 12K gals gunite/plaster pool, SWG, 2-speed pump, cartridge filter, gas heater, and polaris cleaner (Jandy). TF-100 Test Kit w/ Speed Stir

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    Re: Owner / Builder Pool - Please Critique

    I have Pentair Intelliflo VS 3hp to run pool & spa. I have Pentair Whisperflo 3/4hp to run the water features. Some will say VS will run it all but I wanted to make sure when spa was on it was rockin! I was afraid if spa was rockin the water feature ( similar to yours 3 water dents from wall ) may not function to their full potential.
    8500 gallon IG Pebble Sheen with Spa. 3hp Pentair VS Intelliflo ( pool ), 3/4 hp WhisperFlo ( water feature ),Pentair Racer, 400K Pentair heater, Pentair 500sqft Cartridge filter, EasyTouch 8, Stenner 45mp2 15gallon wired to ET8

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    Dparnell's Avatar
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    Re: Owner / Builder Pool - Please Critique

    I like the straight wall in the back!
    Thanks Helen. Me too. Though about giving it some curves, but I enjoy the simplicity of straight lines every once and a while.

    I have Pentair Intelliflo VS 3hp to run pool & spa. I have Pentair Whisperflo 3/4hp to run the water features. Some will say VS will run it all but I wanted to make sure when spa was on it was rockin! I was afraid if spa was rockin the water feature ( similar to yours 3 water dents from wall ) may not function to their full potential.
    Thanks for the feedback Rphpool. I plan on running the VS for the pool and spa. Much like you, I want to be able to run the water features while enjoying the spa. Do you think with 10 jets in the spa I can get away with 1 pump for pool and spa? Or should I get a dedicated pump for the spa giving me a total of 3 pumps?

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    Re: Owner / Builder Pool - Please Critique

    I have 9 jets in my spa. When spa is on the pump is running spa only. I have a valve that when pool is on I can regulate the amount of water comming into spa ( spillway ) and to the pool returns.
    8500 gallon IG Pebble Sheen with Spa. 3hp Pentair VS Intelliflo ( pool ), 3/4 hp WhisperFlo ( water feature ),Pentair Racer, 400K Pentair heater, Pentair 500sqft Cartridge filter, EasyTouch 8, Stenner 45mp2 15gallon wired to ET8

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    SuzfromTexas's Avatar
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    Re: Owner / Builder Pool - Please Critique

    I got your PM yesterday and haven't been sure how to answer...... The questions about the pumps are really out of my league. Just because they're in my signature, doesn't mean I understand them! Lol!!!!!! (that's the truth!) I should know more about them after I have Pool School with my PB - still waiting on that. Also, I think my third pump was for the Polaris pool cleaner which I decided against and went with the robot cleaner - love, love, love it!!!! So now, I guess I have a useless third pump. See, you're ahead of the game by coming to TFP before you build!

    Thanks for including the link to your build so I could check it out. I'm really not trying to pass you off to others - I just don't think I'm the best person to answer your questions.

    Pumps: I decided the best way to help you is to bump your thread back up to the top in hopes some more experts can advise you about the pumps - number and best way to handle what you want done for your water features, etc.

    Heaters: They can also give suggestions on heaters, etc. I have what our PB gave me..... I believe others on TFP have suggested another heater they believe is better. Since you're doing OB, it would be good to get their suggestions.

    Filters: There seem to be varied opinions on the best filters. I think location has some to do with selection - ie, do you have a lot of dust in your area, etc. I've heard (somewhere, maybe not on TFP) that PBs like to install cartridge filters because they are easier for them to install. But they are more time consuming for the owner to clean. I have read on here that bigger is better for filters since the larger filters allow more time between cleanings.

    Again, my apologies for not being more helpful. I'm afraid my usefulness is fairly cosmetic on TFP... But I am flattered you thought I might know more than I do!!!!

    You have a beautiful design! Keep posting so others can help you as you build. There are many awesome Owner/Builders on TFP. And they seem to really enjoy sharing their experience and knowledge!!!

