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Thread: Before you build your pool, Size matters

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    Before you build your pool, Size matters

    This is my 3rd pool build, and it is the smallest of the 3. My yard is a bit smaller than the other 2 but for some reason the wife and I got stuck on a design idea and a few $$$$ and decided not to make the pool as big as we should have. If you are planning on building a pool, do not allow a few $$$$ to influence your decision regarding size. Ours is a geometric that is 14W and 17W x 32. It is 3 feet to 5.6 ft. WAY to shallow. The wife wanted to play volleyball! A major regret. Our old pool was 40 feet by 20, and that is a HUGE difference. My kids dont swim in this pool because the surface is cutting their toes, it is also like bathing in a hot bath and it is just small. We didnt have any fancy water features, we just failed to build it bigger thinking we would be spending to much money. If we had that to do again we would have gladly spent another 10k to make it bigger. SO moral of my story, do not build a pool that is too small, or too shallow, if you have a budget, dump the water feature, fountain, fire pit blah blah and build it big!

    I have a really big bird bath in my yard.
    15000 Salt Water, Hydrazzo plaster, all Jandy equipment. SWG, Polaris 280, booster pump, raised spa
    Houston, Texas -- It's a 105 in the shade.

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    Re: Before you build your pool, Size matters

    Good advice. I started thinking a 16' x 32' but decided to go to 20' x 40' x 8', glad I did, it doesn't seem to big at all, should have gone to 9' deep though and bigger would have been good also.
    DONE, 20 x 40, inground gunite, 30" raised bond beam with 3 12" sheer descents, 8' diving board, pentair 420 cartridge filter, vs-3050 pump, intellechlor ic-40, auto cvr, Tahoe blue pebble tech, 6ea 4' x 12.5' & 2ea 1' x 12.5' helicol solar panels, legend robotic cleaner.

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    Re: Before you build your pool, Size matters

    bigger than 20x40? wow. What is the standard depth for having a diving board.. 12ft? 14ft?

    I have many years before I will be in the market for an in-ground. Most likely it would require a move. I do wish I could have a diving board and slide
    Aaron
    [ Vogue Vectra 24' AG | Hard plumb: Hayward Power-Flo Matrix 1HP 2-speed, 27" sand filter & Pentair MiniMax 100 NG | Taylor K-2006 | Central IL ]
    Powered by: TFP, PoolMath & TFTestkits

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    Re: Before you build your pool, Size matters

    Mine is 8' deep now with a diving board, which is good enough unless you dive at a steep angle. If I remember the cost inc from 16 x 32 to 20 x 40 was about $4000 more, in the scope of a $65000 pool not a huge deal. Its a true statement that the only time cost matters is when you pay the bill, later the cost is forgotten and you'll wish you did what you really wanted and didn't get cheap.
    DONE, 20 x 40, inground gunite, 30" raised bond beam with 3 12" sheer descents, 8' diving board, pentair 420 cartridge filter, vs-3050 pump, intellechlor ic-40, auto cvr, Tahoe blue pebble tech, 6ea 4' x 12.5' & 2ea 1' x 12.5' helicol solar panels, legend robotic cleaner.

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    Re: Before you build your pool, Size matters

    lol, i can just hear merl say to his wife in a really sarcastic voice, "hey honey, let's go play some volleyball in our backyard bathtub!"

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    Re: Before you build your pool, Size matters

    I have not said hey honey, let's go play some volleyball in our backyard bathtub! yet but I will tonight. Man we screwed up so badly. We have talked about moving, digging it out, filling it in, it is worthless, it is a hot tub on steroids. Good news is we paid it off today. Great.
    15000 Salt Water, Hydrazzo plaster, all Jandy equipment. SWG, Polaris 280, booster pump, raised spa
    Houston, Texas -- It's a 105 in the shade.

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    Re: Before you build your pool, Size matters

    I posted elsewhere questions about a new pool, and a very helpful member directed me to your post. I am floored that a 17x32 pool is considered small - I am glad I am reading up as much as I can! I was assuming a 10x25 pool (250 sq ft) pool was "small" and a 14x28' (400 sq ft) was medium/large. Now reading how unhappy you are with a 17x32 pool is scary - I think I'm going to buy some lawn paint tomorrow @ Home Depot and just mark up my backyard -- I need to visualize a pool on the ground. Thank you for a very informative discussion on pool size!

