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Thread: Building on my own, need suggestions....DIGGING STARTED!!!!

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    Building on my own, need suggestions....DIGGING STARTED!!!!

    After 31 months of two mortgages, we closed on our house last week, so I'm trying to put a pool in for my dh who has worked 2 jobs all these months, he's willing to work the 2 jobs a little longer if I can manage this pool. I have tried to use pool companies in my area, but they were outrageous and not very customer focused...the 'best' company gave me a quote of 100k for a vinyl 20x40 plan with 1500 sq. feet of concrete decking, the only 'extra' I had was a tru-tile system...no spas, no waterfalls...so after contracting a massive remodel on our current house...I decided to build our own pool. We are using our farm to hold summer camps for foster kids (free to them) so I need a pool that will withstand the amt of traffic we could potentially have.

    Here is the area where I want to put it...


    And here is my plan...


    I am talking with a pool builder in Atlanta who is willing to help me in the process (we're in Alabama)..he is working up a quote to bring his crew to shoot the gunite and put the finish (Pebble tec) in..I have my backhoe guy working up a bid and a landscaper coming out this week to discuss deck options....

    1. We live in Alabama, high clay content in soil (red Alabama clay)..the pool will be right next to our pasture where I train horses and traipse a lot of red clay back and forth, so I'm a bit against a concrete deck unless it was stained because I don't want to keep pressure washing the clay out.

    2. I am looking at PeacockPavers out of Atmore, AL or stonesteps from California...pre cast concrete, bull nosed for the coping (2" thick) 24" in length....

    3. I want 2 lights, also 3 deck jets to keep water flowing to ward off mosquitoes and bugs in general...

    4. Still undecided on equipment, filters, pumps? Leaning towards Pentair but most here use Hayward...

    Any suggestions that I should consider in the next two weeks as I plan? I'm keeping a folder of what all I need, have a plumber/electrician coming out next week and would like to have a plan/idea of what I need to include...I will need to re-route well lines that service the outside spickets of my house...tear up the concrete deck I currently have because it sits directly on TOP of my septic tank! The pool will be 15 feet from the tank and field lines run away from the pool... I need an access to the tank so I did a rough allowance to put a garden bed in where the tank is..will know more when I dig up the concrete...

    Any suggestions would be very helpful!

    Blessings,
    Tara

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    Re: Building on my own, need suggestions....

    do your own sub-contracting. if you have the time.
    when you get 100k quote on a somewhat normal feature pool. They just dont want to do your pool or discouraging you to do it.

    read up on this.
    http://www.ownergrown.com/build_your_ow ... izona.html
    14000K gal 400sq ft w 6x8 spa, Pentair Intelliflo VS3050, Pentair cart filter, Pentair Master Temp, Pentair Intellichlor IC40, Pentair Easy Touch 8, wireless control. 3x intellibrite LED light. Pentair Kreepy Krauley Sand Shark. Solar Panel Plumbing. 2 x 24 inch arc sheer 24" spa spill way.

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    Re: Building on my own, need suggestions....

    $100K ?

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    Srswimsalot's Avatar
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    Re: Building on my own, need suggestions....

    That's a lot of coin and you have no trees to remove. Plus the ground is flat.
    They must be very proud of their pools. I'm guessing they use gold plated drain covers and stair rails.

  5. Back To Top    #5

    Re: Building on my own, need suggestions....

    No gold plated drains, but it was partly my fault, I was awfully proud of my construction job on the house, all bids were over 100k to do my project (added 1200 sq. feet, bathroom, kitchen, refloored entire house, etc.) it cost me just over 45k for everything and when we had the house reappraised the appraisal went up 90k, even in this market! So I blabbed my mouth too much in pride I guess and told him we wanted to use our savings to build a new pool..guess he heard the 90k not the 45 differential! The other two pool companies took little or not interest in the project, they just do cookie cutter plans and throw in a 1000 sq. feet of concrete decking, when I started asking them about drainage issues, breaks in the concrete, options for pool coping, they just looked at me like I was crazy...oh, also the company that bid 100k had done my husband's boss' pool, they started out a quote for him that was in the 70k range and it went well over that, my guess is 100k or more because they hit rock and started charging exhorbitantly for excavation...I just don't like how that pool builder works, he just assumes that if my dh's boss could pay, then we could...I don't do business like that.

    Appreciate all your help, I'm hoping to start digging in 2 weeks, so I've got to lay out my plans quickly! Thanks!!
    Tara

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    Brentr's Avatar
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    Re: Building on my own, need suggestions....

    I am thinking that you should put in a concrete pool as opposed to a vinyl liner pool. It would be much better to the elements like lots of kids, you never know if one of them might accidently puncture the pool I had one in Mississippi and we had constant problems with the liner leaking and had actually never wanted a pool again but you can see that DW convinced me to build a pool again and so far I am loving it
    6,000 gal, IG free form,Beach Series Antigua by Marbletite Pebble finish,Sheer Descent, IG Fountain, Dolphin / Mermaid Statues,Dura- Glas 1.5hp pump,Hayward Pro-grid DE4820, Aqua Rite SWG with T-Cell 15,Heat Siphon Heat Pump DX 5.0 109,000 btu, Pool Cage, 1800sq ft Tremron Estate Pavers,Aquatherm Ecosun Solar Panels 192 sq ft with GL-235 Controller,Pentair IntelliBrite, Apollo Magnetic Stirrer Our New Poolbuild, Jacksonville, FL yr 2009 Solar install Outdoor kitchen upgrade

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    Re: Building on my own, need suggestions....