    Take care,
    Suz.
    Suz~Cypress area~ 2015 pool build. 23K gallons. IG swcg system. 35'x18'; 573sf; 104' perim; depth 4'-7'. Bubblers, sheer descents, 7' spa. Jandy: color LEDs; 2HP 2sp pump; 1HP 2sp pump; spa pump; 580 cartridge; 400K BTU; Dolphin M500; PS8; Inline chlorinator not used; Aqua Pure 1400. Blue Granite Sheen. Travertine deck. Lightstreams Peacock Blue TF-100, K-1766, SpeedStir

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    JamieP's Avatar
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    Re: Owner / Builder Pool - Please Critique

    I like your design! We are considering doing an owner build too. Do you know how much it costs to elevate the deck on the backside of the pool instead of keeping it level? That is one thing I'm wondering about doing before I have my engineer draw up the plans, but I want to be able to anticipate how it might affect the overall price before I decide.
    28,000 gallon freeform, Stonescapes Tropics Blue Minipebble with abalone, 3.5' to 8.5' depth. 2 skimmers, 5 returns, dedicated vacuum port, Dolphin Z5 robot. All Pentair equip: EasyTouch 8, IC60 SWG, VS pump, 520 Cartridge Filter, 3 Intellibrites, 2 Color Cascade Bubblers. TurboTwister Slide and 8' Salt System Jump Board. TF-100. My Jan-Mar 2016 build:
    Waxahachie, TX Owner Build - A race to beat the baby!!

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    Dparnell's Avatar
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    Re: Owner / Builder Pool - Please Critique

    Suz,

    Thanks for the bump. Once we get going on the project I will be sure to post plenty of pictures.


    JaimeP - thank you. I had one pool builder quote me an extra $1,000k for the raised bond beam. I don't absolutely need it but I think pools that have it are more appealing to look at, plus I want the water features.

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    Re: Owner / Builder Pool - Please Critique

    The cost of raising the deck depends on your PB. This is where they are making their money. On the upgrades. As a owner build, it would cost you next to nothing. Engineers will charge you a flat fee no matter what so pool builders cash in on this. only time engineering would cost more is if you require special retaining walls or if you plan to add sunken bars or ramadas. The additional costs come when they build it. Requires more building material and that is really all pool builders pay for, which should not be much unless you want a big space filled in (shotcrete is charged by the yard and not too cheap).
    NEW POOL BUILD IN THE WORKS. :)

    PLAY POOL - SPA- SUNKEN BAR

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    Re: Owner / Builder Pool - Please Critique

    Dparnell, thanks for the info. How raised is your bond beam? I see a +12" on that back side of the pool. Is that the height? I agree that the raised bond beam really adds character and depth how to a pool looks. I like that in your design, and as others have mentioned the clean look of the straight wall at the back.

    AZwaldo, that makes sense. I don't think the engineering would cost more, only I don't want my guy to design it one way only to find that the cost of building it that way is more than I might expect. Any idea what goes into making the deck higher? Thicker concrete?
    28,000 gallon freeform, Stonescapes Tropics Blue Minipebble with abalone, 3.5' to 8.5' depth. 2 skimmers, 5 returns, dedicated vacuum port, Dolphin Z5 robot. All Pentair equip: EasyTouch 8, IC60 SWG, VS pump, 520 Cartridge Filter, 3 Intellibrites, 2 Color Cascade Bubblers. TurboTwister Slide and 8' Salt System Jump Board. TF-100. My Jan-Mar 2016 build:
    Waxahachie, TX Owner Build - A race to beat the baby!!

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    Dparnell's Avatar
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    Re: Owner / Builder Pool - Please Critique

    JamieP - yes, 12" is the height of the RBB on the backside of the pool. My understanding is the costs are minimal as AZWaldo said, this is where PB often make some of their money with all the extras. The only added major cost should be steel and shotcrete. I would ask you PB to design and quote your pool without RBB and then ask for a quote with it. Most pool builders in my area use Pool Studio to design pools (I used the same software) and adding RBB to a design is just a matter of clicking a few buttons.

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    Dparnell's Avatar
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    Re: Owner / Builder Pool - Please Critique

    Still looking for equipment advice can anyone chime in and let me know if this setup makes sense:

    Pool pump - Pentair Intelliflo VS 011018
    Spa pump - Pentair Whisperflo 1.5 HP 011514
    Water features pump - Pentair Whisperflo 011513 1 HP
    Filter - Pentair CCP320
    Heater - Pentair Mastertemp 400k BTU 460736
    SWG - Intellichlor IC60
    Automation - Pentair Easy Touch
    Lights - Ameribrite LEDs 500 watts x 2

    Anything you would recommend changing?

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    JamieP's Avatar
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    Re: Owner / Builder Pool - Please Critique

    I'm not an expert on equipment, but from what I've read on here, you'll be very glad to have the VS pump, and the larger SWG. The white LEDs (that's what you have listed, right?) make for a really nice crisp white light, and two is definitely better than one. Just make sure you position them so they are shining away from the house and seating areas, because pool lights of any kind can be glaring.