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    Re: Before you build your pool, Size matters

    Good advice here. Go large on the pool and *** the extras later. Pretty easy to add a fire pit 5 years from now, not so easy you make the pool wider. Same goes for the deck. Figure about how much deck you think you will need and then double it. While our pool is about 14 x 36 (and that is OK for us) and our deck is pretty big, I would like to have a few more feet here and there.

    If you are going to paint your yard, better put furniture in it as well. When we built the pool and had the deck poured, it looked gigantic. I was regretting how big we made it. Then we filled it with furniture and I was regretting tht I did not make it a little bigger.

    Of course, if you are going with pavers, you have a little leeway as you can make it begger later.
    Jim

    Southern Frederick County, MD - Leisure Moroccan 38 Fiberglass Pool - 19,800 gallons
    Pentair 1.5 hp 2 speed pump - Cartridge filter - Dolphin robot - TF-100 Test Kit - SWCG

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    Re: Before you build your pool, Size matters

    Our pool is about 16x33 and 5' deep in the middle 3 on one end and 4 on the other. It does not seem to small to us at all. We had a kids party had our house a few weeks ago with almost 30 children swimming with no problem (we just had to direct traffic as they jumped of the wall). We have lots of deck space and several benches/steps for people to sit in the water. The pool is also very pretty with a waterfall and nice landscaping making for a relaxing outdoor environment. I often enjoy the pool as much when I'm sitting on the patio looking at it as when I'm in it.
    13k gallon IG gunite pool
    Jandy 2 speed pump
    Jandy cartridge filter
    Stenner Pump and tank

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    Brentr's Avatar
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    Re: Before you build your pool, Size matters

    Quote Originally Posted by merl
    I have not said hey honey, let's go play some volleyball in our backyard bathtub! yet but I will tonight. Man we screwed up so badly. We have talked about moving, digging it out, filling it in, it is worthless, it is a hot tub on steroids. Good news is we paid it off today. Great.
    Yep size really matters I never wanted a big pool, think it is a waste not to have a pool and not be able to stand in it, however all we wanted was a pool big enough to get wet, soak, float and socialize in. We call it a SPOOL Ours is 10 x 20 and goes from 3.5 ft to 4 ft 10 inches with lots of water features. It is plenty big for the occasional swim and for toddlers, no water bombing or diving allowed here. It is great for walking in, the wife had her knee replaces with a metal one. It takes me less than 1min to brush the pool that way I have more time to float and drink I can put the solar blanket on by myself however with the wife it takes us about 20 secs to do. Also it uses less chemical, and the pump runs about 1.5 hrs per day, as it takes about 75 mins to turn over the pool. It also heats and cools much faster than larger pools and the cost to fill it is pennies compared to a larger pool. Yes it is all relative, with as much as a pool costs we wanted to maximize the use of our pool. Just some thoughts to also consider. If we had to do it over again we would do it the same except we would add an extra 800 sq ft of deck. Believe me you can never have too much deck
    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: Before you build your pool, Size matters

    It is no fun to admit mistakes in building something so permanent. I know we all learn things during and after the fact that change what we would have done. Of course life needs change too, for example handicap accessability or when the kids are little you may not want a deep end but for teenagers it may be more of a necessity.

    We all make many compromises all through the process and for me most of it was budget related. We definitely wanted to be responsible with what we spent. Not just because of the cost now but added monthly upkeep. BTW,..Our latest dilemma is the fact that having a paver deck instead of concrete will cost as much as the rest of the pool.

    Generally pools don't add to the value your home that you spend on them and I have 50% of my neighbors that don't ever use theirs anymore.
    At least one is getting bids to have it filled in, says he hasn't used it since the kids moved out, but still pays a pool service (and electrical), roughly $150 per month.