    Yes Brent! I really want to go gunite...working on reviewing bids on a crew that will help me do that portion, if their bid comes within my budget range, we'll definitely go that route...there are just a lot of unknowns as far as the budget and I'm trying to hammer those down these next two weeks...most my bids should be in to me next week..some things take 6 weeks to order so I'm trying to line up all my suppliers/subs so no time delays will affect my crews....

    Any recommendations on pool equipment for this size pool? Just the three aqua jets, about 38,000 gallons...

    Tara

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    Brentr's Avatar
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    Re: Building on my own, need suggestions....

    I am not educated enough to make any suggestions However there are plenty of great people who will come in and help you
    6,000 gal, IG free form,Beach Series Antigua by Marbletite Pebble finish,Sheer Descent, IG Fountain, Dolphin / Mermaid Statues,Dura- Glas 1.5hp pump,Hayward Pro-grid DE4820, Aqua Rite SWG with T-Cell 15,Heat Siphon Heat Pump DX 5.0 109,000 btu, Pool Cage, 1800sq ft Tremron Estate Pavers,Aquatherm Ecosun Solar Panels 192 sq ft with GL-235 Controller,Pentair IntelliBrite, Apollo Magnetic Stirrer Our New Poolbuild, Jacksonville, FL yr 2009 Solar install Outdoor kitchen upgrade

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    Brentr's Avatar
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    Re: Building on my own, need suggestions....

    If you need a pool light, I have one for sale, however it is 300w and I am thinking that you will be putting 500w lights in your pool Please let me know maybe this would save you some money
    6,000 gal, IG free form,Beach Series Antigua by Marbletite Pebble finish,Sheer Descent, IG Fountain, Dolphin / Mermaid Statues,Dura- Glas 1.5hp pump,Hayward Pro-grid DE4820, Aqua Rite SWG with T-Cell 15,Heat Siphon Heat Pump DX 5.0 109,000 btu, Pool Cage, 1800sq ft Tremron Estate Pavers,Aquatherm Ecosun Solar Panels 192 sq ft with GL-235 Controller,Pentair IntelliBrite, Apollo Magnetic Stirrer Our New Poolbuild, Jacksonville, FL yr 2009 Solar install Outdoor kitchen upgrade

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    Re: Building on my own, need suggestions....

    Yes! I plan on using LED lights...or 2 500 W lights...we are out in the country and it gets pretty dark at night...I'm hopeful to get it all started to dig in 2 weeks so I've got to boogie!!

    Tara

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    Re: Building on my own, need suggestions....

    I emailed the site above about help with design/plumbing/etc. on the pool...with them being out of Arizona I don't know how much help she would be on building a pool in Alabama clay..any special issues I need to consider? I am a bit concerned about hitting water, only because we've had torrential rains and our area has been saturated many times, my house sits on the highest plot of land pretty much, but our pond is at it's highest...about 2 acres behind my house my neighbor dug a 12' pit to burn remnants of trees left over when the logging trucks cleared some of his land..that hole has been filled with water 8'down for the past year! Granted that parcel of sits about 3 feet below where our house is...but it gives me concern about popping issues with gunite...I want to make sure my drainage and special issues concerning this are addressed and not let people tell me it will be fine....until it's my problem and pops!

    Thanks!
    Tara

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    Re: Building on my own, need suggestions....

    Quote Originally Posted by Brentr
    I am thinking that you should put in a concrete pool as opposed to a vinyl liner pool.
    I'll second Brent's suggestion.
    You'll never regret this decision. Note, I'm not implying you'll regret a vinyl pool at all.

    See,ya,
    Kelly

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    Re: Building on my own, need suggestions....

    I'm having a hard time thinking of a $100K vinyl pool.

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    Re: Building on my own, need suggestions....

    Kelly, if it works in our budget, gunite it is!!..today I called Pentair, do you realize there is not even one dealer within 75 miles of me?? He referred me to a dealer in Nashville (about 90 miles) but do I want to buy a system if there's no dealer that close? I just hear Pentair has quality equipment that comes with little maintenance, or maybe I just hear all the problems with Hayward and Jandy b/c that's all they install here??

    The 100k thing is still eating me up, I mean, these are the specs, 20x40 standard vinyl pool..no upgrade in mill, tru-tile system..just a tile system at the water line, brick coping (that's all they do, they even said they won't do pre-cast concrete, just brick...I hate brick because of all the mortar joints, in 10 years it is cracking apart!! Can't imagine what the salt water would do to help degrade the minerals in it) concrete deck, no stamping or stain, 3 deck jets, 2 LED lights and their standard Hayward equipment..that's it!! 100k!!! I wrote the guy back this long letter itemizing each element in my build and kept having to not send it because I was essentially calling him a crook...then he called me on the phone to see if I had received his bid...I must have still been heated, because I started asking him specifically how he came up with that figure and all he could say was that they come in high so when the build comes in less, the homeowner is happy..I essentially told him he padded our 'bid' by 300% and unless he could come back with a realistic one, to find another customer.