    Have you considered an autofill line? Are you doing the lighted bubblers?
    28,000 gallon freeform, Stonescapes Tropics Blue Minipebble with abalone, 3.5' to 8.5' depth. 2 skimmers, 5 returns, dedicated vacuum port, Dolphin Z5 robot. All Pentair equip: EasyTouch 8, IC60 SWG, VS pump, 520 Cartridge Filter, 3 Intellibrites, 2 Color Cascade Bubblers. TurboTwister Slide and 8' Salt System Jump Board. TF-100. My Jan-Mar 2016 build:
    Waxahachie, TX Owner Build - A race to beat the baby!!

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    Dparnell's Avatar
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    Re: Owner / Builder Pool - Please Critique

    Thought I would provide an update and some pics of the pool.

    Dig was done on October 13, pool would have been completed by now but lost a month due to my tile guy disappearing.

    Pre-plaster inspection is planned for Monday, January 11. Once that's complete it's time for pebble. Alumawood patio cover is being installed the third week of January. Then it's time to landscape and enjoy the backyard.

    My wife and I are struggling with what color pebble to go with. She likes the darker look, but fears that since our deck/ coping and tile are pretty dark it will look bad. I tend to agree. Thinking about going light and like the look of Aqua Blue, Aqua White, and Tropics Blue. Any opinions on what color would look best with our tile and deck???

    The pool will get full sun during the day and it's 8' deep. Landscaping will be pretty basic with grass throughout the backyard and fruit trees & flowers lining the perimeter of the yard.




















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    JamieP's Avatar
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    Re: Owner / Builder Pool - Please Critique

    I agree, that the lighter colors of pebble you mentioned would provide a nice contrast and look really clean and fresh against your darker decking. I like the look of Tropics Blue from having seen it on other builds here, but to me, I'd say it's on the darker side. If you want more contrast, the Aqua White would probably give you the most.

    Great job on the pool! It looks to be similar to what we've designed, although we won't be having a spa. Do you think you were able to save money doing the owner build?
    28,000 gallon freeform, Stonescapes Tropics Blue Minipebble with abalone, 3.5' to 8.5' depth. 2 skimmers, 5 returns, dedicated vacuum port, Dolphin Z5 robot. All Pentair equip: EasyTouch 8, IC60 SWG, VS pump, 520 Cartridge Filter, 3 Intellibrites, 2 Color Cascade Bubblers. TurboTwister Slide and 8' Salt System Jump Board. TF-100. My Jan-Mar 2016 build:
    Waxahachie, TX Owner Build - A race to beat the baby!!

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    Dparnell's Avatar
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    Re: Owner / Builder Pool - Please Critique

    Thanks Jamie.

    I like Aqua White on the NPT web site but can't seem to find any other photos of Aqua White, it doesn't seem to be a popular color.

    Yes, when it's all said and done I think I will have saved $12k-$18k by doing owner builder. I was also able to pick and choose my subs which is something you cannot do with a builder.

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    Re: Owner / Builder Pool - Please Critique

    Very nice! Congratulations on your OB.

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    Re: Owner / Builder Pool - Please Critique

    Looks beautiful!
    Denise-TFP Guide
    IG 13.6x30 gunite, Radiant Fusion Topaz, 3.6/5.6/4, 14100 gal, 2 skimmer, 4 Hayward LED lights (pool & spa), Hayward Echostar VSP, 2 future fire bowls, raised beam wall w/ scuppers,7x7 raised spa, DE Progrid70, SWG Hayward Goldline, OmniLogic, Hayward 400K BTU heater, stamped colored deck, Dolphin Discovery robotic cleaner, TF100 test kit, Newbie in Bixby Oklahoma

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    Mod Squad kimkats's Avatar
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    Re: Owner / Builder Pool - Please Critique

    What color did you end up with for the plaster?

    Kim
    TFP Moderator 33x52 round AG 25,600 gals Sand Filter 1.5hp Pump - 2 Speed, SLAM, Pool School, Recommended Levels, Recommended Chemicals, Pool Math, Chlorine/CYA Chart, TF-100 Test Kit

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    Dparnell's Avatar
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    Re: Owner / Builder Pool - Please Critique

    Kim,

    Not sure yet. Leaning towards Aqua Blue. Been traveling for work, pre-plaster inspection is Monday. Hoping to get plaster done later next week. Will update once it's done.
    Owner/ Builder.
    38' x 22' Free Form w/Reef Step, 4 Sheer Descents, 9' Spa with Spillway. 12" R.B.B. 2,100 Sqft concrete deck. Pre-cast concrete coping.
    Pentair Equipment: Intelliflo VS Pump (011018), Whisperflo 1.5 HP, Whisperflo 2 HP. Master Temp HD Heater 400K BTU, Quad 80, IC40 Salt System, Easytouch, Intellibrite 5G Lights.

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