    We definitely have tried to learn from our neighbors and the fine folks here at TFP, to build the right size, shape, and amenities, while keeping it within our budgeting constraints.
    We think the key is in the "backyard oasis" theme that is promoted here. It's not always about actually swimming but being near the water, grilling, lounging, socializing, with the ambiance of the water, lights and water features, etc. My wife and I just purchased a new grill and some fire pots, tiki torches, etc,.
    Mainly this should be convenient like an extention or your living (and kitchen areas), but be able to be totally secured for (toddler) safety.
    Again compromises.

    The best thing we can do is keep sharing, the good and the bad.

    Thanks for everyone's help,
    We are already having fun.
    John.
    "Experience is what you get, just after you needed it."

    Owner DIY build, steel/liner kit, 18x36 Deer Creek, sport depth, approx 17,500 gal,
    Aqua Plus SWG, 1 1/2 hp, 2 speed, 300# sand filter and twin Color logic 4.0s, MX-8 Cleaner.
    My DIY Pool Build

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    Re: Before you build your pool, Size matters

    I agree with merl. Go bigger instead of add on luxuries. These can be added later. Not one of my friends have yet to say I wish my pool was smaller.
    OB Pool - 45K Gal. 64'x25' free-form IG - 35'x18" raised bond beam - Swim up bar w/ 5 stools - 14'x8 ' sunken patio/grill area w/ icemaker, fridge, SS cabinets, sink, granite counters, dual head grill - 14' spa w/12 venturi jets - 2 fire bowls - 1 firepit - Indeck drink cooler - 3 fiberlit waterfalls - 14' sun shelf with 2 fiberlit bubblers - 25 x fiberlit star floor fixtures - 5 Pentair Intelliflow 3HP pumps - Tiger Shark QC Cleaner - 4 Pentair Color LED Intellibrite Lights - Pentair 400K Master Temp - 2 Intellichlor IC40 alt cells - Intellitouch i9 w/ i10x expansion - Pentair IS10 spa side remote - MobileTouch2 - 4 Valve Actuators - Silencer Blower - Pentair 520 Cartridge Filter - 2 fiberlit laminars - 4 Fiberstar Illuminators - Perimeter fiberlit bar counter and spa - 2 Bermuda Skimmers - 8 Returns - Hydrazzo custom color plaster - Natural quartz ledging - Glass Mosaic Tile - 2000 sq ft paver deck w/ double banded poured coping - Interfab G-Force Pool slide.

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    Brentr's Avatar
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    Re: Before you build your pool, Size matters

    Quote Originally Posted by spillmar
    I agree with merl. Go bigger instead of add on luxuries. These can be added later. Not one of my friends have yet to say I wish my pool was smaller.
    And all of my friends who have pools wish they had a smaller pool In fact two of them are in the process of making their pool shallower and smaller in size Like I said it depends what your personal needs are
    Sorry about the come back spillmar
    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: Before you build your pool, Size matters

    This...

    Quote Originally Posted by spillmar
    I agree with merl. Go bigger instead of add on luxuries. These can be added later. Not one of my friends have yet to say I wish my pool was smaller.
    You can do everything people will enjoy in their small pools---with a large pool, but not the other way around.
    Completed: June 2011
    18' X 38' IG Vinyl, 3' - 8' depth ~ 24K gallons
    2 skimmers, 2 wall suctions, 3 returns, 1.5" piping

    Hayward Equipment: 1HP Tri-star 2-speed, Aqua-Plus SWG,
    Star-Clear Plus 175 sqft cartridge filter, Colorlogic 4.0 LED

    The Pool Cleaner 4X(suction)
    2011 Jacuzzi J-280 Hot tub

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    Re: Before you build your pool, Size matters

    Quote Originally Posted by spillmar
    I agree with merl. Go bigger instead of add on luxuries. These can be added later. Not one of my friends have yet to say I wish my pool was smaller.
    Quote Originally Posted by mx702
    This..

    You can do everything people will enjoy in their small pools---with a large pool, but not the other way around.
    I don't think everyone wishes they had an olympic size diving pool, nor the upkeep.

    I get what you are trying to say,....Don't cut costs on size just to save a little money.