    But sometimes these things happen so that we are forced to take on the project ourselves...I really have no fear, the biggest issue is that I get overconfident and eventually will convince myself that I can install my kids braces myself as well, how hard can it be?? No offense to orthodontists....

    Tara

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    midtngal's Avatar
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    Re: Building on my own, need suggestions....

    My input as far as your equipment is...if Pentair sent you to Roy Vaden..DON'T EVEN THINK ABOUT IT!! He built my pool and it was nothing but a nightmare so I can only imagine what just purchasing equipment would be like. My experience with Pentair has been fabulous. I deal direct with them. I've had to replace my pump (under warranty) and they sent it right to me. Just thought I'd give you my 2 cents!
    10,700 gal IG vinyl
    Pentair Triton II TR50 sand filter
    Hayward SharkVac XL cleaner; Emerson 1HP pump
    Bioguard Mineral Springs SWG
    2 skimmers

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    Re: Building on my own, need suggestions....

    I haven't called yet, but it was Aqua pools in Nashville, would that be the guy you're referring to? What issues did you have with your pool? My paver guy came out today to work up a bid, he does not have experience with gunite pools only putting coping around vinyl pools...I plan on going with Peacock pavers out of South Alabama...nice product...but due to the rise in my yard (about 3 inches) we really need to have the entire back side of the pool be a high paver wall or rock wall (24") so that we can divert the water away using a drainage system behind it that will lead out to my pastures...I'm pretty sure we'll go with pavers instead of concrete decking...but he will put in the pavers and wondered if it was okay to backfill the gunite pool with #67 rock because the paver wall will be heavier than a stacked stone wall...I'm going off to try and find pictures of built up walls on gunite to give him an idea of how to prep...any suggestions? Instead of deck jets we'll go with a weeping/fountain wall feature if we can fit it in...

    Thanks!
    Tara

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    midtngal's Avatar
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    Re: Building on my own, need suggestions....

    No, it wasn't Aqua Pools...haven't heard anything about them. Roy Vaden Pools is the builder I was referring to. I just had a simple vinyl pool and it took him 7 months!

    Whoever you choose to do any of your projects, I would check them out on the BBB. Not that they are the most accurate but if there's even 1 complaint, you can bet there are plenty more they aren't revealing!

    Good luck with your build!
    Karen
    10,700 gal IG vinyl
    Pentair Triton II TR50 sand filter
    Hayward SharkVac XL cleaner; Emerson 1HP pump
    Bioguard Mineral Springs SWG
    2 skimmers

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    Re: Building on my own, need suggestions....

    Snooze and you'd miss how quick this build is happening!! Found my subs!! Got a crew to do the shell, and working on the decking with locals..have electrician/plumber handling cut wires/plumbing from well and barn..it's coming together quick! Got my permit pulled and learned a valuable lesson there, honesty costs!! Somehow, I doubt that pool company that gave me a 100k bid would tell the county it cost 100k! Your permit is 1% of what the pool costs...lesson learned, honesty still wins, just hard to write that check!!


    That mountain of fill is much larger than I imagined!! Hoping to get a few guys out tomorrow to take it away, I only need 1/2oth of that around the farm....I have read so much about 2" piping, I will have about 35,000 gallons (20x40 with 3.5-8' deep) and wonder if I can get by with 1.5" in and 2" out?? Or is it best to use 2" all around? I'm using Jandy equipment and it will be salt water...any help would be great, plumber comes out tomorrow, so if I need to buy more 2" I need to know!!

    Thanks!!
    Tara

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    Re: Building on my own, need suggestions....DIGGING STARTED!!!!

    Oh! Did I mention that the previous owners had poured a large concrete patio on TOP of their septic tank??? So today I got to see what 10 years of no pumping looks and SMELLS like!! Oh me!! Some things a lady just shouldn't be exposed to....blech!! I should have taken a pic of that! Here's my plan, I had to take off the two far seats next to the fence, just not enough room, I may move the fence back 5 feet but then I'd need to do some work on putting the horses up while we do it and just one more thing I'd like not to do, but it would give me the chance to rescape the yard so no drainage or very little would come towards pool....keeping it simple folks but wanting no future fuss!

    Tara

  20. Back To Top    #20

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    Re: Building on my own, need suggestions....DIGGING STARTED!!!!

    Go with 2" unless the equipment is more than 50" away, then go 2-1/2" for the suction side.

    Dig your holes for the light niches.

    Scott
    Owner of - PoolGuyNJ LLC
    Expert Pool and Spa Repairs, Renovations, and Augmentation. Helping people decide what is the right gear for meeting their needs. Expectations Set, Expectations Met, No Surprises.

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