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Thread: Pool Renovations in Tucson

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    Cool Pool Renovations in Tucson

    Well, I took the plunge and decided to get the pool renovated. I got three bids over the weekend, chose a builder that I liked the best, and started the process yesterday. I'm getting the decrepit Kool deck redone, the tile cleaned, and replacing the dyed plaster with Pebbletec Stonescapes. The process should take three weeks. Here are some photos:








    Now that the pool is drained, I can see how bad the plaster really was (some cracks are visible in the photo above) and discovered that I was fighting an algae bloom. There are green spots around one of the drains and a few places here and there on the walls. There are even spots that could be the dreaded black algae.

    Two questions:
    • The plaster will soon be gone . Any special precautionary measures I should take when filling the pool? Should I do a SLAM? My numbers were good prior to draining (TC <=0.5) and nothing visible from the surface so I didn't realize there was a problem.
    • Since I will be starting from scratch, should I revert back to chlorine tabs from my new SWCG until CYA levels get up there? I have a full 5gal bucket of those things. I like the feel of saline water but it's getting colder and the pool won't be used much now.


    Thanks in advance for the tips. I'll keep posting pictures.

    - Flappy

    Edit: Third question - I'm considering changing the fiber optic lights for LED. I'm hoping for better illumination. Is the juice with th squeeze?
    16,500 gallon IG Pool & Spa: Intelliflo VS pump, Pentair Triton II TR-100 sand filter, Teledyne Laars Lite2 propane heater
    Laminar Jets (2): Hayward Maxflow SP1600 1/2HP, Hayward Star Clear C500 cartridge filter
    Jandy iAqualink RS-8 Rev T, Hayward AquaRite AQR15, Dolphin Supreme M5, Taylor K-2006, Taylor K-1766

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    Texas Splash's Avatar
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    Re: Pool Renovations in Tucson

    Hi Flappy. Congrats on the renovation. Looks like it was needed. As for your questions:
    1 - See this page: Pool School - Start-up New Plaster. First and foremost though follow the instructions of your contractor as to not void any warranty work.
    2 - You may not be able to add salt for 30 days, so you will be on liquid chlorine (bleach). Do not SLAM with new plaster. I would have the granular stabilizer ready to hang in a sock near your return jet immediately upon fill. For the first 30 days, start with a CYA target of about 40. Use the Chlorine/CYA chart (link below)and liquid bleach to maintain FC appropriate with that CYA probably an FC of around 5-6. Start slow for the first day or two (2-3ppm) then go up to 5-6. After the plaster break-in is done and you can add salt, crank-up that SWG and raise the CYA to 70 and adjust accordingly. The tabs would just take too long to use.
    3 - As for the LED lights, I have them for my pool. Very nice with different programming features. Personal preference I Guess.

    Hope that helps.
    Pat (a.k.a. Texas Splash) ~ My Pool: Viking Fiberglass; 17,888 Gal; Waterway Supreme 2-sp/2-hp pump; Hayward Ctg filter; TF-100 w/ Speed Stir
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    Mod Squad pooldv's Avatar
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    Re: Pool Renovations in Tucson

    Congrats! That is going to be great!

    Yes, it is fine to use up your bucket of tabs to raise your CYA level. Monitor your FC level closely at first to make sure it stays up and add bleach/liquid chlorine if the pucks can't keep up. Use Poolmath to determine how much CYA your pucks will add, there is a section called effects of adding chemicals.
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    Re: Pool Renovations in Tucson

    What vintage is your pool? Was the plaster original? I'm always curious to see how long various finishes last versus the "quoted" lifespans that we all hear from PB's.
    18'x38' Rectangle (3'-8 1/2' deep w/ diving board) - 27K gal. w/ gray plaster
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    JoyfulNoise's Avatar
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    Re: Pool Renovations in Tucson

    Hey Flappy! Glad to hear you're getting a reno done. Good luck with that.