    On the other hand if I waited till I could afford everything I want in a pool, I would never have it.
    We waited long enough, it's now time to do what is feasible.

    Thanks,
    John
    "Experience is what you get, just after you needed it."

    Owner DIY build, steel/liner kit, 18x36 Deer Creek, sport depth, approx 17,500 gal,
    Aqua Plus SWG, 1 1/2 hp, 2 speed, 300# sand filter and twin Color logic 4.0s, MX-8 Cleaner.
    My DIY Pool Build

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    Re: Before you build your pool, Size matters

    Our pool is 12 X @$ X 4. It is much smaller than the last pool I had, but it works for what we want to do in the pool. And that I think is the key. Deciding what you are going to want to do and building a pool that will accommodate that. Our current pool is not good for swimming as it is too short. On the other hand it is perfect for floating with the beverage of choice and for little kids. As the OP pointed out his wife wants to play volleyball and the pool is not large enough. The same would go for a large family or a large number of teenagers. So I think the real lesson is to not waste money on a pool that is larger than your needs and to not penny pinch by building a pool smaller than your needs. And one does have to consider the time and cost of maintenance. The bigger it is the more it will cost. My 3/4 acre yard takes a lot more time, energy, and money than my old postage stamp size yard.
    Larry in Texas

    Above ground 7,700 gallons, 19 inch sand filter ( 2 sq. ft.), Liquidator, and a WaterWay Hi-Flo Pump with an A.O. Smith 1 hp SF 1.0 motor.

  17. Back To Top    #17

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    Re: Before you build your pool, Size matters

    My pool is on the small size, I did not have it built, but I knew it small when buying the house. I did not buy our house just for the pool, but for the entire backyard oasis. We have a small pool with great yard with lots of decking, awesome landscaping and great view. What I have learned is that it is extremely easy to take care of, extremely easy to heat up and swim in the winter and has a ton of features my friends would like to have on their pools. We have been swimming non stop since the end of February with a very minimal natural gas bill. Our neighbors across the street have a standard simple pool, square but much bigger and that is about it, and when they were over for my daughters b-day they commented on how much this wish they had a pool like ours. I guess it really depends on what you want and what you want to do with your pool and backyard.
    Approx 11K Gal. 10'X30' Semi free-form IG - 6 ' raised spa w/6 jets - 10' circle sun shelf with 1 bubbler - Waterfall - 3 / 1.5 HP pumps - Polaris 280 Cleaner - 3 Pentair Color LED Intellibrite Lights - Pentair 400K Master Temp - 2 Valve Actuators - 5 Fiberstar Mini Laminars - 1 Fiberstars 2004 Illuminator - 2 Skimmers - 6 Returns - Caribbean Blue Pebble Tech - 600+ sq ft kool decK - Auto Fill - 2 Boston Acoustics VOYA RK5 Outdoor Rock Speakers - 2 TIC Corporation TFS5CN 6.5-Inch 150-Watt Terra-Forms Rock Speakers - Apple Airport Express - 1 Awesome View.

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    Re: Before you build your pool, Size matters

    We have a 1430 and love it!

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    Re: Before you build your pool, Size matters

    It's likelY a matter if perspective. If you had started with the smaller pool, (OP) it would have probably seemed great. But going form a large one to a smaller one, it makes the small seem smaller.
    26' X 52" Intex Ultra Frame. Intex Sand Filter
    26' X 52 Intex Ultra Frame Install
    You can lead a horse to (clear) water, but you can't force him to swim in it!

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    Before you build your pool, Size matters

    My pool is going to be 29' x 19', and that's the biggest I could possibly get in my backyard with my patio and utility easement. This thread has me doubting myself a little on our depth. Deadline for changing depth is tomorrow. Our shallow end is 3.5' going to 5.5' in the deep end. Builder said anything deeper than that and it will take away too much shallow end (where he said kids and most people congregate). Never had a pool so I don't really know. Kids are 14, 12, 9, & 7. Another concern I have is the water getting too hot in the Houston summer at that shallow of a deep end. Please help a newbie. Thoughts?

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