Greetings everyone ! Apologies for the wall of text in advance.
I am in the design phase of the whole pool building process and thought I would run some things by you all for opinions and or advice based on your experiences.
I live about twenty miles north of Galveston, TX. The Summers are stupid hot, the humidity is usually off the chart, and the mosquitoes carry off small pets from time to time. Fall and Winter months are mild with average air temps hovering in the low sixties during the Winter. ( We occasionally get a week or two of colder weather, but that's about it. )
Having had enough of not being able to go outside at all due to the heat, humidity and the mosquito mob that demands a blood donation anytime you dare to venture out, the pool project idea came to life after being in a friends pool recently.
The pool is going to be a basic rectangular design of 15 x 30. ( ~15k gal ) This is the maximum size pool I can put into the back yard while keeping enough decking space around the entire thing to allow easy access to all sides of the pool for maintenance / cleaning. ( minimum 4' - 6' of decking around entire perimeter )
The pool will be 4.5' deep on one end transitioning to 5' on the other. While a bit short, it will primarily be used as an exercise / lap pool. As we have no children ( nor plans to ) only two adults will be using the pool on a regular basis.
Decking will encompass the majority of the back yard. Typical concrete / spray-deck setup. A standalone hot tub will be installed as the home does not have gas lines available to it to heat an in-ground version. Costs to have gas company install said gas lines into the neighborhood are in the ludicrous range, so that option is right out. This means I will be doing water chemistry for both a pool and a hot-tub independently.
The entire pool and decking area will be fully covered with a screen enclosure. ( ~1500 sq feet ) These are typically found around the Florida area but will be mandatory in my case for a few reasons noted below.
1) Trees surrounding the property would make keeping leaves / debris out of the pool a daily nightmare.
2) If the heat or humidity isn't enough, the mosquitoes cheer anytime anyone walks into the back yard.
3) I live with a large parrot. The enclosure will be a safety barrier to allow him supervised outside time without worry of predators ( hawks ) or loss of a fully flighted bird.
This link will give you an idea of the type of enclosure I'm looking at.
Extra reinforcement will get added around the edges of the decking to allow the structure to bolt down to it. Big plus to my pool builder who has worked with the enclosure company before and knows exactly what needs to be done.
In theory, the enclosure should help keep the pool a bit cleaner as there will effectively be zero debris / critters or insects coming in from outside of it. ( Other than Pollen Armageddon during the Spring anyway )
The equipment loadout looks something like this:
( I don't have specific models available atm as my proposal sheet isn't in front of me )
Hayward Variable Speed pump
Hayward Cartridge Filter
Hayward Aquarite SWG
Hayward Colorlogic LED lights ( 1-2 unsure how many I would need on a pool this size )
AquaCal T135 HeatPump
UV setup to help with water sterilization
Most of that is pretty typical with maybe the exception of the UV and HeatPump.
I would like to extend the swimming season as much as I possibly can, thus the reasons for the HeatPump. The average air temps and humidity down here should make it a pretty decent choice since I don't have a gas option. It should work pretty well for all but the coldest days we have. ( Which aren't all that many tbh ) A pool cover will be mandatory to retain the heat in the cooler months.
One concern is the fact the pool will never get direct sunlight shining on it due to the enclosure. As a result, the pool may run cooler than normal. Great news in the dead of summer when pool temps can easily exceed 90f+. Not so much when the weather starts to finally cool down in late Fall. ( Would a darker plaster do anything to heat the pool from sunlight behind an enclosure ? )
The idea is to keep the water temps in the 75ish range in the Fall / Winter time frames. It will be what it will be in the Summer.
The pool coping will be travertine. The plaster is Pebble-Tech I think. Decking is concrete / spray-deck I believe. No waterfalls, slides, Vatican sized marble fountains, etc. A simple pool where I can get away from the world and exercise or swim about in peace is pretty much the goal here.
I know SaltWater systems fall into one of two camps. Those who love them, and those who hate them. As an ex-Navy type, I can fully attest to what high salinity ( read that seawater ) does to anything and everything that comes into contact with it.
However, I know that a SW pool is a fraction of the salinity of seawater. I also know that choosing the right type of materials and equipment is a big factor in how the pool will perform in the long run. My very irrelevant opinion on the subject says that most pool failures are likely due to two things:
1) Improper material or equipment selection. ( SW + Soft Stone or equipment not designed for it = bad idea )
2) Failure to maintain your water chemistry. ( Out of whack levels are very rough on everything )
Having recently been in a SW pool, I think we're leaning toward that setup vs the old school chlorine tablet systems of old.
Now that you know the basics, I would LOVE to hear any opinions about any part of this setup. Especially interested in those who have experience with the heatpumps and / or enclosure systems as neither of them are very common in this area.