    Advice given so far is from top-flight TFPers. Listen to them.

    Tabs are fine for raising CYA but they are slow to dissolve and quite acidic. So while they will bump up your CYA, they will lower pH and TA which is not good for fresh plaster/pebble. Best option in my opinion is to use granular stabilizer, liquid chlorine and muriatic acid to control the pH rise. Depending on the startup method, you might need baking soda for raising TA but that depends on what your PebbleTec installer is going to require. Talk to them about their startup method so that you don't void the warranty.


    Matt
    16k IG PebbleTec pool, 650gal spa, spillway and waterfall, 3HP IntelliFlo VS / 1.5HP WhisperFlo, Pentair QuadDE-100 filter, IC40 SWCG, MasterTemp 400k BTU/hr NG heater, KreepyKrauly suction-side cleaner Dolphin S300i robot, EasyTouch controls, city water, K-1001, K-2006 and K-1766 test kits, Mannitol test for borates

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    Re: Pool Renovations in Tucson

    Thanks for all your replies (and good advice)! Now that we finally have sun again, I can see that most of the dark spots were merely moisture and I doubt black algae exists although there is some green. It is amazing how bad the plaster really is. Rough spots, cracks, etc. Should have done this years ago.

    Quote Originally Posted by bmoreswim View Post
    What vintage is your pool? Was the plaster original? I'm always curious to see how long various finishes last versus the "quoted" lifespans that we all hear from PB's.
    The pool was built in 2004 and is a dyed plaster. We bought the house in 2012 but it was a foreclosure and bank-owned for over a year. The pool sat empty for at least part of that time.

    Realizing that I am early in the process, I must proclaim that I'm extremely happy with the pool company thus far. Prices are competitive; they aren't trying to oversell and even provide guidance when I ask for something that won't add much value; and they provide excellent communication. They were referred to me by a coworker and I wasn't led astray. For folks in Tucson, PM me and I will be happy to share the name.

    Recent storms delayed the timeline by one day and the total chip starts tomorrow. The pool is completely drained and awaiting the facelift. Even some critters moved in:



    I'll post more pictures as renovations progress...

    - Flappy
    16,500 gallon IG Pool & Spa: Intelliflo VS pump, Pentair Triton II TR-100 sand filter, Teledyne Laars Lite2 propane heater
    Laminar Jets (2): Hayward Maxflow SP1600 1/2HP, Hayward Star Clear C500 cartridge filter
    Jandy iAqualink RS-8 Rev T, Hayward AquaRite AQR15, Dolphin Supreme M5, Taylor K-2006, Taylor K-1766

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    Re: Pool Renovations in Tucson

    Looks like a banded orb weaver, fairly common. Probably hoping to start a nice huge web in your empty pool and capture some tasty snacks. They make spectacular webs.


    Matt
    16k IG PebbleTec pool, 650gal spa, spillway and waterfall, 3HP IntelliFlo VS / 1.5HP WhisperFlo, Pentair QuadDE-100 filter, IC40 SWCG, MasterTemp 400k BTU/hr NG heater, KreepyKrauly suction-side cleaner Dolphin S300i robot, EasyTouch controls, city water, K-1001, K-2006 and K-1766 test kits, Mannitol test for borates

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    Re: Pool Renovations in Tucson

    so, all that water that seems to still be weeping out of the tile in your pic, long after the water was drained... Was there water getting behind the tile and up under the decking? Are they going to regrout/seal the tile?
    10,500 gal IG, Topaz Pebble, auto-level
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    Re: Pool Renovations in Tucson

    Quote Originally Posted by BuckeyeChris View Post
    so, all that water that seems to still be weeping out of the tile in your pic, long after the water was drained... Was there water getting behind the tile and up under the decking? Are they going to regrout/seal the tile?
    Just cleaning at this point. We had a significant storm roll through and the photo was taken just after things started to clear up. Got quite a bit of rain.
    16,500 gallon IG Pool & Spa: Intelliflo VS pump, Pentair Triton II TR-100 sand filter, Teledyne Laars Lite2 propane heater
    Laminar Jets (2): Hayward Maxflow SP1600 1/2HP, Hayward Star Clear C500 cartridge filter
    Jandy iAqualink RS-8 Rev T, Hayward AquaRite AQR15, Dolphin Supreme M5, Taylor K-2006, Taylor K-1766

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    Mod Squad kimkats's Avatar
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    Re: Pool Renovations in Tucson

    OH I am SO in for this one! It is going to be fun to watch and spend money one!

    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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    Re: Pool Renovations in Tucson

    The pool company got a couple of days behind due to last week's storm but it looks like they are making an effort to catch up. Plaster chip kicked off this morning with an army of pool dudes - 7 in all.
    Forgive the quality of the first photo - I am at work and connecting to the outdoor web cam:




    These two were sent to me from the wife:





    I'll post more when I get home from work.

    - Flappy
    16,500 gallon IG Pool & Spa: Intelliflo VS pump, Pentair Triton II TR-100 sand filter, Teledyne Laars Lite2 propane heater
    Laminar Jets (2): Hayward Maxflow SP1600 1/2HP, Hayward Star Clear C500 cartridge filter
    Jandy iAqualink RS-8 Rev T, Hayward AquaRite AQR15, Dolphin Supreme M5, Taylor K-2006, Taylor K-1766

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    JoyfulNoise's Avatar
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    Re: Pool Renovations in Tucson

    Good to have a big crew. The chip-out work will go fast. Tell the wife to keep the windows and doors closed, the plaster dust will get kicked up by even the tiniest breeze.

    Can't wait to see the final result! Good luck!!

    Matt

    PS- Nice outdoor kitchen!!


    Matt
    16k IG PebbleTec pool, 650gal spa, spillway and waterfall, 3HP IntelliFlo VS / 1.5HP WhisperFlo, Pentair QuadDE-100 filter, IC40 SWCG, MasterTemp 400k BTU/hr NG heater, KreepyKrauly suction-side cleaner Dolphin S300i robot, EasyTouch controls, city water, K-1001, K-2006 and K-1766 test kits, Mannitol test for borates

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    Re: Pool Renovations in Tucson

    Quote Originally Posted by JoyfulNoise View Post
    ...the plaster dust will get kicked up by even the tiniest breeze.
    You weren't kiddin'!
    16,500 gallon IG Pool & Spa: Intelliflo VS pump, Pentair Triton II TR-100 sand filter, Teledyne Laars Lite2 propane heater
    Laminar Jets (2): Hayward Maxflow SP1600 1/2HP, Hayward Star Clear C500 cartridge filter
    Jandy iAqualink RS-8 Rev T, Hayward AquaRite AQR15, Dolphin Supreme M5, Taylor K-2006, Taylor K-1766

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    Re: Pool Renovations in Tucson

    Looks like the chip is complete:










    Some of the work scares me a little. Did they go too deep? I don't see sand but they raise an eyebrow:





    The good news is that no tiles were harmed in the chipping of this plaster. Hoping the tile cleaner guy and/or the deck dude comes tomorrow.

    One more question: I'm trying to decide on colors for the accent tile embedded into the steps. We're getting the StoneScapes Aqua Blue for the base. I am thinking Navy tiles; the wife is thinking an off white. Anyone have the Aqua Blue and if so, which worked for you?

    Thanks as always for your advice.

    - Flappy
    16,500 gallon IG Pool & Spa: Intelliflo VS pump, Pentair Triton II TR-100 sand filter, Teledyne Laars Lite2 propane heater
    Laminar Jets (2): Hayward Maxflow SP1600 1/2HP, Hayward Star Clear C500 cartridge filter
    Jandy iAqualink RS-8 Rev T, Hayward AquaRite AQR15, Dolphin Supreme M5, Taylor K-2006, Taylor K-1766

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    Mod Squad kimkats's Avatar
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    Re: Pool Renovations in Tucson

    I bet they were tired after all of that work!

    Better they got all of the loose stuff OUT! I bet it was loose and they kept going until they found solid. If they had left any loose stuff in there the chances of it failing in the future goes up. They can/will fill it in.

    What about bling glass 1"x1"???????? SHINY! You could cut the sheets to fit where you need them.

    blue glass 1x1 pool tile - Google Search

    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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    Re: Pool Renovations in Tucson

    Thanks, Kim. Your comments are encouraging. A couple of those pits are deep.
    The PB is including glow-in-the-dark tile at no extra fee:


    16,500 gallon IG Pool & Spa: Intelliflo VS pump, Pentair Triton II TR-100 sand filter, Teledyne Laars Lite2 propane heater
    Laminar Jets (2): Hayward Maxflow SP1600 1/2HP, Hayward Star Clear C500 cartridge filter
    Jandy iAqualink RS-8 Rev T, Hayward AquaRite AQR15, Dolphin Supreme M5, Taylor K-2006, Taylor K-1766

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    Re: Pool Renovations in Tucson

    Nice! What color did you pick?
    Marla
    No longer living vicariously through other people's pool builds. Pool build is complete on my IG SWCG pool, approx 10,000 gallons. All Jandy equipment - VS 1.5 hp pump, 580 cartridge filter, AquaPure 1400 salt cell, AquaLink PDA system. Dolphin m500. PebbleSheen Blue Surf with shells and beads added. TF-100 w/ SpeedStir. A Houston Pool Build Inside the Loop

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    Re: Pool Renovations in Tucson

    Quote Originally Posted by Marlahoutex View Post
    Nice! What color did you pick?
    Trying to decide. I am leaning toward the navy on the right; the wife prefers the off-white on the left. I am thinking the lighter color will blend in with the Aqua Blue StoneScapes and not stand out enough. She says the same about the blue tile.


    - Flappy
    16,500 gallon IG Pool & Spa: Intelliflo VS pump, Pentair Triton II TR-100 sand filter, Teledyne Laars Lite2 propane heater
    Laminar Jets (2): Hayward Maxflow SP1600 1/2HP, Hayward Star Clear C500 cartridge filter
    Jandy iAqualink RS-8 Rev T, Hayward AquaRite AQR15, Dolphin Supreme M5, Taylor K-2006, Taylor K-1766

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    Re: Pool Renovations in Tucson

    You should get some samples of the aqua blue and put them in a tub of water along with the tile. Might make it easier to decide.
    Marla
    No longer living vicariously through other people's pool builds. Pool build is complete on my IG SWCG pool, approx 10,000 gallons. All Jandy equipment - VS 1.5 hp pump, 580 cartridge filter, AquaPure 1400 salt cell, AquaLink PDA system. Dolphin m500. PebbleSheen Blue Surf with shells and beads added. TF-100 w/ SpeedStir. A Houston Pool Build Inside the Loop

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    Re: Pool Renovations in Tucson

    I agree with Kim. They were either voids in the original shotcrete, bad aggregate mix or loose chunks. The PB needs to see them and fill them. Why don't you give your PB a call and ask? I'm sure he'll let you know what he plans to do.

    As for tiles, I have no opinion. I find the subject to be too subjective as everyone's tastes are different. I'm sure that, whatever you pick, it will look great.


    Matt
    16k IG PebbleTec pool, 650gal spa, spillway and waterfall, 3HP IntelliFlo VS / 1.5HP WhisperFlo, Pentair QuadDE-100 filter, IC40 SWCG, MasterTemp 400k BTU/hr NG heater, KreepyKrauly suction-side cleaner Dolphin S300i robot, EasyTouch controls, city water, K-1001, K-2006 and K-1766 test kits, Mannitol test for borates

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